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The Consequences of AdWords for Dummies [VIDEO]

Does your dealership (or your SEM vendor) run a fully automated SEM management platform? Sure, they’re easy and convenient, but the AdWords for Dummies approach misses several important factors that will help your campaigns be more successful. This week’s Wednesday Workshop video explains the elements that the automated platforms miss and explains why some human interaction in your AdWords account is vital to success.

Welcome back to another DealerOn Wednesday workshop. Let’s talk about the consequences of Adwords for dummies.

I used to work for a company that managed millions of dollars in paid search spend for car dealers on a monthly basis. This company “inspired” pretty much every automotive specific SEM vendor in the market today.

The problem with these platforms is that their machines are programmed to minimize the amount of time an actual person has to spend setting up and managing campaigns. Why is this a problem?

Don’t get me wrong… I’m all for technology and DealerOn uses plenty of it.

My concern… which should be your concern… is what the machines are missing and the relative consequences. If you’re running your SEM through a company that had to name its offering something like Competition Crusher, Complete Annihilator, Firebush… or Jimmy… you should probably call me, so I can help you fix that immediately.

Actually… I like the name Jimmy. Hmm…

In all seriousness, if you’re running SEM with a big, massively automated platform you should jump in your Adwords account (if they’ll let you) and look for some of these fails my team finds on a regular basis:

  • Adgroup structure is MACRO… this means way too many keywords in the adgroup.
  • Ad copy and rotation. Best practice is to have 2 mobile preferred and 3 desktop ads in rotation. Poor performers get bounced in favor on better performing ads’
  • Ad schedule – most big systems are spending your budget 24/7 and you DO NOT want your schedule set this way. Most dealers see better results with an ad schedule modified after 11pm and on Sunday.
  • Mobile ads – it’s unfortunately common for the big Matrix style systems to miss out on setting up proper mobile targeted ads including call only campaigns and DLA’s (dealer listing ads).

These are just a few things to check. There are many more like targeting techniques, remarketing strategies for search – NOT DISPLAY – in this case. Bid adjustments and so on…

Thanks for watching another Wednesday workshop with DealerOn and if you have questions or comments about this video…. Drop them down below.

You know what? Maybe we should talk… If you’d like to learn more about how your SEM dollars are working or… not working for you OR… how DealerOn’s SEM Jedis can make the force strong with your paid search results, send me an email at

We’ll see you next week!

Author Greg Gifford

Greg Gifford is the Vice President of Search at DealerOn. He has over 16 years of online marketing and web design experience, and has specialized in automotive SEO for the last 8 years, helping hundreds of auto dealers thrive while the industry has struggled during the recession. Greg speaks internationally at both automotive and SEO conferences, teaching thousands of small business owners and marketers how to get their sites to show up higher in local search rankings. Greg also spends his spare time doing freelance website design and SEO for local businesses. He graduated from Southern Methodist University with a BA in Cinema and Communications, and has an obscure movie quote for just about any situation.

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