This is a guest post from Dionte Pounds, Account Manager at
At some point, an SEM account manager will have to restructure part of or all of a search account. There are several reasons why this sometimes frustrating and exhausting exercise must be completed. Most commonly, it’s related to subpar account performance and the metrics that suffer as a result. Other times, it has to do with poor account organization.
A great example is when the same keywords are being housed in multiple campaigns, which target the same geographic locations. It’s also not unheard of for an account manager to restructure an inherited account because the current structure is a poor fit for his or her managerial style. No matter what the reason, there are steps you can take to make the restructuring process simple.
Before jumping in, make sure you’ve exhausted all other options for improvement. There’s no need to put a ton of extra work on your plate if you don’t have to!
1. Identify Why a Restructure Is Needed
First, take a step back and examine the issue. Why do you need to restructure the account? Chances are, if you’re thinking of a restructure, you’ve already identified the issue. But if you haven’t, really take some extra time to examine the current setup. Ask yourself a few questions:
- Are there keywords you can pause to improve performance?
- Can you change some bids?
- Can you add some new campaigns to plug the gaps?
Again, don’t create a ton of work if you can avoid it. If you choose to continue down this road, make note of why this current structure didn’t work and do not repeat the mistake!
2. Identify What Worked
Not everything can be bad! Even in the most bloated of accounts, there are successful components that can be salvaged and used another day. Dig in and find those highly relevant, high volume keywords and use them as your foundation. Continue to use the same landing pages if that’s worked well for you.
Make note of the best performing geographic targets and include those targets in your new campaigns. Use anything and everything to your advantage to make the new campaigns successful.
3. Slowly Phase Out
If your old campaigns are already paused, then congratulations! You can skip over this step. If your old campaigns are still active, you’ll need to slowly phase out those legacy campaigns.
An abrupt switch will be a traffic killer and cause a massive conversion volume loss in the process. Instead, launch the new campaigns, slowly drop legacy bids, and increase the new bids. This allows for those new terms to gain some traction while the legacy terms still bring in some volume. Once you’re satisfied with the volume the new campaigns are getting, pause out the old ones.
Restructures can be daunting, but if you realize where the key issues are in the current structure and strategically plan out how to correct those issues, the process becomes much less complicated.
- Take some time to figure out why you need to restructure.
- Identify what worked in the old structure and apply that to the new campaigns.
- Slowly phase out those old campaigns and be sure your new campaigns don’t suffer from the same issues that plagued the last.
Finally, be confident. Have faith that you’re going to get things turned around in no time.