Here at Avant8 we have seen the gamut of Google Adwords accounts that spend anywhere to a couple dollars a day to hundreds of thousands of dollars a day. Marketing on Google Adwords can be very fruitful for many companies, and there is a reason why 96% of Google’s revenue in 2014 of $60 billion came from advertising, because marketing in Adwords generally works. But Google’s system within Adwords is complex and very robust. There are many ways to make your ads as targeted and effective as possible, but there are also many ways to spend a lot of money with little return. Which is why we think it is important to talk about the most common mistakes that companies are making with their Adwords account.
#1 Keyword strategy within Ad Groups is too broad
Google wants advertisers to spend as much money as possible, which is why when using Google’s keyword planner it will “recommend” pretty much any keyword under the internet sun. When setting up an Ad Group, Google says to use between 10 and 20 keywords. This strategy is ridiculous and destined for failure. You will spend a lot of money with little returns on your advertising spend (ROAS). What we recommend is using single keyword ad groups, aka SKAG’s. By getting as granular as possible with your keyword strategy you then create ads for each ad group that are hyper-relative to your keywords, which in turn will increase your click through rate, and therefore increasing your ad relevancy and expected click through rate, which increases your quality score, which ultimately decreases your cost per click and increase your ROAS. So get out there and start using SKAG’s today!
#2 Negative keyword strategy is non-existent
Negative keywords are an important tool to prevent your ads being served and clicked on by people who are not actually interested in your product or service. By looking through the search terms list that Google provides, you can find out exactly what was Google’d when your ad was shown. This shows you which search terms are relevant to you and which ones are not. Say for instance you are selling hot dogs. After letting your account build up some data you go through the search terms and notice that some of your clicks are coming from consumers who are searching for “veggie hot dogs,” but you don’t sell veggie hot dogs and actually despise all things vegetable. Now you can create “veggie” as a negative keyword so that your ads will not show up and ultimately be clicked on by someone who is looking for “veggie hot dogs.” This will save you money and allocate more of your advertising budget towards the search results that matter.
#3 Conversion Tracking
We cannot stress the importance of setting up your conversion tracking. Many companies will looks at metrics like clicks, impressions, click through rate, and average cost per click. Don’t get us wrong, these are important metrics, but they do not tell us the whole story, and making decisions without the whole story is fatal. Until your conversion tracking is properly set up for each ad, it is futile making adjustments within an account. You could have an ad that generates the majority of your clicks but what if those people who are clicking on your ad actually are looking for something else? Now you think that ad is your biggest revenue driver so you double down and allocate more of your budget to it hoping to see an increase in sales but nothing happens and you just wasted all that money on an ad that doesn’t actually perform. This is why determining what a conversion is for your account, whether it is a form submission, phone call, website purchase, etc., is essential to making your ad dollars work for you.