As you might’ve guessed, it’s DoubleClick…but for search. DoubleClick Search (DS) is at its core an incredibly powerful bid management tool, with some hardcore tech that can be leveraged to get the most out of your search campaigns. Beyond that, DS expands into a robust and versatile search campaign management tool, streamlining some of the otherwise time-consuming or awkward tasks associated with running a paid search campaign. In this article, we’ll cover a few of the neat integrations with paid search, and some useful tips when it comes to running your search campaigns through DoubleClick.
As with similar bid management tools, DS uses URL wrapping to forward a user’s click first to the DoubleClick servers, and then through to the landing page. This, in combination with DS’s tracking pixels (floodlight tags), creates a unified system that lets you bring transactions and revenue into your search campaigns and enables visibility of campaign performance by revenue, CPA, and ROAS/ROI. This brings us to our first section of DS – bid strategy. With bid strategies, we can use these conversion metrics to dictate an automated strategy across targeted campaigns in the account.
The bid strategy section has a lot of predefined strategies that you can set up in around 5 minutes. Useful strategies include:
- Target Position
- Click Volume
Simply select your target e.g. Target Position of 3.0, set your constraints: Minimum bid $0.50, maximum bid $10.00, then apply the bid strategy to the campaigns of your choice. DS then uses live AdWords data to attempt to reach your goal within your constraints. For a more advanced approach we can pull in the previously discussed revenue and CPA calculations to target specific CPA or ROAS goals.
If DS is unable to optimise toward your goal (if your max bid is too low for example) it will tell you the % of spend that I couldn’t optimise and the reason it couldn’t. This helps to understand how close you are to meeting your target goals, and what kind of adjustments you can make to your overall strategy to reach them.
DS also has a powerful formula column feature, where we can create custom metrics which can then be utilised in bid strategies or reporting. There is a library of functions and columns that you can use in formula columns available on the DS Support site. One example use of formula columns is to create custom CPA and ROI columns for sets of conversions. If an advertiser provided holiday packages for example, you might have a floodlight tag for your Fiji packages, and one for your Vanuatu packages. You could then call these columns into a total “South Pacific” CPA column to see how the region performs as a whole.
A more complex example would be to pull in your cost for a date range to use as a comparison (Image 2).