We’ve heard a number of people say, “We’ve tried Google AdWords and it doesn’t work.”
When we ask questions about how they used the platform, we have found these to be the most common mistakes.
Not Using A Certified Google Partner
Anyone can create an AdWords campaign, but few know how to do it properly. A Google Certified Partner has passed a number of detailed exams and “competes” with other Partners to maintain their certification. They are also required to manage at least a certain-sized portfolio of AdWords spend and create high-quality campaigns.
Using The Wrong Keyword Phrases
Many do-it-yourself advertisers believe that potential customers use the same search terms that they do. There are tools available that tell us exactly which search terms have the most volume in a client’s service territory.
Inappropriate Keyword Phrase Matching
We’ve seen many AdWords campaigns that use the default “broad match” option. What this does is trigger your ads to a very wide group of keywords. For example, if you use the keyword phrase, “Hydraulic System Repair” with a broad match, your ads many display for people looking for “Hydraulic Education,” “Filtration System,” or “Automobile Repair.” Should someone using those phrases see your ad and click on it, you have just wasted money.
Creating Generic Ads
Attention spans on the internet are very short. When someone is looking for “Hydraulic System Repair” they want to see and ad that has a headline saying, “Hydraulic System Repair”. From that same ad, they want to know where you are, if you are any good, other (related) things you do, your hours, how to contact you, and which systems you repair. Generic AdWords ads don’t sell. Most advertisers are not aware of the no-cost ways to increase their ads’ real estate.
Poor Quality or Non-existent Landing Pages
In order to compete effectively for the three ad locations at the top of a Google browser page, you must have ad-specific landing pages. We have “repaired” programs where all of the ads were sent to the client’s home page. The issue is that Google rewards ads that create a great experience for the viewer. Although Google won’t disclose their exact formula, here is what we know, for sure:
- The best ads have the exact search term in the headline
- The landing page has the search term in the URL
- The heading of the landing page contains the search term
- The search term should be in the page copy only 2–3 times
- The landing page copy must be well-written (yes, Google can tell)
- Your website’s load time must be quick
If your ad/landing page/website has those characteristics and your competitors’ do not, it is possible that you will get a better ad position than your competitors and pay less for your ad.
Setting and Forgetting
Novice online advertisers think that they can setup campaigns and that they will “run themselves”. Technically, they will. Unfortunately, their budget will become exhausted without generating much, if any, ROI. AdWords ads are placed in a few milliseconds during an auction that begins when someone enters a keyword phrase into their browser. Competitors’ bids and budgets change, a new and important keyword may surface that you don’t know about. Successful campaigns need to be reviewed and adjusted on a regular basis.
There are at least six more mistakes that we have seen. If you need assistance, Let’s Talk!