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Increase Sales With Custom Intent Audiences

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Selling your product online is a competitive business to be in. As a result, ecommerce stores are constantly looking for innovative ways to advertise products to potential buyers. Traditionally, online stores tend to get higher conversion rates when they are reaching people closer to the buying process. In the Google Display Network (GDN), online stores can reach more people like this with AdWords Custom Intent Audiences. It’s giving online stores a new way to reach “active researchers” before they buy, outside of search, remarketing, and shopping campaigns.

Custom Intent Audience targeting was born from the desire to reach potential customers, right when they are making a buying decision. Doesn’t that sound amazing? Let’s find out exactly how it works.  First, you must be wondering…How does Google qualify a user to be “in the market” for your product or service?

Behaviors That Define A Custom Intent Audience

  • Clicks on related ads, and if they purchased (are they high converters in this category?)
  • Content of web pages that they visit
  • How frequent, and recently they have visited these sites

First, you should know that this campaign type is only available in the new AdWords interface. So, if you have been trying to avoid the new interface, this is good motivation to switch to it. For the record, the new interface makes my brain hurt, but I force myself to use it because it’s packed with innovative ways to both optimize and grow your campaigns.

Once you’ve created your campaign, you have several options in which to target those buyers in the research mode. Your ads will show to these types of researchers on the Google Display Network publisher sites, as well as YouTube. Let’s look at those in more detail.

How To Target Custom Intent Audiences

In-Market Audiences

In-Market Audiences are content categories of people who are actively researching a product or service. For example, these content categories revolve around the type of product and service. Select the ones that are most relevant to your business. You’ll find categories, with sub categories to refine your targeting.

Custom Intent Audiences

Using Keywords and URLs you decide

Custom Intent Audiences let you input keywords and URLs that are relevant to your business. These help Google target the right people. You’ll choose website URLs and keywords that are related to your product and service in which you are actively seeking conversions. Google will use these to identify users who are actively researching these similar types of things.

Using Auto-Created targeting

Google takes the work out for you with this feature. Using data it has analyzed from your current campaigns, it will create audiences that you can target based on relevant keywords and URLs found in websites that users browse while researching your product or service.   For example, let’s say you sell pet products. If Google finds that people who visited pet product websites, also actively search on cat food, Google will auto create a category related to this. Many online stores save time using this feature because it saves time trying to figure out and target those profitable niche segments.

AdWords Targeting Tips For GDN

  • Under campaign settings, Google will invite you to automatically expand your targeting at around the same cost per customer. While this sounds great, I find that it can be hit or miss…and waste a lot of ad spend quickly. Select “no automation” targeting to keep your campaign refined to how you have set it up. You can always change it later if you find you need to expand and test it out.
  • If you are using a Smart Bidding strategy successfully in your other campaigns, you’ll need to wait for this campaign to get enough conversions in order to use it here. Don’t forget to make the switch – you’ll get a notification when your campaign is eligible.

What has been your best strategy using these features?

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