AdWords giveth, and AdWords taketh away. There is no doubt that a well-honed campaign can be the only advertising tool you need to thrive, but many common pitfalls will destroy your cost-per-click (CPC) and yield you nada in sales nor qualified leads. The name of the game in AdWords success is specificity. The more general your settings and groupings, the more likely that either the wrong people are seeing your ads, or the right people are seeing them, but the ads are not appealing. Here are three reasons why AdWords campaigns fail and solutions to correct these errors.
Low Quality Score
Quality Score is an AdWords metric that determines where an advertiser's ad shows up on the SERP and how much he pays per click. If not for Quality Score, the advertiser willing to pay the most would always appear in the first position. This is Google's way of trying to prioritize the best possible ads. Essentially, Quality Score measures the relevancy of your keyword, and it's measured on two criteria:
- How closely correlated is your keyword to the ad and to the landing page? Google wants to prioritize advertisers who provide keywords, ads and landing pages that are pertinent to each other.
- How relevant is your ad to users on SERP? In other words, what is your click-through rate (CTR)?
The effect of Quality Score on your PC is the most significant of all other variables; by improving it, you are guaranteed to improve your return on investment. According to this article by PPC guru Larry Kim, having a Quality Score of 10 (out of 10) can save you up to 80% on cost per acquisition. To increase your quality score:
- Ensure each ad is clear and relevant to every single keyword in that Adgroup.
- Ensure your landing page fulfills the ad's promise.
- Constantly test your ads to improve CTR for each ad.
Related: Outsource your online marketing. Get quotes from SEM consultants.
Using Broad Match Keywords
Broad Match Keywords empowers Google to run your ad for searches that it deems related to your keyword. For example, if you own a shoe store and are bidding for the broad keyword "shoes," Google might show your ad to people searching for "boots," "women's shoes," or "running shoes."
Whether or not some of those searches are relevant to your products, your CTR will surely be lower than if you had a unique and relevant ad for each of those terms.
- Utilize Phrase and Exact Match for better control over which searches trigger your ads.
- Break each campaign into tight Adgroups, and write a tailored ad for each Adgroup.
A Single Adgroup Contains All Keywords
When you put all of your keywords in one Adgroup and one campaign, you face two main problems:
- The same ads will appear for all the different keywords in your account, which means lower relevancy and a lower CTR. A knock-on effect is an eventual decrease in your Quality Score, as well.
- If you have a limited budget, you will probably find that the high volume keywords are depleting your budget before some long tail keywords in your campaign get a chance to run.
To improve your CTR and avoid burning through your budget, never include more than 10 keywords per Adgroup and only place keywords in the same Adgroup if you can address all keywords in each text ad.
Although it takes a bit more time and energy to make these changes, you should see a noticeable difference in how much more you get for your budget. Google AdWords is an amazing tool in your advertising arsenal, but you have to learn how to use your weapon properly.
Author Bio: Idan is the co-founder of Website Planet, with over 5 years of experience in online marketing. He masters all things PPC, and has a great passion for Analytics and Testing. His motto is "Life isn't about finding yourself, life is about creating yourself".
(Image: Nutdanai Apikhomboonwaroot via freedigitalphotos.net)