Google AdWords News: 

Several of my clients have been notified that they will be included in the new Google AdWords BETA test called “Smart Positioning” which started October 1st.

The goal of Smart Positioning is to place an ad in the most cost-effective position each time it is displayed on Google and the search network, with the end goal of achieving more clicks for the same Google AdWords Smart Positioningtotal cost. Now, it is based on an auction model that does differ slightly from the current auction model, and this is one of the reasons why it is still a BETA feature that is only open to a limited number of accounts.

At first glance, Google AdWords Smart Positioning may seem very much like the position preference settings already found in the Google AdWords campaign settings, however there is a big difference. Smart Positioning calculates incremental CPCs to evaluate the effects on cost and click through rate that would be associated with a higher position for your ad. Once the system determines the incremental CPC for placing your ad in a higher position, it compares the incremental CPC to your maximum CPC bid. Your ad is then placed in the highest position possible, as long as both the actual CPC for that position and incremental CPC are less than your maximum CPC bid. Position Preference simply limits the positions where your ad is displayed without any evaluation as to traffic, incremental cost, and/or benefit.

If you choose to enable Smart Positioning in an existing Google AdWords campaign, Google suggests a one-time increase of your maximum CPC bids that is based on the historical performance of your campaign. New campaigns with Smart Positioning can be launched with whatever bid desired, however Google recommends setting a slightly higher bid than you would otherwise use. It sounds like the extra headroom helps the feature perform better.

Even though Smart Positioning does seem like a great way to test a more automated method to control and optimize bids, I am recommending that my eligible clients do so only on a limited basis. BETA tests are notorious for having difficulties and issues and I would never suggest jumping into this situation with a campaign that is already performing well. It would be best to create a new campaign with a limited budget designed specifically to test this feature in your account.

If you’re interested in learning more about Smart Position and how it may impact your Google AdWords Campaigns, contact a PPC Management specialist today.