3 Noteworthy Elements You Can Test Within AdWords

There are many A/B tests you can run to increase the effectiveness of your online marketing strategy. The majority of companies run their A/B tests on landing pages, and this is a good thing—testing landing pages is often a cost-efficient way to significantly improve your ROI.

However, there are many tests you can run from inside your AdWords account. You may not even realize their potential, but they can both enhance campaign performance and provide you with valuable data. Because they are integrated into your AdWords account, they do not take as much concentrated effort to employ, and can be enacted with a few simple clicks.

Here are three that you may not have known about!

1) Bid adjustments

What they are:

Bid adjustments are percentage changes that you can make to your spending on a particular ad to improve its performance. You can adjust the percentage of your bid based on location, time of day, day of week, and device.

Why they are useful to test:

When you make a bid adjustment in AdWords, you increase or decrease the chances that a particular ad will be shown on a particular day, in a particular location, or on a particular device; this can lead to more qualified traffic, and consequently, more conversions.

If there is a certain place where your ad is being shown that is resulting in a high number of valuable leads, for example, you can raise the bid to more aggressively target customers visiting that location. Or let’s say that you see the most clicks coming in on Monday mornings—you can raise the bid for Monday mornings by a certain percentage to more aggressively target customers on that day in that timeframe. If you see that you have more customers on mobile, you may want to decrease the percentage of your bids on desktop and tablet, so that more of your spend goes towards your mobile campaign, where more of your customers are most likely to see it. You can increase bids by as much as 900% (10x the current rate) and decrease by as much as -100% (opting out of the device/day/time/location).

2) Bid strategies

What they are:

Bid strategies are ways to define your campaign goals and ensure that any ad running has a set chief priority. If your business goals change, so should your bid strategy, and depending on what the data reveals, you may need to adjust different aspects of your strategy to reach qualified traffic and get the results you desire.

Why they are useful to test:

When you modify your bid strategy in AdWords, you can undercut your competitors by getting leads that are more likely to convert. There are so many different options for you to choose from that you should be able to customize your bidding to attain the highest ad performance possible.

You can select the ad to focus on clicks; AdWords allows you to either manually set bids for clicks at either the ad group (less specific) or keyword (more specific) level. If you want to drive traffic to your site, focusing on clicks will accomplish that goal. However, if there is a certain action you want visitors to take on your site, then focusing on conversions may be the best bet. If you select a flexible bid strategy, Google will take control over the optimization of your ads, and make decisions about your bids based on their data and algorithms.

There are also options for you to focus on impressions, target search page location or target outranking share strategy (ideal for growing brand awareness), and there are even strategies tailor made for video ads.

3) Ad copy modifications

What they are:

Text ads on Google show above the search results. They are simple, with only three parts (headline text, a display URL, and brief description text) so it is critical to word everything well and efficiently.

Why they are useful to test:

Testing different elements of the ad copy gives insight into how to best attract your customers. For example, the 30 character headlines are supposed to grab attention, so if you make the headline promise value to the visitor, you may increase clicks. Descriptions are the longest and potentially trickiest part of your text ad. While you want to drive people towards your website/a specific conversion, you also only have 80 characters to do it, and within that limit it is best to provide a call to action (“Shop Now”, “Get an Instant Online Quote”, etc.) to clearly direct the searcher to what you want them to do. Trying out different calls to action as well as varying your description could help you get a better feel for what your customers respond to.

Need help implementing these changes? Contact us today to get the most bang for your buck when it comes to Google advertising and conversion rate optimization!

Shea Duncan - Contributor

Lead Content Producer


Shea is an expert content writer and is a classic literary nerd! She loves writing highly engaging content and has a knack for making it convert!

Elliot Alicea - Author

Co-Founder of Empirical360


Elliot is a Co-Founder of Empirical 360 and is extremely passionate about creating highly effective marketing campaigns. He places ROI above all else!