Setting Default Bid Values in adCenter API

We occasionally get questions around the new bid behavior introduced in API Version 6.

Common questions include:

“How do I remove a match type?”

“We updated a keyword bid to zero; we thought we would see a default bid value in the web UI?”

“We never bid for Exact match, so why are we showing .05 cents as the bid in the web UI? An Exact bid doesn’t show up when we retrieve the same keyword bid values via the API.”

So I thought I would take the time to clear things up. Basically, keep in mind the following rules:

  • Setting a keyword bid amount to “zero” means you do not wish to bid on that match type, hence it is not represented in the UI.  So explicitly setting to zero removes a match type.
  • Passing a “null” value means you DO wish to bid on that match type and the bid amount will be determined by the default ad group bid. The default ad group bid cannot be zero, and its default value is 5 cents. So “null = inherit”.
  • Passing a non-null, non-zero value for a bid amount will set the bid amount to the value that has been defined.

There is information on MSDN here.

Bid Amounts

When adding a new keyword, you specify to use the default ad group bid by passing null for the bid object. Otherwise, pass the keyword bid amount in the Amount element of the Bid object.

When updating an existing keyword, you specify to use the default ad group bid by passing null for the Amount element of the Bid object. Passing null for the bid object in this case causes the existing bid amount to not be changed. Passing a valid value in the Amount element of the Bid object causes that bid amount to be updated.

You can specify up to two decimal places for the BroadMatchBid, ExactMatchBid, PhraseMatchBid, and ContentMatchBid values.

For more information, see Bid Amounts on MSDN.

I will include an example here. I have set the ad group default bid for Exact to $5. The remaining ad group level bids are left to their default values. At the keyword level, via the API I have set the Broad bid to $2, Phrase bid to zero, and Exact bid to null. As you can see in the web UI screenshot below, the Exact bid is inheriting the ad group value of $5, and shows as non-bolded. The explicitly set $2 Broad bid is showing as bold. The Phrase match type is not displayed in the UI as the keyword value was set to 0, effectively removing this match type.



Jeff Dillon, API Support