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Automated Bidding takes historical data into consideration and modifies your bids to meet the goal. However, what happens when the underlying metrics sees a shift, much like what is happening now. With this health crisis, user behavior is changing and so is the PPC space.

We dug into how each automated bidding strategy behaves when the underlying metric sees dramatic changes. And, if the external factor impacts your account performance or spend significantly then what changes you should make.


Note: Automated Bidding behaves differently for different account and depends on many factors such as the business offering, location, consumer acceptance of the product etc. Our opinions thus might differ from yours. These are suggestions and not conclusive answers.

A recent podcast also discussed how PPC has reacted in the current situation and which bidding strategy is working for most of the account.


Target CPA

What it is: This bidding strategy alters the bid to achieve as many conversions within the Target CPA limit specified by you.


What change you might witness: Monitor your conversions. If the conversion rate drops and continues to drop, make seasonality adjustment if you anticipate the change to continue.Alternatively, change the CPA goal in line with new business metrics.


What you can do: Make seasonality adjustment and relook into your CPA goal. To use seasonality adjustment, Go to Tools & Settings > Bid Strategies > Advanced Controls.

seasonality adjustment google ads


You might also want to have a look at this post by Ginny Marvin which gives an alternate view about using seasonality adjustment



Target ROAS

What it is: With this bidding strategy, Google will adjust the bids to help achieve conversion value at the Target ROAS specified by you.


What change you might witness: If conversions are dropping, then this bidding strategy will modify bids to maximize the conversion value at the Target ROAS set by you. In such a case, alter the bidding strategy


What you can do: Choose a different bidding strategy or create seasonality adjustment



Enhanced CPC

What it is: With this option you can maximize results from your Manual CPC bidding. ECPC will lower or increase the bids depending on whether the click will translate into a worthy conversion or not.


What change you might witness: ECPC setting will try to raise your max CPC bid to get more conversions or conversion value. So, keep a tab on your conversions. If it is getting low, your CPCs will increase, if you want Google to go aggressive with getting conversions, then let this option stay, else deselect the ECPC option from your bidding settings.


What you can do: If you want to get in control, deselect the ECPC option and wait for when the situation stabilizes and then you can decide further.



Maximize Clicks

What it is: With this bidding strategy Google will automatically adjust the bids to maximize the chances of receiving more clicks on your ad


What change you might witness: Monitor your CTR. In case of dropping CTR, you might want to lower your avg CPC by adjusting the maximum bid limits. On the other hand, if you observe that the CPC exceeds the average CPC, then make bid adjustments to meet your average.


What you can do: Adjust Max CPC bid limits if you campaign continues to make drastic bidding changes to improve clicks. Also, take a while to evaluate if this is still the right strategy in changing environment.



Maximize Conversions

What it is:  With this bidding strategy Google alters the bids to get you more conversions within the specified budget.


What change you might witness: If you are getting low impressions, then maximize conversions will shoot up causing the CPC to go up. To adjust this, alter the budget or choose a different bidding strategy.


What you can do: You might consider adjusting your budget, so that you do not end up overspending for limited conversions.



Maximize Conversion Value

What it is: Here Google will adjust your bids aiming to get as much conversion value within your set budget.


What change you might witness: If you experience low conversion, lower you budget, as this strategy might increase your spend in order to increase the conversion value.


What you can do: Consider switching your focus from conversions to impressions/ clicks



Target Impression Share

What it is : As the name suggests, this bidding strategy automatically updates the bids to improve your chances of displaying your ads at the search page area that you specify.


What change you might witness: Monitor your impressions during uncertain times such as now. You may observe two scenarios:

  • If the competition is aggressive then if your bids are not competitive enough it will impact conversions and impressions.
  • If on the other hand, the competition is not aggressive, then check if you are overpaying for the clicks and reduce your bids.

What you can do: In either case you might want to adjust your Max CPC if you continue to witness any dramatic changes. Also, ensure that you are using this strategy only for the campaigns where visibility is the key metric and not conversions or CPA. If such is the case then you might want to consider choosing a different bidding strategy.


What bidding strategy is working for your business in this current situation, we would like to know you.


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