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Google AdWords Enhanced CPC Bidding Removes Bid Caps: A Comprehensive Guide

Google AdWords Enhanced CPC Bidding Removes Bid Caps: A Comprehensive Guide

Google AdWords bidding strategies have evolved significantly over the years. The introduction of Enhanced CPC in 2019 removed AdWords’ traditional bidding caps, giving advertisers more flexibility to drive the results that matter most to their business.

In this in-depth guide, we’ll explore what enhanced CPC bidding is, how it differs from other bidding strategies, and how to use it effectively to optimise your AdWords campaigns for key performance indicators like conversions, phone calls, or site visits. We’ll also address some common questions around implementation and settings.

Let’s get started!

What is enhanced CPC bidding?

Traditional AdWords bidding strategies, like manual CPC, impose hard caps on the maximum bid amount for each keyword. While this provides budget control, it can limit performance by preventing bids from adjusting up when needed to capture high-intent searchers.

Enhanced CPC bidding removes these capsWikipedia, allowing bids to automatically rise as high as needed to achieve optimisation goals like conversions. Rather than focusing on cost per click (CPC), it optimises for the overall cost of acquiring actions like phone calls, online orders, or signups using machine learning algorithms.

The key benefit is that your bids can more freely adjust based on estimated value instead of artificial caps. This gives high-intent keywords room to bid up to the point that generates a target number of conversions within your daily budget.

How Does Enhanced CPC Differ from Other Strategies?

Here’s a quick comparison of how Enhanced CPC differs from Manual CPC, Target CPA and Target ROAS bidding:

  • Manual CPC: You set the maximum CPC bid manually. Bids are capped and can’t rise based on search demand or conversion potential.
  • Target CPA: Bids adjust to hit a target cost-per-acquisition amount. It works well for single conversion events but not multi-step goals.
  • Target ROAS is similar to Target CPA but optimises for return on ad spend (ROAS) rather than cost. Still focused on single metrics.
  • Enhanced CPC: bids rise freely based on predicted impact on overall campaign goals, like multi-step conversions. More flexible than the above to optimise the end-to-end customer journey.

In summary, Enhanced CPC removes artificial restrictions and gives you the most control over optimising core business KPIs versus cost-focused metrics like CPC, CPA or ROAS alone.

Implementing Enhanced CPC Bidding

To start using Enhanced CPC, follow these steps in your AdWords account:

  1. Create a conversion-oriented campaign and ad group targeting structure.
  2. Set your budget and choose Enhanced CPC as the bidding strategy.
  3. Add conversions like phone calls, signups or online orders as Campaign goals.
  4. Add adequate conversion tracking to measure all significant actions.Digital Marketing Institute
  5. Verify conversions are being received before switching from a different bidding strategy.
  6. Monitor KPIs and bids closely during the initial optimisation period as they adjust automatically.
  7. Tweak placement, ad format, and other settings over time to improve campaign performance.
  8. Team of colleagues working together on tablet Team of young colleagues working together on tablet in office business meeting stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images

Optimising Enhanced CPC Campaigns

Once launched, here are some best practices for optimising Enhanced CPC campaigns:

  • Use negative keywords to filter undesirable traffic that won’t convert.
  • Closely watch top-performing ads and add new ones modelled after these templates.
  • Test new placements, audiences, or geographical locations to find high-potential outlets.
  • Refine conversion action setups to streamline the tracking of critical business goals.
  • Set multi-stage or sequence-based conversion goals for journeys rather than single actions.
  • Consider custom bidding to target search partners separately from Google search.
  • Monitor ROI, costs, and conversion rates to check the return on marginal bids over time.
  • A/B test campaign settings as needed, like conversion windows or attribution models.
  • Consult reports to cull underperforming keywords, ads, or other segments regularly.

By continuously improving your optimisation efforts, enhanced CPC campaigns can drive a significant lift in key metrics.

Key Takeaways

To summarise some of the top points:

  • Enhanced CPC bidding removes bidding caps to let bids freely adjust based on goal predictions.
  • It optimises overall conversions and customer journey metrics rather than cost-per-action goals.
  • Implement by creating goals-focused structure and enabling Enhanced CPC strategy in AdWords.
  • Monitor bids and KPIs closely as campaigns learn initially, then optimise elements over time.
  • Best practices include refining tracking, testing new formats and locations, and culling underperformers regularly.
  • With ongoing effort, Enhanced CPC can substantially boost core metrics versus capped strategies.

With the right setup and refinement process, Enhanced CPC offers advertisers powerful ways to scale goal-focused digital marketing campaigns on Google.

FAQs about Enhanced CPC

Here are some common questions about Enhanced CPC bidding:

Q: How much do bids typically increase with Enhanced CPC?

A: Bids may rise gradually at first but could potentially double or triple original levels depending on search demand and campaign goals. Monitoring closely is advised.

Q: Can Enhanced CPC be used with Shopping campaigns?

A: Not currently. Enhanced CPC is only compatible with standard search, display and video campaigns at this time.

Q: Does it work for multi-location or separate account structures?

A: Yes, enhanced CPC can span manager and sub-accounts or campaigns for different locations seamlessly.

Q: Are there tools for bulk keyword changes in Enhanced CPC?

A: No, bids must be enabled separately per ad group. Consider testing gradually on a subset first before scaling wider.

Q: How is budget utilised versus a capped strategy?

A: A budget may be spent more quickly at times, depending on goals. Monitoring daily spending closely ensures it remains within budget.

Q: What if goals or strategy change mid-campaign?

Pausing bidding, adjusting goals or taking conversion actions may help retrain models. Significant changes may require restarting optimisation periods.

I hope this guide has helped provide a thorough overview of Google AdWords Enhanced CPC bidding and how to leverage its benefits for advertisers. Let me know if any part requires further explanation.

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