Getting Started With Adwords

Getting started with Adwords is a really simple process.  You have seen the adverts from Google to get started with a few simple steps, add your web address, put in a few keywords and a paragraph or two about your service and you’re away.  Just have to sit back and wait for the money to roll in…

Well…it isn’t that simple.  Yes, your advert will start appearing for the keywords that you have entered – and a lot more!  The easy way to spend a lot of money is by following the steps set out for you by the company that will profit the most from your spending.

Google Adwords can work really well, but there are steps and techniques that should be followed to get the most out of it as a sales tool.  If you have set up an Adwords campaign yourself, then you can almost be guaranteed there will be at least one of the mistakes mentioned underneath that will be affecting your results.

1. Search Network & Display Network default campaign targeting options

Setting up a campaign from scratch firstly means telling Google what networks you want to advertise on. By default, Google will put you on Search and Display networks. This exposes your ad to the highest amount of people possible, but it isn’t the best to get you results!

Using Search network is the option that should be selected if your target is sales and leads. If you are opting for Brand awareness, then adding Display network is fine, but it is still better to run separate campaigns as the type of advert differs. Running both networks types at the same time can drive up your CPA (cost per acquisition) as the display network is well-known for low conversion rates when compared to the search network.

Action: Uncheck the default search partners and display network when setting up the campaign.  Go to your campaign settings > networks and untick the display and search network to keep it to Google search only.

2. Not Using Negative Keywords

Keywords are the part that a lot of people will understand.  Google matches a search to the words you select and voila!  Your Ad is shown to the relevant audience.  What is not commonly known is a keyword match type called ‘negative’.  This is a list of keywords that you wouldn’t want your advert to be seen for.

Google shows your ad for keyword searches that form part of a larger sentence.  For example, we may target the keywords ‘web design’, but this would show our advert for searches including:

  • web design jobs
  • free web design templates
  • what is web design
  • web design awards
  • spider web design tattoos

There will be many other searches that the keywords could generate.  Adding these search terms as negatives will prevent your ad from appearing for them, saving your budget for the keyword searches that will actually get you conversions!

Check out this list of negative keywords that you could use straight away.

Action: Click on the ‘Negative Keyword’ tab and add negative keywords.

3. Not Doing Keyword Research

An area that gets a lot of people is the lack of research around keywords. The way you may describe your business or services may not be the way your audience would describe you. There are plenty of places around the web where you can do keyword research – Google’s own keyword planner can generate a bunch of different keywords based on either your website address, or the keywords you enter into the search box.

Looking at your own data is also a great way of discovering new keywords, search amounts and organic search positions. You can find this data by looking at your Google Search Console information. If you don’t have search console installed, it is relatively straightforward to do following the instructions, or you can ask your web developer (or us – 01257 429217) to do it for you.

Action: Do your research on your keywords! It will make or break your entire campaign.

4. Not Tracking Conversions

A very common mistake is not knowing how many conversions (sales, leads, phone calls etc) come from your adverts! A successful campaign is surely based on the results you get back. If you are running a campaign and are trying to measure the results of how many phone calls you had, or how many forms came through the site in your head, chances are you are missing a lot of data!

Understanding what keywords and adverts are causing success is vitally important, as is the opposite. Finding out what keywords and adverts are not generating conversions. Understanding these allows you to optimise your account further, concentrating your budget on the words and adverts that are working well for you.

Action: Make sure you are tracking your conversions in Adwords – either direct, or imported from Google Analytics.

5. Only Using One Ad Variation

Again, when setting up your campaign following the Google guidelines, you would only create one advert.  Creating more adverts allows you to test different headlines and description variations.  When you have enough data, you will see the results of the different combinations and how people are responding to them.

You will find that certain combinations work better than others.  The tip for this is to then create a new ad, based on the best performing advert (pausing the under-performing advert), this way you will evolve the click-through rates or conversion rates of the ads, resulting in a better cost-per-acquisition.

Only using one advert is one of the common mistakes we see when performing an analysis on the different accounts we come into contact with.

Action: Create at least three ads per Ad group and constantly test new ad variations.

6. Location Location Location

One of the most costly mistakes that can be made on an Adwords campaign is not checking where your adverts will be appearing! Many times we have seen the most budget spend being from the other side of the country or even from foreign countries. Now, this might be fine – if you are an international, or national trader, but for many people, the service or product will only be available to a certain geographical location.

Google makes it easy to target specific areas – even targeting down to a postcode level, but it is often unchecked and just goes with the default setting of worldwide or UK-wide. Targeting only the areas that you service will not only save you money but get you better results!

Action: Check your campaign settings and make sure you are only targeting the areas you work in.

7. Not Adding Ad Extensions

Ad extensions are a great feature that aren’t added in by default. They can append information onto your advert without taking up the space in your headline or description text. These extensions include: phone numbers, other URLs to different parts of the site, call-to-action text, price extensions, app extensions, images and a few others. It is a mistake to ignore this section as your advert will stand out more with extensions. It also increases your quality score, meaning that you could have a better chance at appearing higher on the Google results page than a competitor who doesn’t have extensions.

Action: Make sure you add relevant extensions to your campaigns.

If you can crack these common mistakes you will see an improvement in your Adwords account. We often see a better return on investment when we fix changes like these, giving more sales for the same budget.

If you would like us to help you, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Please fill in the form underneath to get in touch. We offer a free Adwords appraisal to help you identify areas that you could improve to get better results for less.

Phone or drop in. We’d love to talk to you!

We are open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.
Call us on 01257 429217 Or fill in the form underneath.