DS features in November

Tuesday, December 16, 2014 |

In November, we added the following features to DoubleClick Search (DS):
  • Report purchase details in DS: Learn which products in your inventory make up your sales with purchase detail reports. Enable this feature by configuring your Floodlight transaction tags to report on revenue, cost, and profit for individual products sold in each conversion. DS reports can also show which campaigns (including keyword and Shopping campaigns), ad groups, and keywords contributed to the sales of those products. Finally, you can segment your reports using any attributes from your inventory feed.

We also updated the following features:
  • Executive Reports:
    • Share reports: Share a link to your executive reports with clients, executives, non-DS users, or anyone that you want to see how you’re performing toward your advertising goals.
    • Resize charts: DS has added chart resizing to the list of formatting options available in executive reports. With a single click, you can expand or contract a chart horizontally or vertically.
  • Bid strategies: Set a minimum ROAS constraint: In addition to bid limit and position constraints, you can now set a minimum ROAS constraint. For bid strategies that are focused on maximizing revenue, set the minimum ROAS constraint to optimize bids and keep the marginal ROAS above a target threshold.
  • Apply, remove, or change sitelinks for AdWords campaigns in the DS UI: If you need to apply sitelinks to several campaigns in your AdWords account, you can now use the DS UI in addition to bulksheets.
  • Use the DS API to report on AdWords location extensions : If you've set up upgraded location extensions in DS, you can use the DoubleClick Search API’s Reporting Service to download adGroup, campaign, or feeditem performance metrics for location extensions.

    Note that reports downloaded from the DS API include only location extensions that have recorded at least one impression during the report's time range.

See these updates in action in the November New Features training video:

Posted by the DoubleClick Search team

DoubleClick at CES

Friday, December 12, 2014 |

With 2014 drawing to a close, we’re getting excited about what’s ahead in the new year. We’ll be ringing in 2015 at the International CES (Consumer Electronics Show) the first week of January. If you’re planning to go too, we’d like to invite you to come by C Space, the new destination at CES for advertisers, publishers, agencies, and content creators.

On the first day of the event (Tuesday, January 6th), Neal Mohan, Google’s VP of Display and Video Advertising Products, will be headlining C Space. In his keynote he’ll talk about how brands can make the most of video in a climate where consumers are easier to reach but harder to influence. He’ll discuss not only how to drive engagement but also how to measure the impact that it has on brand metrics.

Following his keynote, Neal will join Meredith Levien, EVP Advertising at The New York Times, in a fireside chat.
Learn more about C Space and check out the full agenda here.
Hope to see you there!
Tuesday, January 6th 2015
1 - 2 PM PT

Digital advertising in 2014: An industry in motion

Thursday, December 11, 2014 |

2014: IAB’s “Open Letter to Marketers” advocated for the universal adoption of HTML5. “Programmatic” became the ANA’s marketing word of the year. The MRC lifted its advisory on transacting on viewability. 

These are just some of the moments that moved our industry forward in 2014. “Digital Advertising in 2014: An Industry in Motion” recaps the ideas we congregated around as an industry, the technology we evolved to realize them, and the impact we saw from executing on them. Together with you, we:
  • Told stories through big, beautiful canvases everywhere
  • Evolved media buying 
  • Measured what matters with new metrics
  • Made digital easier for all of us
As we raise a toast to the year that was and look forward to 2015, we thank you for partnering with us and ensuring that we never stay still, that as an industry, we’re always in motion.

Get DoubleClick’s full 2014 recap here.

Real-time helps you win on big launch days

Thursday, November 13, 2014 |

This is our third post in a blog series on using real-time data to win in SEM. Today, we’re writing about the importance of real-time for product launches.

If you’re a marketer, a product launch can translate into a long list of to-dos - from updating your website with product, pricing, and promotional information, to setting up your campaigns for maximum exposure.

Then, you have to carefully monitor sales and respond to real-time changes in consumer demand. While some retailers receive and act on performance data after 24 hours, this lag can result in a significant lost opportunity for others. Real-time data helps you act in the first crucial minutes and hours of a launch.

Real-time data and the tools to act on it in DoubleClick Search can help make your launches a success. Automated bid strategies update bids multiple times per day to meet business goals. Up-to-the-minute conversion reporting means you can see sales as they come in, make adjustments, and ensure your changes are live across all engines as fast as you react.

Real-time becomes even more crucial in competitive markets when, for example, a single product is launching in numerous retail outlets at once. To illustrate this, we’ll use some examples from the mobile industry. With the release of the iPhone 6 and Moto 360 in September, and with pre-sales having opened for the Nexus 6 on October 29, autumn is a big launch season for mobile retailers. 

How important was real-time on these days? An example from the days following the iPhone 6 launch shows that DoubleClick Search responded to breaking trends throughout the day, and updated relevant advertisers’ bids an average of eight times, sometimes topping out at 13 bid changes per day during the highest-peak days. These frequent changes were made to drive incremental revenue or to push ads to the top of the page. Without DoubleClick Search’s real-time data and real-time bid strategies, these advertisers would have been left with their original bids for the whole day—missing out on opportunities for more sales.

But real-time is about more than just changing bids frequently. It is about knowing what is happening, like understanding what is and isn’t converting. During big events, the propensity for your keywords to convert can change dramatically. A big launch like one for the iPhone or Android generates many curiosity-seekers who - while not in-market - will be looking for information. Do these clicks matter for your business? Real-time conversion data shows you the answer, separating out keywords that drive revenue from those that just capture browsers, and distinguishing, in real-time, how they in relation to a big market event. With all of this real-time visibility available directly in your reporting, you can make quick decisions on whether you want to be in-market for non-converting keywords that may yet be important for your brand to stay out there. Automated bidding rules can make this even more responsive.

Jeffrey Mysel with Digitas LBi explains how real-time data was key for a successful launch and promotion of the Moto360 smart watch:

“Capturing demand for the Moto360 product launch was a crucial piece to our marketing program, and even more so for paid search. Having the benefit of real-time data gave us the flexibility to pulse our budget during important sales windows, as the team was able to monitor data and make adjustments on peak days. With DoubleClick Search, we were able to maximize our budget and make quick decisions to manage public demand, meet client needs, and keep our program in line with product inventory.” 

Real-time data can also be extremely useful for big seasonal events. As the holidays approach, our next post will highlight how DoubleClick Search clients used real-time data to take advantage of Black Friday and Cyber Monday this year.

DS features in October

Tuesday, November 11, 2014 |

In October, we added the following features to DoubleClick Search (DS):
  • Include data from IBM Digital Analytics in DS reports: You can now report on IBM Digital Analytics data directly in DoubleClick Search (DS). After your DS advertiser and Digital Analytics accounts are linked, you’ll be able to see conversion events—including revenue and item counts—from Digital Analytics in the DoubleClick Search UI. You can also download and schedule reports with this data, retrieve the data from the DoubleClick Search API’s Reporting Service, as well as use the data in formula columns. To get started, email your DS support contact and let them know that you want to link DS with Digital Analytics. See Link a DS advertiser with Digital Analytics for the information to include in your email.
  • Manage AdWords location extensions in DS: Location extensions show your local business address, phone number, and a map marker in text ads served by AdWords. Now you can use DS to manage the location extensions that you've set up in AdWords.
  • Report on the quantity of items in transactions: Now you can use DS to report the number of items in transactions recorded by Google Analytics and Floodlight activities. Just add the GA quantity, Action quantity, and Transaction quantity columns to a report, or to a formula column.
We also updated the following features:
  • Bid strategies:
    • Choose an attribution model for distributing credit: By default, bid strategies attribute full credit for a conversion to the last paid click. In effect, bid strategies optimize bids to maximize the number of last click conversions in the funnel. If instead you prefer to optimize for paid search clicks throughout the funnel, you can select an alternate attribution model such as time-decay.
    • Set a maximum CPA: Bid strategies optimize bids across the whole portfolio to increase efficiency by bidding more for some keywords and less for others. This can mean that the average bid for some individual keywords drives a CPA that's over the target CPA, even though the overall strategy is profitable. To attempt to keep the average bid of each keyword in the profitable CPA range, you can now set a max CPA constraint.
  • Executive Reporting: Customize the axes for bar and line charts
    • Start axis at zero: Now, if you want to show the scale of change between data points in your bar and line charts, you have the option to start the axis at zero. For close data ranges, starting at zero expands the scale of the range.
    • Combine the range for measurement on one axis: When comparing different metrics in bar and line charts, you can also combine metrics that use the same unit of measurement on one axis. For example, you can combine clicks and impressions on the same axis because they are measured the same way.
  • Updated editor for text ads: To make it easier to create text ads, the ad editor now provides separate fields for each line along with a preview of the ad. As you enter text, you'll see the number of characters that you can type in each line. And for a shortcut, you can paste an entire ad into the Headline field. DS will automatically fill in the fields with text you pasted.
  • DS API's Reporting Service:

See these updates in action in the training video for October features:

Posted by the DoubleClick Search team

Using real-time data to optimize your search ads and Shopping Campaigns

Thursday, October 23, 2014 |

This is the second in a series of posts on real-time advertising. Last week, we wrote about the real-time gap and how access to real-time data can positively affect online sales and results. This week, we’re writing about how real-time data can help you optimize text ads and Shopping campaigns. 

Don’t underestimate the long tail 
Retailers today often have hundreds or thousands of products, but a recent study shows they only advertise an average of 49% of their inventory with search ads. There are two main reasons for this. One is that advertisers just can’t manage millions of keywords and bids on their own. The other is that they often don’t see the value of their long-tail inventory items.

However, forgetting the long tail can mean missed opportunities. While each additional item advertised may not contribute a lot of sales on its own, aggregated sales for long-tail items can have a significant bottom-line impact.

Create and optimize Shopping Campaigns with inventory-aware campaigns 
Our customers have told us Shopping campaigns are a critical tool to automate ad creation, management, and bid optimization. Integrating with Google Merchant Center - from feed to ad creation - helps retailers be “real-time” in responding to the many seasonal assortment changes, new product launches and inventory status changes. They can afford to traffic and manage the full product catalog, without risking losing track of a promotion or out-of-stock and paying for that “ad to nowhere”. Last year Piston saw big success with inventory management, with over 50% gains in both ROAS and conversions.

Umut Dincer, The Home Depot’s Director of Online Marketing shares: “Our strong partnership with DoubleClick Search has been a great source of revenue for The Home Depot using the Google Merchant Center and Shopping campaigns to merchandize inventory.”

Organize products intelligently with Adaptive Shopping Campaigns
Beyond expanding product coverage, advertisers can also improve performance with sound product group structure. Adaptive Shopping campaigns leverage real-time conversion data to automatically change Shopping Campaign structure to optimize performance gains. When items in product groups have similar conversion rates, DoubleClick Search can assign better bids and reduce inefficiencies in spend.

By looking at advertiser data, we found, for example, that 90% of the median advertiser’s Shopping campaign cost came from only 9.5% of its products.* Often, it turned out, advertisers were lumping high-performance products into product groups with other, lower-converting products. The end result: bids that were too low for their top-selling products and bids that were too high for their lower-revenue items.

Andrea Bywater, Marketing Coordinator of Paid Search at BuildDirect says, “Adaptive shopping campaigns will be incredibly helpful in grouping ‘winning’ SKUs together—especially when things get busier with the holidays, and with Black Friday around the corner. Not only will this save time; it’ll help us save money on products with lower conversion rates.”

Link purchases to ads with Purchase detail reports 
A third way for retailers to increase their advertising efficiencies with real-time data is to allow them to connect their ads with product sales. Linking ads and sales used to be a complex task requiring deep analysis and a lot of data. As a result, advertisers often skipped over this analysis, missing out on key insights like which keywords sold which products. We designed Purchase detail reports to meet this customer need.

Purchase detail reports help advertisers:
  • Identify the impact of advertising on business goals like maximizing profitability or selling off inventory
  • Improve ad targeting by matching ads to products that consumers are most interested in
  • Understand the value of brand and general terms in selling your highest margin or most important products
Justin Johnson, Paid Search Manager at Cabela’s explains, “Having insights into where we spend our money, in addition to what people are looking for, has been invaluable in helping us make better decisions. We have a better look into where we may not have adequate coverage, and are able to quickly make changes to address that. Being able to pull in margin data to see if certain keywords are better or worse at driving profitable traffic than we anticipated helps us be more thoughtful with our spend.”

Real-time in real life 
In the next edition we’ll shift our focus to a real-time use case: smartphone launches. We’ll have a look at how real-time capabilities make a difference on big sales days, where competition and volatility are high.

*DoubleClick Search internal data, 2014

DoubleClick Search URL Change

Thursday, October 16, 2014 |

To better align with other solutions in the DoubleClick Digital Marketing (DDM) platform, we’re moving DoubleClick Search (DS) from https://www.google.com/doubleclick/search to https://ddm.google.com/search.

Over the coming weeks you may notice that you’re automatically redirected to the new URL when hopping into DS. When this happens you may receive a message that informs you about the redirect and encourages you to update your bookmarks. It’s important to note that DS user credentials will continue to work as expected and existing bookmarks/saved links will redirect to the new URL.

Reach out to your DoubleClick Search representative or our support team at ds-support@google.com with any questions.