As Google likes to keep saying, you need not spend a bomb to get a lot out of your pay-per-click advertising campaigns. Even with a limited daily budget, and with the right strategy in place, you can ensure the right people are clicking on your ads and you are getting good conversions.
In Part-1, we had looked at some of the common mistakes in the initial phase of setting up your AdWords campaign and how they can be fixed.
In this the concluding part, we will look at the next 5 common mistakes in the business end of setting up your campaigns and the fixes for them.
Mistake 6: Not setting up tracking
How do you propose to maximise your returns from your AdWords campaigns if you are not continuously monitoring the performance? How can you optimise your spends and ensure higher clicks? Short answer - You can’t!
Fix : Your AdWords account can be linked to the Google Analytics profile which then allows the account to collect more data to decide which terms keywords are high performing and which ones needs a relook. A keyword maybe be seen to have a good CTR, but GA gives an indepth look at which terms have a higher bounce rate or are not converting. This is a great way to optimise your account.
Mistake 7: Ad group having too many Keywords
You need to make sure that your ad groups are set up right, with the proper keywords, to effectively target an ad to a user’s query. An ad group may sound thematically relevant if it has a lot of similar keywords, but the problem here is having too many keywords in an ad group decreases the likelihood of that particular ad matching the user’s search query. This results in a lowering of the CTR.
Fix: Have a limited number of keyword ad groups (2-3 recommended). This means that you can keep an eye on the ad copy and thereby the relevance of the ad that the user sees and this will increase your CTRs. The translates into lower CPCs and more conversions, provided you got everything else is going for you.
Mistake 8: Ignoring Ad Scheduling
There are multifold reasons as to why you should consider setting up Ad scheduling on your campaigns to improve their performance. Often we have seen that an account performance is adversely affected because it is set live for all hours of the day and all days of the week.
Reasons why you should be considering Ad Scheduling are:
- Reach the users during the Business hours - There is no need to have live ads running if you know your business won’t be able to serve them during specific periods, for example, at 3 A.M in the morning.
- Working on limited budgets - It makes sense to look at running your ads only during specific times of the day to optimise your ad spends. You can prime your ads to be shown only during specific times and will inturn prevent your budget from getting thinned very quickly.
- If you are running international campaigns - You may need to show your ads during the business hours or according to the time zones your users are present in.
Ignoring Ad scheduling altogether might add limitations to your account performance and result in budget being wasted on clicks that have a less likelihood of conversion.
Fix: Segment the time when your campaigns are going to be set live according to day or time using GA and AdWords data. If you notice that a certain product or service is best served to be seen during a specific day of the week or time of the day, then it makes sense to set up specific scheduling by migrating it into a separate ad group.
Mistake 9: Using Bid modifiers incorrectly
Bid modifiers have been found to be a great way of defining pre-set rules to direct a little more budget to your campaigns. Bid modifiers can be manually added based on the following:
- Type of device
- Location of the user
Using AdWords data, Automatic bid modifiers can also be set which add to your CPC and help in pushing your ads to the top of the page.But there might be a problem if you use too many modifiers to at the same time. For example, if you have set location and device bid modifiers at +10% each and a user is searching for 2 BHK houses from that location using his mobile device, you will end up with a +20% bid modifier, essentially doubling your CPC on that term!
Fix: Careful and forward planning is required if your AdWords strategy contains the usage of bid modifiers. Double checking and performing A/B tests on how certain bid modifiers affect your account budget also helps.
Mistake 10: Not using Ad Extensions
Ad Extensions help in improving the CTRs of your keywords and also increase conversions as you will be getting more without paying extra. We have noticed that many accounts either don’t use them at all or don’t use them to the best advantage.These Ad Extensions include offering alternate landing pages to users, offering additional USPs, integrating reviews, specifying on which devices these extensions appear etc.
This is like free additional ad real estate (and trust us, we know how useful that is!). So, what’s not to like?
Fix: Start by reviewing your targeted ads, what are your priorities and where you think ad extensions can be used to stand out. Do some competitor analysis and think of how you can beat them or improve upon them.
There are many other mistakes we have come across, like:
- Incorrect spellings
- Landing pages that keep redirecting or are broken
- No clear automatic bidding strategy
- Ignoring location targeting
- Forgetting to bid on your brand name - as it has been observed that sometimes the competitors do bid for your name!
- Not monitoring the strategies and the ads of your competitors.
The list goes on and on..
But a great Adwords campaign essentially boils down to the same thing really : carefully plan your campaign strategy, lockdown on your targeting and ad groups and keep monitoring and optimising your account performance.
If you have any big mistakes other than these that you have come across, then please share them in the comments section below and we can discuss them.
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