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ad not showing in search results

QS seems ok, but keyword get few impressions

10:58 am on Oct 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I'm an adwords advertiser for many years, in my account I've spent >500.000$ and I've a quite good confidence with adwords.

I've a strange problem with some keywords that don't appear in search results, or appear getting very few impressions.

At the moment I speak about an adgroup with only a single keyword in exact match (cpc 0.55); its quality is 7/10; this month its CTR is 2.11% (not so bad) and average position is 7.3 (9.1 on google search and 5.3 on search partners).
The campaign budget is 2 times the daily spent (and google says it's ok); campain is set on Accelerated: Show ads as quickly as possible

This keyword has a much better CTR on search partners then on google search (2.67% vs 1.59%) - content network is disabled.

What happens is that if I search for my keyword I don't see in the search results (there are 6 pages with ads for this keyword), and the google diagnostic and analisys tools say that the keyword doesn't trigger any ad (but my ad is there, hasn't negative keywords and after all gets some impressions and clicks, 15000 impressions this month so far).

The landing page is highly relevant (it's in the first 5 positions of the organic results too)

Seems that this keyword get sometimes excluded from the auction, but I don't understand the reason/s. I wouldn't increase max cpc because it's already quite high for me and my industry (travel - hotel reservations)

I've the same problem for other keywords too where just for test I've set the max cpc to 2 (more then 3 times the profit level) but they don't get impressions. I always speak about very targeted ads with few keywords in exact match

Campaigns are targeted on one of the main european languages and for all the (233) countries.

Have you any idea on what happens and how to solve?

Any suggestion is much appreciated.

Thank you!

12:30 pm on Oct 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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You know you would be very interested to read the article on Google's artificial intelligence that Jeremy Chatfield did at the Merjis blog. Just Google his name or company. The post title is this AdWords Quality Score Changes To Correct A Design Defect?

He presents a case on why some keywords will never show impressions. Jeremy is a leader in the industry and I believe that he may be on the right track on that topic.

Don't know if there is a solution for you unfortunately since the 9-15-08 quality score update, but you may want to ready the article and see what you think as well.

I have personally found that since the 9-15 update Google is more in control than ever on how much you pay and what gets shown.

9:15 pm on Oct 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Please just check these below statements.

- Are those keywords having any trademark problem? Or are they just normal general keywords and no problem seems on the magnifying glass?

- Maybe your opponents would give higher max cpc than yours?

- Do you turn on Position Preference for your Campaign? If yes, that would be the reason. You should turn it off.

If none of the above, my advise is delete the keyword and resubmit it to the ad group. Or you can even delete the ad group and re-create the ad group again. This would probably be a temporary system bug.

If nothing changes, you should contact with Google Adwords Support Center.


[edited by: buckworks at 9:50 pm (utc) on Oct. 19, 2008]
[edit reason] No sigs, please, and no URL drops [/edit]

2:34 am on Oct 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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call support will help you
3:32 am on Oct 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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no they probably wont help even if black has a designated rep from google

try advertising directly on ask and aol (doubleserving in this way is NOT against TOS) in addition to adwords
those 2 are usually the best converting of the search partners anyhow

9:09 am on Oct 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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hello Guys,
thank you for sharing your thoughts :)

- no trademark problem; these are common keywords (what I'm speaking about ss a 3 word keyword, not generic, very selective)
- I don't think my opponents give higher cpc. And in any case my keyword doesn't apperat in the search results at all, neither at the last page. Average cpc for this kind of keywords is 0.50-0.90, I'm bidding 2
- I never use position preference

Deleting keyword has no effect becase the same happen with some new keywords I'm adding with a very high cpc (my bidding strategy is start high, sometimes very high)
I've the suspect that google "thinks" that one of the term in my keyword is not relevant for my account (it's terrible wrong); this morning I noticed that many keywords having that term perform bad. Other keywords with the same term but in plural form (eg vacation vs vacations) performe slightly better.
These terms in both forms are both in my adcreative then on my landing page and it's highly relevant to my industry.

I'm in touch with my adwords rep (I'm an agency and I've several of them) but I suspect they don't know exactly what happens in my case and try giving me very odd advices (useless...)

So this time my move was to share with you my problem.

I'm reading the Jeremy Chatfield posts this morning.

Advertising directly on ask and aol doesn't solve my problem; I really would understand how to solve this.

Thank you again, I hope to have other feedbacks! :)

12:14 am on Oct 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I have a very similar sounding problem. For this particular KW I am ranked no.2 on organic (which should suggest a fantastic relevancy as far as QS is concerened), have a very high CPC & budget 5 times average daily spend.

Here's the funny thing though:

When I search on Google I am rarely on the 1st page of ads. However if I click on "More Sponsored Links" I am in Position 2 of the 1st page of all the possible advertisers with all the other advertisers whose ads do show below me (except number 1 of course).

I've had thois problem for years now & I think I might know what stuffed this KW up. We were part of a beta test for "Click to Call" with Google & they encouraged us to put our best converting KW's in the test. The whole thing didn't work & the beta test was officially marked as a failure. We then resumed normal advertising and that's when we could never get these impressions like they used to be.

Does this sound plausible? Have tried all sorts of optimisation (even through Google rep) & no joy. Anyone else scarred by this particular beta test?

9:45 am on Oct 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

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You should ensure you use Ad Preview to view your ads - I regularly don't see our ads in the SERPs. Google definitely seem to personalise the ads and if you aren't clicking your own (which you won't!) then Google realise they can make more money by showing you something you might click.

Use Ad Preview to get the true average position of what's going on.


2:50 pm on Nov 1, 2008 (gmt 0)

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My experience with Ad Preview is very bad; it seems working bad or not working at all: in my case activated adgroups are often not showed (but the appear in the search results)

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