Lab Weekly; Your Digital News Round Up & AdWords Updates

Jessica Milner

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It’s been a busy week in #TheLab, with the Lincolnshire Tech Week. The Expo & Conference took place on Wednesday, all 3 of our talks went really well and we received some fantastic feedback from the attendees. Throughout the day, we had lots of people come to our stand, enquiring about what we do in #TheLab. If you would like to find out more about the different talks that took place, then click here to access the presentations. You can also get all the information from Jodie’s talk on Tuesday, “Digital Marketing For Dummies”, including her presentation. In this week’s Lab Weekly you can find a range of stories including Analytics, AdWords updates and much more.

Digital News This Week:

Google Analytics is Making it Easier to see Users Across AMP and Non-AMP Pages

Google is currently updating the way that analytics counts and reports site visitors to AMP and non-AMP pages, they are doing this by unifying users IDs when someone visits and domain via AMP and non-AMP pages. Unfortunately, you may notice a few implications as these changes come into place over the next few weeks:

  • User and session counts will go down over time when Google recognises that the IDs are the same person
  • The metric New Users might rise temporarily as IDs are reset
  • Metrics such as time on site, page views per session and bounce rate will rise with sessions. AMP and non-AMP page views will no longer be treated as multiple sessions.

Users should be able to see these changes over the next few weeks.

AdWords AdRank’s Are Adapting  

Google is to roll out its most recent updates to Ad Rank thresholds, these updates will be facilitated by the meaning of the query.
Google Ad Rank has been something that Google has been focusing a lot of attention on since early May and has recently made even more important. Some advertisers have reported seeing large shifts in AdWords CPC’s since then, as you can imagine some on a larger and smaller scale.
For those less aware of AdRank a little bit of information on what it is. AdRank determines where an ad appears on a specific page and is calculated using a maximum CPC, expected CTR, ad relevance, landing page experience and the expected impact of ad extensions and other ad formats. However, Ads included in this must meet AdRank thresholds, or commonly called, minimums, in order to show on the first page of SERP’s. These thresholds are higher to show at the top of the page, above organic results. These take into consideration factors such as country and device.
There are two key factors that AdRank threshold is updating:

  1. Ad Rank thresholds account for meaning of the query

This change means that Ad Rank thresholds can be based on the meaning of the query. On face value, this seems like an obvious observation, but it hasn’t been a threshold factor in the past. This change does not affect how the bid adjustments are treated.
What this means is that Google is now taking context, including things like whether the query is about recent news, or a consumer product, into consideration. These queries have different Ad Rank thresholds since the query meaning differs. Which in turn means that fewer or more ads are showing on a result.

  1. Bids can be weighed more heavily in the Ad Rank calculation depending on query meaning

The two changes are synonymous, bids take on more weight depending on the query meaning or category. Quality factors also play a significant role in determining Ad Rank, but with this chance, Max CPCs may hold more weight in Ad Rank for some queries.
If you’re seeing higher CPC’s, you may not see any change in reported Quality Score (and from what words on the grapevine, this can lead to higher CPC’s, even on keywords). As a result of the bid being weighed more heavily rather than quality score alone.
These updates are expected to continue being introduced throughout May, coming to the fore at the end of the month.

Advertisers Can Now See Historical Quality Score Data in Adwords

Google have recently added seven new Quality Score reporting columns that will provide much more visibility for users. The system will now arrange data by day, allowing advertisers to see how end-of-day Quality Scores have changed over time.
Advertisers will no longer have to hover over the bubble icon next to each keyword to get feedback on current Quality Score factors. The new columns show breakouts for:

  • Expected click-through rate
  • Ad relevance
  • Landing page experience

The new columns are available at the manager account level and will be made available in the Report Editor section of Adwords soon.

New Keyboard Bidding Suggestions in Adwords

This week, many users have noticed that there is a new keyboard bidding interface in the AdWords UI, by updating the Max CPC on a keyboard it brings up a new look with suggestions tailored to a specific keyword.
Google will now show bid suggestions for various page positions, it could be one, two or three suggestions, it will depend on the current standing for that keyword bid. It seems that the wording has also changed on the new layout, using words that are a lot clearer for newer users. The new update is still rolling out, so you might not see it straight away in your account, but it is coming!

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