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NADA insight: two Google advertising tactics you should be using

Tim McLain: senior digital marketing specialist at Netservice USA


Remarketing lists for search ads (RLSA) is a feature that lets you customise your search ads campaign for people who have previously visited your site, and tailor your bids and ads to these visitors when they're searching on Google.

For example: When people leave your site without buying anything, remarketing lists for search ads helps you to connect with these potential customers when they continue looking for what they need on Google Search. You can set your bids, create ads or select keywords, bearing in mind that these customers have previously visited your website.

Remarketing lists for search ads uses remarketing lists to enable these customisations. (Google)

McLain said, based on the premise that not all Google users are equal, ‘cross shoppers’ already familiar with your dealership, franchise or specific models, are more likely to convert.

RLSAs bring back higher value shoppers.

a. RLSAs make search ads more effective with a remarketing list of high-value shoppers who’ve hit one or more pages

b. They target these visitors across a wider geography with higher bids, unique creative, and broader keywords

c. Proactive campaign changes by Google Premier Partners will optimize conversions and deliver maximum return on investment

d. RLSAs build an audience of recent site visitors who are familiar with your dealership and have a lower cost per conversion

e. The highest value audience is cross shoppers and McLain suggested creating a segment (model) comparison landing page, then applying a piece of code to the page which creates a tailored advert for the comparison shopper that shows a specific model previously viewed, inviting the

viewer to compare with other franchise models

f. McLain then ran through a few real life examples all of which showed improvements in ad ranking, click through rates and ultimately conversions.


a. Improvements include smarter ads to better target users, device specific bid adjustments and detailed conversion tracking and reporting

b. Enhanced campaigns can deliver the right message to the right shopper based on location, in addition you can turn on ad extensions unique to device or time of day and also enhance site links down to ad group level

c. McLain cited a BMW dealership who moved 25% of their monthly budget to mobile and saw over 23% increase in sales and now 52% of all site visitors are mobile. In addition they reduced their cost per click by 18% and increased the share of voice from 62% to 71%.

RSLA video

McLain’s six Google techniques to master as the foundation to a successful digital marketing strategy:

1. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO): 2-3 average ad position, 60-80% share of voice, 3-6% click through

2. Display retargeting: build remarketing list of recent website visitors, “follow along” display banners bring visitors back, 20-40% return visitors

3. Call tracking and recording: embed tracking numbers, 5-10% volume growth per month, quality v quantity calls

4. Display banner advertising (GDN): Google display network, 100-500k impressions per month, contextually relevant sites (news and weather are top performers)

5. Mobile (basic search ads): drive text ads to smartphones inside original campaign, 30-40% of website traffic, critical mass signalling readiness for enhanced campaign

6. Responsive landing pages: set, achieve core sales goals, 20-40% unit sales growth, check that your online marketing KPIs measure up.

> BDO attended the latest National Automobile Dealers' Association in the US and brought back insight on a number of topics, including the above.

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