Managed by EverQuote, is a car insurance company marketplace that helps consumers quickly and easily request competitive quotes. Since its early days, EverQuote has made profit-driven marketing a key part of its site's digital strategy. Putting consumers at the forefront, EverQuote ensures that its budget is focused on the most profitable customers. The company will sacrifice its unit margins, only to enjoy soaring conversions.


  • Make the online destination for car insurance
  • Increase conversions and profits from AdWords


  • Aligned search campaigns and the experience with customer needs
  • Set total gross margin dollars instead of efficiency targets as the KPI for bidding
  • Increased bids by up to 30% when targeting at the DMA level


  • Boosted conversion volume by 60%
  • Increased profits 170% year over year
May 2014
Topics is a car insurance comparison marketplace owned and managed by marketing firm EverQuote. The website helps users to quickly and easily request competitive quotes. EverQuote works directly with a vast network of agencies, brokers and carriers to match consumers with the best auto insurance options on AdWords has been an integral part of EverQuote's marketing strategy from day one.

“ was born on AdWords,” says Tomas Revesz, CTO of EverQuote. “The site’s very first click was a Google-paid search click, and it’s increased substantially to more than ten thousand clicks a day, and growing.” Executives at EverQuote believe in the importance of paid search to their business, and they actively empower their team to pursue advanced strategies to maintain a best-in-class search program.

Search is core to our business. With a profit-driven approach, we get the best of both worlds—more happy drivers and better business results.

The profit-driven approach

EverQuote believes that customers are in the driver’s seat when they reach out and search. They can choose to look for car insurance at any time, in any place and on any device—and it’s EverQuote's responsibility to be ready. EverQuote also believes that a traditional media approach to bids, budgets and measurement won’t drive optimal results for its business. Instead, it aligns its search strategy directly to its business objectives, specifically, maximizing profits.

Aligning spend to reach every profitable customer

The EverQuote team uncaps its daily budgets in AdWords so that team members are present to connect with a consumer on his or her terms. Empowered with a flexible budget, the SEM team is constantly experimenting to find new profitable opportunities to reach more consumers. “We will spend as long as we can make a certain profit,” says Revesz. “I think it’s worth it to put the right measure of resources behind scaling AdWords using meaningful signals from testing.”

Aligning incentives to maximize total profits

The EverQuote management team carefully recognizes the difference between targeting for gross margin dollars versus margin percentages. The management team doesn’t set an efficiency target, such as an ROI percentage or max CPA, that can often overlook the actual number of consumers reached. Instead, they test various bid targets and observe which ones will result in maximum profit volume. “A lot of people are worried about gross margin percentage targets, but we have always focused on increasing our gross margin dollars. This strategy can sometimes have us spending more, but we make up for it with the profits from extra conversions,” explains Birnbaum.

Aligning investments with customer value

What’s more, using robust AdWords features like ValueTrack, the EverQuote team is able to optimize CPC bids for maximum profits. Specifically, the team has bid up to 30% in certain areas, resulting in a 60% increase in conversion volume. “Everything about our business has to be measurable,” explains Revesz. “The core of everything we do is understanding the cost and value associated with the entire life cycle of a consumer.”

More happy drivers, better business results

By aligning budgets and bids with customer value, EverQuote has seen stellar results. For example, the company has grown its profit at a compounded rate of 170% year over year with no slowdown in sight.

“We see an opportunity in this business to best align consumers with the providers that will offer them the best value and long-term experience,” says Birnbaum. “Any marketer looking to align resources and goals with long-term customer value and profits should be going to AdWords first.”