I have been informed that even though my last two posts on PPC keyword selection and writing PPC ad copy were good, I was making the assumption that small business owners already understood the structure of PPC accounts. Therefore I will repent, go back to the beginning, and explain how basic account structure affects your PPC performance.
Account -> Campaign -> Ad Group
PPC accounts have 3 main organizational levels (courtesy of Google’s AdWords product) each with distinct characteristics. I will start at the top and work down:
- Account – All your campaigns, ad groups, keywords and ads are in one, single account. Billing, reporting and conversion tracking operate at the account level.
- Campaign – Campaigns contain one or more ad groups. Geotargeting (having your ads show only in specified geographies), daily/monthly budgets, ad serving, demographic targeting, dayparting (only showing ads at specified hours of the day) and negative keywords all operate on a campaign level.
- Ad Group – Ad groups consist of one or more keywords with one or more ads. Negative keywords, keyword match types, keyword bids and destination URLs all operate at the ad group level. You will spend most of your time and effort.
When constructing your campaigns and ad groups you want to keep ad groups tightly themed, meaning that all the keywords in the ad group should match with the ads you are showing. While Nike basketball shoes are related to Doc Martens because they are both footwear, you would want to show different ads for each. The key is to start with the most relevant keywords for your business and then expand outward as you see success. As a professional PPC manager I have accounts with hundreds of ad groups, but your small business may only need 3-5 at first to deliver impressive results.
Poll: How many ad groups does your PPC account have? Leave your answers in the comments.