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Troubleshooting performance changes on Conversion Bid Strategy campaigns

This article outlines different reasons that could be causing performance change on your Conversion Bid Strategy Campaigns, and help you understand why these happen and what you can do to navigate them.

Before you begin: The success of your Conversion Bid Strategy starts with choosing the mode and settings that best match the goal your campaign is optimizing towards. To make sure you’re using the right mode based on your business objective, please refer to this article


Common reasons for performance changes and how to resolve them

1. Conversion tracking setup & conversion volume

Conversion tracking is one of the most important pillars of your Conversion Bid Strategy campaigns. In case you notice any sudden performance drops or if your newly created campaign isn’t working as expected, please make sure your pixel is implemented correctly and that conversion setup is working as intended.

Keep in mind: the higher the conversion volume, the less performance changes you can expect.

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– Make sure your selected conversions are actively registering conversions. Use our Chrome tracker tool to test conversion pixel implementation.

– If your primary conversion has a low conversion rate (below 2%), we highly recommend adding an additional conversion event with a higher conversion rate (10-20%) to better inform the algorithm about potential conversions.

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2. Click-through rate (CTR) performance

Performance changes can be caused by a drop in CTR so make sure to monitor it regularly and ensure your ads and landing pages are relevant to your users.

A healthy CTR means the algorithm is more likely to serve your ads to more users, bringing you more inventory at a lower CPC, which in turn improves your CPA performance.

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– Check recent CTR performance of your current creatives. If you see an overall drop or a drop on certain creatives, consider testing new ad combinations to improve your CTR.

– You can also duplicate your existing campaign and test new creatives there.

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3. Targeting limitations

If your campaign is targeting a smaller audience or if it’s limited by narrow location settings, it might be more likely to have performance fluctuations. Narrow targeting means there is a smaller pool of users and fewer opportunities for your content to be shown.

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– Consider expanding your campaign’s targeting to increase the number of eligible options and improve the potential reach of your ads.

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4. Recent changes to campaign settings

Any bigger changes to your campaign, such as adjusting the budget, target goal, bids, targeting or content, can cause your performance to change.

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– Wait at least 48 hours for the algorithm to adjust to the new settings.

Avoid making too many bigger changes to your campaigns at once. Test different updates or changes gradually to see how each adjustment affects performance.

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5. Budget settings

Performance changes might be a result of a budget that is too limited based on your conversion goals.

For example, if you are running a campaign that is generating less than 3 conversions per day, you might see more performance changes since the algorithm doesn’t have sufficient data to optimize.

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– Make sure to set up a daily budget that is generating at least 3 conversions per day. Consider adding another conversion event with a higher conversion volume to further inform the algorithm.

– When using Semi-Manual, if you see a “Limited by budget” alert in the dashboard, increase your budget to make sure your campaign has enough budget to be able to serve evenly throughout the day.

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6. CPC settings

Your campaign might be more likely to have performance fluctuations when it’s limited by low CPC settings. Setting strict bid limitations, limits the algorithms’ ability to modify your bids to the level that best meets your goals.

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If you are using CPC limits and you’re seeing the system has reached that limit, increase the limit. On Target CPA and ROAS campaigns, you will see the limit was reached if you see a “Maxed” notification in the campaign columns. In that case, navigate to campaign settings and increase the Max Avg. CPC under additional options. On Max Conversions mode, you will know the system has reached the limit by seeing the yellow box appear around the “Optimized CPC. In that case, navigate to campaign settings and raise your entered CPC.

Avoid using bid limits for campaigns on Target CPA or Target ROAS modes.

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7. Auction dynamics and market fluctuations

Market conditions and actions of other advertisers, who are targeting the same audience as you, can affect your campaign’s performance.

For example, during the holiday season the competition on the market increases, which affects inventory prices.

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– Increase your Target CPA or lower your Target ROAS to increase serving during high competition periods and win additional inventory. Alternatively, increase your bid limits when you expect increases in competition.

– Depending on your goal, lower your budget if you’d like to ensure your campaign doesn’t spend too much at a level you’re not comfortable with during high competition periods.

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8. Target CPA/ROAS goal settings

If running a Target CPA or Target ROAS campaign, make sure to set a realistic target to not limit the system in achieving your goal.

For example, setting a goal that is too low, may result in the system missing out on traffic that could lead to a conversion, resulting in fewer total conversions and causing performance changes.

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Analyze your results across different advertising channels to determine your optimal target. We recommend you to look at channels that are most similar to native and display (for example, search traffic tends to produce higher conversion rates and isn’t advised to use for benchmarks).

– Calculate the maximum cost you’re able to afford per conversion or start by setting your CPA goal around 20% higher than your ideal target to leave the system enough leeway to learn and explore in the beginning phase. You can always lower the CPA/increase the ROAS goal later once you’re seeing good results.

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Please note: It is completely normal for your campaign performance to vary. If you’re seeing any sudden performance changes over a longer period of time and have excluded all the below reasons, please reach out to our Customer Success team for support.

To learn more about Conversion Bid Strategy, click here.

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