Andrew Goodman on Google’s Recently Announced AdWords Change
Andrew writes a 4 page article about the new AdWords system. Smart of him to reinforce his market position by writing an article about it. I also found it interesting that he wrote about his speculations as to why some things at Google change and how Google is viewing the ad system more like organic search results.
Recently, Google introduced what they’re calling “simplified keyword states” and “quality-based minimums” as a way of injecting more flexibility into its AdWords online advertising platform. Advertisers will no longer have to grapple with the former clickthrough rate (CTR) “cutoff” of “0.5% normalized for ad position.” Now, there is no cutoff, and low CTR’s will not cause a campaign to be slowed. However, for low-CTR keywords, advertisers may be forced to bid higher than the current minimum bid of .05 in order to keep their keywords active.
On the surface, that’s a fundamental change, because that 0.5% CTR threshold has been a much-touted feature of the AdWords program from Day One. Now, with a flourish and a promise that a new cutoff-free regime will be live in “a matter of weeks, not months,” it’s gone. Google cared so much about CTR’s — or more to the point, their image of being obsessed with relevance and search quality — that they once claimed to be doubling the threshold to 1.0% “under certain conditions for some keywords.” (That initiative quietly fizzled out.)
You can count on the backend technology driving both AdWords and Google’s search results to get more complex. Eventually the systems may require some sort of degree or certification, although for now nothing can really beat what you get out of hands on experience.
Aaron Wall is a Search Engine Marketing expert and the publisher of the SEOBook.