Performance Marketing Campaign – Complete Guide for E-commerce Brands

Table of Contents  

Complete Guide Google Performance Max Campaign
Setup, Structure, Mistakes, Optimizations, Questions and more

As defined by Google

“Performance Max is a new goal-based campaign type that allows performance advertisers to access all of their Google Ads inventory from a single campaign. It’s designed to complement your keyword-based Search campaigns to help you find more converting customers across all of Google’s channels like YouTube, Display, Search, Discover, Gmail, and Maps.”

It’s a one-campaign that serves ads on all of Google ads inventory. Good thing is one campaign serves for all inventory, the bad thing is there is a lot of junk inventory in Google ads

Key Features

  • Automated ad placement
  • Automated creation of assets
  • Cross-network reach
  • Add Audience Signal

This is the campaign structure we use for the Performance Max Campaign for E-commerce Brands

Structure

  • 1 Campaign for best-sellers
  • 1 Campaign with multiple asset groups targeting other categories
  • If need be 1 Campaign dedicated to top products

Campaigns can be structured based on

  • Product/Category type
  • Sell-through rate
  • Bestsellers or not
  • AOV or Margins based
  • Season based

Asset groups can be segmented based on

  • Type of audience you want to attract, if two different products have the same audience then go ahead
  • AOV or Margins based
  • Assets being used are what type
  • Product or Category type

Audience Signal
Target based on

  • Search
  • Create a custom segment based on keywords in the insights tab
  • Use custom pixel and GA data, upload customer list
  • Use Shopping ads search terms to create custom segments
  • Use the insights tab to target particular interests
  • Utilize competitor websites
  • Exclude low-level income demographics
  • Use Search ads data to create custom keyword segments

Metrics

  • Conversion
  • Conversion value/Cost
  • Conv Rate
  • CTR
  • Product wise conversions
  • Auction insights

Optimize ad campaigns for?
If you are an e-commerce brand then always optimize for sale only, with purchase conversion set as primary

Assets
The type of assets to be designed largely depends on the structure of the campaign and products advertised in the asset group. If there are multiple different products, then assets like Headlines, images, and videos, must be generic so they suit all products in the asset group
If a product requires education or awareness then design a campaign structure such that all products in the asset group are education and awareness-based only.

BID STRATEGY
PMax is mostly started when there is historical conversion data

  • If multiple products of different values then tROAS
  • If the same product-price range then tCPA

Bid high for new customers?
We have tested this for multiple brands & it hasn’t been effective. If you have an excess ad budget please test, otherwise, you can ignore

Mistakes

  • Failing to exclude brand search terms from the PMax and not concentrating on incrementality
  • Stuffing all products into the same asset group, don’t do this
  • Just like Facebook, you have to provide new assets here though the volume and frequency is far lower

Optimizations
If you are observing consistently low CPC (way lower than other campaigns) campaigns likely reaching low-quality audiences generate a PMax placement report and exclude them
Segment listing groups into multiple categories with custom labels and exclude products with poor performance
Use asset group data to run search ads on specific product terms and capture demand on non-shopping inventory, probably lower competition also, and vice-versa to use keyword data from search to create headlines for PMax

Quick Bites
If you are observing consistently low CPC (way lower than other campaigns) campaigns likely reaching low-quality audiences generate a PMax placement report and exclude them
This campaign has a bad habit of showing the wrong site link, so make sure to include right site link while creating the asset groups
Increase the budget to an extent where the campaign isn’t utilizing the full budget, if it is then improve your ROAS/CPA targets
Be patient, this isn’t Facebook don’t make changes often instead wait for the algorithm to understand the audience and the creative input provided. Approx 7 to 10 day time period is required, for a larger catalog even more

Limitations of Performance Max

  • Limited data availability and control over the campaign
  • Automated creation of assets sometimes hurts
  • Bad habit of slipping the budget into heavily spending in bad inventory
  • 0 Control over allocation of budget to each placement

Questions
1/ I tried everything with PMax but still struggling with ROAS, what to do?
If you have tried everything, then pause the PMax and run the product to be promoted as a standalone shopping campaign with a dedicated budget and targets. In some accounts PMax just doesn’t pick up, but that’s fine

2/ What if my current with assets PMax is not working?
Duplicate the ad group, select the right product and run no-asset for a few days, and monitor

3/ How many products per asset group?
There is no one answer, bid strategy, campaign structure, targets and assets matter more as PMax will automatically prioritize the products as per performance

4/ Should you stop running Shopping campaigns if you are running a Performance Max campaign?
No, there have been instances where the PMax campaigns have failed, and for the same product shopping campaign succeeded. It is recommended to run a catch-all shopping campaign all-time

Conclusion
In a nutshell, Performance Max is like having a smart assistant for your online ads. It takes care of where and how your ads show up across Google’s vast playground, making sure you reach the right people without the fuss.