First of all, what is it?

ECPC stands for ‘enhanced cost per click’ and is essentially a bid strategy that helps maximise towards conversions. It uses a combination of manual bidding and a smart bidding strategy (such as Target CPA or Target ROAS) to help you achieve your conversion goal. It works by automatically adjusting your manual bids in situations where it is more likely that a conversion will occur. It will raise your manual bid for clicks that seem more likely to lead to a conversion or will lower your manual bid in instances where a conversion is less likely to occur.

ECPC uses a wide range of auction-time signals such as device, browser, location and time of day to determine what to bid when a conversion is more or less likely to occur. For search and display campaigns it helps increase conversions while trying to maintain or achieve lower than the manual CPC. For shopping campaigns, it helps increase conversions while trying to maintain your overall spend.

For example:

Say you sell hats on your site and you have set your max bid at $2.00 with ECPC turned on. If the AdWords system determines that there is an auction where someone is more likely to click on your ad and convert, it may bid $2.60. Alternatively, if it determines that a conversion is less likely to occur it may bid down to $1.40.

So what are these changes?

Up until now the ECPC could only raise your bid 30% higher or 30% lower than your manual max CPC. Now there will be no 30% cap.

Why the changes?

Google will remove the cap on the enhanced bidding in order to account for differences in conversion rates across dimensions like audience and location.

What does this mean?

Basically it means you won’t have to set bid adjustments across audience and location when using ECPC, the system will automatically optimise for you.

However, this also means that by removing the cap you have less control on bidding in the auction and there is a chance that you may see changes in spend for your search and display campaigns with the system having the ability to bid for you.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to get in contact.

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Elise Aitken

Digital Solutions Coordinator at Reprise Media
I am a Digital Solutions Coordinator here at Reprise, specialising in paid search and working across some of Australia’s biggest brands. I have a passion for search, technology and the ever changing digital landscape.
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