Managing a Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising campaign in Google AdWords is not a hilarious task but beginners and small scale business group may find it difficult. I had gone through many accounts and had came across some PPC campaigns that are just a mess, and for many reasons. We have to apply no rocket science technologies but some basic logics to manage a PPC campaign well. Stick on to basics and we will get well optimized PPC accounts. A little education can go a long way when trying to manage a profitable PPC campaign. Below I share with you ten steps to optimize PPC campaign that even beginner AdWords advertisers can grasp. By putting these tips to use, we can quickly earn better results in our AdWords campaign.
#1: Ensure Strong Account Structure
Marketing strategies and plans may vary time to time. What our account did for us yesterday might not be what we need tomorrow. So continuous evaluation should be done on account structure to ensure that its current with our objectives and goals. PPC account structure is a key to successfully generating a great return on ad spend.
AdWords campaigns we build to begin with are rarely optimal. Once we start getting the responses (keyword data like CTR, cost, clicks, conversions), we may take decisions to improve our existing campaigns. A well structured account is easy to manage and monitor.
Move Keywords to Their Own Ad Groups
One of the big selling points of moving keywords to new ad groups and writing more specific ads for them is to help your ads stand out from your competitors.
#2: Review, Refine and Add to Keyword List
We are bidding on keywords that people search with and their popularity changes over time. Also, new keywords will always be emerging. Add the new keywords we find, to relevant existing adgroups. If there is no relevant group, start a new one with their own adcopies and landing pages. This allows the old and new adgroups to have adcopies and landing pages more relevant to their keywords. Remember, more relevant ads and landing pages means higher quality Score, lower Cost Per Click (CPC) and higher conversion rates.
Change and Test Matching Options
There are 3 basic forms of keyword matching: Broad, Phrase and Exact match. Drill down from Broad to Phrase then Exact to find the specific keywords that convert best. Our strategy will most likely have a blend of Phrase and Exact by the time you finish testing.
#3: Review Search Term Report to Find Negative Keywords
We can compare our Search Term Report to see what goes on the backstage. It may be a shock for some to know that the keywords we choose in AdWords are not necessarily the keywords that our ads show up for. Actually, it’s rare that our ads only show up for the keywords we have chosen. So, we need to control it and do corrections throughout the entire lifespan of our campaign. We can do this by reviewing our Search Term Report. Here, we can see what search terms our keywords are triggering. With this information we can either add new negative keywords or add additional keywords to target.
This report is not just about cost-cutting. It’s also about expanding our existing reach and this is where optimizing our AdWords campaigns really starts.
So using search term report, we should be able to - Build new negative keyword list - Keep our focus on high performing keyword list and - Pause keywords showing poor performance.
#4: Use Location Targeting to Show Our Ads Only in Relevant Parts of the Country
Most AdWords accounts only have one campaign targeted to one location. If our product or service is location specific, we can use AdWords location targeting features to only target people in the areas we can sell to. This allows us to tailor our ads and landing pages to these locations.
But the location service is not perfect as it’s based on IP address, and some IPs don’t match user location. To deal with this, we may run a second Campaign with much broader location settings - eg a whole country - but only bidding on keywords that include ‘location words’.
Smart location targeting like this should dramatically decrease our AdWords costs and increase relevancy.
#5: Continuously Optimize Ads & Create New Ad Text
An ad copy without any strong Call to Action and USP is not going to help us in getting many clicks & conversions. Experiments with different offers and call-to-action phrases to see what drives conversions can help us in creating good text ads. Superior ad text is a crucial step in getting searchers to our site. If our ads are not compelling and relevant to our keywords, searchers aren’t going to click on them, resulting in less traffic to our site. Adding sitelinks and call out extensions can be extremely beneficial.
Tips to improve ad copies:
- Should be simple and to the point - Use relevant ad copies - Should include clear call to action - Use ad variations in single adgroup - Use sitelink extensions - Use callout extensions - For improved performance, - Add punctuation to the end of description line - May use descriptive display URL
#6: Test & Analyse Landing Pages
A landing page which takes a long time to load may give zero return. Visitors won’t wait long and in that case, a click is wasted. So we need to optimise our landing pages. We need to test them. We can also test new landing pages against our current page. Because much of a landing page’s quality depends on goals that are often managed by multiple teams, this is an area where it can be harder to implement substantial changes. However, any audit that does not pay close attention to landing pages will fail to address potential gains in quality score and conversion rate, metrics that we can't overlook.
#7: Perform Routine Keyword Bid Management
When we manage bids, we are managing an auction. As our competitors change their bidding or our ROI changes, we need to act in order to keep our bid at the optimal level.
Quick tips for optimizing your AdWords bids:
- Do whatever it takes to stay in top three – CTR and click volume are much higher there. - Bid higher, when we’re in a low position and see high ROI. - Bid lower, when we’re seeing a low ROI.
#8: Run Remarketing Campaigns
Remarketing is one of the most powerful tools available to us in PPC. Remarketing campaigns have proved to increase the ROI for many businesses and are almost always profitable. Remarketing ads are served only to users who’ve visited one or more pages on our website in the past, thus demonstrating an interest in our brand. Remarketing has the added benefit of conveying the message that “our company is everywhere”, which can assist brand visibility and recognition.
Benefits of remarketing:
- Reach Highly Targeted Audiences - Increase Conversion Rates - Lower Online Advertising and Cost Per Action Costs
#9: Schedule the Campaign to be ON When Customers Respond
We can easily increase our Click-Through Rate (CTR) by making sure our campaign is on only when we get the best results. Find out when that is by studying response across different days of the week and times of the day (an hourly report is available to help us).
#10: Run Mobile Ads
Mobile search is officially a way of life for consumers. Recent studies say that 80% of people don't leave home without their mobile device and 61% of smartphone owners perform searches from their device every single day. In fact, consumers are now spending over 15 hours per week researching from their smartphones. AdWords mobile PPC ads are our ticket to appearing in front of people who are already on the go, looking for information, and often showing great intent to make a purchase.
How to jumpstart mobile marketing & PPC strategy?
- Set SMART PPC goals - Define our target audience - Determine our AdWords mobile PPC keywords - Optimize AdWords ads and landing pages for mobile - Smartphone and tablets now account for 32% of paid search clicks and 25% of all PPC ad spend. Mobile is here to stay and it's time to get in the game!
PPC accounts come in a variety of shapes and sizes, so it becomes very important to change our strategies accordingly. Today we’ve discussed several ways in which can gain an edge over our competitors, but this certainly isn’t a complete solution. Having said that, what are some of the techniques you use to optimize your PPC accounts? Feel free to drop your thoughts in the comments section below, thanks for reading!
This resource was published by Akhil Alappattu25 November 2015
Akhil is a Search Engine Marketing specialist at Webdura Technologies. He is a Bing Ads Accredited Professional with AdWords, Analytics and Hubspot certification.