January 26, 2018

A Hyper-Granular Approach to AdWords

The difference between having a good AdWords campaign and a bad AdWords campaign starts with the structure. The structure is key in achieving good results in the long-term, and, to achieve a good structure, you need to take your time and be as specific as possible.  In my experience, rushing into building a campaign ultimately leads to poor results and extra time is needed to rectify the original campaigns. This is why I will always take the time to create hyper-granular campaigns.

A hyper-granular AdWords campaign can be a great differentiator for many clients.  It allows for a high level of detail by creating extremely specific ad text based on a large number of keywords. This in turn provides a much higher Quality Score (QS):

  • the click through rate (CTR) will be higher because we are serving the user an ad specific to their search
  • Ad relevance is higher because the ad is specific to the keyword, and
  • landing page relevance is high because we can land users on pages specific to the keyword

As we all know, the higher the QS, the lower our cost per click (CPC), and in highly competitive industries this can be the difference between position 1 and 2 (and ultimately the click and conversion).

In creating your AdWords Campaign, you should first identify your campaign structure. Typically, this will be based on your menu — if you are a fashion retailer, it may be something like Dresses, Skirts, Tees, Shorts etc.

From here we establish our Head Terms, which are the broadest keywords in the group (for example, ‘tees,’ ‘shorts,’ etc). We then identify all the related variables like colour, size, gender, etc, as well as other terms like ‘for sale,’ ‘buy,’ ‘near me,’ ‘nearest,’ ‘best,’ etc and begin to build out the keywords.

Head Term




Colour – black

Colour – blue

Colour – white

Location – australia

Location – au

Gender – mens

Gender – womens

Once we have identified our head terms and variables, it’s time to combine them all together and build out all the possible variants. Below are some of the head keywords combinations, however we recommend building these out to be as specific as possible.


Ad Group                                              Keywords

T-shirt > Head                                           t shirt

T-shirt > Colour > Black                         black tshirt

T-shirt > Colour > Blue                          blue tshirt

T-shirt > Colour > White                       white tshirt

T-shirt > Location > Australia              tshirt australia

T-shirt > Location > Au                          tshirt au

T-shirt > Gender > Mens                        mens tshirt

T-shirt > Gender > Womens                 womens tshirt

Shorts > Head                                            shorts

Shorts > Colour > Black                          black shorts

Shorts > Colour > Blue                           blue shorts

Shorts > Colour > White                        white shorts

Shorts > Location > Australia              shorts australia

Shorts > Location > Au                           shorts au

Shorts > Gender > Mens                        mens shorts

Shorts > Gender > Womens                 womens shorts

Another effective way to do this is to group together your ad groups – notice in our ad group names, we have head, colour, location & gender. We have added these so when we need to find a keyword or make any bid adjustment, it is easier to find just by using a simple filter. It also allows you to group keyword sets together when there is not enough data to make a statistical bidding decision.

Now we know how to create a hyper-granular structure, make sure to do it correctly the first time — taking shortcuts when setting up a campaign will just damage performance in the long run. Take your time and once you have the campaigns built, everything else will be easier to take care of down the track (like optimizing ad text, split testing CTAs, etc).

Good luck with your campaigns!

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