Google Ads Update: Automatic Pausing of Low-Activity Keywords

pause button on a keyboard

In the ever-evolving world of digital marketing, efficiency and effectiveness are key. Google Ads is introducing a new feature that aligns perfectly with this ethos. Starting June 2024, Google Ads will automatically pause low-activity keywords to streamline advertising efforts and focus on high-performing elements.

What Are Low-Activity Keywords?

Low-activity keywords are defined as positive keywords in search ads campaigns that have been created over 13 months ago and have zero impressions over the past 13 months. These keywords are often remnants of past campaigns or products that no longer align with current marketing strategies.

The Rationale Behind the Change

The primary goal of this update is to simplify accounts and optimize performance. By eliminating clutter and focusing on keywords that actively drive results, advertisers can allocate their budgets more effectively and improve their campaign’s overall ROI.

What This Means for Advertisers

If you’re an advertiser, this change requires your attention. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Review Your Keywords: Before June 2024, take the time to review your keywords. Identify any that may fall into the low-activity category and assess their relevance to your current campaigns.
  • Unpausing Keywords: If you find that a paused keyword is essential for your campaign, you have the option to unpause it. However, it’s crucial to unpause only those keywords you believe will generate impressions shortly.
  • Ongoing Management: Keep in mind that any unpaused keywords will need to maintain activity. If they fail to receive any impressions over the subsequent 3 months, they will be automatically paused again.

Google Ads’ proactive approach reminds advertisers of the dynamic nature of online advertising. It encourages advertisers to regularly audit and update their campaigns, ensuring that every element works hard to achieve their marketing objectives.

For more information on managing your Google Ads account and optimizing your keyword strategy, stay tuned to our blog or reach out to our team of experts. Together, we can navigate these changes and continue to drive success in your digital advertising efforts.

Best Practices for Integrating Paid Search & Organic Insights

When it comes to integrating Paid Search and SEO, 1+1=3. The combination of both channels is stronger together, rather than they are on their own. This correlation was compounded when Google dropped their right rail ads from the SERP (search engine results page). Since then, top-of-the-page ad real estate increased from 3 to 4 placements. The increase of ad realestate decreases Organic listings from being seen above-the-fold and can require participation in Paid Search.

It’s imperative digital advertisers understand how Paid Search and Organic can work together.  Paid Search and Organic performance insight should be leveraged through integrated optimization tactics.

Increase Your Ownership of the SERP (Search Engine Results Page)

When Paid Search and Organic both appear in the SERP results, particularly above-the-fold, the more page space you occupy, the less there is for your competition. Achieving this scenario exponentially increases your chance of being clicked and winning conversions.

So, what steps should you take? Try augmenting high ranking keywords with Paid Search.  Test for a statistically significant amount of time to see if your increased takeover of SERP real estate subsequently drives more traffic, engagement or conversions.

 Using Paid Search Data to Optimize Organic

Often, Paid Search is referred to as a sprint and SEO as a marathon. This is because Paid Search achieves first page results immediately, whereas, Organic rankings grow over time. Websites may launch with Organic rankings from page 2 and beyond. However, Paid Search can appear in position 1 on day one of their launch. For that reason, Paid Search can provide preliminary insight that can be applied to SEO’s strategy. By testing keywords in Paid Search, you can discover whether or not they’ll be good conversion drivers. These types of findings can help you identify keywords that are crucial to your SEO strategy.

Also, analyze top performing Paid Search ad copy to determine what CTA’s work best and utilize them when crafting or refining  meta descriptions. Paid Search best-practices rotate 3-4 ads per ad group, which means you’ll be able to identify phrases that work well for particular keyword themes as well.

Using Organic to Optimize Paid Search

On the flip side, SEO insights can be optimized to improve Paid Search performance. Identify Paid Search keywords with low Quality Score and work to improve them with on-site SEO tactics such as better on-page keyword optimization or creating keyword-targeted subpages. Optimizations such as these signal higher keyword/content relevancy ratios to search engines.

Additionally, Paid Search terms that are expensive, but essential, can be made SEO priorities. Gaining traffic from these types of keywords will take time and effort. But, if you put a strategic roadmap in place and optimize accordingly, you’ll eventually reap the benefit of free, Organic traffic.

Taking a Holistic Approach to Paid & Organic Search

Managing Paid Search and SEO in individual silos is detrimental to performance. By making them work together, you’ll be able to leverage their learnings and achieve optimal performance.