Anyone who has planned an event, from a family holiday to a business conference, knows it’s a complex task. Regardless of scale, the process will involve multiple searches over days to find everything from the best venue to activities.
But such complex tasks are hardly challenging for the billions of people who turn to Search daily for relevant information, clarity, and trust. The AI-powered abilities of Search enable people to easily find answers to their myriad needs — and in even more creative ways, such as using Voice Search and Google Lens.
With the majority of searches on Google being multi-day user journeys powered by machine learning, brands need to keep pace with people and how they’re searching — by reaching them at the same scale and speed through automation.
Automation in marketing enables brands to achieve optimised performance and realise profits on an unmatched scale.
Marketing automation, powered by machine learning, enables brands to reach people wherever they are in their multichannel consumer journey. At the same time, it delivers relevant content while using less granular data to provide user privacy. Crucially, it optimises performance and drives profits. For example, advertisers who shift their keyword match type to broad match can achieve 25% more profits.1
Over 80% of Google advertisers already use automated bidding to optimise performance and free up time for other tasks.2 However, some marketers are still hesitant to fully commit to automation because of misperceptions. Here, we clear the air and highlight three key points you need to know about automation. We also share tips for how you can adopt automation to drive growth.
You control the goals, message, and bidding strategy. The algorithm works in service of the marketing objectives you set.
Misperception: “Automation seems like a black box. Can I trust the algorithm and still control my strategy?
What you need to know: Smart Bidding, for example, analyses millions of variables such as device, time of day, and operating system to automatically adjust bids and help your brand reach high-value customers. However, you retain the power to adjust targets as your business goals change. Additionally, you have full visibility of how the algorithm works in the bid strategy report.
Performance becomes more consistent as more data is collected for the algorithm to optimise results.
Misperception: “Should I be worried about potentially volatile performance or a delay in seeing positive results?”
What you need to know: You may see results such as cost per acquisition (CPA) and return on ad spend (ROAS) fluctuate because there isn’t enough conversion data at the start for the algorithm to learn from and optimise results. However, performance will become more consistent as more data is gathered. Even when performance fluctuates, it’s still very likely to outperform manual bidding, and this sometimes happens as quickly as in a week.
Search automation tools are multipliers — they powerfully impact growth and profitability when used together.
Misperception: “Will spending my marketing budget on automation bring me maximum business impact and profitability?”
What you need to know: Besides putting your marketing spend toward more than one Search automation tool, you should also align your spending with business objectives such as increasing revenue, profit, and customer lifetime value. Investing in these goals, rather than intermediary metrics such as clicks or CPA, ensures that the automation tools focus on maximising business impact and profitability.
Search automation solutions that help you drive growth
1. Increase online sales with broad match and Smart Bidding
You can reach more audiences with broad match keywords because they connect your brand to people with related Google searches — not just the searches that contain your exact keywords. By pairing broad match keywords with Smart Bidding, your bid price is automatically set. This makes it easier and more cost-efficient than manual bidding.
That’s why Telstra, Australia’s leading telecommunications and technology company, and its agency, Resolution Digital, decided to replace phrase match keywords from selected campaigns with broad match keywords. When the brand combined its new strategy with Smart Bidding, it increased online orders by 29% and decreased cost per online order by 16%.3
2. Deliver personalised ads with responsive search ads
To deliver information that most closely matches what people are searching for, responsive search ads use machine learning to personalise ad headlines and descriptions.
When advertisers adopt responsive search ads in tandem with broad match and Smart Bidding, they see 20% higher conversions due to the multiplier impact of using a combination of automation tools.4 These three tools, when used together, help set the right bid price so you don’t have to do this manually or spend more to achieve broader reach.
3. Maximise high-quality conversions with value-based bidding
If you want to make the most of your campaign budget, acquire high-value customers, and drive business growth, use the Maximise conversion value-based bidding strategy. Its advanced machine learning automatically sets and optimises bids based on the values you decide, such as sales revenue or profit margin.
On average, advertisers who use value bidding and switch from a target CPA to a target ROAS bid strategy achieve a 14% higher conversion value with a similar ROAS.5
4. Grow customers with Performance Max
To reach high-value customers online and offline, tap into Performance Max. It enables you to find customers across Google’s full suite of ad channels such as YouTube, Search, Gmail, and Maps — all in a single automated campaign. Once you’ve set your goal, the automation tool will do the rest, saving you time while boosting sales. Brands that run Performance Max campaigns achieve a 13% increase in incremental conversions on average at a similar CPA.6
Luxury Escapes, an online travel agency, knows first-hand just how much automation can spark growth. The brand rolled out Performance Max campaigns to connect first-time customers to getaways fit for their wanderlust. By harnessing the power of automation, Luxury Escapes increased new customer revenue and ROAS by 45% and 21%, respectively — all while decreasing cost per sale for new customers by 35%.7
As people tackle complex tasks in their AI-enabled Search journeys, brands need to keep pace and deliver timely solutions to customers at scale. By using automation tools, you can optimise reach, personalisation, and conversion to drive business growth and profitability.
Contributors: Jasmine Li, Product Marketing Manager, APAC Search Ads; Doris Claesen, Lead, APAC Search Ads Marketing