With the ever-expanding targeting and bid adjustment capabilities of Google AdWords, it’s fair to say that it can often be difficult to decide where to begin.

It’s ok.                                                      

Take a deep breath and let me take you for a ride through the wonderful world of Location Adjustments, most particularly the lesser known Household Income targeting.

I am sure by now, as a seasoned PPC Account Manager, you’re a pro at pulling location based reports, as well as determining the hot and not so hot user locations in your campaigns to help maximize conversion rates.

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Just a quick refresher; by selecting the ‘Where your users were (user locations)’ report, you can easily establish what your key target areas should be based on historical conversion, CTR, and CPA data. This report can be as broad as Country or as granular as Zip Code, Neighbourhood, or University!

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If users in location X have a strong CTR but are also costing you hundreds, if not thousands of dollars without converting, this is an excellent opportunity for a negative bid adjustment.

Below is a high level review of the effects of + and – bid adjustments:

  • $10 at -100% = $0
  • $10 at -90% = $1
  • $10 at -40% = $6
  • $10 at – = $10
  • $10 at +50% = $15
  • $10 at +100% = $20
  • $10 at +200% = $30


Now that we’ve got this down, let’s get a little more technical.

Within your desired campaign, select the Settings tab and hit ‘All Settings’. From there, select edit and click into one of your Targeted Locations.

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Once you have the map visual in front of you, select Location Groups, and Demographics.

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Next step is identifying your key HHI audience based on the industry of your client and your campaign objectives.

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There are some key verticals where this strategy is particularly valuable, namely luxury goods, low-income segments, and financial products. Some of these may include automotive, real estate, and pay-day-loans.

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That about wraps it up. Use this handy tool to manage spend more efficiently, increase ROI, and decrease waste on consumers who fall outside of your specific target audience. Testing across different income brackets is a great opportunity to gain further insight into your consumer base, and to create more fine-tuned strategies in future campaigns.

(It will also impress the pants off of your client when you show them your results!)