All entries for Tuesday 18 November 2008

November 18, 2008

Are Google trialling 'Automatic Matching' of Keywords on their UK Adwords?

Writing about web page

Adwords Automatic MatchingLast weekend I was working on an Adwords account by searching on common negative keywords for a Gold Plating group by searching for ‘gold plated’. My client, Frost Electroplating, a ‘world class’ industrial and technical electroplater to the automotive and aerospace sectors, is looking for specialist volume plating not the domestic and giftware described as ‘plate’ or ‘gold plated’.

I was concerned when I found that two of the Frost Electroplating ads appeared as I searched for ‘gold plated’. One for ‘gold plating’ and even more unlikely a second for ‘gold electroplating’. I checked through the two groups concerned then searched their entire campaign to confirm that the word ‘plated’ was not added to any keyword list.

I hope that this was just a glitch with Google’s ‘broad match’ algorithm and I have explicitly added ‘plating’ to the negative keywords. This behaviour matches perfectly the Beta trial in the US of Adwords ‘Automatic Matching’ of Keywords. Here any spare budget is used up by bidding on keywords selected by Google’s increasingly sophisticated Keyword Suggestion tools.

Automatic Matching has been widely derided and the results for Google’s US beta clients has been poor. Even the example they used in their invitation email fails to inspire confidence.

I’m excited to tell you that you have been selected to participate in a beta for our new Automatic Matching feature which will be starting on February 28th.

Automatic Matching automatically extends your campaign’s reach by using surplus budget to serve your ads on relevant search queries that are not already triggered by your keyword lists. By analyzing the structure and content of your website and AdWords campaigns, we deliver more impressions and clicks while maintaining your current CTRs and CPCs.

For example, If you sold Adidas shoes on your website, Automatic Matching would automatically crawl your landing page and target your campaigns to queries such as: “shoes” “adidas” “athletic”, etc., and less obvious ones such as “slippers” that our system has determined will benefit you and likely lead to a conversion on your site.

Now in fact the Campaign in question did not have any spare budget and Google recommended an increase, now implemented so this should not have run. Neither has ‘automatic matching’ been announced in the UK. Even if this is a tweek to the ‘broad match’ algorithm this needs watching.

Do your own search on ‘automatic matching google’ to read the response in the US with headlines like ‘Automatic Matching Feeds Google Your Budget’ ‘Do not fall for this’ and ‘A Tax on Lazy SEO’.

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