AdWords Update: How to Bid with New Device Adjustments

Google AdWords gets an Update on New Device Bids

Google recently announced some big changes to the AdWords platform, including changes to Device Bid Adjustments. Inbound marketing relies heavily on Google AdWords and compatibility across devices. Here’s what’s happening and how to adjust your digital marketing strategy accordingly:

Device Bid Adjustments now allows you to adjust bids on desktops, tablets, and mobile devices from -90% to +900% with the ability to opt out at -100%.

You don’t need to do a thing! Google is gradually rolling out these changes to more and more accounts. When it hits you, your account will maintain the current setup — desktop and tablet bids set at their normal 0%. The changes can be found under your Settings tab under Devices:

When setting up Bid Adjustments:
Don’t break up campaigns by device! It adds unnecessary complexity in campaign management and will probably result in coverage gaps.

AdWords Smart Bidding (Target CPA, Target ROAS and Enhanced CPC) — Don’t do a thing! These strategies already take devices into account — lucky you.

3rd Party Bidding Tool — WAIT! Each provider is gradually working to integrate this into their tool and adjusting your bids now could create performance and traffic fluctuations (AKA a huge headache for you and everyone else).

3rd Part Bidding Tool and some manual bidding — You’re doing a lot of extra work already…you should definitely consider switching to using AdWords Smart Bidding.

Managing Manually in AdWords — Follow these steps:

  • Consider the full value of each device by tracking all possible conversion in the AdWords platform (e.g., Calls, Website Calls, and Cross Device Conversions)
  • Set keyword-level bids to reach aggregate target CPA across ALL devices. Do NOT set bids for a single device!
  • Evaluate performance across device — i.e., if you’re performing better on mobile and desktop you should probably increase bids on mobile and desktops while decreasing bids on tablets to bring you closer to the overall average
  • Monitor Performance! Remember, this is an ongoing process!

Define each bid adjustment by using the following formula:

Calculate Device Bid Adjustment Change =

[[(total campaign Cost / total campaign All Conv) / (device Cost / device All Conv)] — 1] x 100

Calculate New Device Bid Adjustment =

[(Device bid adjustment change* x Previous device bid adjustment*) — 1] x 100

*Remember to convert bid adjustments into corresponding multiplier in this formula:

e.g., -30% = 0.7 and +20%=1.2, etc.

Contact your Google AdWords representative with any questions or concerns.

Remember to always be on the lookout for Paid Search advertising updates (i.e., Google AdWords, Bing Ads, etc). It is extremely crucial to your inbound marketing plan and your overall digital marketing strategy as whole. If you’re struggling to keep up with all these updates — look to a digital marketing management company to put your worries to rest.