How to get 48% more conversions only with ad schedule and daily changing of budget

Feat2 - case study 1

We all came across certain situations in which we had a very constraining marketing budget for which we had to increase our results.

This is a simple case study about certain client who had that same problem.  He had very restricted budget on which he wanted to maximize its conversions (sales). It is something that many of digital marketing agencies are confronted daily. In the majority of cases the solution is very simple as you are about to see reading this blog post.

This case study is about AdWords optimization of a digital campaign and is divided into several parts. This is done for easier reading and conclusion upon reading an entire blog post. Without any more ado:

  1. Problem
  2. Situation and ideas for possible solution
  3. Action on AdWords campaigns
  4. Results from campaigns
  5. Things to do after optimization

1. Problem

The client is having ongoing adwords campaign thru which he is selling his products (all related to “sleeping” and “bedroom”). But, during his advertising time, he realized that he does not have enough budget to cover all related search terms during the day.

In other words – he had campaigns that are almost always limited by budget and they did not meet their 100% daily impression share. Also, for client it is very important to be present for almost all his products (targeted search terms). Because of that there weren’t any possibility to pause low performing ad groups or campaigns for certain product categories.

It is also very important to notice that almost every campaign was present in conversion path. You can easily see this by properly using conversion segments and filters in analytics. Also, with using conversion segments we can see that “paid search” assisted to every other channel.

assisted conversions from paid channel

But, there were a couple of campaigns who had the biggest number of conversions and biggest “influence” in assisting conversions.

first vs last click attribution

Here we can also see that when we compare Last click attribution model with First click model that some of the campaigns are more “important” than others in attracting new conversions.

We could say that AdWords campaigns are contributing to assisted conversions and also that there are some of specific campaigns that are particularly effective in this. Remark: We did  not show all reports that we are using because there would be so much more to write about and this blog post would become too big.

To summarize the problem: Client wants more conversions, which does not need to be direct from adwords, his budget is very limited and all categories of products need to have an active campaign.

2. Situation and ideas for possible solution

When we started to think about possible optimization steps we focused on several adwords campaigns that were generating most of first click conversions but was also responsible for assisted conversions.

Remark: For this blog post, we are going to keep it simple and show you data (charts, pie, pictures) about one campaign and what we did on it.

The situation is very specific. The client wants more ROI (return on investment) for the same budget as before. But, we can not pause low performing words or campaigns.

Solution can consist of several things. We can decide that main thing to do is to lower CPC. If we were successful in that then we could have more clicks for same amount of budget. More clicks could also mean more conversions.

before optimization data 1

But, as we can see on above picture, average position for this campaign is getting better and better thru time (5 month time before optimization). Average CPC is more or less the same during this time.

When looking at competitor report we could also see that there are several number of them. Also, competition for number one & two position is very strong (for this campaign). When we have this information on mind we can come to conclusion that average CPC is actually good.

But, it can be better.

ad relevance pie chart

When look at ad relevance we can see that almost 53% of all ads in this campaign are below average! Additionally, only 23% are average. This is strong indicator that ads in this campaign can be done better. And if those ads can be better – they can influence Quality Score. Bigger QS = smaller CPC.

Simple AdWords: Bigger QS = smaller CPC or better avg. position = more clicks = more Conversions. Click To Tweet

Second assumption is that not all days in a week are same for every single campaign. For this we are going to look at conversion and cost per conversion for every day in a week for last 5 months.

conversion per day

Right away we can see that Saturday is one of most “weak” days considering the number of conversions and cost per conversion. At the same time we can see that Friday is opposite of Saturday – he is the best day for selling clients products!

The third assumption is that not all hours in a single day are same when comes to conversions and cost per conversion.

conversions per hour

Interesting info can be found in this graph. For example, there are cases when users are buying clients products at midnight (for very low cost per conversion)! Also, a majority of conversions are between 8am and 14pm.

Some of other things that were checked are: ad extensions, segmentation of entire campaign (SKAG = single keyword ad group), results of Google search partners network, use of negative keywords…

3. Action on AdWords campaigns

Out of main 3 things that were planned we could do only two of them. The thing was that client wanted his ads to look in a specific way.  He wanted that every text ad contains a specific sentence.

We explained to the client that we are constricted with strict number of available places in text ad. Also, we have explained the connection between relevant ad and targeted keywords in ad group in its regard to Quality Score and resulting CPC.

In the end, we could not do anything about better ads. Nevertheless, we had several other things to do.

First one was very simple. Because we are limited with the budget we have decided to restrict showing of ad at certain hours.

restricting ad showing and bids

In that way we have achieved that our ad is showed more frequently at hours that are more important. In other word: hours in which we are getting more conversions per lower cost per click. But, we have also implemented bid adjustments to certain hours on certain days.

bid modifiers

The other thing is changing daily budget on campaigns. When we checked results per day for certain campaigns we could see that specific days are not so good in attracting conversions (direct or assisted). We decide to change campaign daily budget every single day in an attempt to maximize return on investment.

We have accomplished that thru automated rules. It is very simple to set it up. Important thing is to be careful when calculating percentages or amount of budget that needs to be added or subtracted.

One of important mathematical operations in managing AdWords campaigns is calculation of percentages. Click To Tweet

We have also did a small reallocation of budget between certain campaigns – not much, around 5-10% of total budget.

Another thing that we have done included switching off of Google search partners because results from them were nonexistent. There were several other “smaller” things like inserting several very important negative keywords on the campaign level.

4. Results from campaigns

We have achieved an increase in number of conversions by 68% for indicated campaign when looking 30 days after our changes! (Remark: although it has since passed more time than 30 days we had access to this client AdWords & Analytics account for only 30 days after optimization. This was agreed on during negotiation and acceptance of our optimization services.)

increase in conversions campaign

We have also achieved a 17% reduction in cost per conversion for that campaign!

reduction in campaign cost per conversion

But, do not forget that pictures above are related to only one campaign. We have only done our work on several campaigns – not all of them.

If we look at results for entire AdWords account then we can see that this changes also influenced results for the entire account.

adwords results month on month 2

There is one more important thing to remember. Those campaigns (which we optimized) are also responsible for attracting a very large number of assisted conversions! So, if we properly optimized those campaigns then entire webshop, from all other channels, must have seen an increase in sales and profit.

results for entire webshop 1

This is no small increase – 45% increase in revenue!

results for entire webshop 2

Almost 48% more transaction.

And the things that we did were so simple. Among things that had biggest influence on these results were changing ad schedule and changing daily budget for certain campaigns during week.

The results could be even better if we could change ad text. But, even with these results, we are satisfied.

5. Things to do after optimization

Always check your PPC results for different days and different hours. People are usually checking your products (or services) on certain hours and sometimes buying those products (or services) on completely different hours.

Now, read the previous sentence again.

You can optimize your campaigns in that way that you want to bid higher on hours in which your customers are historically more prone to buy.

But, this is not the only way to optimize your campaigns. You must always keep in mind that some of your campaigns have a certain role. And that role is to “attract” new customers. In other words – you must keep in mind that some campaigns, or ad groups, are very important in assisting to conversions.

Don't just optimize AdWords campaigns for last click results - keep in mind their assisting results too! Click To Tweet

When deciding how to distribute budget between different days, or between different campaigns, always check how are they assisting to conversions.

What we did, in this case, is a simple budget allocation between different hours and days to achieve 48% more transactions.

But, do not do this if your campaigns are new. For example, I would not do this if we have less than 2-3 months of data. Also, a very important tip: check google trends for any seasonality and plan accordingly.

Černoga Davorin

Digital marketing specialist with years of expertise in the field of search engine marketing. Since 2015. he is in charge of supervising & training a constantly growing team of digital marketing specialists in Escape Ltd. Always looking for the opportunity of a personal development and new experiences.

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