Over the course of the last few months, we’ve occasionally put up an article with some tips and advice for managing a successful Google Adwords campaign. In this, our latest in the series of Adwords related articles, we’ll suggest a few more things to think about when planning your campaign, courtesy of Google’s Adwords resources.
If you’re interested in learning more about what you need to know in order to have a successful Adwords campaign, you can check out the following articles: PPC Tips For The Google Display Network, Tips For Successful Adwords Campaigns, and More Display Network Tips, among others.
Before You Start…
Before you even start your Adwords campaign, the most important thing you can do is identify the goals of the campaign you want to start. The objective of your campaign will determine how you go about optimising the campaign, so it’s important to identify it right from the start. And the areas to focus on will be different, depending on the goals you’re attempting to achieve through your Adwords campaign.
If the focus of your campaign is to get more clicks, then Google recommends that you pay attention to the keywords you’re targeting, and your advert placements. Add keywords and site placements to your ad groups, and you should see an increase in clicks.
If, on the other hand, you’d like to improve your click-through rate, (CTR), then you should spend some time refining your advertisements. In this case, pay attention to highly targeted keywords and placements, and take advantage of the “negative keywords” to control your ad displays better.
Finally, if your intention is to increase your Adwords ROI, or return on investment, you should pay attention to your keywords and placements, and most importantly, make sure that your landing page quality is high, and that your site makes it easy for visitors to find whatever it is that you’re advertising.
As You Begin…
When you start setting up your Adwords account, bear in mind that the better you structure your account, the easier it will be to manage, and the easier it will be to make sure you’re targeting your market.
The first thing to do is to make sure that you organise your different campaigns according to their topic. Google suggests creating a separate campaign for each of your products, brands or target audiences. This will help you monitor your campaigns efficiently, so you know where changes need to be made.
Another important point to keep in mind is ensuring that you target the correct locations for your ad. If you only provide services within a certain distance from your premises, make sure you’re not serving up your ad to the whole world.
When it comes to groups within each of your campaigns, the secret is to be specific. Each group should focus on only one product or service, to make sure that you’re targeting the right audience with each one.
Avoid using duplicate keywords between multiple groups or campaigns though, since Adwords will only display a single ad for each advertiser per keyword. So there’s no point in targeting the same keyword across two groups, because you’ll never get both ads to show.
Choosing Your Keywords…
The more relevant your keywords and placements are, the easier it will be to meet your campaign objectives. Keywords that are directly relevant to the theme of your ad group, and your landing page will improve your ad performance. For better ad visibility, choose relevant variations and single & plural versions of your keywords as well.
Because some keywords will improve your impressions, while others will encourage more clicks, you can use keyword matching options to display your ads to the right audience, as well as reduce your CPC (cost per click) and increase your return on investment. Broad match options can help bring relevant traffic on keyword variations and long tail searches.
Placement targeting is another way of reaching the audience that’s relevant to your market. This tool allows you to select where on the Display Network you would like your ads to appear. You also have the option of using Google’s automatic placements, where Google uses your keywords to determine the best sites to display your ads on.
Placements allow you to include websites that are relevant to your product or service, and the more relevant the sites are, the more likely it is that your ad will be displayed. Pay special attention to the ad formats in this section, as some times of sites will only accept certain ad formats and layouts.
Creating Your Ads…
When it comes to writing your ads, keep in mind that your ad needs to capture the attention of your audience, and clearly communicate your offering. The following are some of the factors you should consider when writing your ads.
The first thing to remember is that your keywords should appear in your ad text, and especially in the title, so that people who see the ad can understand how it’s related to their search. If the user searched for the keyword that appears in your ad, that word will be displayed in a bold typeface.
When writing your ad, you should try and highlight the factors that make your product or service better than your competitors.
Including a strong call to action in your ad will improve your CTR. Calls to action are instructions to viewers, encouraging them to carry out a certain action, like clicking on your ad, or buying your product.
Use multiple ads in each group, to help you determine which type of ads work the best for you. Because Adwords automatically rotates ads in the ad group, and displays the most successful ad more frequently, a variety of different ads for the same thing will let you isolate the ones which are most effective.
Optimising Your Website…
At the end of the day, it is your website, and the page which an ad directs users to, that will determine how effectively your ads convert visitors into leads or sales. This means its important to make sure that your site makes it easy for users to find the information they’re looking for, or to carry out the action that you’re trying to encourage.
To begin with, make sure you’re pointing visitors to the right landing page. When it comes to an Adwords advert, the right landing page is the one that is relevant to whatever the contents of your ad are. If your visitor can’t immediately find what they’re looking for, they’ll abandon your page, and that’s not good for your campaign. (The more people find what they’re looking for, the more Google will like your ad.)
Another important aspect involves the design of your site. The easier the site is to navigate and use, and the more attractive and informative it is, the better it is likely to perform. A few design aspects that are worth keeping in mind include making sure that people can accomplish their objective in 3 clicks or less, placing important information at the top left of the page, where people tend to look first, and making sure that it’s simple to carry out any action on the site.
Monitoring Your Results…
One of the most crucial parts of a successful Adwords campaign is monitoring the performance of your campaigns. Your account statistics are a good place to start when you’re evaluating your campaigns. They’ll give you information on your click through rate, first page bid estimates and keyword status among many other factors, and will allow you to determine how well your campaigns are performing. (Statistics are available at all levels, from overall campaigns to ad groups and keywords.)
Take advantage of the alerts and custom reports to get crucial information on your campaign, that will help you work out what you need to change in order to make them more effective.
Modifying Your Campaigns…
Using the data you accumulate through monitoring your campaign, you’ll be able to tweak your campaign to improve its performance. Eliminate ads, keywords and calls to action that aren’t bringing you conversions, and replace them with alternatives to see if they work any better. Try different bidding and placement options, or entirely new ads, to find the ones that work best for your target market.
Adwords offers a huge variety of tools to help you choose, monitor and modify your campaign. An Adwords campaign isn’t something you can just set up and ignore, it needs careful attention to ensure you’re getting the best value for money, and the biggest return on investment.
Correctly managed, an Adwords campaign can be an invaluable tool to drive traffic to your site, and increase your conversions.