Profile cover photo
Profile photo
Chris Rand
For what is Chatteris without you there?
For what is Chatteris without you there?


Post has attachment

Post has attachment
Here’s something I hadn’t seen before – file as another example of “Google just decides to do anything it wants with the stuff you give it, despite not asking”. The description and the callouts have just been merged into one long stream of text in this advert. Looks horrible. Client won’t be thrilled either.

Post has attachment
Anyone else use Google’s Link Checker Script and has found it’s now failing? According to a PM from Google support there’s an issue with labels caused by the new UI, with fairly broad implications, which I think they’re suggesting is the cause. If anyone has an alternative to the Link Checker Script, I’d love to hear about it – the script is an essential tool for us!

Post has attachment
We have a few clients who will never, ever want to advertise on mobile apps, so we use the standard “Placement Exclusion” in each campaign of “”. However, with the introduction of account-level Placement Exclusions, an opportunity arose to add this exclusion more broadly for the account.

Unfortunately if you add “” there, in the Shared Library, the domain is rejected!

However, if you add “www.” on the front, it’s accepted. The big question I have is: “Is anyone else doing it this way, and have you satisfied yourself that it works?”

I guess we’ll find out soon enough…

Post has attachment
I finally persuaded a big e-Commerce client in HVAC to try out Google Shopping. On setting up their Google Merchant Centre account, we got the message: "No online purchasing means". The site turns over a lot of money quite successfully, so this was news to us.

Google support referred us to its policies at and in particular the section called "Low Value Content". Way to go, Google, that's going to make our client enamoured with you. "Low Value Content", my arse.

Apparently the problem is that to buy items, visitors are forced to fill in a company name (well, duh, it's a B2B site). Google considers this to be a "poor experience" for its users, we were told - "not everyone who visits can buy stuff from the site."

I can't believe this policy is universally enforced – I'd bet they'd be rejecting some very big B2B advertisers if it was. Has anyone else come up against this?

Plenty of chat from clients this morning about the print media's concerted attack on Google advertising, which clearly is having the desired result at board level. Our worry is that someone several pay grades above marketing is going to try to be seen to be doing something by saying: "if it's right for Marks & Spencer, we should pull our Google advertising too", without understanding what that means. We're circulating something to try to explain the Display Network and Remarketing, and the control we have on it, to pre-empt this. Anyone else have any thoughts?

Post has attachment
Here’s an odd one – can someone explain? The ad seems to have two structured snippet lines, and the second is “industries”, which I can’t recall ever having been offered. How does this come about?

I’ve just had my first client complaint about “auto-resizing” of display network image adverts. In this case, Google took a 300x600 ad, crushed it down to less than half the size, then padded it out with colour to fit in a 300x250 slot. It looked AWFUL. The client now wants to withdraw from the display network completely. Does anyone know of a way out of this?

Oh great. Just had the email from Google to say that call extensions are being “upgraded” to switch over to Google forwarding numbers by default in a month’s time. Gee thanks Google, like we obviously don’t know what’s good for us. There’s a form to fill in if we don’t want to be “upgraded”, and after the switchover we can opt out individually, if we have the patience to go through every campaign manually. But seriously? We have the “opportunity” to use Google forwarding numbers if we want to already; why is this necessary?

In the B2B sectors in which my agency operates, not only would most clients recoil in horror at having a phone number next to their ad which they didn’t recognise, the number of prospects who would call them directly from an ad is, well, zero.


Earlier in the year I reported that one of my clients' text ads on the Display Network was being shown as a robot-generated image ad without my approval or permission.

By this, I don't mean what Google calls 'magazine-style' ads, where the text is changed to an unusual font and blown up to fill a much larger display ad area. We've all seen those. I mean an attempt to create an image ad, including pulling in the company logo without permission, as well as using what Google's colour-blind algorithms think are blocks of suitable colours.

The result, in my client's case, looks like something thrown together by a 5-year-old. The logo is used in a way which the client would never sanction, and the colours aren't remotely like anything in the style book. If I was the client and I stumbled across the advert, I would fire us.

I can now report that this is an official 'thing'. If you are running text ads on the Display Network, including remarketing campaigns, these ads may well be created for you without your approval or permission, and without notification. Unless you see the adverts, you will not know they are running. There is no indication in the AdWords interface.

I got confirmation of all this from AdWords support today. I have not seen any announcement on this, but would love to be directed to one if anyone has seen it.

I would strongly recommend that if your clients employ any guidelines on style, that you stop any text ads on the Display Network.
Wait while more posts are being loaded