PPC Management- Successfully Leveraging Paid Search During the Evaluate Phase


In the Evaluation phase, prospects visit your site and in their engagement, they tell you a lot about where they are in the buying journey and what their needs are.

Use this data to “ re-market ” prospects with tailored Paid Search ad copy and corresponding landing pages that meet their needs as they continue their journey.

  • Be specific: address the specific topics that your prospects have shown interest in during their website visits.

  • Be proactive: show them ads on topics that logically follow on their last visit. Ideally, you can base this content mapping based on historical data rather educated guesses of what prospects will want to see.

There will be plenty of Evaluation phase prospects that you can’t re-market to – they haven’t visited your site, they’ve blocked their cookies and/or they’re using an IP not associated with a particular company. Even so, you will still be effective with Paid Search during the evaluation phase with other PPC tactics.


As in the Explore phase, create b2b search engine marketing campaigns with ad copy and landing pages that speak to the typical Evaluation phase query and pre-qualify the potential visitor as much as possible.

  • You’ll be able to narrow the copy focus as you get a deeper understanding of the queries associated with the Evaluation phase
    (Learn more about typical Evaluation phase keywords)


Landing page alignment is the final piece.  Ensure that repeat visitors are engaging and affecting success events by monitoring re-entry points.  If a keyword query is mis-matched w/ the expected landing page experience, improve on this with new content or another site section.

Often SEM will be sending visitors a layer or two deeper into the site – places where potentially SEO work has not been done or is not as relevant.  SEM acts as that critical bridge on longer, more descriptive keyword queries to bring them to their point of interest.

Landing page attention-to-detail on these queries will make a big difference in influencing the visitor in this stage.  Ensure good design on product detail pages and information sections so the Evaluator does not get lost or drop off given their intent from the search query.

Optimizing Mobile – Google AdWords Platform Change – What it Means to You

In July 2013, Google updated their AdWords platform with “Enhanced Campaigns”. The main goal is to reduce duplicated effort by allowing you to more easily manage multi device targeting within a single campaign.

But, this does make advanced optimization harder because when targeting mobile devices…

  • You can now only adjust mobile bids at the campaign or ad group-level – not at the individual keyword level

  • Adwords now only breaks out reporting on device types at a category level  

Why does this matter?

  • Keyphrases and keywords vary by device:

    • People still perform long queries when they search from their desktop

    • People typically perform much shorter queries on their mobile devices

  • The percentage of searches from mobile is growing rapidly

So, to optimize performance by device type, you now you need to get more sophisticated with your Web analytics system and correlate performance by device type with referring traffic from Google.

It pays to have both paid ads AND a organic search result. A paid search ad supporting your organic can boost traffic 35- 40%.

Paid Search Data Gives Insights on Prospects

These data points will help you learn more about your prospects in the Evaluate phase and better serve up what they need.

  • Identify prospects in the Evaluation phase: Look at data on frequency of visits and entry point keywords.
    • For example, prospects in the Evaluation phase typically shift from non-brand to branded searches, and repeatedly use brand as a re-entry point.
  • Types of success events: Look at data on activity associated with keywords or ad copy
    • For example, prospects in the Evaluation phase are more likely to dive into product detail information.
  • Keyword modifiers: Look at data on which keywords prospects are adding to key phases.
    • For example, prospects in the Evaluation phase are more likely to use branded terms and words such as comparison, case studies, testimonial, reviews


Josh Dreller BtoB Paid Search Engine Marketing Expert

Expert Advisor:  Josh Dreller

Director, Marketing Research at Kenshoo / Kenshoo
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Josh Dreller BtoB Paid Search Engine Marketing Expert

Josh Dreller

Director, Marketing Research at Kenshoo / Kenshoo

As Director of Marketing Research for Kenshoo, I sift through massive data sets across search, social, and online advertising to uncover trends and best practices. I have a strong passion for this industry and am very proud to be a long-time member of the Standards Committee for the Digital Analytics Association, which works to provide standard definitions and promote consistency of the most widely used terms across the analytics industry. I also enjoy writing, and contribute regularly to iMedia Connection and SearchEngineLand.com.

Prior to Kenshoo, I spent many years working on the Web in various positions at Fuor Digital, Visual IQ, and Resolution Media. I’m a graduate of Florida State University, with a B.F.A. in Motion Pictures, Television, and Recording Arts. I’m also a member of MENSA.