MacAdam Lea
By MacAdam Lea | SEM | September 6, 2016

AdWords Update: Adjusting Bids For Tablets

Adjusting Bids for Tablets

For some time now we’ve been able to set different keyword bids for Desktop Computers and Mobile Devices, but Tablets were lumped in with Desktop Computers back in 2013 with the enhanced campaigns update. This caused issues for a lot of online advertisers because traffic doesn’t usually behave the same across different devices. In the past if you had an exceptional ROI on Tablets but didn’t convert as well on Desktop Computers there was no way to alter bids for Tablets without also changing Desktop Computer bids. This is no longer the case, because earlier this month Google made is so that we can Adjust Cost Per Click Bids for Tablets. In this blog we’ll be covering why this update is significant, and how you can go about adjusting your own Tablet bids.

To adjust your Tablet bids in AdWords look for the “Devices” tab by following the steps below:

How To Adjust Tablet Bids

Step #1 – Choose the campaign that you want to make adjustments to

Step #2 – Select the “Settings” Tab

Step #3 – Select the “Devices” Tab

Step #4 – You should see a column for “Devices” and for “Bid adj.” (Bid Adjustments). You will be able to set specific bid adjustments for each device by clicking on whatever number is currently in the “Bid adj.” column. Keep in mind that it may be blank if you haven’t adjusted these in the past, so just click on the empty slot to get started.

So what will making bid adjustments to your Tablets do for your business in the long run? Well like everything else in AdWords it’s going to depend on your market, how well you perform across various devices, and how well you used that information to make bid adjustments. Lets take a look at the example below:


Tablets and Computers are NOT the same

Take a moment to look over the data. Notice how Computer and Mobile Devices generate roughly the same number of Clicks, but Mobile Devices generate significantly more Conversions at a much lower cost. Tablets perform even worse, spending a whopping $15 to generate a conversion. So if we were looking to spend the same amount but generate more conversions for less here are some bid adjustments we could make:

  1. Lower Bids for Computers

Computers spend the most, but they also have a lower conversion rate and a worse Cost per Conversion than Mobile Devices. We can counteract this by reducing bids for Computers, allowing Mobile Devices to use more spend and lowering the Cost per Conversion for computers. For this example, I would probably start off by reducing bids by -30% for a few weeks and see what kind of results we get.

  1. Lower Bids for Tablets

Tablets have the lowest CTR (Click Through Rate) by far, so it’s probably not a good idea to be wasting very much spend here.  This could be due to a number of reasons; they may not be optimized to run ads on Tablets, or users in their industry may tend to make purchases on other devices. Either way I would probably start by reducing bids by -50%.

  1. Increase Bids for Mobile Devices

Mobile Devices generate the most Clicks, the most Conversions, and have the best Cost per Conversion and Conversion Rate of all three devices. I would suggest increasing bids for Mobile Devices by 10-15% for a couple of weeks. They may start to run into diminishing returns, but as it stands spending more on Mobile Devices and less on Computers and Tablets would be a big win.

Your own data is sure to look much different than my example above, but focus on isolating which device seems to perform best and make adjustments from there. Like anything else with AdWords it’s going to be an iterative process, but if you keep making tweaks every couple of weeks you’ll get your Device settings optimized in no time. If you run into any trouble and feel like your AdWords account could use a professional touch just contact us at Digital Reach and we’ll walk you through all of the industry’s best practices.


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