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Advertising on Google Play

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi,

I've been trying to set up a (preferably CPA) campaign so that my app install ads appear on Google Play. However, I have repeatedly run into a number of roadblocks. I have been in contact via telephone and email with customer service in Dublin but no-one was able to offer help or enlightenment. A few of the problems are as follows.

i) It seems that it is only possible to target Google Play by running mobile app install ads across the whole search network, which includes Google Play. As far as I can tell, there is no reason to believe that ads run on this basis ever feature on Google Play and there is no way to check.

ii) Although an advertiser explicitly specifies CPA in the campaign settings, Google continues to charge on a CPC basis anyway. I had this confirmed to me by the customer service rep and have found language in Google's documentation which confirms it.

iii) The price Google shows on the app install ad is the price before tax. In Europe, where I sell most of my apps, this means that anyone who clicks on an ad is in for a nasty surprise when (s)he sees that the app actually costs ~20% more than advertised, after, of course, Google has registered their click.

In sum, it seems to be impossible to achieve my aim which is simply to get my app install ads to show on Google Play and pay Google a maximum amount for every download. If anyone should know otherwise, I would be grateful for any help or information.

1 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Advertising on Google Play

Rising Star
# 2
Rising Star

Hi Aidan V,

 

Answers/suggestions inline:

 

i) It seems that it is only possible to target Google Play by running mobile app install ads across the whole search network, which includes Google Play. As far as I can tell, there is no reason to believe that ads run on this basis ever feature on Google Play and there is no way to check.

 

Search App install ads are shown on Google Play as well as the search results page, probably because the search results page has more reach than Google Play in terms of search volumes. I can relate to your concern about previewing ads on Google Play which isn't available yet. However, you can check this in the Mobile App Sources Report and measure your campaign performance on Google Play. In fact, I'd recommend using the 'Universal App Install' campaign type to promote your app across networks and formats. This is an automated campaign type with not much customization available, but I've seen positive results for a few of my clients.

 

ii) Although an advertiser explicitly specifies CPA in the campaign settings, Google continues to charge on a CPC basis anyway. I had this confirmed to me by the customer service rep and have found language in Google's documentation which confirms it.

 

Yes, this is true. Though you can set the maximum amount you'd like to spend for a conversion (as target CPA), Google would charge per click or on CPC basis. This is because "Target CPA bidding automatically finds an optimal CPC bid for your ad each time it's eligible to appear. AdWords sets these bids to achieve an average CPA equal to your target across all ad groups and campaigns using this strategy". Be it CPC or CPA bidding, you'd pay for clicks and not conversions. However, when the question " how much am I paying for a conversion" arises, CPA is the answer to it. In other words, improving (or reducing) your CPA means increasing conversions within the same budget.

 

iii) The price Google shows on the app install ad is the price before tax. In Europe, where I sell most of my apps, this means that anyone who clicks on an ad is in for a nasty surprise when (s)he sees that the app actually costs ~20% more than advertised, after, of course, Google has registered their click

 

How about including tax in the price? Tax inclusive pricing is available for UK.

 

Would love to hear your thoughts!

Sumanth

 

 

 

Sumanth Sridhar
Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by Mini-CM (Community Manager)
March 2016

Re: Advertising on Google Play

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi Sumanth,

 

Many thanks for taking the time to write such a considered reply. I have followed up your links and suggestions and I would just like to leave a couple of comments on each of the areas we touched on.

 

i) Universal App Install
I had considered the 'Universal App Install' campaign type but, as I have tried search display campaigns before and found them ineffective, I wanted to focus the campaign as much as possible on Google Play.

 

ii) CPA / CPC
You make the point: However, when the question "how much am I paying for a conversion" arises, CPA is the answer to it.
I ran a short campaign to test the waters, which generated zero conversions. However, I was charged for the clicks generated so my cost per acquisition was actually infinite. Even if I had achieved a couple of conversions, my target CPA would still have been exceeded. I can't help thinking that calling this CPA borders on misrepresentation.

 

iii) Pricing
How about including tax in the price? Tax inclusive pricing is available for UK.
When I set my base price, say 2.40€ and tick autoconvert, Google autoconverts the price for each country to a tax inclusive price, 2.84€ in Germany, 2.92€ in Spain etc. and this is the price shown on Google Play.
Google's documentation points out:
In some countries, prices shown to buyers on search and detail pages must equal the amount paid at time of payment. This means that all taxes (including VAT) must be included in the price.
However, the ad (unless this is only on the mockup Google shows to the advertiser) seems to show the base price 2.40€, in apparent violation of this principle.

 

I have noticed that doing keyword searches on Google Play almost never results in an ad being shown. (I have seen ads for chess and piano but nothing for English, football, draw, or toDo) and wonder why it is that Google makes it so difficult to show ads in this way.