Baidu Tuiguang — Baidu’s PPC Management Platform
This is intended to be a basic guide to Baidu Tuiguang (百度推广), Baidu’s pay per click management platform. You can think of it as the Chinese equivalent of Google AdWords. While this guide won’t prepare you to manage a Baidu pay per click account with the efficiency and accuracy of an experienced professional, it will at least provide a basic overview of the Baidu Tuiguang platform. We’ll focus primarily on the following:
Word of Caution – What this Guide is NOT
This guide is not an alternative to hiring a PPC professional. Even if you have years of experience with AdWords, Chinese language and cultural differences cannot be underestimated. Pay per click experts understand how their target audience thinks, which enables them to select suitable keywords, write highly-targeted ads, and create high-converting landing pages. This is a tall order for anyone who didn’t grow up in China.
And no, our old friend Google Translate won’t get you out of this one. For example, the literal translation of “chicken feet” into Chinese is “鸡脚”, but most Chinese people would use the term “凤爪”, or “phoenix claws”, to search for chicken feet. Mistakes like this will cost you a lot of traffic.
So enjoy this blog for what it is—a basic look under the hood, of sorts. If you want to make a real go at promoting your goods or services in China, we strongly suggest hiring an agency with Baidu certified professionals to help.
Why Use Baidu Tuiguang?
Baidu is the dominant player in the search engine market in China, accounting for 60% of the market share. To create keywords and ads, manage your budget, change your matching methods, add negative keywords—basically carry out any of the essential duties of PPC account management on Baidu—you must be able to use Baidu Tuiguang.
Baidu Account Setup
Setting up a Baidu account is a fairly extensive process in itself. In a word, Baidu requires any company that wants to setup an account to submit business documents, make website edits, and deposit a minimum of 900USD in the account, amongst other things. We provide this service if you need a little help. After your account is setup, you’ll receive a username and password which you can use to login to Baidu Tuiguang here.
The first thing you see when you login is a basic overview of your account’s current situation:
You can see the amount of money left, how many days of advertising can be sustained with the current amount of money, the daily budget, the target locations for the ads, and links to information about account structure (account, campaign, ad group, keywords).
You can also see your spending, clicks, and impressions for the day, as well as the quality score for your account. If you’re not sure what some of these terms mean, this blog provides a good overview of PPC terminology.
Account Components, Reports, and Tools
Once you login and check the overall status of your account, you’ll want to select the 推广管理 (promotion management) tab to check specifics as well as update some of the key areas of your account. You can view information related to your campaign, ad groups, keywords, and ads. You can also make edits to various aspects of your account, such as where you want to target your ads and how much money you want to spend per day.
The bottom of the page represents all the different reports you can generate. The reports you are going to want to pay the most attention to are the 数据报告 (data report), 推广实况 (real-time report), and 搜索词报告 (search terms report). Here you’ll also find the keyword tool (关键词工具), which can be used to assess general public interest towards certain keywords/industries, and the cost estimation tool (估算工具), which provides an estimate of how competitive and costly those keywords might be.
Researching and adding keywords
After you click the keyword tool button you’ll be taken to this page:
In the encircled area you can enter in the keyword you want to search. I’ve entered in the term “学英语”, or “study English.” The number on the right of the keyword represents its average daily search volume (calculated over the last 30 days), and the bar on the right is an estimate of how much competition there is for the keyword. If you see a keyword you like, you can add it to you keyword list by clicking the thumbs up icon.
Adding Negative Keywords
In the 搜索词报告 (search terms report) you’ll find useful information about what terms people are using to find your ads. For example, in the image below you can see that a web user searched “下载手机数据链接” (“download cell phone data link”) and was served an ad for the keyword “智能手机数据分析软件” (“smart phone data analysis software”). If you feel the search term this person used is not very relevant to your business, you can add it to your negative keywords list. This way your ad won’t be displayed next time someone conducts a search with those words. In the encircled dropdown menu on the right, select the second option, “添加为否定关键词” (add to negative keywords list).
In the 数据报告, click the 关键词报告 link (see below) to produce a keywords report. In the keywords report you can glean valuable information about which keywords you’re spending the most money on, as well as CTRs, impressions, and average CPC. If a certain keyword is eating up a significant amount of your daily spending, it’s important to understand what kind of return on investment it’s bringing.
You can also look at keyword information by location. The image below shows that the client spent more money on clicks from 广东 (Guangdong) web users than from anywhere else:
Changing Keyword Match Type
Go to the keywords (关键词) tab, select a keyword, and then select “修改匹配模式” (change match type). The options are broad match (广泛), phrase match (短语), and exact match (精确). Select the one you want and click 确定 (confirm).
Changing Bids for Keywords
Check the box next to the keyword you wish to change your bid for and click the encircled button, “修改出价” (change bid). Write in the amount you wish to bid for the keyword and select 确定。
To create ads, simply click the 创意tab and write your ad content in the red box below. You can select the ad group (推广单元) and campaign (推广计划) you want to put the ad in.
Checking ad position by geographic location
Under the 推广实况报告 (real-time report), you can check the ranking of different keywords by date and location to see if any changes have occurred. In the below image you can see I checked the current ranking for an ad for the keyword, “买鞋子” (“buy shoes”) in our current location (Nanjing in this case). You can see the ad is in the number one position for searches conducted for this keyword in Nanjing.
But if you change the geographic location to Shanghai, you’ll see the ad is displayed in a less prominent position:
You can control when your ads are shown based on day of the week and time of day by clicking the encircled link (全部时间修改). The rows are arranged from top to bottom from Monday to Sunday. You can focus on work days, weekends, work hours, mornings—whatever best suits your target audience.
Geographic targeting is possible with Baidu Tuiguang, though it lacks some of the capabilities of Google Adwords. You can target your audience based on locations both in China and overseas, but Baidu Tuiguang’s targeting of locations outside of China is highly limited. The only two choices are Japan (日本) and “other country” (其他国家). However, given the fact that virtually all traffic on Baidu comes from mainland China, targeting other countries on Baidu isn’t really ideal anyway.
This is really just scratching the surface of what’s possible with Baidu Tuiguang. I hope it’s provided at least a basic overview of how to manage a few of the key areas of a Baidu PPC account. Please feel free to contact us if you have questions about Baidu Tuiguang or online marketing in China in general.