While the Google Content Network can certainly provide an advertiser with huge click volume, if not managed correctly, content ads can quickly drain your budget with minimal results. Below are a few best practices for managing Adwords campaigns within the Google Content Network:
Replicate Campaigns for Content Only:
From a campaign hierarchy perspective, I would recommend replicating your Search Network campaigns to Content Only campaigns and labeling them accordingly. For example, if you have a search campaign called “Golf Putters,” call the replicated Content Only campaign “Golf Putters: CONTENT.”
Use Data from Google Search Network:
Because the Google Content Network only gives you visibility down to the Adgroup level, its best to initially launch a Content Campaign with only your best performing Adgroups from the Search Network. Next, I would pause all under performing keywords and ads from the Search Network Adgroups to ensure you’re transfering only the best performers to the Content Network. Finally, I would start by setting your bids at 50% lower than your Search Network campaigns, as conversion rates within the Content Network are typically much lower.
Negative Match Ad Placements:
At one point or another, we’ve all landed on a web page full of Adsense ads with little or no relative content. Obviously, the likelihood of generating quality conversions from a domain park is low, so refining your ad placements is a key driver to Content Network success. Similar to finding Negative Keywords, by running an Adwords Placement Report, you can start to negative match any non-converting content websites.