The PPC Mistakes Companies Make All Too Often

How effective is your pay-per-click (PPC) advertising campaign? What tweaks could you make to boost conversions?  PPC advertising is the one digital marketing tool that few companies can do without, yet many struggle to leverage…

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How effective is your pay-per-click (PPC) advertising campaign? What tweaks could you make to boost conversions? 

PPC advertising is the one digital marketing tool that few companies can do without, yet many struggle to leverage it to its fullest extent. As many companies that have tried to go it alone can attestPPC mistakes can be very costly. It sometimes takes no more than a single incorrect setting for your ads to reach the wrong audience, forcing you to pay for unproductive clicks. Combined with the continuous revisions and additions of Google Ads features, it’s a challenging tool to navigate. 

The fact is the race to generate high-quality results at the lowest possible cost per acquisition looks different every day. Just ask the Nowspeed PPC Management services team that works full time to stay on top of this ever-evolving tool. As we have evaluated hundreds of campaigns, we have noticed companies often struggle with similar problems. 

Here are some of the most common PPC mistakes that companies make:

Improper conversion tracking

Most companies do not have conversion tracking setup properly. This is the single most important item for a successful PPC campaign. Keep in mind people may convert on more than just an ad. PPC ads can pique their interest, but they might convert through another channel, such as social media or directly on your website. To fully understand their journey, you need to accumulate more comprehensive data with, for instance, an attribution model.  

Targeting errors

Targeting is getting a lot more specific but not all companies take full advantage of the advanced features. There are now countless variables that you can use to narrow down your reach to your target persona. In other words, you need to look way beyond state-based advertising and add other appropriate variables, such as location and job status. 

Failing to match channels and customers

Do you know how to make full use of various campaign types across Search, Display, Discovery, and YouTube? For most companies, the answer is no. 

Not all marketing channels work for all of your marketing goals. The Google Display and Google Search networks are designed for different types of customers—and failing to take that into consideration will result in ineffective campaigns. Display ads target people with low interest or awareness of your products or services; they are more susceptible to a soft sell. Search ads, in contrast, are geared toward people with a high level of interest; they are actively searching for products and services like yours and are, therefore, more susceptible to a hard sell. 

In sum, display customers need to be persuaded. Search customers need less friction in their experience. Each group should be segmented based on interest and intent. 

DIY approach

PPC campaign management is a complex and time-consuming undertaking. That is, after all, why companies reach out to us for expert help. They can see the value that PPC would bring but know, sometimes from trying it themselves, they don’t have the in-house expertise to get it right. From building the campaign structure; to writing the ads, using all the correct ad types; to creating the right bid strategies; to using the right settings—every step is vulnerable to costly PPC mistakes. 

No or incorrect use of automation

Marketing automation can make campaigns soarbut only if you use it correctly. In fact, many companies use no automation at all because they simply don’t know how. 

Google algorithms now allow for different types of automated bidding. You need to know when to use Maximize Clicks vs. Maximize Conversion vs. Target CPA vs. Target Impressions, or when to just manually bid yourself. There are also fully automated Smart Campaigns and Performance Max campaigns that can help grow volume and leads ifyes, it bears repeatingused correctly. Can you successfully execute automated campaigns without the help of a PPC expert?

Ignoring expert advice

Data should drive PPC decisions along with realistic expectations for budget needs and conversion rates. But it’s easy for companies to get carried away. Despite all the evidence to the contrary, they may insist they can squeeze record-breaking conversions out of a poorly composed campaign. If you let presumptions guide campaign decisions rather than data and expert advice, you’re setting yourself up for failure. For the biggest chance at success, consider the experience of a PPC team that has managed hundreds of effective campaigns and knows the latest trends and tools by heart. 

Wasting money on incorrect location settings

Do you know the significance of targeting users “in” compared to users “in or interested in”?  The answer is key to avoiding wasting thousands of dollars. 

To explain: Targeting users “in” the United States will limit the scope of the ads to its geographical area. But, if the setting says “in or interested in,” someone in another country could see your ads if they, for example, search for “digital marketing agency in the USA” since they are “interested in” the United States although not located here. Unless you aim to target users in other countries, the cost can quickly add up before you realize the error (an analysis of the user location reports can reveal the issue). 

Another point to keep in mind as you look at the reports: There are two reports for geosone shows the results for the locations that you targeted, while the other includes where users are actually located. So, looking at the wrong report could be deceiving;  you may get the impression your clicks were all from the United States, but because you are targeting “in or interested in USA,” you also need the user location report for an accurate read.

The best way to avoid making these common PPC mistakes? Enlist the help of a full-service PPC team with a track record of creating and executing effective PPC advertising campaigns. Contact us  for a free consultation.

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