The optimization of your PPC strategy is essential to maintain or improve your ad campaign’s performance on search engines. Knowing what steps to take or where to start can be confusing, so here are some tips on how to optimize your PPC campaign:
In a PPC campaign, keyword selection is paramount. To choose your keywords, focus on those that appear in the largest volume of search. It is best to limit yourself to 15-20 keywords per ad group. Poorly chosen keywords can cost you money, so it is a good idea to have a web marketing expert to help you. To learn more, read our blog posting on keywords.
- Search words vs. negative keywords
It is important to regularly review your list of search words and the keywords being used by Internet users. You could be surprised by what you find.
You want to be vigilant about what search words you DO NOT want to be targeting in order to optimize your ROI. This is called negative keywords, which lets you exclude search terms from your campaign in order to only target the right customers and increase clickthrough. This list of negative keywords can be shared among all your Google Ads campaigns.
We recommend that you list all the negative keywords you want: such as products or services close to yours but you don’t offer, words linked to job postings, names of your competitors, scandals or sensitive subjects you don’t want to associate your company with.
- Ad Testing
In all marketing initiatives, testing is recommended to maintain effectiveness. Web advertising allows testing opportunities like no other medium. You can create 3-4 banner ads (with different visual and copy elements) for the same keyword groups and then see how their clickthrough performance compares. You can then get a better return on investment. Repeat this process as often as needed, and remember, Google Ads uses an ad rotation system that shows the ads that are performing best throughout your campaign.
This may seem logical, but do not forget to indicate the geographical area in which you wish to have your ads shown. If you only provide services to the Montreal area, it doesn’t make sense to target the whole planet. If you analyze the Geographical Report and conclude that some Internet users are coming from locations that you do not want to target, you can exclude those locations (city, region, country etc.) the same way you do for negative keywords. This avoids wasting your advertising budget.
Conversions are considered customer actions that your company believes are valuable. They can include purchases, signups, downloads, web page visits or lead generation. To optimize your tracking of conversion actions, consider the following questions:
- Does your conversion follow-up work?
- Does the conversion action align with your company’s most important KPI (Key Performance Indicator)?
- Is the conversion tag on the correct page of your web site or is the Google Analytics corresponding to the correct page and action?
- Are you tracking too many conversions?
Web marketing experts recommend you follow no more than two conversion actions on Google Ads. For example, for an e-commerce website, it could be sales (a primary KPI) and shopping cart add-ons (a secondary KPI).
In contrast, with Google Analytics, you can follow secondary conversion actions like newsletter signups, downloads of a catalogue or activity on a chat.
The problem with following too many conversions is that each one has a different value; therefore, the overall picture can give a distorted perspective on your actual return on investment of your advertising dollars.
A PPC budget requires monitoring and regular adjustments which means you should allocate your budget according to the ad campaign or keywords performance. Keep in mind, often the name of your company or your brand has a high conversion rate, but this doesn’t mean you should invest more on these keywords. The more targeted for conversion, the better.
Bonus Tip: Bing Ads now offers a tool to estimate conversions based on your budget to make it easier and quicker to optimize your budget.
Improving and optimizing your PPC campaign is an on-going process based on Internet users behavior and search trends over time. The more you carefully target your keywords and ads, the more you improve your campaign’s performance and optimize your budget.
If you don’t have the time, patience, or knowledge to manage your Google Ads campaign, Amauta Marketing is here to ensure the best possible return on your investment based on your budget.