Ask PPC Hero! Your Questions On Remarketing, Quality Score And More Answered

Wherever there are paid search advertisers with questions, PPC Hero is close at hand with the answer! We receive many questions from readers about different issues they have with PPC. In the past, these questions have spurred full blog posts, but we get so many great questions that it’s hard to keep up.

In our Ask PPC Hero series we will answer the questions we’ve received from you about all things PPC. Read on to find out how to effectively remarket, pausing low QS keywords, and why Mario Lopez is still really, really good looking.

Q: How much should one spend and how long should one run a campaign before giving up?

How much you spend in PPC should be determined by your overall marketing budget. The more money you spend, the faster you’ll accrue data, which will allow you to make management decisions faster. However, I firmly believe that a PPC campaign can be effective no matter what the budget. You’ll just have to adjust your strategy in order to maximize your spending.

As for how long you should run before giving up, we recommend starting with a 3 month minimum. This gives you enough time to analyze the account and make changes to improve performance. Take a look at an example below:

PPC Account Performance ImprovementThis client had a small budget and even reduced budget in April, but by the 3rd month had a 203% ROI. It is common to experience some losses in the first month as you are trying to figure out what works for your account. Don’t be discouraged. Give your account time and you will see improvements happen quickly.


Q: What are some effective ad messages for Google Remarketing, given that the audience is familiar with the brand already?

Determining your different Remarketing audiences is the first step to creating effective messaging. Segment your Remarketing lists so that you can tailor unique messages to each group. Just because a group of people visited your site, does not mean you should target them all with the same ad copy.

Instead of just targeting people who came to your site and didn’t convert, target people who visited certain pages on your site. For example, if you sell clothing, create different Remarketing lists for people who visited Women’s, Men’s, Children’s, etc. Then target each group with specific information about these products. For example, if you’re running a sale on Women’s clothing include that in the ads.

You can also target people differently based on how far they were into the buying cycle. People who added an item to the shopping cart but didn’t purchase should be targeted differently than people who just visited the homepage. The further along in the buying cycle, the more specific your ads should be.

Ads for Remarketing should be less branding focused, as you said they are already familiar with you. Of all the Display Network targeting options, Remarketing has the highest conversion rate. Focus on giving reasons to purchase, like sales or free shipping. Let consumers know when you launch new products. Show how your products compare to your competitors. But don’t treat all Remarketing consumers the same.

Certified Knowledge wrote a great post on how they split out their Remarketing lists and the messaging they use for each.

Q: What are broad session keywords in search terms?


Here is the definition straight for AdWords Help:


The search term is considered to be a variation of a keyword from your account, based on previous searches that the user has done during his or her search session.

Basically, AdWords determines that this search query is relevant to your ad group, even if it doesn’t match an active keyword. I’ve had both good and bad experiences, where Google seems to really nail it but then sometimes completely misses the mark. If you find you are showing for many irrelevant search terms from these session based keywords you can add them as negatives or turn off your broad match keywords. You can also narrow your scope by utilizing modified broad match keywords.

Q: Should I pause low QS keyword with high clicks?

This is a question I’ve asked myself, and without knowing more about  your account I can’t give a definitive answer. In my experience, sometimes the keywords Google determines are low quality actually perform well for accounts. I would take a look at the rest of your metrics first to decide if you want to keep these keywords active or pause them.

You may have high clicks, but have you received any conversions? If not, you are just spending money on a low QS keyword without reaping any benefit. If you are getting conversions, I would keep these keywords active and focus on improving Quality Score through restructuring.

Break out these low QS keywords into individual ad groups. Write very specific ads including these keywords to improve CTR. Make sure you have landing pages that are relevant to the keywords you bidding on. I’ve found that just by following these best practices you can start to see QS improvements rather quickly. Check our a case study about improving Quality Score to see how much impact restructuring can have.


Q: Why Google has an “Other” line item in search query reports (interface) that can have up to 90% of impressions, and how that means broad match isn’t working for you.

There are a few reasons why the SQR have a column for “Other search terms”:

  • The search term resulted in an ad impression but didn’t receive any clicks in the last 30 days.
  • The search term wasn’t entered by a significant amount of users.
  • The search term triggered your ad within the past 24 hours.
  • The user has blocked their referrer URL from being passed on to the destination website.

I’ve experienced frustration with this issue when I started a new account in an unsure market and was anxious to see what search terms our keywords were triggering. Although my campaigns had spend plenty of money, the SQR still listed the majority of search terms in the “Other” category. I just had to wait a few more days for these search terms to begin showing in the report.

And now for something completely different…

Q: Reveal the google algorithm 🙂

Google Algorithm

Q: Why does Mario Lopez still look so hot at his age?

Exercise, healthy eating, and saying nope to dope.

Q:Why do they call fries chips in England?

British chips are usually significantly thicker than the American-style French fries sold by major multinational fast food chains, resulting in a lower fat content per portion.In England, the term “fries” usually refers to the narrow-cut (shoestring) items that are served by American-style fast-food shops. People in or from the United States may eat a thick type of chip, more similar to the British variant, called “home fries” or “steak fries”.

If you have a question for PPC, submit it via the ASK PPC Hero box on the homepage above our Twitter feed!

PPC Question Submission