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Maximum CPC for search terms

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hello,

 

I'm hoping someone can explain the following:

 

When I click on KEYWORDS > SEARCH TERMS in order to see what search terms have triggered my ad, I found some pretty disturbing information.

 

When I organised the list by Cost Per Click - I found a long list of keywords which have triggered a single impression, and a single click, and cost between $25 and $50 per click. All these search terms are neither negative nor added keywords, and are just search terms that have triggered my Ad (presumably because of broad match keywords added to the campaigns).

 

Is there no limit to the max CPC for search terms? The keyword with the highest maximum bid in the campaign in probably about $10 - so how can all these clicks cost $25 - $30?

 

Also - I have noticed an issue which I feel may be related to the above... I manually manage all bidding - however I have noticed that when I add keywords to a campaign (from the search terms menu) - they default to AUTOMATIC - and quite often the have a ludicrously high 'auto' limit of $70-$90.... So if one added the keywords to a campaign and then forgot to change the bidding to manual - the keyword would be set with an 'auto' maximum bid of $70 - $90.

 

- Also regarding this - I don't know why the 'auto' max bid is so high, as if I change the bid to manual, I find out that the recommended highest bid is around $5 - so why the 'auto' bid of $70?

 

Can anyone please shed any light on this confusing situation - I'd be very grateful.

 

Cheers

1 Expert replyverified_user
1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

Accepted Solutions
Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by topic author Sam D
March 2016

Re: Maximum CPC for search terms

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 4
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
Glad we figured out the bid strategy issue.

The automatic bids are higher because they have a different objective than first page bids.

First page bids are calculated to maximize impressions. They help you get the ad on as many SERPs as possible, but they don't aim for high ad position on the pages..

Automatic bidding is optimizing for clicks -- its job is to get your campaign as many clicks per day as possible, based on your budget, eCTR, and the number of available impressions. If the auto-bidder decides you need to be high up the page to get those clicks, it's going to bid much higher than the first page bid estimate.

A huge difference between the first page estimate and the autobids usually results from narrow targeting limiting how many searches per day match your keywords. The fewer impressions available, the harder autobidder fights for the high-CTR top ad slots.

View solution in original post

Re: Maximum CPC for search terms

[ Edited ]
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 2
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆

You're creating an imaginary divide between "keyword" and "search term." The CPC paid for a particular search term can't exceed the bid of the keyword that matched the term.

 

If your actual CPCs are exceeding the keyword bids, you must have bid adjustments somewhere in your campaign. https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/2732132?hl=en

 

The behavior you're describing for keywords added from the report doesn't make sense. If the campaign or ad group is using manual bidding, the bid for new keywords (even ones added from the search terms report) defaults to the ad group's default bid. Check your defaults. https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/2375408?hl=en

 

Are you using flexible bid strategies to set manual keyword bids in an automatic bidding campaign? If so, that's kind of crazy for a beginner to try. https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/2375408?hl=en

 

I'm not even going to try answering that last question without know more about how you've set up your campaign.

 

 

Re: Maximum CPC for search terms

[ Edited ]
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Thanks for the swift reply.

I hadn't created an imaginary distinction - I'm aware roughly of how it
works, but I can see I wasn't clear in my description.

I think I have found the solution to the problem based on what you said
anyway.

So even though I was managing the bids manually - the ad groups were all
set to auto (must have been when the campaign was first created). For some
reason the default bids for some of these ad groups were $70 - $90 - no
idea why that would be as I certainly didn't set them like that - however
it doesn't matter, I've changed them now at te adgroup level.

This means when ever I add a new keyword from the search term list is goes
to the new default bids I've set for the adgroups $3-$5.

I think this also explains how these huge cost clicks happened - I must
have added keywords from the search term list - which have defaulted to
these extremely high bids that were set at the ad group leve (and then
forgotten to set these to manual tell next time I checked the account)...

The confusing thing to me, is that when I fixed it up and set these
keywords to manual - the first page bid was only around $5.... I guess an
explanation could be that others had also made a similar mistake to me and
so the ads had gone into a bidding war?... Any thoughts?...

Anyway - thanks for your help - the issue is solved, however the cause
certainly isn't (why the ad groups defaulted to such high bids, and how the
bids for these keywords got so high when the first page bid suggestion is
low)

Cheers!


Sam D

 

<edited by a Community Manager as noted below>
 
NOTE: This post has been edited by a Community Manager - per Community Guidelines - in order to remove contact information which was most likely due to an email or mobile footer. This is done in order to protect account security and/or privacy. Please be sure to remove this information in future replies. Thank you for your understanding.
Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by topic author Sam D
March 2016

Re: Maximum CPC for search terms

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 4
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
Glad we figured out the bid strategy issue.

The automatic bids are higher because they have a different objective than first page bids.

First page bids are calculated to maximize impressions. They help you get the ad on as many SERPs as possible, but they don't aim for high ad position on the pages..

Automatic bidding is optimizing for clicks -- its job is to get your campaign as many clicks per day as possible, based on your budget, eCTR, and the number of available impressions. If the auto-bidder decides you need to be high up the page to get those clicks, it's going to bid much higher than the first page bid estimate.

A huge difference between the first page estimate and the autobids usually results from narrow targeting limiting how many searches per day match your keywords. The fewer impressions available, the harder autobidder fights for the high-CTR top ad slots.

Re: Maximum CPC for search terms

Top Contributor
# 5
Top Contributor
Hi Sam D,

I just want to point out here that "auto" bids on a keyword simply means the bid defaults to the AdGroup default bid, no more, no less. It does not indicate whether any other bid strategies have been applied to the group. It does not mean any kind of optimization is being applied. From your description and answers here, it appears this would be expected behavior.

It does seem the real problem here is unrelated search terms, probably due to use of broad match. Keep in mind, broad is very broad. Consider changing broad match keywords to broad match modified to reduce the number of impressions for unrelated search terms. Check the search terms report often and add negative, phrase and/or exact match as appropriate.

Best of Luck!

Pete
petebardo -- Deadhead doing AdWords