After our recent PPC workshop where most of the audience had at least tried to put together some kind of PPC campaign,  it made us think of the main mistakes that we see when users are creating and maintaining their own Pay Per Click campaigns.

To help you if you want to continue managing the campaign yourself here are the top culprits that you need to sort out to maximise your money and click through rate. In no particular order we’ll list them below:

1) Creating one campaign and ad group and stuffing it with keywords

This is sin number one, and amazingly probably the most common. You will never create a great ROI on a pay per click campaign that has all your keywords in one adgroup …Why?…

Well because your quality score looks at the relevancy of your keywords in conjunction with your ad group, if you’ve got twenty keywords assigned to just one ad then you can bet your bottom dollar that 85% will not be relevant…and you’ll never be able to use them all in your advert there is just not space. Our advice is to create mulitple campaigns with multiple ad groups and few related keywords in each. The result a good quality score and high click through rate.

2) Creating multiple adgroups and still stuffing with too many keywords

Same really as point one above, creating half a dozen adgroups but then still putting in too many keywords that do not have the same ‘core’ or ‘seed keyword’ – it makes getting relevancy and therefore your Google quality score  just more difficult to do. Spend time creating multiple adgroups and only putting a couple of keywords in each, you’ll end up saving yourself money in the long run.

3) Only creating one advert for your campaign and not split testing

Google makes it so easy for you to be able to split test your advert, most of you will know that the headline is most important, and subtle changes can bring about big results. The same is true for your PPC ad – changing just one word can make all the difference to your click through rate. Do use the split testing option, you know it makes sense.

4) Not allowing enough budget

If you have an inadequate budget for your campaigns then your ads will only appear for a very small period of time during the day – typically first thing in the morning before your money runs out. If you can’t get an adequate budget together our advice is to find some niche keywords that don’t cost as much – or perhaps can you localise your search? Both will stretch your budget that little bit more.

5) Landing your advert on your home page

This really is the worst thing you can do, please land the visitor on the page that is most relevant to your ad, 9 times out of 10 this won’t be your Home page. You don’t want to leave your prospect fighting through your navigation or not knowing what to do next – they will leave your website immediately and you have paid for that priviledge.

6) Using Generic Keywords

If your keywords are too generic then that will pay havoc with both your quality score and also your conversion rate. Just think about using some ‘long-tail’ phrases …what do we mean? well lets give you an easy example to demonstrate, just imagine you make and sell Birthday Cakes. The term ‘Birthday Cake’ is actually quite generic (not as bad as just cake) but if you were more specific ‘handbag birthday cake’ you can see that your conversion rate would be good, someone looking for a football birthday cake wouldn’t click on your ad.

7) Using just Broad Match

This is the default option when you launch your pay per click campaign, but not always the best. The default option will show your advert when someone types in your keyword – no matter what the context or in what order. It might be better for you to be more specific in the ordering of your keywords or even making sure that certain keywords are not included (budget / cheap etc)

8) Failure to use the Google Extensions

There is an option when you set up your campaign to add further detail to your ad, either your Google places page information, or links to other areas of your website or Google shop. Whichever is the most relevant for your business then please spend just a couple of minutes completing this task. It will increase the overall size of your ad (over and above your competitors) and give you more real estate. You’re also providing more value to your prospects to enable them to click through to the most relevant place.

9) Not testing and Measuring

To launch a Pay Per Click Campaign and not to test and measure your results is probably the worst thing that you can do. By using goals and funnels in Google Analytics you can easily measure where your visitors are leaving your site (if indeed they are) and also if you add your tracking code to your conversion page (a thank you page typically) this can then be drawn into your ppc campaign so that you can easily see what conversion rates you are getting.

So now you know the seven things not to do in a Pay Per Click campaign hopefully you’ll be on the right path, of course if you need help or assistance you can always contact us and ask for help!