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Welcome to the help center for DoubleClick Search, a platform for managing search marketing campaigns.  While the help center is available to the public, access to the DoubleClick Search product is available only to subscribing customers who are signed in. To subscribe or find out more, contact our sales team.

Apply a DS bid strategy to multiple campaigns and ad groups

You can apply a DS bid strategy to campaigns and ad groups instead of having to add one biddable item at a time. This makes it easy to align all biddable items in a campaign or ad group behind a single performance goal.

To apply DS bid strategy to campaigns, keywords, and other items:

  1. Navigate to an advertiser.

    Steps for navigating to an advertiser
    1. Click the navigation bar to display navigation options.

    2. In the Agency list, click on the agency that contains the advertiser. You can search for an agency by name or scroll through the list.

    3. In the Advertiser list, click on the advertiser.

    4. Click Apply or press the Enter key.

    DoubleClick Search displays the advertiser page, which contains data for all of the advertiser’s engine accounts.

  2. Click one of the following tabs:

    • Campaigns

    • Ad groups

    • Keywords

    • Targets: Product groups

  3. Optionally use a filter to display just the campaigns, ad groups, keywords, or product groups you're applying the bid strategy to.

    For example, to display only campaigns in the "AdWords - Apparel" and "Bing - Apparel" accounts, apply this filter:
    [ Account ] [ contains ]  [ AdWords - Apparel  | Bing - Apparel ]

    Use a filter to display just the campaigns, ad groups, keywords, or product groups you

  4. Select the check boxes next to the items you're applying the bid strategy to.

  5. Click Edit▼ above the reporting table and select Change bid strategy.

  6. In the New bid strategy list, select a bid strategy.

    The bid strategy list displays all advertiser bid strategies. You can select any advertiser bid strategy but note that the bid strategy is only applied to the campaigns that use the same currency as the bid strategy. Campaign currencies are determined by the currency setting of the engine account.

    For example, if the bid strategy currency setting is US$, and the selected campaigns are GBP, and US$, the bid strategy is applied only to the US$ campaigns.

    Bid strategies can only manage campaigns that use the same currency.

     If the selection of campaigns use different currencies, a message appears.

  7. Click Save.

Bid strategy inheritance

Depending on how you've organized your campaigns, it might not make sense to optimize all biddable items for the same bid strategy goal. For example, you might have one ad group that contains keywords for building brand awareness, while all other ad groups contain keywords for specific products and services that you offer. In this case, you might want to assign a different bid strategy to each ad group. A Visits bid strategy can optimize your brand ad group for visits and a Purchase bid strategy can optimize your other ad groups for purchases.

To give maximum flexibility when applying DS bid strategies, you can specify the following for each ad group and biddable item:

  • Inherit from parent. This is the default setting. With this setting:

    • An ad group inherits the campaign's bid strategy if one has been specified. If you change the campaign's bid strategy, the ad group will use the new bid strategy.

    • A biddable item inherits the ad group's bid strategy if one has been specified (all biddable items belong to an ad group). If you change the ad group's bid strategy, the biddable item will use the new bid strategy.

  • No bid strategy (manual bidding) indicates that the biddable item will never inherit a bid strategy even if one has been specified for a campaign or ad group.

  • Specify its own bid strategy.

How to specify inheritance for ad groups and biddable items

Ad groups

  1. Start creating an ad group or editing an ad group.

  2. From the Bidding strategy list, select one of the following:

    • Bid strategy name (inherited): (Displays when the campaign specifies a bid strategy.) Inherits the campaign's bid strategy.
    • Manual bidding: The ad group never inherits a bid strategy.
    • Manual bidding (inherited): (Displays when the campaign specifies manual bidding.) Inherits the campaign's bid strategy setting.
    • A specific bid strategy: Uses the specific bid strategy and ignores any bid strategy that is set for the campaign.

Specify inheritance for ad groups in bulk

  1. Navigate to a campaign.
  2. Click Ad groups.
  3. In the reporting table, do either of the following:

    • Select the check box next to each ad group that you want to change.
    • Filter the table to display only the ad groups that you want.
  4. In the toolbar above the reporting table, click the Edit  button, and then click Change bid strategy.
  5. Under New bid strategy, click DoubleClick Search bid strategies.

  6. Under DoubleClick Search bid strategy, click the arrowto display the list of bid strategies that have been created in the engine account.

  7. Select one of the following items from the bid strategy list:

    • A specific bid strategy: The ad groups will use the selected bid strategy instead of any bid strategy specified for the campaigns.

    • No bid strategy (manual bidding): The ad groups will never be managed by a bid strategy until you change this setting.

    • Inherit from parent: The ad groups will inherit the bid strategy setting from the campaigns. 

  8. Optional. Schedule the change.

  9. Click Save.

 

Biddable items

After you create new keywords and product groups, or after DS generates new product targets, do the following:

  1. For keywords, navigate to the Keywords tab.

    For product targets or product groups, navigate to the Targets tab and then click Product targets, or Product groups.

  2. Add the Bid strategy column to the reporting table.

  3. In the reporting table, do either of the following:

    • Select the check box next to each item that you want to change.
    • Filter the table to display only the items that you want.
  4. In the toolbar above the reporting table, click the Edit  button, and then click Change bid strategy.

  5. Under New bid strategy, click DoubleClick Search bid strategies.

  6. Under DoubleClick Search bid strategy, click the arrowto display the list of bid strategies that have been created in the engine account.

  7. Select one of the following items from the bid strategy list:

    • A specific bid strategy: The keyword  or product group will use the selected bid strategy instead of any bid strategy specified for the campaign or ad group.

    • No bid strategy (manual bidding): The keyword or product group will never be managed by a bid strategy until you change this setting.

    • Inherit from parent: The keyword or product group will inherit the bid strategy setting from the ad group. If the ad group doesn't specify a bid strategy setting, the keyword or product group will inherit the bid strategy setting from the campaign.

  8. Optional. Select the Set min/max bid check box.
    The check box is available if you select a bid strategy or Inherit from parent.
    Min bid and Max bid determine the lowest and highest amounts that a bid strategy will set for the max CPC of a keyword or product group.
    You can use the default min and max bids specified at the bid strategy level, or you can specify the min and max bid for the selected keywords or product groups.
  9. Do one of the following:
    • To use the default bids, select the Use min and max bids set at bid strategy level check box.
    • To specify the min and max bids at the keyword or product group level,  enter the bids. Note that the max CPC of each selected keyword or product group must be greater than the min bid and less than the max bid.
  10. Optional. Schedule the change.
  11. Click Save.

Max CPC, minimum bid, and maximum bid

Max CPC, minimum bid, and maximum bid are the settings you use to control and temporarily override bidding that's set by a bid strategy.

Max CPC is the setting that a bid strategy monitors and potentially changes based on performance. A bid strategy explicitly sets max CPC for each biddable item it manages. It does not set max CPC for ad groups. Because each biddable item defines its own max CPC, any default CPC or maximum CPC that you specify at the ad group level is overridden by the max CPC that the bid strategy sets for each biddable item.

You can change the max CPC that a bid strategy has set for a biddable item. After 24 hours, the bid strategy will change the max CPC you specified back to its own max CPC.

Minimum bid and maximum bid determine the lowest and highest amounts that a bid strategy will set for max CPC. You specify a min and max bid when you create a bid strategy. If you apply a bid strategy directly to biddable items, you can specify a different min or max bid. DS does not provide the ability to specify min and max bids at the campaign or ad group level.

How to apply a DS bid strategy to a campaign or ad group

  1. Navigate to the settings for an existing campaign or ad group, or start creating a campaign or creating an ad group.

  2. In the Bid strategy section, click DoubleClick Search bid strategies

  3. In the right panel, under DoubleClick Search bid strategy, click the arrow  to display the list. 

  4. Select a bid strategy or click Create new bid strategy and enter the settings for a new bid strategy.

  5. If any ad groups or biddable items already specify a bid strategy (instead of inheriting), you can cause all of them to inherit by selecting On save, bid strategies applied to individual ad groups and keywords in this campaign will be removed, and they will instead inherit this bid strategy.
    Any ad groups or biddable items that specify Manual bidding will not be updated to inherit the bid strategy.

    New keyword constraint: When you apply an Actions, Revenue, Transactions, or Weighted Conversions bid strategy to a campaign or ad group that has brand new keywords without performance history, DS implements a startup learning behavior for the keywords. Learn more about this constraint and how to change it if needed.

  6. Click Save.
    To see the bid strategy membership for campaigns, ad groups, or keywords, you can select the optional Bid Strategy column. The icon will indicate the bid strategies that have been inherited from a higher level (for example, the icon will appear for a keyword if its bid strategy membership has been inherited from the ad group).

Apply a bid strategy to multiple campaigns or ad groups 

  1. Navigate to an account or campaign.
  2. Click Campaigns or Ad groups.
  3. Add the Bid strategy column to the reporting table.
  4. In the reporting table, do either of the following:

    • Select the check box next to each item that you want to change.
    • Filter the table to display only the items that you want.
  5. In the toolbar above the reporting table, click the Edit  button, and then click Change bid strategy.

  6. Under New bid strategy, click DoubleClick Search bid strategies.

  7. In the right panel, under DoubleClick Search bid strategy, click the arrowto display the list of bid strategies that have been created in the engine account.

  8. Select one of the following items from the bid strategy list:

    • A specific bid strategy. The ad group will use the selected bid strategy instead of any bid strategy specified for the campaign.

    • No bid strategy (manual bidding): The campaign or ad group will never be managed by a bid strategy until you change this setting.

    • Inherit from parent (ad groups only): The ad group will inherit the bid strategy setting from the campaign. 

  9. Optional. Schedule the change.
  10. Click Save.

Use a bulksheet to apply a DS bid strategy

To apply a DS bid strategy with a bulksheet:

  1. Download an Editable columns (for re-upload) report that contains campaigns and/or ad groups. You can also include biddable items in the report if you want to specify bid strategy settings for them. For example, to apply a bid strategy to a campaign and override inheritance for some ad groups and keywords:
    1. Navigate to an advertiser and click the Campaigns tab.

      Steps for navigating to an advertiser
      1. Click the navigation bar to display navigation options.

      2. In the Agency list, click on the agency that contains the advertiser. You can search for an agency by name or scroll through the list.

      3. In the Advertiser list, click on the advertiser.

      4. Click Apply or press the Enter key.

      DoubleClick Search displays the advertiser page, which contains data for all of the advertiser’s engine accounts.

    2. In the reporting table, do either of the following:

      • Select the check box next to each campaign that you want in the report.
      • Filter the table to display only the campaigns that you want in the report.
    3. Click the download icon Download icon in the toolbar above the reporting table.

    4. Leave the Columns list set to the default Editable columns (for re-upload).

    5. In the Include types list, leave Campaigns selected.
      Also select Ad groups and Keywords.

    6. Click Download.

    7. After DS finishes generating the download, click the Download now link that appears above the reporting table.

  2. Open the downloaded spreadsheet and do the following for each campaign, ad group, and biddable item:
    1. In the Advertiser bid strategy column, enter one of the following:
      • The name of existing bid strategy: Applies the bid strategy to the object.
      • (inherited) (this is the default value for ad groups and biddable items): The object will inherit a bid strategy from a higher level.
      • (manual): The object will never have a bid strategy applied to it unless you change this setting again.
    2. In the  Min Bid and Max Bid columns, enter one of the following:
      • (inherited) to inherit min and max bids from the bid strategy.
      • A specific amount to override the bid strategy setting. For example, .50
  3. Upload the spreadsheet.

Next steps:
After you apply a DS bid strategy, you can monitor bid strategy performance.

Review Best practices for evaluating bid strategy performance.

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