Are you ready for some football? It seems Google is, as well as a huge portion of the advertising audience for many brands and businesses. If you’re tired of talking about New Year’s resolutions and are ready to totally throw your diet down the drain with some hot wings and pigs-in-a-blanket, today’s roundup has some insights on how to tap into the massive enthusiasm for football that’s consuming everyone’s lives at the moment.

Of course, it is still January, so Google still has some New Year’s resolutions you should consider. And, no time like January to make some predictions about what’s ahead for PPC and the search industry as a whole in the coming year. All of that and more awaits you in today’s PPC update, so read on.

 

What’s up, Google?

There’s still time to talk about New Year’s resolutions. It’s still January, after all, so you have 11 more months to knock it out of the park this year. So, in the spirit of all things shiny and new, Google outlines five resolutions for shopping success in 2015:

  1. I will be on time. (Ha! They are joking, right?)
  2. I will get organized and eliminate clutter. (Great. Hope they’re coming to my place to eliminate clutter, too.)
  3. I will try something new. (I’m down with that.)
  4. I will be a better listener. (Got something to say? I’m all ears. Hit me up in the comments.)
  5. I will be a better communicator. (Well, shucks. Can I do a better job at communicating all the uber-fabulous updates from the PPC world I deliver to you every Friday? I shall try.)

More on the five resolutions and how to make them a reality in this post.

Got another great business idea? An existing business you haven’t yet taken online (hopefully that’s not you)? Google wants to make it easier to get your biz on the map, so they’re testing a new service called Google Domains, designed to help you secure an awesome domain name and get your new website up and running. They’ve partnered with some leading companies to help you do just that, such as Shopify, Squarespace, Weebly, and Wix.

They’ve just opened the doors by limiting the invitation restriction in the U.S., so if you’re U.S.-based, you can now get in on the Google Domains action and take advantage of:

  • An improved search and suggestion experience to help you find the perfect domain name.
  • More than 60 new domain endings.
  • A simple dashboard for managing your domain, website, and email settings.
  • Blogger integration for easily creating a blog and connecting it to your domain.
  • The ability to quickly browse website themes and compare features and plans from website builders.
  • Dynamic DNS. Set up your domain and it continues to point to the same computer even when the IP address changes. (More on that here.)

Visit Google Domains or learn more here.

Hey, you know what comes after the New Year? Football. Specifically, playoffs, bowl games, and of course the most epic football event of the season: The Super Bowl. Like any major holiday or sporting event, the laser focus of the population on these events spells opportunity for advertisers. Think with Google has put together “A Marketer’s Playbook for Winning the Big Game,” chock-full of data on search query trends, like apparel, food, and weather, and the increasing mobilization of fans. More details in this post.

Oh, and by the way, it’s not just about game day. Check out this infographic which details how searches are impacted throughout the whole month surrounding game day.

 

What’s happening, Bing?

What’s going to happen to the search landscape in 2015? Experts weigh in with predictions on what search will bring to the table this year, including:

  • Retargeting is going to be huge in 2015.
  • You gotta connect sales data to marketing. Really, the analytics capabilities are here and becoming increasingly accessible to SMBs, not just enterprises. You’re short-changing your business if you’re not painting a full picture for your sales and marketing teams.
  • The time has passed for “catching up” to the mobile world. You gotta go mobile. It’s where your audience is.
  • Cross-device tracking and better attribution are taking their place in the paid search world. This has been pretty clear in recent updates these past few months with Google obviously emphasizing the multi-device experience and aiming for data and analytics to reflect these habits.
  • PPC will move beyond traditional text ads and search placements. That’s right: PPC is literally transforming into a whole new breed compared to its original (relative) simplicity. Search share behavior is expanding more into specialty sites like Reddit, Pinterest, and TripAdvisor, while SERPs are beginning to provide more of a holistic shopping experience. And advertisers are going to increasingly look towards growing volume on other channels such as Facebook Ads, Twitter Ads, and the like.
  • Search is going to be “on the leading edge of ‘wow.’” With technologies rapidly advancing, giving advertisers and marketers unprecedented visibility and predictive capabilities, it’s going to be pretty freaking amazing.

Read more about the expert contributors and their specific insights here.

Listen, folks: It’s time to start thinking outside the (search) box. At least, according to Cedric Chambaz, MSFT, who weighs in with his thoughts on how you should be using the Bing Ads Intelligence tool and other tools to take advantage of the many consumer insights that are literally waiting to be discovered all around you. Find out what the Bing Ads Intelligence tool can do for you (whether or not you’re actually in paid search, this tool offers valuable insights for any marketer) in this post.

Guess what? More improvements from Bing: You can now have up to 5 million keywords per account and up to 20,000 ad groups per campaign. And, for simpler management and reporting, Bing Ads customers can now have 5 million keywords per account, 5 million negative keywords per account and 50 million keywords per customer.

In other news, the Top Mover Report is now globally available, and the Bid Landscape is now available on the Opportunities page to help you make informed decisions before actually applying opportunities to your campaigns. As usual, Bing is keeping pace with our insatiable need for always-bigger, always-better everything, especially when it comes to our PPC campaigns. That’s not even the full spectrum of the recent improvements coming down the line from Bing Ads. Read the full post here.

 

Thought leaders, what say you?

In accordance with the general expansion of PPC outside the traditional, Yahoo Stream Ads are poised for growth in 2015. “Yahoo released the newest native ad format back in April and has been evolving ever since. Yahoo Stream Ads helps connect advertisers with their consumers through the highly personalized content stream on Yahoo.com,” according to this post from PPCHero back in November 2013.

So why the sudden interest? “Clients like the fact that Yahoo Stream Ads contain both an image and text. Yahoo Stream Ads do not only show up in their search result pages, but they also appear above user email inboxes and most Yahoo sites including the Yahoo homepage. Since these ads are basically imbedded in the news feeds of consumers, they are more likely to be read, and hopefully clicked,” PPCHero says. Read more about the increasing excitement surrounding Yahoo Stream Ads here.

3Q Digital compares running a SEM campaign to flying a fighter jet. To do that, of course, you need to understand the tools available in the cockpit in order to make the jet fly and perform all kinds of fancy tricks. They’ve broken down the SEM cockpit with an explanation of all the essential tools and how to use them to keep your campaigns cruising smoothly. Check it out.

Since retargeting is all the rage in 2015 (and the phrase “all the rage” I’m fairly certain has long been on its way out, but what can I say? I’m old-school), WordStream breaks down three do’s and don’ts to optimize your retargeting campaigns. Read it here.

 

Another week down, how many more to go in 2015? Good thing January is a nice long month, that’s all I’ve got to say. I need a few weeks to get my act together at the start of a new year. Today’s PPC update just so happens to be packed full of informative articles to help you get your act together, too, so if you’re in the same boat as me, you’re welcome. Happy reading! Until next week, all!