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What is up with the “Increase quality or bid $10.00 to activate”?

Looking back the selected phrases would just have been disabled for good by the Google PPC admin. Now you get to decide whether it is worth the 10.00 dollars a click. But this is how the “latest” Google PPC system operates and is better in my opinion .

First I would look to see if there are many impressions of your selected phrase, but few or no clicks. That and very few impressions seems to activate this minimum bids feature in Google. My best guess and I have seen that my search marketing colleagues agree on that around the blogs and forums that I read is that Google is trying to manage it’s resources by limiting the number of non-productive PPC phrases (keywords) for each ad. Note that even though you say you are willing to spend the 10 USD it’s not very likely you will be charged that amount, specially if you are the only web fighting for it, by selecting 10 USD you are saying that you are willing to spend upto 10 USD for a click, but there is no one fighting for it I belive that you will only have to pay the minimum 0,01 USD per click. This is at least how the theory goes and pls. correct me if I am wrong. I how ever strongly reccomend that you control this with a third party bid management tool to prevent click fraud.

To increase phrase quality I would try the following:

1. Use the keyword phrase in the title of the ad.
2. Test different ad versions to get increase Click Through Rate (CTR).
3. The Google system considers page relevance now too the landing page should be about and include the keyword phrase
4. Monitor this with a third party web analytics solution like IndexTools (through their Bid Managment tool for example)

These sugestions should help, to my experience this is all about testing, doing some a/b using. Still in the end you might end up having to pay the 10 USD after all :-)

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Kristjan Mar Hauksson is the founder and director of search and online communications at Nordic eMarketing. The company specializes in multilingual online communications, organic search engine optimization, and marketing through several verticals such as tourism, finance, government, and pharmaceuticals. It helps companies gain international visibility online and to use the Internet as a communication channel; it also provides consultation in web content management systems and analytics solutions. Hauksson is on the board of directors of SEMPO, on the Advisory board for Bing Advertising and founded the Iceland SEO/SEM forum. He has been involved in developing Internet solutions since 1996, and involved in search engine optimization and marketing since 1997. He is a publish author on the topic of Internet Marketing and among other co-authored the acclaimed Global Search Engine Marketing.

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