The world of pay-per-click advertising has come a long way since its early days, and opportunities are now abundant for both small businesses and major enterprises. Sure, the big dogs still have an astronomical advertising and marketing budget bigger than a small business’ lifetime earnings so far, but that’s not to say that they have a distinct advantage when it comes to online marketing. Not anymore. In fact, there are more tools and opportunities available to small businesses who want to reach their target customers online than ever before, allowing SMBs to readily compete against their biggest competitors with a bit of finesse and ingenuity.

With the capability to dig deep into data and obtain valuable insights that can drive your company’s digital strategy – not just for PPC, but for channels both online and offline – any business can compete in today’s world. In today’s weekly PPC update, you’ll learn about a new Shopping Assortment Report from Google that can help retailers uncover the most in-demand products that they’re not stocking, offering a unique look at what your competition is doing that you might be missing out on. Also, new opportunities for both DoubleClick advertisers and small businesses, as well as some upcoming new tools from Bing Ads and new ways to reach your target customers through strategic Bing Ads partnerships.

Ready to level the playing field? Let’s dig in to the PPC news and updates for this week.

 

What’s up, Google?

A new Shopping Assortment Report available in the Google Merchant Center “gives retailers insight into demand for popular products they don’t stock.” What that means, of course, is you can uncover consumer demands that you’re not yet meeting and quickly discover the products your target market is most interested in purchasing.

“With the Shopping Assortment Report, you can quickly discover the top 100 products that you don’t already offer in your Merchant Center product feed for each Google Product Category. You can also see benchmark selling prices for these products. This information can be helpful in identifying new brands and products to add to your assortment, and reach even more customers with in-demand products. The data is based on the popularity of these products on Google Shopping, offering a near real-time view into online consumer demand for shoppable products,” explains a post on the AdWords Blog. Read more about this new opportunity and how to use it to your advantage in this post.

For DoubleClick advertisers, you can now reach the right audience faster with comScore vCE in DoubleClick. What exactly is that, you say? It’s “the first completely tagless GRP measurement solution integrated directly into an ad server.” And it means that with comScore vCE in DoubleClick, brand marketers in the U.S. get the trusted comScore audience measurement solution – for both video and display ads – offering 100% coverage.

If that sounds appealing, you can learn more about it by registering for DoubleClick’s upcoming webinar on October 21st at 11am PST / 2pm EST. Check out this post for more details.

The Google Domains experience has been improved, as Google and Your Business Reports. Google Domains was designed to make it easy for businesses to get online with a domain name and website, but now you also have access to:

  • Custom email addresses, via Google Apps for Work where you can quickly and easily set up email addresses to coordinate with your new website domain.
  • More than 90 new domain endings, including cool options like .life, .business, .gifts, and even .pizza.
  • Domain ownership transfer, allowing you to make sure that the right person is managing the right domains without a hassle.

Check out this post from Google and Your Business to learn more.

 

Let’s check in with Bing…

Bing Ads has joined forces with adMarketplace, the largest independent search advertising marketplace. adMarketplace will now showcase Bing Ads across its network of digital properties, helping Bing Ads advertisers to reach a wider target audience. Bing Ads advertisers can now access publishers within adMarketplace and display keyword-targeted ads to millions of users outside the search engines. More details here.

There’s a new Segmentation feature in Bing Ads, available only in the U.S. as of now, and you have the opportunity to preview it. Segmentation will provide deeper insights into your campaigns’ data tables, get access to the data you need without having to visit the Reports workspace, and allow you to slice and dice your data by the attributes that matter most to you, including:

  • Time
  • Network
  • Device
  • Top vs. Other

If you’re interested in being a part of the upcoming Segmentation preview, you’ll need to opt in by letting Bing know you’d like to participate. You can do so by emailing bingads-segmentation@microsoft.com – and be sure to check out this post for more information on how Segmentation will work.

 

And, a quick stroll around the web-o-sphere…

Do you employ strategy roadmaps? If you’re not using these tools to help craft and drive your PPC strategy (whether for your own business or for your clients, if you’re managing PPC campaigns for others), you should be. This post from PPC Hero focuses on how to use strategy roadmaps for your clients, but there are tips you can certainly put to use for your own strategy planning as well.

Are you too focused on your data? Considering we kicked off this week’s post with a discussion of how the ready availability of data levels the playing field between enterprises and SMBs, this post is an important one to read. Key takeaway: “You can use data to make good decisions but data can’t make good decisions for you.” Read more from PPC Hero here.

Episode 15 of 3Q Digital’s Digital Download Podcast is a good one to listen to as a follow-up to all the mobile marketing info we’ve been discussing in recent weeks.  Host Joe Kerschbaum and guest Bryant Garvin break down some valuable tips for mobile marketing in this podcast, and you’ll also get a few top tips for PPC ad copy for mobile – check it out here.

Heard about Google AMP? It’s a new program just announced by Google that will “speed up load times of pages viewed on mobile devices, while providing a reader – and advertiser – friendly environment.” Learn more about the new AMP program and why it’s a great thing for advertisers in this post from Clix Marketing.

If Facebook advertising is your thing, WordStream offers some insights right up your alley this week. Be sure to check out this post for three mind-blowing hacks to leverage PPC for Facebook ads, and then this post for some valuable tips for “funky-fresh” Facebook ads (because we all totally need funky-fresh Facebook ads).

 

Are you using data to level the playing field between your business and your biggest competitors? Better yet, are you using data to help you make better decisions – but not letting data make your decisions for you? If you’re not making the best use of all the readily available data that’s at your fingertips, now’s the time to hone your data skills. Sounds like a mighty fine weekend goal, don’t you think? Whatever you might do this weekend, have a little fun and be sure to rest up for the busy week ahead. Until next week, my friends!