You have made noteworthy investments in Google AdWords for coming up with a campaign for your business and have prepared all the requisite content as per the marketing plan. But somehow, you don’t seem to get the profits as per expectations. What could be the reason? The answer is simple enough – poorly managed AdWords campaigns. Ever since search online marketing has gained prominence, Google AdWords has become quite popular as an effective tool for driving traffic to web pages. However, if managed incorrectly, it could prove to be an expensive undertaking with more costs being incurred in investment than profits being earned on return on investments. The trick lies in managing campaigns in the best manner possible to rake in profits and to ensure that the business retains its presence in the market. Lets look at some of the ways in which the effectiveness of AdWords Campaigns may be enhanced.
Customize Ads by Grouping Keywords in the Correct Manner:
AdWords is not your ordinary marketing tool. It has features which allow distinct campaigns to be managed separately for which the keywords and ads can be segmented into appropriate ad groups. More than often, SEM professionals club all keywords in a single ad group which renders the ad ineffective, In terms of marketing efficiency, this is one of the biggest mistakes that is currently being made as we speak. According to PPC fundamentals, an ad is effective only when it matches or holds extreme relevance with the search keyword. You cant expect people to purchase a specific product by looking at an ad that holds a broader perspective about itself. Lets take the example of Samsung for understanding this concept. Samsung currently has a lot of products across various product lines being offered. If all keywords were to be clubbed together, then the ad would include headlines such as “Buy Samsung Products at Attractive Rates” or “Samsung Products Available at Discounted Prices”. But neither of these give any direct information with respect to any particular product that the user might be searching about. A more relevant and effective approach would be to use headlines that have the product identity, for example, “Get 20% Discount on Samsung Galaxy S4 This Festive Season”.
A word of advice – It would be wise to stick to less than 20 keywords for each ad group as any number exceeding 20 would result in the ad matching incorrectly with the keywords being searched by the user.
Using the Right Keywords is Good, Using Correct Keyword Matches is Better:
Matching keywords is one of the most crucial tasks in a campaign with its importance exceeding that of finding the correct keywords. While getting the right keywords is good for the campaign but it does not guarantee success unless the correct keyword matches are made. Keywords can be added to a campaign in any of the following methods;
- Broad Match – Ads will come up regardless of the sequence of keywords entered by the user.
- Phrase Match – Ads will come up when the particular keyword phrase is matched in the search query. The phrases have to be provided by encapsulating them in quotation marks for it to come up in a ‘phrase match’ search.
- Exact Match – Ads will come up only if the keywords are matched in the exact sequence and form. Exact match keywords need to be provided by enscapulating them in brackets.
Each matching method has its own benefits. The broad match is good for generating high impressions but lacks the accuracy and preciseness that is achieved with phrase match and exact match methods. However, the phrase and exact match fail to generate the required impressions which results in less potential customers being targeted.
A word of advice – A good strategy for matching keywords would be to analyze the requirements of the business and the nature as well as size of the target audience so that the broad match method may be used for generating higher impressions and traffic, while phrase and exact match methods may help you to get the desired return on investments.
Negative Keywords Can Actually Provide Positive Outcomes:
Negative keywords pertain to those keywords that do not hold relevance with your product or service and is best if excluded from being matched during search results. By not including negative keywords in the campaign, marketing professionals often make a huge mistake at the cost of irrelevant words being associated with the product which becomes evident when the search query has been sent. This is highly beneficial for streamlining the search outcomes for specific product or service offerings. One of the most beneficial features of negative keyword inclusion is that it may be placed at the ad group level or it may be placed for the entire campaign. By placing it at the ad group level, the keyword would be excluded from search results generating for the particular ad. However, the inclusion of negative keywords for an entire campaign would result in the keyword being excluded in matches for all ads placed within the campaign,
A word of advice – Google Analytics is a good way to initiate the identification of keywords that need to be excluded from search matches. By using the acquisition section of Google Analytics, you can easily identify phrases or keywords that are not bringing about successful conversions. These can be used as negative keywords for your own campaign.
Your Brand Is Indeed Worth Bidding For:
You may have created a good position for your brand and may not consider advertising it further. But the rule of the market is survival of the fittest. If you don’t advertise for your own brand, chances are that others will use it for their benefit. Common places where your brand name is most likely to show up is in ad groups and minor campaigns. While this may seem lucrative as the brand is getting good visibility in the search results, the competitor would be getting the upper hand by getting its own ad placed above the organic search result position for the brand.
A word of advice – Make the highest bid for your own brand as it would ensure it to be at the top of the bidding list. It also pays to bid high on your brand as there is a high probability of successful conversion of people searching for the brand into prospective customers.
Ad Positions Are Made Optimal Only Through Testing:
It may be surprising for marketing professionals but sometimes, being ranked at the 3rd or 4th position in the search listing provides more benefits than ranking at the 1st position. The reason behind this is in the fact that people often tend to click on the first two search results irrespective of whether they are really interested in the ad. Only the most serious users return to the search screen and scan the rest of the results for the answers. But the optimal position for your ad depends entirely on your business segment and the nature of responses received for that particular segment.
A word of advice – A single approach is never beneficial to suit all needs. This holds true for ad positions also wherein the optimal positions need to be judged after testing it thoroughly and then determining the position which offers the most responses. A good way to go about it would be to lower the bid value which would decrease the position of the ad in the searches.
Knowing the LTV of Customers Helps to Define Accurate Budgets for AdWords Per Acquisition:
Businesses getting involved in first time ad campaigns usually have no idea on the budget for AdWords per acquisition. A little financial introspection and understanding the Life Time Value of Customers would go a long way in ensuring better investment accuracy. Lets consider the following scenario:
LTV of Customer for your business = $10
Investments Made per Acquisition = $5.5
Profit = $10 – $5.5 = $4.5
The above example clearly illustrates that as long as one is able to generate profits from a campaign, the business will continue to prosper, at least at the financial ends. If the cost per acquisition drops below the LTV of Customers, then you can expect your business to die pretty soon. This concepts holds ground even if the average values for customers are calculated for a period involving more than 1 month as the end result should reflect profit regardless of how the values are managed.
A word of advice – Calculating LTV of Customers is an effective way to identify the amount of investments and financial adjustments that need to be made to a campaign such that the business is able to generate profits. The basic rule of any e-commerce business is that initial phases may not provide return on investments but returns should be achieved soon enough before you go out of business.
Directing Everyone to The Homepage Does Not Ensure Successful Conversion:
One of the most common and major mistakes that AdWords users commit is directing the every user to the homepage instead of leading them to an appropriate page that holds high relevance to the search result or ad. Considering the home page as an effective presentation on redirection is a misconception upheld by people due to which most campaigns fail to convert effectively.
A word of advice – Match the landing page with the ad so that the user eventually gets what he sees. This does save a lot of time and effort for users who prefer getting the information directly rather than having to spend additional time browsing through the contents of the homepage.
Analyze Your Competition to Rewamp Your Strategies:
Analyzing and and evaluating the strategies of your competition could give huge insights into steps that need to be taken by you to ensure the success of your marketing efforts. The best way to go about it is to put yourself in the position of your customers and then check the ads provided by the competitors as well as your ads. The comparative analysis would give a clearer depiction of the effectiveness of your ad campaign.
A word of advice – It would be wise to analyze the competitors’ ad structures, landing pages and presentation. With this done, a prototype could be created and tested to identify its effectiveness in achieving the required traffic and conversion rates. Constant testing is the key to success for all initiatives.
Limit Your Expectations from AdWords:
This issue is not only with AdWords but with every popular tool in the market. People tend to expect more than feasible from AdWords and in keeping with this expectation, they feel that large population numbers may be targeted with small monthly investments. Ads and campaigns need time to probe for responses from the users after which their marketing strategy can be defined in a better manner. Having a small budget will most likely halt the progress of the campaign till more funds are made available. This waiting period could be frustrating to some with most of them opting out of the campaign.
A word of advice – Understand the needs of marketing your business online and determine a large enough budget which would allow you to push through the phases of the campaign. These activities require time before noticeable returns and results are achieved. Any tool is as good or as bad as the one who uses it. While AdWords provides immense functionalities to take online marketing efforts to the next level, one should always give due consideration to the “human factor” involved in the process.