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Is there a way to roll over the daily unused budget?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

I'm marketing an out-patient healthcare service to a very limited geographical area (about 200,000 population) and I've set up my budget to be about $100 a month or $3.33 each day. Small potatoes, I know. My challenge is the weekends and low-volume search days. We get less searches on the weekends because the demand for our services are less. Some weekends are better than others, and sometimes holidays also make our search opportunities drop in the middle of the week. Other times, we just get a slow day without a determinable reason.

 

But on our good days, the budget maxes out pretty quick, which means less opportunities.

 

So is there a way to roll over unused daily budgets?

 

I've tried adjusting the bidding schedule, but that hasn't made a measurable difference (probably because my data pool is so small). I've tried increasing our daily budget, but that changes the bidding and we risk going over budget. I'm trying to maximize my monthly budget, but it's really hard when my daily budget is so rigid. I could try manually calculating the roll over, but that would throw my automatic bidding out of joint every single day, which I don't think would give us the results we want.

 

Anyone have any ideas?

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Accepted by topic author Jamie H
November 2015

Re: Is there a way to roll over the daily unused budget?

Top Contributor
# 6
Top Contributor

Hi @Jamie H I'd certainly recommend going down the script route.  I use budget control scripts in a couple of client Accounts and they work very well, enabling you to hit a defined target spend and not lose out on spend when it's available.  I wrote a blog post a while back that included a simple, complete, script for doing what you need:

 

http://adwords.cobnut.net/2013/09/using-every-penny-with-scripts.html

 

That said, I do have to second @David C's comments about using budget in a more "concentrated" way over shorter periods of time.  AdWords really doesn't work in a "linear" fashion when dealing with budgets, especially when those budgets become very low, and if budgets are low, you can sometimes get better results by reducing your targets so that the budget you have covers more of the available impressions.


Are you using automatic bidding?  With such a small budget I'd really recommend manual CPC bids so you can more closely control clicks for a given budget.

 

Are you tracking conversions and their values?

 

Is your budget permanently limited, or is it just until you can prove profitability?

 

Jon

 

AdWords Top Contributor Google+ Profile | Partner Profile | AdWords Audits

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Re: Is there a way to roll over the daily unused budget?

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

Hi Jamie,

 

I have used and currently still use some basic scripts to manage this.  I'm not sure how familiar you are with scripts and/or if you'd be comfortable using them but this is something that would accomplish what you're looking for.

 

In a nutshell, daily, the script would read your monthly spend and subtract that from your monthly specified budget.  Then it would divide up your remaining monthly budget by the number of days left in the month and apply that daily budget to your campaigns based on how you want it distributed.

 

 

Google has an example here:  https://developers.google.com/adwords/scripts/docs/solutions/flexible-budgets  

 

Not sure if that will work for you or not but figured I'd make the suggestion regardless.

 

-Tommy

 

Tommy Sands, AdWords Top Contributor | Community Profile | Twitter | Philly Marketing Labs
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Re: Is there a way to roll over the daily unused budget?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Hi Tommy,

This sounds like what I need. I have some basic coding skills, but so far I haven't worked with GA scripts. I understand the basic concept. Do you know if there is a coding dictionary for this sort of thing?

Thanks!

Jamie

Re: Is there a way to roll over the daily unused budget?

Badged Google Partner
# 4
Badged Google Partner
Hi Jamie, Have you tried to setup an ad schedule to just turn off the ads on the days that are less profitable to you and just have the ads running on the days/times that your ads are at their peak? Then just adjust the daily budget that way.

Re: Is there a way to roll over the daily unused budget?

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 5
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
Hi

I think the previous answers give you what you were asking for but I'd like to comment on something else.

You have a monthly budget (a very low one as you said) and you are splitting it evenly through the month... I don't think you should.
In my experience you are better off having a greater presence for a shorter number of days.
you get more usable data, its easier to optimise, it makes your account more easily scalable if you do get a bigger budget.

one example - We had a client that had a 1500 p/m budget and we were spending it in 2 weeks every month they had 3 other agencies in for a review and they all hammered us for that practice. Thing is at that intensity they were able to be competitive in the more expensive keywords that converted better, if we dropped the budget for the arbitrary reason of being live all month they would have had a lower daily budget and not been able to compete for the more expensive keywords.
additionally as they were getting a positive roi we could with almost 100% certainty say that if they 2x the budget to 3k pm we would get them 2x the leads instantly as it would be the same structure running for the whole month rather than trying to gear up the account or add new campaigns/ad groups.

tl;dr favour getting the optimal intensity with your budget rather than spreading it thin over the month for the sake of it.
Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by topic author Jamie H
November 2015

Re: Is there a way to roll over the daily unused budget?

Top Contributor
# 6
Top Contributor

Hi @Jamie H I'd certainly recommend going down the script route.  I use budget control scripts in a couple of client Accounts and they work very well, enabling you to hit a defined target spend and not lose out on spend when it's available.  I wrote a blog post a while back that included a simple, complete, script for doing what you need:

 

http://adwords.cobnut.net/2013/09/using-every-penny-with-scripts.html

 

That said, I do have to second @David C's comments about using budget in a more "concentrated" way over shorter periods of time.  AdWords really doesn't work in a "linear" fashion when dealing with budgets, especially when those budgets become very low, and if budgets are low, you can sometimes get better results by reducing your targets so that the budget you have covers more of the available impressions.


Are you using automatic bidding?  With such a small budget I'd really recommend manual CPC bids so you can more closely control clicks for a given budget.

 

Are you tracking conversions and their values?

 

Is your budget permanently limited, or is it just until you can prove profitability?

 

Jon

 

AdWords Top Contributor Google+ Profile | Partner Profile | AdWords Audits

Re: Is there a way to roll over the daily unused budget?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 7
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
I have tried that, and discovered that it was really a static solution to a dynamic problem. There's just so much variation on a week-to-week basis and a month-to-month basis that I don't think schedules will compensate for it. Thanks for the suggestion, tho. Smiley Happy

Re: Is there a way to roll over the daily unused budget?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 8
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
That does sound like a good strategy. I'm just not sure about when would be a good time to run it. I guess I'm just mentally locked into the idea that so few people are looking for our services and I don't want to miss any of them if I can help it. Our services (physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and massage therapy) all have a very narrow window of time between when a patient gets the doctor's prescription for therapy and when they start seeing a therapist. If they do any research for themselves, I want to be in on it.

Enter my tiny budget to tie my hands. Smiley Tongue

But now that you've put this idea in my head, I will research our analytics data to see if there is any pattern to the search peaks. Thanks!

Re: Is there a way to roll over the daily unused budget?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 9
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
I tried using manual CPC bids, but I switched to automatic bidding after testing a couple campaigns revealed that I get more clicks for less that way. (Of course, with my budget, we're talking an extra 5 clicks a month, but there's also the added benefit of not having to monitor my bids for 200+ keywords constantly. I'm a one-woman marketing department, so my time is limited on this project.)

I'm trying to work with the code in your blog, but I'm having trouble with line 37: " var thisCampaign=campaignsToSet[i];" It says "Missing ; after for-loop condition. (line 37)". I have no idea what that means, since there is a semicolon right there.

I am tracking conversions but it's hard to set a value since the reimbursement rates from insurance companies vary quite a bit depending on diagnosis and patient compliance.

Yes, the budget is limited until I can prove profitability (and/or get our ads in the #1 position for certain keywords).