Evaluating PPC Management Software: Questions to Ask

evaluating ppc management software for agencies

Functionality and Features


For You:

  • Does this PPC software have all, some, or none of the features that I need?

    • - If not, can I utilize/integrate multiple PPC software solutions to solve my needs?
    • - If not, does it make sense to build my own software solution instead?

  • If I’ve trialed the software:

    • - Do the key features meet my team’s needs?
    • - Do the key features exceed my team’s expectations?
    • - Are there additional features my company will benefit from having access to?
    • - Are the key features more time consuming or difficult to implement than completing the workflows manually?

For the Vendor:

  • Can you walk me through using this feature that I would use to automate task A, B, or C?

  • If you don’t provide all of my necessary features, do you have recommended partners you would suggest?

  • If you don’t provide all of my necessary features, is it possible to integrate other software solutions with yours that do?

  • Can I customize your software to my specific needs (examples: data filters/segments, column sets, etc.) without affecting settings for anyone else on my team?

Agency vs. In-House Solutions

For the Vendor:

  • Is your software primarily utilized by agencies or in-house/enterprise advertisers?

  • If the software offers a solution for both, which was built first?

  • If the software offers an agency solution:
    • - How easy is it to apply templates or strategies across multiple clients?
    • *Examples: campaign strategies, bid rules, reports, negative keywords

    • - Can the software be white labeled?
    • - Which features are most utilized by agencies similar to us?
    • - Which features are least utilized by agencies similar to us?
    • - Do features often go unused because they are difficult to implement across multiple, disparate clients?
    • *Example: Conversion-based bidding algorithm’s not working because clients don’t want to implement the vendor’s tracking pixel on their website.

    • - Does the software allow multiple team members to access the software at the same time?

    • - Do you have any fail-safes in place to prevent team members from making changes that overwrite other team member’s changes?

    • - Do you have a change history logging what actions were taken by which users and when?

    • - What types of user roles exist?
    • Can the software be customized to allow team members different permissions based on role?
    • Example: Admin, Manager, Read-Only
    • - Is there a client read-only role?

  • If the vendor offers an in-house/enterprise solution:
    • - Who do you consider as your key competitors?
    • - In what key ways do you differ from the competitors you just listed?
    • - Your marketing website says you have a niche solution for my industry, what are the key features that differentiate it from your other industry-specific solutions?

    • - May we add multiple team members to the software as individual users?
    • - Do you have any fail-safes in place to prevent team members from making changes that overwrite other team member’s changes?
    • - Do you have a change history logging what actions were taken by which users and when?
    • - Do you have any fail-safes in place to prevent team members from making changes that overwrite other team member’s changes?
    • - Do you have a change history logging what actions were taken by which users and when?

    • - What types of user roles exist?
    • Can the software be customized to allow team members different permissions based on role?
    • Example: Admin, Manager, Read-Only

Integrations

For the Vendor:

  • What advertising platforms does the software integrate with?

  • What advertising network and channels are available to us via those integrations?

  • Do you offer one- or two-way integrations with each ad platform?
    • - Does the software only allow you to import data?
    • - Does the software allow you to import data and push changes back into the advertising platforms?
    • - Is this consistent across all ad networks and channels you support?
  • Does your software have an API and what interface protocol do you use?

  • Our company needs to programmatically push data from our internal company systems into your software solution. Is this possible?
    • - Can we push custom dimensions or fields into your software for the purposes of better integrating with our internal systems?

Free Trial/Tier

For You:

  • Do I have a good enough understanding of the value of the product from my free trial/free tier?

  • What additional value does this PPC management software have over others I’ve trialed?

  • Are a majority or all of our needs met by this software?

  • Were there any unexpected benefits, features, or uses I found by trialing the software?

  • What frustrated my team the most about trialing the software?
    • - Are the challenges so insurmountable that my team would be unhappy using the software?
  • Does your software have an API and what interface protocol do you use?

  • Our company needs to programmatically push data from our internal company systems into your software solution. Is this possible?
    • - Can we push custom dimensions or fields into your software for the purposes of better integrating with our internal systems?

  • What is stopping our team from purchasing the software today?

For the Vendor:

  • Does your company offer a free trial or a free tier?
    • - If the trial is not free, what are the minimum expected requirements of a trial?
  • What is the duration of the free trial?

  • Are there software restrictions/limitations we can expect utilizing the free trial or free tier?

Pricing

For You:

  • Does the solution fall into your budgeted price range for PPC management software?

  • If outside of your price range, does it offer enough value to convince management to allocate additional resources?

    • - How do you calculate the value received by the PPC software solution?
      • - Time saved?
      • - Additional employee resources saved?
      • - Other?

For the Vendor:

  • Do you offer flat-fee pricing? What are the stipulations?
  • Do you offer tiered pricing? What factors are the tiers based off of?
  • Do you charge a percentage of ad spend for your fee?
  • Do you offer access to all of your products for one single price?
  • Can I purchase products you offer individually?
    • - How does pricing differ than if I purchase a combination of your products vs all of them?
  • Do I receive a discount based on the volume I manage with your software?

    • *Examples: ad spend, user seats
  • Do I receive a discount based on the length of time for which I’m willing to sign a contract?
    • *Examples: quarterly, half-year, annually.
  • Do you offer month-to-month pricing?
  • What resources can you offer to help me sell my management team on your PPC software solution?
    • - In-person meeting
    • - Sales call
    • - Marketing or product deck
    • - Demos
    • - Value calculator

  • What are the terms of the sales contract I sign with your company?
    • - Length of contract
    • - Additional fees, stipulations, etc.
    • - Vendor uptime requirements
    • - Early termination of the contract
  • How do contract renewals work?
    • - What period of time will you notify me before any pricing or contractual changes?

Implementation and Onboarding

For the Vendor:

  • How long does implementation take for an average customer similar to our company (size, industry, agency/in-house)?
  • Do you offer tiered pricing? What factors are the tiers based off of?
  • Do you charge a percentage of ad spend for your fee?
  • Do you offer access to all of your products for one single price?
  • What does the technical implementation look like?
    • *Example: Do I have to implement a pixel to track conversions?

  • Do you have an implementation team to assist with onboarding?

  • What responsibilities do my team have to fulfill as part of onboarding?
  • What responsibilities will your team fulfill as part of onboarding?
  • Can we agree to a written timeline of when each onboarding action needs to be finished in order to achieve implementation by X date?
  • What tools do you have to allow for bulk onboarding of client accounts and campaigns?
  • Our team won’t be using X and Y features. How will that adversely affect how we utilize the software?

Ease of Use and Scalability

For the Vendor:

  • How long does it take an average customer similar to our company (size, industry, agency/in-house) to fully ramp up?
  • Do you have case studies that show how your software solution has helped businesses similar to ours scale their business?
  • What feature do customers say is most useful in helping scale their business?
  • According to your product metrics, what feature is most used by customers to help scale their business?
  • Are there any limitations that will be placed on our company by your software that would limit us from growing our business?
    • The number of user seats, clients, ad accounts, campaigns, keywords/audience targets, ads, etc.?
    • Limits on how much data we send or receive via your integrations or APIs?
    • The number of reports we are able to create, automate, and/or automatically schedule?
    • Other?

Training, Support and Customer Service

For the Vendor:

  • After we’ve implemented your software, what training do you offer to help our company learn the software?
  • Is training:
    • In person
    • Digital
    • Self-guided

  • Are training materials accessible to us after we complete the initial training?
  • Are training materials created for new features/products you release?
  • How do I reach out to your team for help if I need assistance?
  • Do you have a knowledge base?

  • Do you have a support center where I can submit issues and questions about your product?
    • Is it accessible 24/7?
    • Can I call or chat with you instead of sending an email?
    • What is the average response time for a follow up from your team?

  • Will our team have a dedicated customer success representative?
  • How frequently will our customer success representative be meeting with our team?
  • What is your customer retention rate?

Ongoing Product Releases and Announcements

For the Vendor:

  • What is the frequency with which you update your product and/or release new features?
  • Do you publish release notes somewhere?
  • Will our team be notified or emailed about these releases?
  • Does your company have a public roadmap you can share with our team for the year ahead?
  • I have a feature request. Does your team accept customer submissions? If so, what does the process look like to submit it to your team?
  • If my feature request is accepted, will I be given any updates as to when it will be released?

  • I’m willing to pay your team to implement a feature. What does the process look like to submit a feature request in