August 15, 2007
I have a few questions to pose to you: How often do you hit your PPC budget before the end of the month? If so, how far in advance have you hit your budget: a day, perhaps two, maybe three? If this has happened to your campaigns before, wouldn’t this happen to other campaigns as well? Perhaps even your competitors’ campaigns?
These questions lead me to meditate on a new management strategy and I thought I would share it with you. Here’s the idea: you could save a portion of your budget for the last 2 days of the month, and when your competitors’ ads are inactive due to budget constraints, you could increase bids slightly to dramatically gain visibility, and increase your click-through rate.
Now, keep in mind that this a theory. I know that not every PPC campaign hits their budgets every month, and some may not even have budget ceilings. Also, I know that this practice would be a shot in the dark since you don’t have a great deal of insight into your competitors’ PPC budget. And, let’s not forget that other competitors may even be executing this strategy. Okay, have I poked enough holes in my swiss-cheese-theory? Good.
However, I have been managing PPC campaigns for a while and this idea hadn’t struck me until recently, so I doubt many PPC campaigns employ this method. If your core keywords are highly competitive, then why not give this a try? If you employ this method and for those two days you see a dramatic increase in your rank and click-through rate, wouldn’t that be telling?
At least within AdWords this method would be rather simple to test. Using AdWords’ day parting/ad scheduling tool you can set your bids to automatically increase two days before the end of month, and then automatically decrease down to their usual settings on the first of the next month. For the rest of the search engines you’ll have to adjust bids manually.
I know this sounds crazy, but it just might work! As I stated earlier, I have run into this problem in the past and it leads me to believe others have as well – and you can capitalize on it!