Adwords Search Network is a great way to improve your website and businesses visibility within Google Search. You pay for what you get in terms of clicks and with a well build account you can really maximise the ROI of campaigns. Trouble is, there are plenty of ways to waste money on rubbish! To help you out, check out these 7 quick tips to minimise Ad spend wastage…
1 – Don’t Use Adwords Express
Adwords Express is a really cool little way to spend a lot of money in a short period without much control over the spend. It’s supposed to be a simplified version of Adwords for businesses that are new to online advertising or have very limited understanding of how it all works.
In that regard it does what it’s meant to do, be simple. What it also does is strip out a lot of the control over where the spend goes and the layers that can control waste in the typical Adwords interface.
It spends money quicker than a footballers wife after transfer day. Avoid it unless there is no alternative.
2 – Add Negatives
So for those who don’t know, a Negative in Adwords is something that works in the same way as regular targeting methods but in reverse. You can add the following negatives into any Adwords account:
- Negative Keywords – These can be added at Campaign and or Adgroup level and depending on the match type (Exact, Phrase or Broad) you can ensure that your Ads don’t show when a user searches for something that isn’t relevant to you. Be careful though as without some thought you may accidentally block important terms as the term you add in as a negative may be related to a relevant term.
- Location Negatives – Similar to Keywords these block users in or around (depending on what you chose) specific locations. This is added at Campaign level to stop a user in China seeing an Ad you only want a user in France to see.
3 – Keep Targeting Tight
Might sound obvious but if you have too broadly targeted Keywords in your Adgroups or too many Keywords in your Adgroups then you’re probably going to waste a few quid. For example, if you’re wanting to sell places on a Photography Course based in London then whilst the term “Photography Course” is relevant, if you’re using ‘Phrase Match’ targeting on it then you could be wasting money or getting irrelevant impressions for searches like “Photography Course Birmingham” or “Manchester Based Photography Course”.
If budgets are tight, stick to Exact match & Phrase (as long as there are a few decent Negative Keywords for the Phrase).
4 – Make Ads as Relevant as Possible
An Ad that is as relevant to the users search might sound obvious but you’d be surprised what we’ve seen! A relevant Ad to the users query helps to minimise Cost per Click (CPC) over time & improve the chances of conversion.
Relevant Ads improve Click through Rates (CTR) – This has a positive effect on Quality Score which helps improve Ad position & decrease CPC.
5 – Use Ad Extensions
Ad Extensions are brilliant for improving CTR and your overall impact in the search results. By standing out over a competing result you’re more likely to get the click that converts (reducing your CPA) as well as improving your Adgroup performance.
Click to Call, Callout and Sitelinks offer additional layers to an Ad that can boost engagement as well as get more selling points out in front of prospective clients. Review extensions can help to sell the click through credibility.
6 – Pause Poorly Performing Adgroups, Keywords & Ads
If you take a look at your account metrics periodically you should be able to spot any Adgroups, Keywords or Ads that are performing less than others. Don’t look to frequently as there may not be enough data to make a decent judgement but a thorough review can save a lot of cash.
Ads with a low Ad position may need the wording or Keyword targeting looking at. You may need to increase the bid or pause it.
Keywords with a low Quality Score could need either the Ad copy looking at or the landing page updated (or both). You may also need to increase the bid.
If however, the Ad is highly positioned, the Keyword Quality Score is high and the Ad is relevant but the CTR & Conversion Rate is low (or it just costs loads and kills your margin) then it may just need to be paused. Don’t delete Adgroups, Ads or Keywords as the data may be lost, keeping them as paused terms helps to remind you what worked and what didn’t. They may also be worth trying again in future.
7 – Make Use of Scheduling
Budgets can end up constricting performance on an account. You may not have enough budget to last the day so Adwords will try and stretch it out over the day. If that’s the case then there may be times when your Ad doesn’t show to the most relevant search, performed by a user who has decided to purchase that day. Gutted!
If you are only open Monday to Friday 9-5 then it might not be sensible to have your Ads showing at 4am on a Sunday. If you are targeting people looking to order theatre tickets for the weekend then those most likely to buy right after the search could well be looking during their lunch hour at work.
With a limited amount to spend per day it’s best to have a good think about when your prospective customers are potentially looking for you. Failing that, run the account for a week or so on all days and hours to see which are the best to focus on.
Many of these tips are things you can keep an eye on yourself over time to minimise CPC and maximise CTR & Conversions. If you want more information or need help unravelling a messy or expensive account give us a shout.
Fire a few questions in the comments if you have any!