Advertisers Say No To Google Enhanced AdWords Campaigns

Feb 7, 2013 • 9:13 am | comments (17) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google AdWords

Google Enhanced AdWords CampaignsFor weeks now, top level Google AdWords advertisers were rumbling and kicking their feet about an upcoming change they have been hearing about from their Google reps. That was officially announced yesterday, called Google AdWords Enhanced Campaigns.

In short, it is suppose to make it easier for business owners to create ads that target both desktop and mobile users. The goal is to simplify the ad creation and management process for the "multi-device world."

The problem with the approach Google is taking is that with simplicity, AdWords control is lost. I.e. if you are an expert AdWords advertiser, you probably want to control your mobile, smart phone, tablet, and desktop campaigns differently. You probably want to bid different, show ads differently and not have Google make those decisions for you.

Google explained:

With enhanced campaigns, instead of having to cobble together and compare several separate campaigns, reports and ad extensions to do this, the pizza restaurant can easily manage all of this in one single place. Enhanced campaigns help you reach people with the right ads, based on their context like location, time of day and device type, across all devices without having to set up and manage several separate campaigns.

Yea, that is nice in theory. But I think advertisers may want more control, not less. Of course, Google wants more advertisers, more spend, more impressions and higher CPCs.

In a Google+ thread, one advertiser said "Loss of control and transparency? Moving in the wrong direction Google." In a Google AdWords Help thread another advertiser believes "this will increase CPC on mobiles a lot, which has so far been cheap in comparison with desktop," which most other advertisers agree with. Greg Sterling on Google+ asks who this benefits more, Google or the advertiser? I am more surprised the folks in WebmasterWorld have yet to get annoyed about this either way.

Here is Google's video on the topic:

Are you happy with these changes? If so why? If not, why? Are you concerned with not having control? Prices going up? Reporting being limited? What are your concerns?

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld, Google AdWords Help & Google+.

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02/07/2013 03:44 pm

From what I understand, you'll still be able to choose devices if you want to. If this is just an option you could choose to go with, I'm happy with it, because when it will be useful, I'll use it, and when it won't, I won't.


02/07/2013 04:06 pm

Just clarified that we won't be able to opt out, which makes this officially suck in a lot of ways, though it still has some good to it.


02/07/2013 04:34 pm

When you you folks learn you really just walked into a casino at Las Vegas - yes admission was free and they give free drinks and other stuff away to get you in there but once you entered their game the house rules always applied - guess who always wins and takes home the most money? If your a card counter and consistently beat their game they have you arrested and thrown out, hmmmm sound familiar


02/07/2013 05:01 pm

They're probably betting that this will make the AdWords experience less confusing for new/novice advertisers, giving them better retention of new customers.

Douglas Thomas

02/07/2013 06:01 pm

I can't get too upset about this, and you can read why at Campaign duplication, which was the main method of using mobile campaigns (regardless of best practices) was tedious and foolish; most advertisers only needed a bid difference. This also forces advertisers to get their act together on both SEO and Paid with regard to Mobile best practices. Furthermore, there are a variety of ways to "optimize" for mobile, not the least of which is the little button for Mobile Preference. Finally, the graphs that I've seen regarding individual platforms' conversions rates seem to be highly influenced by the individual issues of clients (IE lte 7 converts less than IE10? Maybe you forgot to set haslayout on something and so it doesn't display well. Opera doesn't work? Maybe there's a demographic issue there...). As for tablets being wildly different than mouse-and-keyboard, I can only point to my own usage of tablets, which tends to be trying to shoehorn it into desktop roles when browsing. App stores are targeted algorithmically under Enhanced Campaigns, solving that issue. I do agree that it'll lead to an increased CPC, but I see that happening either way, since un-savvy advertisers abound already and there has been a 15% decrease in the gap between Mobile and Desktop advertising over the past quarter. And really, CPCs aren't that big a deal if you bid what the click is worth, instead of trying to "win" the auction. What I'm really interested in is how this will connect with in-store Mobile ads...


02/07/2013 11:53 pm

This will definitely drive our costs up. We currently bid on brand on mobile only since competitors can push down our organic results off the fold. We do not bid on brand across tablet and desktop as we didn't see a financial benefit from doing so. This is just one example where these new so called 'enhanced campaigns' will really screw us. If you agree with me and would like all the new benefits with an opt out option, please sign this petition.

Dario Petkovic

02/08/2013 12:13 am

I reckon there should be a button before you starting a campaign to choose something like: 'Show Expert Settings'

Martin Roche

02/08/2013 07:59 am

I look at it this way, the majority of accounts I review already are bidding on all 'devices' and on both display and search. The change may force people to review how they bid on each device. It will be possible to bid less aggressively on a mobile device and not be shown so not to use budget. As for reporting Google seem to be working to improve how you track ROI so that businesses spend more which means better data not worse.

Pisethhout ( Clubvegas)

02/08/2013 08:16 am

This will definitely drive our costs up.

David Rothwell

02/08/2013 10:30 am

This is about connecting up more sources of data, which is always a good thing. Of course there will be collateral damage - nothing new there. Anyone in control of their CPA costs doesn't care about what the click cost (good feedback from Doug R Thomas), and where it came from - just that they sold their products and services at profit, and can maximise their opportunities for scale. And there's a ton of brilliant improvements for Ad Extensions - which are a treasure trove of extra links to be exploited to the full.


02/08/2013 10:52 am

Like I have already noted in where this piece was shared: This is truly news to me. But I think Google will benefit more than the Advertisers because the new idea makes it able to control more of advert campaign is posted to different devices. Its not surprising that many advertisers who know there onions are already protesting to the changes. In the end, Google will still have its way because it has no big competitors. I will say, this is another way Google is planning to 'firmly' grip Internet search. Google should allow advertisers some level of freedom to manage and control their ad distribution. Sunday - Moderator for

Naroat ( Clubvegas999 )

02/08/2013 01:20 pm

I think so......

Naroat ( Clubvegas999 )

02/08/2013 01:21 pm

I have some disapproved posts to show you...

Naroat ( Clubvegas999 )

02/08/2013 01:24 pm

I'm happy with it,


02/09/2013 06:05 pm

Gooogle wants to dominate the Mobile Asd dollars cake and taking a shortcut to this makes sens while FB and Twitter are just tweaking their strategies

Ann Stanley

02/21/2013 10:14 pm

Whatever happened to being able to control your targeting? Of course you can turn mobile off by lowering the bid, but you can't turn desktops or tablets off . We have clients who have mobile specific websites with mobile only campaigns - do we now turn these off, or make the bid so low on desktops that are never seen and use the bid multiplier so they are seen on mobiles. Nearly all our campaigns with reasonable volumes have separate mobile campaigns, usually with click to call. Now we have to restructure everything, or shall we wait until they do a U-turn if enough of us complain. Ad rotation springs to mind! Sign the petition at cheers Ann from Anicca Search


10/23/2013 09:04 pm

IT SUCKS and we were wasting money because if it. This is the least advertiser friendly thing google could possibly do, all for their own bottom-line. I am devoting all of our money to bing, and it's paying off. The nature of our service and product does not lend itself, or actually work, with tablets. Google got beat up last year one quarter because an analyst said mobile is going to hurt ad sales. What does google do? They screw over their advertisers by making them show ads on horrible tablets. I own two tablets and they suck to do anything useful on, let a lone buy and use a product. These are not laptops/desktops. Not even close. Since I got a chromebook for screwing around I never touch my tablets. Tablets are like handheld video games that people don't do serious business one. We lost piles of ad money without one conversion. It's truly unreal that google just does not care.

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