At the end of 2018, Google made updates to their policies on Remarketing List for Search Ads. RLSAs use audiences built off of consumers who have already visited your web page, and then layer on top of keywords that you are bidding on. Businesses could also upload external customer lists to augment these remarketing audiences. This is Customer Match. These tools are a good option for small businesses to test because they tend to have higher conversion rates at a lower cost per conversion. In short, it is a better use of the budget.
Google now requires the following to use Customer Match:
-A 90 day history of account activity
-A lifetime spend of at least $50,000
My opinion is this is a reaction to the new layout of Google’s results page with fewer ad placements. It pushes down the number of ads to serve. Most small businesses are not spending $16,000+ per month on their PPC budget. They are out of the auction.
If you happen to be a small business or manage an account with a small spend, there are workarounds. You need to have Google Analytics and a remarketing tag installed on your website. Instead of using Customer Match, you will use the Remarketing audience. (This is assuming you have 1,000 people.) Once you have hit your 90/$50k, upload your Customer Match list.
There is a different set of challenges to small businesses who do not have Analytics previously installed. In order for the audience to build and serve search ads, the list needs to have at least 1,000 people. This can take anywhere from a day to several months. There are many factors that affect search volume, including:
-The type of business that you have
-How much budget you are able to spend
This downtime pushes back your actual launch date of using RLSAs. Be patient. Brainstorm different ways you can drive traffic to your website through social media. Optimize your search campaigns for the lowest CPC with the highest volume of clicks. Focus on the short-term goal of building those lists for greater success down the road.