Jeremy Mayes over at PPC Discussions asks, “In your mind, what is the most important element of an AdWords campaign?” This is a very interesting question, and I like the car analogy he uses (see his original post); however, I disagree: my radio is not critical to my car’s functionality but it is essential to my sanity (I am a music geek, and I hate driving, so I NEED music to operate a car). I agree with Jeremy that well-designed landing pages can make or break a PPC campaign. The most important element of an AdWords campaign, in my opinion, is “behind-the-scenes,” and this is your account structure.

A well-structured account has many benefits which include quick, efficient management and relevant keyword grouping. A well-structured account consists of campaigns that are broken down into specific ad groups that contain closely-themed keywords.

Quick, efficient management: Accounts that are separated into very specific ad groups allow for quick, easy manage because you do not have to search certain keywords. Also, you will be able to see trending for keyword groups with more precision. For example, you should break down your “widget” campaign into metal widgets, wooden widgets and paper widgets. The more specific the better.

Relevant keyword grouping: Relevancy is the name of the game when it come to AdWords’ Quality Score. An ad group with closely related keywords can serve well-crafted ad texts that are highly relevant, and these ad texts should lead users to a landing page with content/information/offers that they expect to find. I know that’s about 3 different aspects of an account (KW, ad texts, landing pages) but what I’m saying is that all of them should flow seamlessly; from keyword query, to ad text, to landing page, to desired action. When your account is set-up optimally this path is easily distinguishable. Also, when your keywords are tightly grouped your click-through rate will rise because your ad texts will be better suited to your audience which will then increase your Quality Score.

A well-structured account has many benefits which include quick, efficient management and relevant keyword grouping.

A rule of thumb for keyword grouping; if you need to use dynamic keyword insertion (DKI) frequently in order to make your ads relevant for your keywords, then you should break down your ad groups even further so that you don’t have to use DKI. There is nothing wrong with utilizing this tool (I use it all the time!), but when your ad groups are as specific as possible then DKI is just another weapon in your relevancy arsenal.