The Ultimate Goal of DSA: Render It Useless

Useless - someecardsDynamic search ads are a pretty cool development by Google. Basically, they repurposed their SEO strength to add to their revenue making PPC machine. And in a lot of ways, that’s how it should be used in your account. Take what your SEO team has done and make it work for your PPC account.

At the highest level, DSA campaigns are best for generating unique search queries outside of your current keyword list based on your site’s content. It’s kind of like broad match, but better. If this is indeed your main use for DSA, then your end result might seem counter intuitive.

Your goal: kill your DSA.

Make it useless. If you’re appropriately managing and optimizing your account for these new search queries, eventually you’re going to kill DSA. It will become gridlocked with a large number of negatives and a small number of potential queries that you just turn it off. And that’s the appropriate result.

Kill It, Kill It Dead

This might seem a bit ridiculous. Why would I want you to render a tool useless?

Because you should be following PPC best practices, that’s why.

Here’s the thing. If your DSA is doing it’s job, it’s enlightening you to all these new queries out there that are either relevant or not relevant to your business. Excellent. So what do you do with those terms? If they’re relevant, they need their own home. If they’re not relevant, they need to get out of your house.

My Process

Here’s how I set up a DSA campaign, then slowly work until it’s useless:

  1. Exclude your current list of keywords from the campaign. Although Google claims these campaigns won’t cannibalize your current campaigns, they can and will. Simply export your keyword list then add it as negatives to your DSA campaign.
  2. Regularly farm out the relevant queries in your DSA campaign just like you would with any other search query analysis. Either give them their own ad group or add them to an existing relevant ad group somewhere in your account. This way, you can control the ad copy and landing page these keywords are given, as well as gaining more control over their individual bids. Then add those terms as negatives in your DSA campaign.
  3. Exclude irrelevant queries in your DSA campaign just as you would in your regular search campaigns. If they’re not high enough quality or relevant to your business, get them out of there.

Over time, as you follow these three steps, your DSA campaign will eventually hit a wall. It won’t have any additional queries to match to based on your site content that aren’t already added as a negative in your account. So what did you do?

Killed it dead.

At this point, your impression count will be extremely low, if not non-existent. You can either keep the campaign active or pause it depending on your preference. Either way, your strategy did it’s job. You’ve gained a number of new keywords to be active in your account and in a place where they can be properly controlled. You’ve also gained a number of new negative keywords to add to all your search campaigns now that you know what Google thinks is relevant to your business.

Signs of Life

Although you may have killed it, there are a couple instances where you should bring this bad boy back to life.

First, if you update your site content or add new pages, it might make sense to run a targeted DSA campaign at the pages that are different than before. Depending on the updates to your content, you may get to run through the process outlined above again and gain a few more valuable keywords out of it.

Second, if enough time has passed, maybe 6 months or so, I recommend reenabling the campaign for a bit even if you didn’t update your site. Unique queries on search engines are always increasing. Six months from now, you have no idea what your audience will be searching for to find you. Give this tool another shot and see if it can find anything new for you after some time has gone by.

What do you think? Are you prepared to kill your DSA campaign? Do you have a different strategy or opinion on it? Share with us in the comments!

Comments (1)

  1. Every day, Google gets 15% search queries that it has never seen before. With growing mobile & voice searches, this number is unlikely to go down. Capturing these new search queries require Broad/DSA campaigns.

    We follow similar practice for Broad match campaigns, and we see almost 10% conversions coming from that match type.

    Shashi
    Co-founder, Karooya.com

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