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Jacob Wulff is a featured contributor to The Proof is in the PPC: The Definitive Guide to Search Advertising.

Here's the complete contribution:

We don’t know the future. We don’t know what the economy will look like in 3-5 years, nor do we truly know the changes that will take place on the Internet, much less the transformations that will take place in the world of digital marketing. One thing is for certain, however — Things will change. How will search advertising and pay-per-click marketing evolve in this time, if at all?

Automation-transformation

Pay-per-click as we know it is changing. It’s going through a transformation to focus on more automation within campaigns and accounts. These automatic changes are helping marketing agencies and PPC specialists dynamically optimize their campaigns so that they can focus on new additions and high-value optimizations to client’s campaigns.

Over the past couple of years, advertising networks including Adwords, Bing Ads, and Facebook have started providing advertisers with simple automation tools to help make their time spent in accounts more efficient. Automated ad scheduling, dynamic keyword bid adjustments, and dynamic ad changes are common automated tools already being utilized by many marketers. These basic automation features are just the tip of the iceberg — More robust and advanced automation, and dynamic optimization opportunities that affect campaigns more profoundly are around the corner.

Enhanced interfaces & tools

With the recent release of Google’s new AdWords interface in August came new performance data visualization, enhanced load speeds, new reports and management controls, specific landing page monitoring tools, and a nifty new feature to control how often a “click to call” option is displayed on an ad. While the new AdWords interface is still evolving into a more powerful PPC standard, there are still plenty of untapped and unannounced features that we can expect to see rolled out over the coming years.

Bing Ads is surely taking notice, and Facebook has already begun making new improvements and ease-of-use changes to their hyper-targeted toolset. In addition, third-party management software like WordStream continues to release new features to work as an all-in-one dashboard for managing multiple PPC accounts across all networks including AdWords, Bing, and Facebook making optimizations simple, efficient, and most importantly thorough.

New keywords on the horizon

Last year millions of new search queries were conducted on the popular search engines. The birth of keywords including “fidget spinners,” “Nintendo Switch,” and “Stranger Things” topped Google Trends without you even noticing. Each year brings new unique keyword opportunities for businesses and consumers. With this in mind, the next several years are likely to be similar as new products are released, new trends started, and thousands of advertisers anxious to get a piece of the action.

New keyword opportunities mean new opportunities to improve performance and the visibility of your client’s campaigns — which is great news for PPC account managers and digital marketing agencies. Take notice of these new trends as they usually can provide thousands of highly targeted clicks with generally very low initial cost per click.

A great tool to help monitor these changes in search trends and keyword popularity is Google’s Trends tool. The tool allows you to enter a term or phrase and collect a plethora of related keywords that are building momentum and popularity in SERPs. By paying attention to these new products, releases, and popular new search terms, you can significantly improve and boost your PPC campaign performance, or broaden the scope of your client’s current strategy.

Here’s to tomorrow

While nobody really knows what the future may bring (aside from Google, Microsoft and the other formidable giants in online advertising), we do know that the digital landscape will continue to change and improve. More targeted advertising features, more robust automation, new search volume to capitalize on, and best of all - more refined interfaces and management tools that will aim to make digital marketing life easier and advertisers more successful.


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