Not long ago, the Google Content Network used to be a source of frustration for many PPC managers. This distribution channel can be difficult to master as the user intent for the Content Network is extremely different from the Search Network. However, any frustration you may have encountered with the Content Network should hopefully not end in complete desertion of this distribution channel.

As a PPC manager, you now possess the tools to help optimize your Content Network campaign. The report/tool that I am going to focus on today is the Placement Performance Report within the AdWords interface. This report provides detailed information on where your ads have appeared within the Content Network, and how your ads performed on each website, as well as how your ad performed on each URL within each website.

The Placement Performance Report provides a lot of great information. However, you need to be able to interpret all of this data correctly in order to optimize your campaign properly.

To optimize your Content Network performance and better-target your ads, you’ll want to remove sites that are under performing. You will notice within the Placement Performance Report that you are given stats at the URL level, and not just the domain level. This means that Google is actually breaking down the information from each site down to the URL level. You should use this information to get even more granular with your targeting.

Here is a quick screen of this report:


You can see from this report that my ads have appeared on numerous URLs within each domain. If you find that every URL from a given site under performs, then you should block that site at the domain level (to block the entire site). However, within each site there maybe URLs that work well and URLs that don’t work well. You can block individual URLs within a domain, this way your ads remain active on those portions of the site that generate a positive response, while removing your ads from the areas of a site that do not perform well.

This is one way to enhance your performance on the Google Content Network. This distribution channel is vast, it possesses a great volume of traffic, and has much potential for expansion within your PPC account. But you have to optimize wisely, and one way to do this is by utilizing your Placement Performance Report to its fullest extent.