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Archive by Dave Ashbolt

5 PPC Trends to Watch Out For in 2021


Who better to predict the latest PPC trends than Dave, our wonderful Head of PPC? Read on for the top 5 2021 trends that he thinks will affect Pay Per Click advertising in the coming year.  

1. Less Data

In 2020, Google Ads made a change that meant advertisers could see less search query data in their reports – we’ve seen around a 30%-35% drop in search query data since that change has been made. In addition to this, websites are required to have much stricter cookie policies in place and need users to accept their policies to track their marketing activity, such as how they engage on a website using Google Analytics.

What does this mean? 

Advertisers have less visibility of users’ search queries and behaviour. This means making decisions based on less data – so advertisers will need to be more flexible.


2. Automation

This is something that crops up every year and is no different in 2021. Advertisers will need to be more reliant on automation, providing they have the right conversion set up which focuses on high quality leads (eg. track conversions for enquiry forms rather than a link click), otherwise platforms will optimise across the board. Also, considering the reduction in available data, advertisers will be more reliant on bid automation or smart campaigns.


3. Ad Formats and Messaging

In 2021 Google will be phasing out expanded text ads, and moving to responsive search ads. With this ad format having a variety of ad combinations, it’s so important that advertisers use the right message to capture their target audience. 

RSAs (responsive search ads) and DSAs (dynamic search ads) are more prominent now and in a lot of cases we are seeing that these outperform the standard ad formats, so switching to these could prompt an uplift in key metrics such as CTR, CPC and conversions.


4. Ecommerce Growth

The COVID-19 pandemic and resulting lockdown in countries across the world has meant that people have had to rely on buying online in 2020. Last year we onboarded three companies who had set up online businesses during lockdown and seen huge success by promoting their websites through Google Shopping – and we expect this to continue in 2021. 

This will make advertising space more competitive with more advertisers and potentially increase click costs, but the buying intent is much higher online these days.



5. Mobile

Having a mobile website is so important, yet in 2021 there are still sites that don’t have one! It’s a ranking factor, plus ensuring a great user experience means that people will engage more with your site and are more likely to convert. We have been seeing conversions increase on mobile each year and this will continue in 2021 – so having a great mobile site is a must!


Dave and the Passion PPC team are primed and ready to take on 2021 – challenges, opportunities and all! If you’re interested in gaining their expertise for your PPC campaigns, get in touch.

2020 Trends: PPC


Hi, I’m Dave, Head of PPC at Passion Digital, and I’m here to share my top three PPC trends for 2020.


The first trend is automation. I think this has been a hot topic for at least the last three years. There’s so much availability when it comes to automation tools and script within Google Ads. I think people are going to become more and more reliant on them this year, especially as more and more data is being provided by these platforms.

With the amount of data available to us within platforms, automation in some form is a must for any agency or company running PPC activity.


The second trend is video, especially YouTube videos. A lot of changes have been made on YouTube, such as around the recent sitelink extensions that have been provided within the videos. This is definitely something people need to take more advantage of, as YouTube is the second biggest search engine out there. People use it more and more, and there’s a lot more engagement on it. Having video content or utilising the options within site links is important.

Audience Segmentation

I think audience segmentation is a big part of PPC. Combining that with your search keywords means there will be a lot more audience availability. Google recently released options to target users by company size, Bing use LinkedIn data to target users.

I think there’s going to be a lot more availability of audiences to target users within Search campaigns, as well as in Display and on YouTube and Gmail.

Do you agree or disagree with my predictions? Let me know in the comments below.

Power your site in 2020 with the help of Passion Digital’s PPC team. Get in touch to see how we can help you reach new audiences.

What is Remarketing’s Place in My PPC Strategy?


Remarketing is one of the most important parts of PPC (Pay Per Click). However, if you are new to the world of digital marketing, you may also be new to this concept. Have no fear – I’m Dave, Head of PPC, and I’m here to help! Come along with me on a journey to learn all about the wonderful world of remarketing, from its definition to its place within a PPC strategy.

What is Remarketing?

As its name suggests, remarketing (also known as retargeting) is marketing something to an audience a second time. To do this, a personalised ad campaign and ad copy (usually in the form of display ads) are created and shown to users who have visited your website or viewed your other content in the past.

Remarketing Explained in 3 Simple Steps

The process of remarketing is simple:

  1. A user visits a website or otherwise consumes a brand’s content.
  2. The user gets tagged with a cookie, which means they are added to the brand’s remarketing list.
  3. The brand then launches a remarketing campaign where the user will see remarketing ads as they continue to browse the web. These ads are are shown only to users on the aforementioned list.

The purpose of remarketing is to reach out to potential customers who are already aware of your brand’s products and/or services. Ideally this will increase conversion rates for your business as you are targeting the same user multiple times. The more they see the ad, the more likely they are to make a purchase.

Currently, one of the most popular remarketing tools is Google Ads.

How Do I Use Remarketing in My PPC Strategy?

Now that you know the definition of remarketing, you may be wondering how you can harness its power and incorporate it into your PPC strategy. Here are some great ways to boost your PPC campaign techniques.


There are two major platforms that allow you to build remarketing lists: Google Ads and Google Analytics. Both will allow you to target users who have visited one of your landing pages before and who fit certain criteria (you can customise this to ensure you are reaching the right demographics).

The main difference between Ads and Analytics is that the former will let you build separate lists of criteria on each of your specific landing pages, while the latter means you can build more complex rule-based lists based on channel and engagement data.

This is the most standard type of remarketing.


A great new way to utilise remarketing in your PPC marketing campaign is with videos. Google Ads has a feature that allows you to show video ads to users who have visited your website or viewed videos from your YouTube channel. These ads will appear either via the Google Display Network videos or on YouTube.


Do you have a list of your customers’ email addresses? Upload their emails to Google Ads as a ‘custom audience’ and while they are browsing YouTube, Gmail or Google’s search engine they will see your ads.

Search Ads

Search ads is a Google Ads feature that targets users using the Google search engine. Applying remarketing lists to search campaigns means you can re-engage previous site visitors through search ads.

Mobile Ads

This refers to targeted ads that are specifically shown on mobile apps. You can use text, images and video ads.


If Google isn’t your cup of tea and you’re hoping to conquer the Bing market, consider checking out Bing Ads. Similar to Google Ads and Google Analytics, you will be able to cultivate remarketing lists based on:

  • Recent converters – Those who have recently filled out a lead form or made a purchase on your site
  • Loyalty members – Current and repeat customers
  • Product visitors – Users who browsed a specific product, service or page on your site
  • General visitors – Any user who has visited any page on your site
  • Shopping cart abandoners – Users who added a service or product to their online shopping cart but failed to either make a purchase or fill out a lead form

Remarketing is arguably the most effective addition to any PPC strategy. Consider using the above tips to make your next campaign pop – or get in touch if you want us to do it for you. Happy selling!

From PPC and SEO to content marketing and web design, we’re here for all your digital marketing needs… and if your digital marketing needs involve a new step in your career, we can help with that too! Check out our current job openings and see if you have what it takes to become a Passionista.

The Aftermath of the SERP Shake-Up – Google Removes Right Hand Side Adverts


google SERP changes

So it’s been about 1 month since Google decided to remove paid adverts from the right hand side of the search results pages. When this first happened our first reaction was probably the same as a many others, ‘what will happen to the cost of clicks?’

We imagined inflated click-costs and clients’ CPA’s increasing. Not to mention CTR dropping due to the ads that have since moved to the bottom of the SERPs, having next to no chance of generating any interest.

Was this a ploy for Google to make more money? We had numerous conversations amongst our PPC team about what this meant and what we should be doing to make sure our clients are ranking in the top 4 positions.

Instead of panicking and increasing bids, we opted to leave bids as they were and monitor. We pride ourselves on well built, granular account structures, utilising all of Google’s available tools to maximise quality scores. We liaise with clients to ensure that the landing pages are optimised for PPC campaigns, which has helped achieve strong PPC results month-on-month, so why change our approach now?

We trusted that Google would continue to reward quality advertisers with higher rankings, instead of favouring poor account builds with higher CPC’s.
Dave Ashbolt, Head of PPC

Since the change how has this impacted our clients? Well, so far it’s been positive across the board. The majority of accounts have seen a reduction in costs per click, while maintaining or improving ranking and comparatively increased click through rates, due to the decrease in impressions now available.

We haven’t seen conversion rates suffer either; again, some clients have actually experienced some impressive improvements.

These changes haven’t been surprising when you think about it. Advertisers always strived to rank in the top 3 positions, due to higher click through rates and a conversion being more likely to occur when occupying one of those spots.

It’s still very early days, but the initial signs have been positive for us and we haven’t experienced any of our initial fears. The next few months will give a clearer picture of the effects on PPC results and we’ll report back when we have more data!

If you’re having problems since the change or need PPC advice. Contact or call 0203 4321 369

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