Report Central Blog

3 PPC mistakes and how to avoid them – Part 1

Many marketers get frustrated with Adwords as a marketing tool, considering it expensive and not always worth the cost.

But, what many people don’t realise is that you could be making some pretty common mistakes that are holding your PPC campaign back. After all, Adwords is a highly technical tool and if not used and reviewed regularly, the mistakes can be costly and literally a kiss of death to your PPC efforts!

In this step by step article, we’ll explain exactly where you’re going wrong with Adwords, so you can instead start using it as a highly powerful and profitable tool for your business.

Ready to start rebuilding up an awesome PPC campaign?

Mistake No 1 – Never bidding on your brand name

First things first, bidding on your own brand name is a no brainer.

With low click costs and high conversions it’s not only cheap but also shows user intent. This is a great way of leveraging on existing brand awareness, promoting your business and reaching out to customers and social media fans.

Think of it this way – if you’re not bidding on your own brand terms you can be certain that your competitors are, especially if your brand name is already known and holds some serious gravitas.

Whilst you might do well on your brand terms organically, you’re probably not showing up organically for every possible brand term variation 100% of the time – this means losing out on traffic that is ready to convert well.

To take top page position every time and get every impression available, you should ensure that when you bid on your own brand terms and your budget is adjusted to allow 100% of impressions share.

Don’t make the mistake of failing to bid on your own brand name. Remember, bidding on your own brand prevents competitors from stealing your business, strengthens your brand and does not cost a lot. It’s a win win!

Mistake No 2 – Being sloppy with your copy!

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Now, presuming you’ve got the hang of using keyword match types, it’s likely you’ve built up an extensive keyword terms list. Now it’s time to hone your advert copy – the first thing the users will see before they either click or ignore your Adwords listing.

Creating a fresh and relevant ad, whether it’s in print, media or Adwords is a skill that gets developed the more that you do it. The beauty of Adwords is the almost instant feedback on how your copy is performing – whether it results in clicks and conversions or none of these.

New to Adwords or not, there are common mistakes any marketer can make, to name a few:

  1. Keeping your ad copy boring and irrelevant

What you have to realised that when someone types in a query on Google, more often or not, there will be an intent for that search – perhaps researching how to do something, finding the best places to eat or the best providers for a product. Your job as digital marketer is to tap into emotive side of the users to entice them to visit the site because it will provide a solution to their problem, but at the same time keep the copy relevant to the search and that user intent by aligning the end result that appears in the listing with what the users are searching for.

  1. Don’t have outdated text

Put simply, don’t advertise Christmas trees in April.

  1. Not using ad extensions

Ad extensions will enhance your ads by showing additional information to potential customers. It is an effective way of getting more clicks and this is something you should definitely be doing. Just make sure your landing page is optimised for conversions – you might have the best ad in the world but if your landing page isn’t optimised to convert traffic then your budget’s gone to waste!

  1. Not taking advantage of your businesses’ seasonal ups and downs.

Does your business run a sale every year around Valentine’s Day? Then in order to get the most from your PPC budget you need to make sure you’re running ads highlighting this.

  1. Don’t repeat yourself in site links.

Don’t waste what precious ad space you have! Use ad space to highlight the extra features you offer, but don’t repeat the same ones in descriptions lines and ad extensions.

  1. Don’t jump between the title and sentence case in your ads. Choose either title or sentence case when drafting your PPC adverts. We’d recommend using title case which usually gets higher click through rates.
  2. Not running multiple ad copies to see which one works best.

We’d recommend using at least 3 advert copies at one time. Then, once you’ve perfected your ad copy don’t just leave it – for at least a month. Keep checking, testing and optimising so you’re not left behind with outdated ad text.

  1. Not using mobile specific ad copy. Mobile advertising is becoming increasingly significant. Although mobile conversions can be lower they still have a huge impact on overall results. So, you should make sure that your ad copy and CTAs are mobile optimised. Don’t forget to keep an eye on mobile bid adjustments too!

Mistake No 3 – Leaving your Conversions Funnel Untested

Checking if your conversion funnel is working as expected is crucial. This might seem like a mistake only a novice would make, but you’d be surprised at how many advertisers fail to do so.

Nobody wants to waste money, right? You need to make every penny in your marketing budget count. So, when running a paid ad campaign, you need to make sure your funnels aren’t broken, you have no obstacles to conversions and that your conversion tracking and goals are set up correctly.

Think about it, if you launch an awesome campaign you expect results. But imagine if valuable traffic is being sent to a part of your website that doesn’t work. Customers can’t do what you want them to – buy!  Chances are some people will click somewhere else on the site, if committed to purchase, but if not – you lost them!

Similarly, if your checkout funnel is confusing, buyers will simply get frustrated and give up without making a purchase.

So, how do you prevent this? Before clicking the ‘enable’ button on your Adwords campaign you should always:

  1. Check your landing page thoroughly- Is it working? Are your CTAs present and working?
  2. Use real time software and watch how real people perform on your site. This helps you spot errors and fix them quickly. Use the tool called Hotjar – Read how we generated over £60M for one of our clients using this tool.
  3. Check if your website is performing on all devices and browsers without issues.
  4. Check that you Google Analytics tracking and goals are set up correctly.
  5. Make sure your Adwords conversions are set up according to your business goals. This means you’re able to track, monitor and optimise your campaigns correctly.

If you want to make real money from paid search you need to make sure you’ve built up a strong PPC campaign that avoids these common Adwords mistakes. This is something we do every day here at Report Central, getting tangible results for our customers.

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