What The Other Guys Should Learn From Google AdWords

By Amanda Sides | Aug 12, 2009
More Articles by Amanda

Managing PPC accounts, especially large ones, involves tedious, day-in and day-out tweaks, research, analysis, and restructures.So it was no surprise that people were ecstatic when Google announced its new interface would be launching back in the spring.When I say ecstatic, I mean people were actually cheering in the initial presentation of the updates at SES NY.I can’t lie, I may or may not have joined in the revelry.Now all we need is for the other guys to catch up and have major overhauls to make all of us even more content with our PPC routines… However, I think I could just settle for a few simple tweaks.

Yahoo Marketing Solutions:This interface is unbelievably slow and difficult to navigate.There aren’t many shortcuts or easy ways to view account organization.One of the major issues I have with this interface is that I am unable to make account/campaign downloads, make edits on a spreadsheet, then upload my changes.The option is available, but never seems to work.This is particularly inconvenient when trying to manage keyword specific destination URLs.Another problem that would be an easy update for Yahoo would be to at least allow me to make budget changes right on the Campaign summary page, like the new AdWords interface.No major updates have been made to the interface lately, and I’m sure plenty of users are unhappy with the efficiency and usability issues.

MSN AdCenter: MSN’s interface is lacking in the usability department compared to Google’s AdWords program, but the recent release of their desktop application compensated a bit for it.MSN has at least made an effort to make their interface more user-friendly.The implementation of the desktop application has made organization and daily budget allocations a little less burdensome.One major complaint I have regarding this interface is that it seems there is no easy way to pause one match type.If you try to pause one match type of a keyword, you will get this message: “The selected keywords will be paused for all of their match types. Do you want to continue?” Heck no! Cancel! You can go into the “add or edit keywords” tab and unselect the match type for that keyword, but then there’s the issue of possibly losing or not being able to easily look back at past data.

The Merger:It was recently announced that Yahoo and Bing will join, and sometime in the not-so-distant future there could be major changes.It is still unclear what the logistics will be, but if they decide to collaborate and operate from one interface, they should definitely think about a few updates.They should use Google as an example of how small tweaks can make the user’s experience much more enjoyable.  Things to consider:

  • Better and more convenient reporting options.AdWords reorganized and made it simple to quickly create detailed reports.
  • Redesign layout and organization options.AdWords redesigned to allow for easy viewing of all ads, keywords, or campaigns with the swift click of a tab.
  • Improved filtering capabilities. Being able to filter ads, keywords, data, etc is a great way to make the interface more user-friendly.AdWords can even filter your Ad Destination URLs so you can find errors or variances that you can then quickly edit.Filtering capabilities are necessary for managing large accounts.

Whenever the Yahoo/Bing ordeal materializes, I hope they take these few tweaks into consideration.What changes would you like to see implemented for Marketing Solutions and/or AdCenter?

Need help with building out your PPC account?Register for Tad Miller’s presentation of “Sculpting a Successful Pay-Per Click Advertising Account” airing Thursday August, 13 at 3PM ET.

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