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Bidding and Budgets, Oh My!

[ Edited ]
Google Employee
# 1
Google Employee

Do you find yourself scratching your head wondering if your bids and budgets are set up to provide for the optimum amount of traffic? Fear not, you are not alone! Luckily there are some great resources you can utilize within your account to give you some insight as to where you should be bidding at for your keywords and whether or not your budget should be bumped up to provide you with more traffic.

Let the system guide you.

You should first and foremost set a budget that you are comfortable with. Keep in mind that the budget is set at the daily level so if you have a monthly budget in mind, please divide that by 30.4 which is the average number of days in the month and set this as your daily budget.

If you’re not sure about your budget after your ads have been running, the system will actually let you know whether or not your campaign is limited by budget. You will see this in your campaigns status column on the campaigns tab. If you do indeed see the ‘Limited by Budget’ messaging, there is a little graph that appears next to it. If you click on this graph it will provide you with the different amounts you should set as your budget and the expected amount of traffic you would receive at that amount. For more information on this feature, please reference the following article.


What about my bids?

You can enable two very helpful columns that can guide you as to what you should be bidding for your keywords. The ‘Est. Top Page Bid’ and ‘Est. First Page Bid’ are located under the ‘Columns’ button on the Keywords tab. For more information on how to enable them, please reference the following article.

If you find that by looking at these columns you’re not bidding at where the system recommends, we would recommend increasing your bids for more exposure. If you are on automatic bidding and the system is bidding much lower than these amounts, I would recommend switching over to manual bidding so that you can have more control of your bids.

What strategies have you utilized to optimize your bidding and budget options? Please feel free to share them on this post! I will also be on the thread to answer any questions you may have. Happy bidding!


1 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Bidding and Budgets, Oh My!

[ Edited ]
Follower ✭ ✭ ☆
# 2
Follower ✭ ✭ ☆

Another useful set of data you can use to help you make decisions about bids and budget is the 'Lost Impression Share' data found in the Dimensions tab. By adding extra columns of data to your table you can see the percentage of impressions you missed out on each day due to low budget and bids.


Lost IS (Budget)

Lost IS (Budget) refers to the percentage of impressions that your ad didn’t receive due to insufficient budget. Eg. A lost impression share of 50% would means that your ads potentially could have received 50% additional impressions that day if the budget had not run out and the ads taken offline.


Lost IS (Rank)


Lost IS (Rank) is the percentage of impressions that your ad didn't receive due to low ad rank. One of the ways to improve your ad rank is to increase the bids of the keywords. Eg. A lost impression share of 50% would means that your ads potentially could have received 50% additional impressions that day if the ad rank was higher.


To add these columns:


  1. Click the Campaigns tab.
  2. Click the Columns button above your statistics table, then choose "Customize columns" from the drop-down.
  3. Click Competitive metrics, then add Lost IS (budget) and Lost IS (rank).
  4. Click Apply. The data will now appear in your statistics table.



Here's some more information about lost IS.

Re: Bidding and Budgets, Oh My!

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

Thanks Sherry127 & rosiel for these posts. I am already using both & still palying around to learn more. I have 2 question as below


Q. 1- I have a keywords in Exact & Phrase match, having exach mach at hight Max CPC than phrase match. I found that avg. cpc of phrase match is more than exact match. This is not with all such keywords. So, what the reason behind it.


Q2. Another question is if for same keyword as above case, I bid for phrase match $5 & for exact match $6. Ans if next competitor Max CPC is $3, then how will the CPC of exact match keywords will be calculated? will it consider the bid of phrase match keyword too?




Re: Bidding and Budgets, Oh My!

Google Employee
# 4
Google Employee

Hi Anil_Singh,


Thank you for your post!


To answer question one, the actual bid that is used for each auction can differ based on a variety of factors - including the quality score for that keyword and the competition. Although the bids will vary, we will only bid up to what you have set as your max CPC for a given keyword (as long as you are not using any type of conversion optimizing bid strategies).


Because phrase match can encompass terms before or after your keyword in a users search query, it can be the case that that particular string can have more competition than the keyword as it is exactly or that your quality score for the keyword in that format is not as high as you have it in the exact match format. Please note that although they are the same word, just in different match types, the quality scores can still differ. The CTR (click-through rate) is a major driver of the quality score and these will most likely differ for your same keyword in the different match types.  


To expand on question one and delve into question two, the way we will calculate the bid necessary to get you shown will be based on your quality score and max CPC you have set and the competitions quality score and bid. So in the scenario you have presented, let's say your competitor has a very high quality score for that keyword and a $3 bid. Because their quality score is high, they may be able to place in a better position with a lower bid. Now say your particular keyword has a low quality score, the system will deem that it needs to bid high in order to get you in a good position. So it could be the case that you need to bid more. 


The following excerpt from the AdWords Help Center helps explain this process:


The most important thing to remember is that the auction process uses both quality and bids to determine your ad's position. So even if your competition bids higher than you, you can still win a higher position -- at a lower price -- with highly relevant keywords and ads. Also remember that the auction process is repeated for every search on Google, each time with potentially different results depending on the competition at that moment and which ad you use.


I hope this information helps! In the event you need additional clarification please do not hesitate to reach back out. Great hearing from you!