Have You Made the Move to Smart Bidding?

Smart Bidding and Google AdwordsMany law firms utilize Google AdWords as part of their marketing efforts. It can be an important facet of any law firm’s advertising efforts.

Google AdWords appears at the top of the search results on Google. Google AdWords also appears at the bottom of the page. So, if you are searching for anything within Google, you can see the paid ads at the top or the bottom of the search results. If you are still unsure what you are looking for you, the word “Ad” appears in the search results next to the paid ads through Google AdWords.

Google AdWords, while highly effective, is also increasing in cost at a drastic rate. Every time somebody clicks the ad, the law firm pays a fee. For many law firms, the cost of Google AdWords can be one of the most significant parts of their advertising strategy.

Law firms that do not show up on page one of the search results organically are often most tempted to utilize Google AdWords. However, some law firms that want to dominate across the board also use Google AdWords even if they are showing up organically on page one of the search results. The more views a potential client sees in terms of the law firm, the more likely they may be to reach out about their legal matter — whether it be organically or through paid ads.

No matter the situation, one question that many law firms that utilize Google AdWords should ask is whether they are utilizing smart bidding. Smart bidding is where Google AdWords measure the conversions the ads receive. Google AdWords then optimizes the AdWords Account to obtain more conversions. The thought is that the more conversion that takes place, the more potential clients will reach out. The more potential clients who reach out can then result in more new clients.

Conversions could be marked as calls, lead submission forms, page views, app downloads, map views (or various other actions within Google Adwords that one designates). Over time, Google AdWords accumulates the conversion data. Google AdWords then optimizes the bidding within the account through machine learning to obtain more conversions.

How ads optimize is complex, computerized, and hard to understand. But Google AdWords might show ads to people who are typing in various keywords. Google AdWords might hone in on the time of the day, the locations, the device, the most effective ads, and a litany of other factors in an attempt at getting more conversions. It is complex, but the beauty is that with smart bidding, Google AdWords is optimizing the ads automatically through machine learning.

Within Google AdWords, there are various options in terms of smart bidding. A law firm can utilize a Target CPA, Target ROAS, Enhanced CPC, or a Maximize Conversions strategy. All of these are smart bidding strategies with various nuances to them.

Smart bidding is the opposite of other bidding strategies where a law firm manually bids on keywords. Manual bidding on keywords is the way most law firms and lawyers would historically utilize Google AdWords. Some law firms might have even optimized for a specific impression share. In other words, the law firm might bid to be on the top of the page for certain keywords. Or, the law firm might bid just to be on page one somewhere for certain keywords.

However, today, law firms that want to succeed probably utilize some form of smart bidding. The pros and cons of the various smart bidding strategies can vary. But if you are not utilizing smart bidding, it is probably time to get on board now. For most, it makes sense to track conversions and let Google smart bid for you versus trying to bid manually on keywords or on impression shares (which can be costly and inefficient).

If your law firm has enlisted a marketing agency to run your Google AdWords campaign, it is important to speak with them about the bidding strategy in terms of what strategy they are utilizing and why. It might also be important to utilize third-party tools to track conversions to better optimize your Google AdWords account.

One way to do this is to track calls from Google AdWords. Several companies can track the calls you obtain from Google AdWords with tracking numbers. These companies can then feed this data back into your Google AdWords campaign. No matter whether the specific strategy is Target CPA, Target ROAS, Enhanced CPC, or Maximize Conversions, the more conversion data, the better.

By tracking conversions, the hope is that your Google AdWords campaign will generate even more conversions. Conversions are potential clients that may eventually turn into a client at your law firm. New clients at your law firm are usually the point of any marketing efforts.

If you are running your own Google AdWords campaign, it is important to educate yourself about smart bidding strategies. The better able you are to track conversions and then feed this data back into Google AdWords, the more successful your efforts with Google AdWords will likely be.

If you have any thoughts, feel free to share them below.

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