My 2017 PPC Platform Wish List

By Alaina Thompson | @AlainaPThompson | Account Manager at Hanapin Marketing

We’ve all been PPC-ing
And we’ve all got bids to make
We don’t know what this year will bring
So we blog and hope it takes!

 

(If you try really hard, those lyrics can be sung to the tune of Santa Claus is Coming to Town. If it doesn’t work the first time, try harder. I’m not Beethoven.)

 

This is my selfish intent for this blog post: I hope the geniuses behind each of the major PPC platforms read this and addresses each of my 2017 PPC Wish List Items. (I don’t say “geniuses” sarcastically – I know there are really intelligent people that work at Google, Bing, Facebook etc. who can actually build all of the things I’m about to request.)

 

First things first.

If you’re going to make a PPC wish list, you should have already made a list of things for which you’re grateful. Click To Tweet

 

In 2016, there were plenty of new innovations in the PPC industry. Several of those innovations improved our day-to-day efficiency while others increased the overall effectiveness of our existing paid search campaigns. A few updates even made lasting impact that reaches far beyond the PPC industry.

 

Here’s a few 2016 advertising platform updates that I’m grateful for:

 

  1. Removal of sidebar ads from Google
  2. Bing Ads Editor for Mac
  3. Continual updates to the Facebook power editor
  4. LinkedIn conversion tracking
  5. Device-specific bid adjustments in AdWords
  6. Instagram shopping ads
  7. Google and Facebook policy updates

 

There are plenty more, but I’m ready to leave 2016 behind and look onward to 2017!

 

I’m making a list. I’m checkin’ it twice. Gonna make edits once or twice. This is my PPC Wish List! Click To Tweet

 

These are the PPC updates that I want most in 2017, in no particular order:

 

1) LinkedIn – Keep The Platform Updates Coming

 

In 2016, Microsoft bought LinkedIn. Since then, I’ve seen a noticeable difference in the advertising platform. The ad campaign manager is slowly, but surely, becoming more user-friendly. We can actually turn on old campaigns, even after the campaign has “completed”. Best of all, conversion tracking was added!

 

I’d like to see these kinds of platform upgrades continue at a steady pace. Below are some places that I wish LinkedIn would start changing:

 

First, the campaign manager still feels messy. Example: Let’s say I filter my campaigns to see only those that are “On”. I want to look into the performance details of Campaign #1 so I click it. When I hit the back button or return to the account level, the filter is gone. That seems like a minute detail, but we definitely take that functionality in Google and Bing for granted.

 

Second, I want to be able to edit a sponsored post after its original creation. This also seems like an obvious functionality, as we’re able to edit any of our Google, Bing, and Facebook ads after their initial creation. We should be able to easily make duplicates and then change the ad copy or imagery for A/B testing. Especially since each ad campaign should have a minimum of four ads. That’s a fun fact that I recently learned from a LinkedIn representative. A LinkedIn user can only see up to four ads from the same company in a 48-hour time frame. Thus, we’re not maximizing our potential CTR’s if we do not run four ads.

 

So LinkedIn, please make it easier to create four ads at a time.

 

Please?

 

2) Yahoo – Please Make An Editor Like AdWords And Bing

 

We don’t want to go through another holiday season without one. Uploading thousands of holiday promotional ads without an editor makes me a bit Grinchy.

 

very grinchy

 

3) Bing – Please Keep Updating The Ad Editor For Mac

 

Any PPC-er that uses a Mac would agree that the release of the Ad Editor for Mac was amazing. Is the Editor perfect yet? No. But any Bing editor is better than none, if you ask me.

 

Moving into 2017, I’d like more functionality and less quirks. Here’s an example of the functionality to which I’m referring: I want to be able to select more than one ad group or campaign on left-hand side of the editor. In the AdWords editor, we can do that by using Shift + Click. This makes the whole editing process much faster. When I say I want “less quirks”, I’m recalling a moment of panic I had last week that was due to the Bing Editor’s default settings. When I import new campaigns from an Excel workbook, the BAE default view only shows me the most recent import. I’m accustomed to AdWords, which highlights the new imports but does not hide the existing structures. Last week, I imported thousands of ETA’s into BAE and when I went to look for my existing text ads, I just saw “Text Ads (0)” under each ad group. I honestly thought the account had zero active ads, since I had just downloaded recent changes. I may have had a miniature heart attack. In 2017, I’d like to avoid that feeling.

 

Not a good feeling at all

 

4) Yahoo – I’d really Appreciate Automated Rules

 

Those also would have made the holiday e-com rush much easier on some of us.

 

5) Bing – Why Can’t We See Impression Share At The Keyword Level?

 

It’s incredibly helpful to see keyword-level impression share metrics in AdWords by adding Competitive Metric columns. I’d rather not have to use custom reports to find these numbers. I don’t believe that Bing has to implement every feature that Google AdWords does, but this is definitely a feature that Bing should just copy.

 

6) Facebook

 

I know I shouldn’t have the exact same set of expectations for Facebook that I do paid search platforms. However, I’d really like to see some competitive metrics. I realize that each individual on Facebook could be targeted by a variety of industries. That makes it more difficult for Facebook to tell advertisers how their ad positioning was determined within the algorithm. I do not know what the answer is for this wish list idea. I just hope someone at Facebook could figure out how to give advertisers additional auction insight – no matter how it’s formatted.

 

A few additional wish list items from my coworkers at Hanapin:

 

  1. Facebook – Could you show a Breakdown by Interest? We’d like to see how layered interests are independently affecting an ad set.
  2. LinkedIn – There are rumors of remarketing capabilities in 2017…I hope that’s true!
  3. Twitter – We want to know how and why to use twitter ads. Is Twitter a social platform or a news platform? Is it neither? What is Twitter’s business proposition that the other platforms do not offer?
  4. Snapchat – You seem fun and hip, but most of us can’t afford to advertise through Snapchat right now. In 2017, could you aim to broaden your market by making advertising more affordable?

 

(Unfortunately, I’m out of PPC lyrics for my Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town remix, so I’ll just sum this up like a normal person.)

 

There’s a solid chance that many of my PPC Platform Wish List items are already in the works, but only time will tell!

 

I’m curious what’s on your 2017 PPC Wish List. If you have some additional Wish List items, please let us know on Twitter! Don’t forget to use #PPCChat. You can also reach out to me via Twitter @AlainaPThompson.

 

Happy Holidays!

 

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