Checklist For A Successful PPC Campaign

You have taken the plunge and decided to promote your website on Google using paid Ads.  Everything is now good and the leads are pouring in right…Right?

As you may have found out, it isn’t always as simple as giving Google your money and then getting results. Whilst promoting your site at the top of Google will bring visitors to your site, how sure are you that these visitors are actually interested in your services?

Working on Google Ad accounts day-in, day-out, I can assure you that it is an excellent channel to get visitors and increase leads and conversions. However, it can also be an easy way to throw your money away.

Wasted PPC Budget

Some of the most common ways people waste their budget will be listed underneath.  Take a look at the points listed and check you account!  There may be some quick and easy ways to make your budget work harder, reduce spend on unnecessary searches and/or increase the amount of conversions you receive through your paid search.

If you require a more in-depth analysis of your account, please get in  touch. We offer a FREE one hour bespoke appraisal on your PPC account to look into any issues a bit more in-depth and advise you on your best course of action.

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Location, Location, Location

A setting easily overlooked is your location settings.  Where are your adverts targeted? If you are providing a local service – Just in the Wigan area for example, or perhaps a 40 mile radius from your home base, are you advertising across the UK? By default, your ads will be set to show across the United Kingdom.

Google Adwords has great geo-targeting and you can drill down to postcode level targeting if you wanted to. A popular option however, is to show your ads within a certain area only, or perhaps a radius around a particular area.

Some companies I work with operate across the UK, but don’t have agents or a sales rep within a certain area, so there is no point advertising in those areas. In this case, we will target the UK, but then add a ‘negative’ location of where they don’t want to be shown. This means that the budget set is only spent on ads in areas that they can service.

To check your location settings, select the campaign level, go to your settings and drop down the location tab. In here you will be able to see the areas that you are being shown. If it is wrong, now is the best time to adjust.  Click the ‘advanced targeting’ to add negative areas or add in radius targeting.

If you wanted to go quite granular with your location targeting, you can add multiple layers of targeting. I.e rather than target ‘Lancashire’, you could pick, Chorley, Preston, Blackburn, Leyland etc. Doing this will allow you to do bid adjustments per area. If you find you are getting more success in Chorley (for example) you could adjust your bids for that area to increase your chances of appearing higher in the search results. The basics of a bid adjustment is that you are telling Google that for any clicks by people in your specific area, or searching for your services in that area, you will pay more for.  So for a click in Chorley, you will pay an extra 25% on top of your max keyword bid to make your advert more prominent.

Too Many Keywords

When providing PPC reviews to people who have create their own accounts, nine times out of ten I find far too many keywords within the same Ad group.

It is a very common mistake for people to add in all the keywords they can think of into the same ad group. In ten years of working on PPC accounts, I have never seen this as the most effective way of optimising a campaign.

Think about the broad range of keywords your account will have.  Would one advert cover all of those keywords?  Almost always, the answer is no.

The most effective way to target these searches is to create different Ad groups based around 3-4 tightly related keywords. This way, those keywords will trigger an advert that will be very strongly related to the searches people use on Google.  When the adverts people see closely match what they have searched, the chances of them clicking on the Ad is much higher.  Plus, your cost per click will be cheaper, as the quality score will be higher.

Match these closely related keywords and adverts with a relevant page on your website and you will be onto a winner!

There are 4 different keyword match types; Broad, Phrase, Exact and Negative.
The average Ad Group contains between 25-30 keywords (far too many)
Keyword stuffing

No Conversion tracking

Why have you gone to the effort and expense of advertising on Google using paid ads? The end goal is to create profit. There is no shame in that, it is not a bad thing, that is what all advertisers using Google want. But how will you know if any profit has come from your Google Ads account?

This is another very common situation I have found when analysing PPC accounts. There is no conversion tracking set-up at all. Many people judge the success of their campaigns by loosely monitoring how many phone calls / web forms / sales start happening after they have activated a campaign, but there is soo much more that can be measured to create more success.

When you monitor conversions, you can start seeing which keywords and adverts are generating the sales and leads. Just as important, you can see which keywords and ads are not. The simple thing to do in these cases is pause the keywords and /or ads that are not generating conversions, so that the more successful ones can be seen more often.

What Do Conversions Tell Us?

Without conversion data, what would you determine to be a successful keyword? The normal answer would be amount of clicks, but that doesn’t really mean too much.

If you were selling memorabilia from the rock band Queen, and you had a keyword of ‘Queen Memorabilia’  chances are you would see a lot of clicks, but not as many conversions as should be expected, this is because there would be lots of searches for the actual Queen (RIP). With conversion tracking in place it would be quick and easy to notice something wasn’t correct and a quick decision could be made to provide more precise keyword targets.

Even More PPC

Thank you for reading so far, when learning about Google Ads, I understand that posts like this can be a hard read, but hopefully I have made some of these points clear, please feel free to tell me if I haven’t!

There is much more to getting the most out of your account, but that would be an incredibly long post that only the very hardcore would read with many hours to spare! If you would like to know more about your account in a (hopefully) easy to understand way, get a bespoke analysis done for free, without any obligation to use my PPC management services by filling in the form at the top of this page.

As well as PPC, I also offer SEO reviews and try to create helpful posts with the aim to empower more people to understand digital marketing for their own site. If you would like to read a little about SEO, please read my SEO tips for your startup post by following the link.

Again, thank you for reading and please follow me on Social media, or get in touch via the contact form to ask any questions.