Frequency capping is an important part of running display campaigns, especially across remarketing campaigns that are engaging with users who are in different stages of the buying funnel. Setting a frequency cap too low may be reducing your branding exposure and the ability to squeeze users through to the end of the funnel. Setting a frequency cap to high may result in over saturating the market and wasting ad spend on users who are not likely to convert.

The following blog aims to provide some quick tips to determine your ideal AdWords frequency cap.

For those new to AdWords, frequency refers to the average number of times a unique user sees your ad over a given time period. The frequency cap feature within your Display campaign settings will allow you to control the maximum number of times that each user will see your ad on the Google Display Network.

To set your frequency cap, navigate to Campaign Settings > All Settings > Ad Delivery: Ad rotation, frequency capping. Select ‘Edit’ on the Frequency capping feature and input your desired cap.

 

How to Add a Frequency Cap in AdWords

So now you know how to set this feature up, how do you go about deciding the ideal frequency cap for each of your campaigns? Our team suggest conducting a Page Depth Report that looks at the conversion rate by number of pages viewed per user in Google Analytics. Using this data, you should then be able to determine the influence of page depth Vs. conversion rate by calculating a weighted score that represents frequency cap number.

Page Depth Report:

The first step to determining your frequency cap is to analyse user engagement by page depth and conversion rate. Set this up using a customer report in Google Analytics using the below metrics and dimensions:

Page Depth Custom Report

This is a useful report as it shows where users may be within the buying funnel. Users who have viewed a small number of pages (e.g. 1 or two products) may be very early in the buying funnel and therefore not ready to purchase. As such, you may not need to dedicate a large portion of budget to drive high impressions for these users just yet. On the other end of the spectrum, users who have engaged with a higher number of pages (e.g. 10 or more products) may be much closer to making a purchase decision. This may present an opportunity to open up your impressions per user much more and dedicate a much higher portion of ad spend to drive them to complete the desired action on your website.

Determining Your Frequency Cap:

Using a custom spread sheet, import your data from the custom report you have just created. Using your current Remarketing or display CTR as a benchmark, compare it against the conversions rate of each page depth to determine the ad frequency. The current campaign CTR is focal point, as it provides you with the average number of impressions that may be required for a user to click on your ads. As mentioned, the formula should be based on the users’ likelihood to convert – users who are more likely to convert are served more impressions. As an option for easier segmentation, you can also set up “percentages difference above the current conversions rate average” as the ceiling for unlimited impressions. This allows you to group highly valuable users to serve unlimited impressions.

As shown in the example below, users who have engaged much more with the site (high page depth) have a much higher conversion rate and therefore, have been allocated a much higher frequency cap to push them through to the end conversion.

Frequency Cap Analysis

How to Apply this Data to Remarketing?

Now that you have a set frequency cap for different page depths per user, you will need to create appropriate Remarketing Lists within Google Analytics that reflect the target market.

To create your Remarketing lists in Analytics, navigate to Admin > Remarketing > Audiences. Select to create a new audience. You will need to create a separate Remarketing list for each frequency cap by inputting the appropriate page depths. Also remember to exclude users who have already converted. It’s better to target converted users through alternative Remarketing strategies, such as repeat buyer windows (e.g. the number of days repeat purchases occur across your site).

Setting Up Remarketing Lists

With these lists, you can now create individual campaigns in AdWords per frequency cap and use the corresponding lists you just created. Remember to set the frequency cap for each campaign within the campaigns settings as outlined above.

Keep reading about Adwords on our blog or contact us today to see how we can help you with your SEM strategy!