There has been a raft of new Adwords features announced at the Google Performance Summit. As always a lot of the features will not be available to gambling advertisers due to policy restrictions, so I’ll focus on what I see as the two key changes for gambling advertisers.
Literally the biggest change that will occur is Expanded Text Ads (ETAs), currently ads are in the 25-35-35-character format and they will be moving to 30-30-80 format, this change will gives ads forty five percent more screen real estate. Google also claim it will have up to a twenty per cent boost in click through rate (CTR) which will have a significant impact on traffic.
We see two key things here, one is the importance of re-writing and re-testing all of your ad-copy to maximize the extra space and get the claimed uplift. Secondly, with the increase in CTR from the new ad format, being in the top fours positions on desktop becomes even more important. There is a lot less clicks to go to organic results or ads at the bottom of the page
While ETAs are the biggest visible change the most important change is device bidding. Before Enhanced Campaigns was rolled out most gambling operators had separate campaigns for Desktop, Tablet and Mobile, then post-Enhanced Campaigns (EC) your campaigns had to be merged. Under EC you had the same bid for Desktop and Tablet and mobile calculated as a percentage using a bid-modifier. While this simplified account structure for high performance marketers the loss of control was frustrating.
The new updates will allow you to set separate Desktop, Tablet and Mobile bids meaning you can optimize each channel separately. While Tablet queries are still a small percentage of Desktop and Mobile queries, player value tends to skew higher and opens up an opportunity to target this audience more precisely. Our recommendation is to spend some time to re-calculate your tablet conversion rates and player values to get an accurate cost per click.
In the words of the Godfather, “just when you thought you where out….they pull you back in”. As what happened when Enhanced Campaigns rolled out, we expect to see all advertisers will need to carry out a significant amount of work to their campaigns to take advantage of these new features.
We always see opportunity in change, those who move fast and decisively can expect to take advantage of the uncertainty with competitors.