Discover Home Loans Paid Search

The Challenge

The Home Loans division of Discover Financial Services, Discover Home Loans invited Booyah into a head-to-head paid search test with their current agency, Adobe (Efficient Frontier). Booyah optimized and managed Bing Ads in one corner and Adobe danced with Google in the other. Which agency could best the other in applied efficiency and volume; lead quality improvement; loan application efficiency and volume; and have the best cost/benefit of switching search platforms and agencies? The winner would leave the ring with the paid search business.

The Strategy

After auditing the Bing Ads account, Booyah uncovered poor account practices – such as CPC bids unnecessarily exceeding $100, continually bidding up keywords that are already in position 1 – and made our move. We opened up the brand budget and accelerate ad delivery. We took a tough, outside-in approach, revamping the entire Bing Ads account by restructuring the more specific keyword sets, adding directional negatives to properly route traffic and allow for data accuracy and honing in on and isolating top volume keywords.

Our light-on-their-feet Booyah team also added new match types, incorporated appropriate bid cascades to prioritize exact match, negated excessive headroom and analyzed relationships between front-end (lead) and back-end (application) performance. All without breaking a sweat! We learned—on the fly– that in the home loans vertical (specifically for Yahoo and Bing traffic) a geo-targeted strategy, coupled with our fundamental best practice improvements, yielded higher average positions and lower CPC’s than a nationally-targeted effort.

The Results


At the end of the test, Discover Home Loans gave Booyah the TKO—and the business! We continue to see these changes hold steady, and even improve year-over-year, two years after our relationship with Discover Home Loans began. Our heavyweight, winning Booyah team redirected the focus to quality leads that drive a higher volume of applications and ultimately funded loans. With a 74% less cost, Booyah has been able to drive fewer, but higher-quality leads, more than double application volume, and even achieve increases in application quality.