How to Structure Your AdWords Account

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A well-structured AdWords account will save you time and money. Here, we look at how to control your paid search budget to maximise on keyword spend, target ads effectively and the value of a well thought out reporting system.

Account structure refers to the hierarchy of campaigns, ad groups and keywords that make up your Google AdWords account.

Here’s a simplified version of a typical account structure:

Adwords Account Structure

The structure of your account affects how simply and successfully you can optimise activity, control your budget, and report on results.

In short, a broken-down, easy-to-follow structure can make your life easier and make your paid search activities more likely to succeed.

Ask Yourself:

  • Do I have sufficient control over budget?

For example, are there any high-spending keywords that are sapping the budget away from long-tail keywords with lower CPCs?

If this is the case, you could choose to structure your account so that this high-spending keyword is isolated in a different campaign. This will allow you to control spend more efficiently.

  • Can I target my ads effectively?

By structuring your campaigns and ad groups as granularly as possible, you broaden your targeting options.

Let’s take a fashion retailer as an example. If this retailer chooses to structure their account into two campaigns – clothing and footwear – they are limited in terms of on-going optimisation and reporting.

Breaking down the structure further – by creating campaigns for different clothing and footwear brands, for example – makes it easier to see which keywords are having the biggest impact, and which need work.

With this granular structure, it’s easier to push the keywords which are doing well, and reign in the underperformers.

  • Can I easily push products during sales?

Keywords for sales and other time-limited events should be organised into separate ad groups so they can easily be turned on and off. Does your current account structure allow you to do this easily?

  • Do my reports offer the detail I need?

A happy consequence of a good account structure is that it makes reporting simpler and more insightful. With a granular approach, it’s easy to see which particular product lines, sales initiatives, ad extensions or messages performed well.

If you can’t glean this information from your reports at a glance, then it’s time to consider re-structuring your account.

AdWords Account Structure Best-Practice Tips

  • Google recommends following the structure of your site when structuring your AdWords account. This means every product or category will have a pre-existing landing page, which helps to increase your keywords’ Quality Score. In turn, this will help to decrease CPCs.
  • Don’t implement large-scale changes to your account structure all at once. Use a phased approach to minimise impact on Quality Score and make it easier to recognise cause and effect.
  • Use AdWords Editor to carry out restructuring work. The online AdWords interface is more suited to day-to-day optimisation than extensive structural edits.

This post is adapted and abridged from our FREE eBook – The Best-Practice Guide to AdWords Audits: Part One

Download your copy now to discover how to structure a successful AdWords campaign and keep up-to-date with Google’s guidelines.

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