Winter Holidays With AdWords: Monitoring Your Campaigns While You're Out Of the Office

Thursday, December 10, 2009 | 12:25 PM

Winter holidays mean a flurry of activity, from preparing for guests and gift-shopping to putting final touches on end-of-year projects and advertising efforts.

For many organizations, work-related tasks come to a screeching halt by late December, until after the New Year. Many people are traveling, away from email, or spending time with family instead of sticking close to their computers. At the same time, the end of the calendar year is a time when AdWords ads can bring valuable traffic to your website--especially if you have a holiday initiative or opportunities for people to donate funds during the giving season.

During this time, some anxiety can arise for non-profits about what to do about AdWords campaigns: is it advisable to let a campaign run without being monitored for a week to ten days? In the event of an issue with a campaign, would there be a fast way to detect this without having to run several reports or log in daily?

There are several ways to help ensure that your Google Grants campaigns stay up and running for the duration of the winter holidays--without needing to unplug twinkle lights to plug in your laptop while singing carols.

1. Make any final changes to your campaign about five business days before you're going out of the office. This way, you'll be confident that the changes you made are working, ads are accruing impressions, and no red alerts are appearing that would impede ad serving.

2. Create a report template to send a report via email. The summary metrics will give you peace of mind as you're heading out for the holidays.

3. Set up custom alerts to automatically notify you if there are any stark decreases in impressions or clicks. Even if you're away from internet access throughout the last week of December and first week of January, custom alerts will help you immediately identify the potential dip and address the cause of it.

A benefit of online advertising with Google is the ease with which you can monitor performance and view real-time data. However, real-time data will still be reasonably recent when you return from the holiday break! Make any final adjustments before leaving the office, mark it off your 'to do list,' and enjoy the holidays!