It’s no secret that a/b testing is imperative to a successful paid search program—but what does that mean, and what can it look like? There are several approaches you can take when running tests for your paid search campaigns. Maybe you are testing landing pages, running new ad copy, or trying to determine the best CTA for your target audience. In any case, even the seemingly-smallest Google Ads tests can pay off.
So why exactly should you conduct tests? Below we have outlined some of the benefits of a/b testing for your paid search strategy. We also discuss why running an experiment within Google Ads is a great option, and some of the top considerations when determining the best PPC testing strategy for your organization.
Key Benefits of Google Ads Experiments
Continue to Improve Upon Your Paid Search Program:
Not all tests are guaranteed to drive profound and statistically significant results, but the greatest goal and benefit of testing is to identify what works and continue to make it better. Whether your main KPI is impression volume, traffic, conversions, or revenue, running experiments within Google Ads allow you to test things such as ad copy, landing pages, keyword strategy, bidding strategies, extensions, and more. One Synapse client tested a new CTA in their ad copy and landing page messaging and found the new CTA had a 90% higher conversion rate than the original CTA/message.
Stay Ahead of Your Competition:
In an ever-changing paid search landscape, your organization must continue to test to get ahead of competition. If you continue doing what you have always done, you will likely start to see declining performance as your competitors are capturing and converting a larger portion of traffic. Use features in Google Ads such as Auction Insights to keep track of how aggressively your competition is bidding on your keyword set and how that aggression changes over time. Other tools such as SEMrush or Google’s new Ads Transparency Center can help you monitor the specific language competitors are using in their ads.
Google Ads Experiment Features:
Google’s New “Sync” Feature
In January 2022, Google announced they were reconfiguring the experiment process within Google Ads. With that, they rolled out the “experiment sync” feature, in which, any update made within the control campaign would automatically be made in the test campaign (if opted in). Because it is imperative to keep experiments as even as possible and mitigate extra variables, this feature is great. It keeps your campaigns synced and won’t let a minor adjustment (e.g. a bid optimization) influence the results.
Easily Apply Experiment Results in One Click
Along with the experiment updates rolled out in early 2022, Google also made it much easier to adopt testing results with an “apply experiment” button after you have ended your test. To make this decision, Google assists by telling you if you have reached statistical significance, as shown in the image below.
Keep Messaging Consistent
If you are testing landing pages with a different call to action or overall theme, it is important that users are exposed to that type of language throughout all steps of their sales journey. This includes Google Ads ad copy, whether it be a responsive search ad or display ad. Ad copy and landing page continuity is critical for user experience and minimizing factors when analyzing your test results.
No Reliance on IT or a 3rd Party Platform
One common bottleneck of a/b testing for organizations is the reliance on IT or a 3rd party testing platform to set up a test on the backend. One major benefit of Google Ads Experiments is that you can create experiments within the platform (and your agency partner can completely handle the setup)..
Top Considerations for Google Ads Experiments
Now you’re ready to run with your first Google Ads experiment, but there are still things you have to consider and determine to run your test well. Whether you are just testing the waters with paid search, or looking to level-up your paid search strategy with Experiments, here are a few key considerations to keep top of mind when starting out:
- Have you run any tests before? If so, how did they go?
- What is the main goal of the test?
- What are your competitors doing?
- Do you have enough traffic to generate statistical significance within a reasonable amount of time?
Consider these questions carefully as you determine how to run your next Google Ads experiment. What types of tests have worked well for you in the past? Are there any learnings from prior tests that you can apply to a new test? Think about what you want to accomplish and be sure to prioritize your experiments by estimated impact.
Google Ads Experiments are a great way to conduct a/b tests for your paid search strategy. If you need help setting up your experiment or a consultation on your paid search strategy, please contact us by email at email@example.com to talk through your Google Ads testing needs.