Optimize Your AdWords

Using Segments to Optimize Your AdWords

In a previous article I wrote about how to segment your data in Google AdWords. Now I would like to explain how you can use the segment feature to help you optimize your account.

I suggest you begin by viewing “all online campaigns”. This view will show you all of the campaigns you currently have running. If you have many campaigns that have been paused or removed you might want to view the data for those campaigns as well. Star by setting your date range for “all time”. You want to start with the broadest range of data possible and to identify the areas you wish to focus on before you start to drill down into specific campaigns and more recent time frames.

Once you have your view and date range set you will be looking for the segment feature which you will find just below your settings and ads tabs as seen in the image below.

Segment Your AdWords Data

AdWords Segment Feature

To get started on using the segment feature go ahead and click segment and select the device option from the drop down menu.

AdWords Segment by Device

Segment by device

You should now see the data for all of the campaigns in your view to be broken out by computers, mobile, and tablets.

I usually begin by scrolling to the very bottom of the page to look at the totals by device for all my campaigns combined.

AdWords segment totals

Start with all totals

Then look at the total for the Search Network and the Display Network. By doing this you will begin to see how your ads are performing on specific devices on specific networks. You might find that your ads get much better results on mobile devices, or maybe much worse results. You might find that your ads perform better on computers for the Display Network but on mobile devices on the Search Network.

Looking at Your Totals

A word of caution here, looking at the totals of all your campaigns for all time is just to get a first impression. Your totals may tell you that mobile ads perform better but when you look at individual campaigns you might find that that is not always the case.

You should start by looking at the totals and segmenting by device, and then by networks. Then you will go campaign by campaign to discover where your ads are performing best and where they are performing the worst. Hopefully you are tracking conversions as well since this will provide you with the most important data.

When I begin to optimize an AdWords account I focus on only 2 metrics.

  1. Number of conversions
  2. Cost per conversion

If I can get the number of conversions to rise while getting the cost per conversion to fall then I usually don’t worry about metrics like CTR or CPC. It is all about conversions. If you try to focus on too many metrics at once you will find yourself running around in circles.

Also, try not to ever assume what will work and what won’t. In the past I always stayed away from the Display Network and Google Search Partners then I found data that showed good results in these areas. Sometimes it was just for 1 specific geographic area, or 1 particular product but the point is I always try everything at some point. I don’t assume the Google Search Partners won’t get the results I need. I test it out and let the data tell me what is working.

You can use the segment feature at the ad group and keyword levels as well. Start with the broader view and then begin to dig deeper making bid adjustments to start allocating your budget to those areas that provide you the most success.

I have optimized many AdWords accounts. Sometimes I see amazing results immediately, sometimes it can take a little longer, but I always see results.