Columnist Pauline Jakober discusses what she believes will be big in paid search in 2016, with a look back at some of this past year's biggest developments.
These are three specific areas in paid search that advertisers should definitely consider in 2016.
1. Your Ad Messaging Strategy
It used to be you could put 95 characters on a PPC ad and that is it but all that has changed.
It gradually crawled us as AdWords released more and more ways to jazz up our ads with its goodie bag of ad extensions.
Pretty soon, it became less about those 95 characters and more about designing a strategy — almost like you would with a website — carefully crafting the overall messaging using all the features available.
That means new ways to combine and highlight key aspects of the business, including features, benefits and differentiators of a company.
2. Video Ads: A Must-Watch
Video campaigns are not new of course, but 2015 felt like the year they came of age.
We think adopting this strategy now will allow you to be more prepared when video campaigns explode in the near future.
3. Remarketing Lists For Search Ads
If you feel that you’ve mastered the Search Network, go ahead and take it one step further with remarketing lists for search ads (RLSA). While this feature is nothing new, a lot of advertisers still aren’t reaping the benefits from it.
RLSA effectively lets you modify search ads, bids and keywords when past site visitors are searching on Google for products and services similar to yours.
If returning visitors are converting at a higher cost per acquisition than new visitors, we can lower the bid on our search ads for this audience. If they are converting at a lower cost, we can increase the bid for that audience, too.
- WordStream has an in-depth article that goes into everything you need to know about RLSA here.
- For more inspiration on how other businesses are using it, check out a few examples here.
Beyond these three trends, there are, of course, many avenues to explore in paid search. I like to follow the paths that offer the most return for each individual scenario.
But figuring that out takes testing, so I urge you to pick at least one paid search tactic you haven’t tried yet to test in 2016. Without that first step, you’ll never know how good (or bad) it can be.