Our thoughts are with the families in Connecticut and around the world who were affected by the tragedy on Friday.  We are so very sorry for your loss.


Here are the week’s biggest PPC stories.


This week at Google….


The update to Google Shopping (being based on Product Listing Ads) will roll out to 10 more countries in February 2013 and to the rest of Google’s markets by end of Q2 2013.  To encourage advertisers to make the transition sooner, Google is offering a 10% discount on monthly ad spend. You can learn more about the promotional credit here.


Google Shopping Feed Specs Updates – Google is changing specifications for feeds which will go into effect in March 2013 to more tightly align the specs across countries.  You can see specific changes here.


Coming up this Thursday (12/20), you can attend a Google Hangout for AdWords users about How to maintain the holiday momentum
This Hangout will help you assess your holiday performance and engage your new customer base into the new year.  Registration information for this get together is here.


Google presents a few case studies about how companies have successfully used Next-Gen Keyword Contextual Targeting, a feature that was rolled out last March.  See how ModCloth increase CTRs and ROI and how Inflection boosted conversions in the case studies here.


Meanwhile, over at Bing Ads….


Two weeks ago, we covered a blog post from Bing Ads about common integration issues when importing Google AdWords accounts into Bing Ads.  This past week, Bing has issued a tutorial video about Importing Your AdWords AccountYou can check it out here.


Do you rotate your ads regularly?  This post from the Bing Ads blog gives some arguments (using a tire rotation metaphor <!>) about how and why to do so.  The author points out that ads can lose traction over time (like tires), that ads have different grades (like tires), and that longer ad titles have more traction (like wider tires).  LOL.


If you’ve wondered why you sometimes get more than one bill a month from Bing Ads, you can learn more about billing thresholds in this article.  Basically, Bing’s “billing threshold is the maximum unpaid balance you can have on your postpay account. When this threshold is exceeded, (they) charge your card for the balance due.”


And, from elsewhere on the www……


Search Engine Watch has the article Why Your PPC Ads Must Meet the True and Positive Needs of Prospects, which is a pretty philosophical post on how to meet your audience’s needs.


An article at Search Engine Journal If SEO or PPC Matter, Remember Integrating Public Relations argues that PR has a major place in any integrated marketing campaign.


One of Ms. Mayer’s first big announcements as leader of Yahoo is in Search Engine Land’s post Yahoo Intros Cost-Per-Lead Search Ads, First New Format Under Marissa Mayer. This allows Yahoo “a new way to earn off search separately from its deal with Microsoft.”


That’s all for this week, folks.  Stay warm and give your little ones some extra hugs.