Is it possible to predict if someone is ready to buy? Well according to Google the answer is yes. With the low key roll out last month of their Adwords “In-market buyers” feature the search engine claims that it’s now possible to target users who are deep into the sales process and are about to make a purchase. Finding buyers when they’re ready to buy – isn’t that what we’re all hoping for?
Here’s the skinny. Interest Categories have been around in Adwords for a while; and Google says that adding them to your ad groups allows targeting based on consumers’ interests as they browse, regardless of whether your ad correlates with the particular topic of the page they’re currently on. Now though, Google has quietly added a new option in your Adwords account, (Targeting > Interests & remarketing > Interest categories > In-market buyers) which they say will identify users who are actively looking to purchase. I don’t know about you, but I think that’s pretty nifty.
The new feature is aimed at generating sales more than increasing awareness or branding and, more importantly, allows for accurate measurement of ROI for your PPC campaign. Google’s support page explains where this fits into your campaign strategy:
“In-market buyers – Select from these categories to find customers who are researching products and actively considering buying a service or product like those you offer. These categories are designed for advertisers focused on getting conversions from highly qualified customers. “In-market buyers” categories can help drive remarketing performance and reach consumers close to completing a purchase.”
Google Support also provide some helpful tips on how you can get the best out of this new feature:
- Use in-market buyers as a standalone method of targeting. According to Google, applying other targeting methods to your ad groups if you use in-market buyers will limit your access to audiences.
- CPA (cost per acquisition) bidding is recommended when targeting in-market buyers. If CPA isn’t possible then use CPC (cost per click) instead. CPM (cost per thousand impressions) is not recommended.
- Conversion tracking is highly recommended for an in-market campaign.
- Use manual optimization, such as frequency capping, with care, as an unintended consequence is that it could limit the reach of your campaign.
- Protect yourself by excluding topics, keywords or placements that don’t align with your brand.
Category verticals for “In-market” targeting are currently limited to autos & vehicles, computers & peripherals, consumer electronics, and real estate and the feature will only be available for English-language campaigns in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, India, Australia, and New Zealand. If you or your clients operate in any of these product areas, this looks like something you might want to be experimenting with. Despite the limited availability at the moment, the powerful potential of this type of targeting is something we’ll all need to monitor carefully.
Have you checked your Adwords account to see if this new option is available to you yet? If you have been, or plan to run an in-market buyer campaign, I would love to hear your feedback on effectiveness thus far.