Which Of These Google Ads Bidding Strategies Should You Be Using?

Published by Pedro Campos on

There are several types of Google Ads bidding strategies. Each of them fall under these categories: awareness, consideration, conversion and revenue.

Choosing the right bidding strategy for your Google Ads campaigns will depend mainly on your marketing goals.

There are so many possibilities that sometimes it`s hard to know which bidding option best suits your unique situation.

Is it maximize conversions, target impression share, maximize clicks or something else?

In this post, I`ll walk through all the bidding strategies, the goals related to each one and the stage of the funnel they’re positioned in so you can make more informed decisions the next time you launch some campaigns.

But before we dive into each strategy, let`s understand a bit more about how smart bidding works.

What Is Google Smart Bidding?

Google`s programmatic algorithm uses a set of signals, including user behavior, characteristics, the context of the web page, and ad characteristics when analyzing key attributes about each ad auction in order to deliver optimal ad performance.

Additionally, it`s important to reference that some of these bidding strategies mentioned in this post fall under the umbrella of Google`s smart bidding:

  • Enhanced Cost-Per-Click
  • Target Cost-Per-Acquisition
  • Maximize Conversions
  • Target Return On Ad Spend

There`s a comprehensive guide put together by Google, laying out the best practices when working with smart bidding.

Google Ads Bidding Strategies

The first thing you must consider before choosing your bidding strategy is thinking about the goal of your campaign.
Is it to generate brand awareness, leads, or purchases?

The answer to this question will give you a starting point and help you determine which of the following you can use.

Awareness-Based

google-ads-bidding-strategies

Obviously, this type of strategy is best suited if your goal is to build awareness around your brand. The only possible bidding strategy, to this date, is:

  • Target Impression Share

By choosing TIS (target impressive share), Google will optimize your ads to meet a certain threshold of impressions you specify.

Use Case
John is the marketing director of a large corporation. He wants to create a Google Ads campaign with the goal of increasing awareness around his company, using branded terms.

Consideration-Based

google-ads-bidding-strategies

Without a doubt, this strategy implies getting prospects to consider your product or service as a possible solution to their problem. Similar to the previous one, in the consideration stage, there`s only one bidding strategy you can choose:

  • Maximize Clicks

By choosing to maximize clicks, Google will set your bids to give you as many clicks as possible within a target spend amount you specify.

Use Case
Mary has just started her cats blog. She`s excited to showcase her work to cat lovers, so she starts a campaign to get as much traffic as possible to the blog.

Conversion-Focused

google-ads-bidding-strategies

Again, as the name suggests, this type of strategy is best suited if you`re trying to maximize conversions. Unlike the other two mentioned above, you can choose one of three bidding strategies for your campaign:

  • Maximize Conversions

You`ll use this bidding option when you’re trying to maximize conversions and don`t specify a CPC, CPA, or ROAS goal.

Use Case
Andrew has a consulting business and wants to generate leads. He doesn`t have a specific cost to aim for, he just wants to get as many leads as possible from his website inquiry form.

  • Target Cost-Per-Acquisition (tCPA)

With this bidding option, Google will automatically set bids for you while reaching your average CPA goal.

Use Case
As a business coach, Justin is looking to generate appointments from his landing page. He doesn`t want his CPA to deviate too much from $15 per appointment.

  • Enhanced Cost-Per-Click (eCPC)

With eCPC, your manual bids are automatically adjusted up or down based on how likely each click is to result in a conversion.

Use Case
Anna is a marketing manager at an online mattress store. She`s looking to run a search campaign and optimize her bids in real-time using a third-party tool.

Revenue-Focused

You`ll want to use this strategy if you’re tracking the value associated with your conversions and you’re trying to maximize those at a specific return on ad spend.

Note that you’ll need at least 50 conversions in the past 30 days for Google Search and at least 15 conversions in the past 30 days for the Display Network. The only bidding strategy you can choose from is:

  • Target Return On Ad Spend (ROAS)

With Target ROAS, Google`s algorithm will automatically set bids to help you get as high conversion value as possible at the target return on ad spend you specify.

Use Case
Maria has been tracking conversions for her eCommerce store. To meet her business goals, she has specified a target return on ad spend of 150%.

Conclusion

In conclusion, choosing the right bidding strategy comes down to understanding your marketing goals.

What are you trying to accomplish? Increase brand recall, generate leads, boost sales, or increase return on ad spend?

Always start with your campaign goal in mind.

As a side note, remember to also focus on landing page optimization. The right bidding strategy with a bad page experience will likely not give you the best results possible.

Back to you…

Which of these bidding strategies will you use for your next Google Ads campaign?


Pedro Campos

Pedro is the founder of Advertongue, a performance-based digital advertising agency. He is a paid media strategist for high-growth companies and experts all over the world, with over a million dollars in managed ad spend. You might have seen his content on sites such as Funnel Magazine, G2, Content Marketing Institute, or FitSmallBusiness, to name a few.

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