5 Major Mistakes to Avoid in Your AdWords Campaigns

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5 Major Mistakes to Avoid in Your AdWords Campaigns

Posted by visibility on September 26, 2014

Google AdWords is a tremendous way to get your advertisement in front of highly-targeted customers. You can show your ad to the right person at the exact moment they are looking for a product or service that your business offers. So how do you make sure you are targeting the right people?

adwords mistakes to avoid

By avoiding some of the major mistakes below in your AdWords campaigns, you can ensure you are targeting people who are looking for your offer. In addition, it will increase your return on ad spend (ROAS) dramatically.

1. Not Adding Negative Keywords

Negative keywords essentially help you pre-qualify customers. If you are trying to advertise a Social Media related software, you probably want to add negative keywords related to ‘icons’ and ‘graphics’ because someone looking for pictures likely will not stop to look at your software. The same goes for ‘job’ and ’employment’ related keywords because they are completely unrelated to software.

Bonus Tip: I believe in adding negative keywords before ever putting my search campaign live. As you search for keywords for your campaign, you will usually find plenty of keywords that are unrelated to your campaign. Instead of ignoring these unrelated keywords, add them directly to your campaign as negative keywords right away.

2. Targeting Search Network with Display Select

The ‘Search Network with Display Select’ mistake is the biggest one new advertisers make. The Search Network and the Display Network perform so much differently so there is never a reason to lump them together.

Search and Display Networks

When you create a new campaign, just make sure you either select the ‘Search Network only’ option or the ‘Display Network only’ option. If you already have ‘Search Network with Display Select’ as your Network targeting, split your existing campaign into two separate Search and Display campaigns.

Bonus Tip: Use your Search Network keyword list to help you get ideas for targeting in your Keyword Contextual Display Network campaigns. You can layer Placement and Keyword targeting on the Display Network so this might help your campaign perform better.

3. Only Targeting Broad Keywords

Broad keywords are not your friend, they are Google’s friend. Broad keywords can drive conversions but they will literally eat away at your budget in the process. Whereas negative keywords help you pre-qualify customers, broad keywords will show your ads to plenty of unqualified customers.

Instead of using broad keywords, use modified broad keywords in your campaign. Modified broad keywords will give you more control, make it easy to organize your account, and make it easier to match ads with keywords in your ad groups.

Bonus Tip: If you are an account manager and you take over an account with only broad keywords, the keyword data will be invaluable. Use the data in the keyword search reports to your advantage as you set-up a new campaign.

4. No Ad Group Organization

Nobody really wants to go through the tedious process of limiting ad groups to 5 or less keywords, but it leads to a much better performance in the long run. Your can target your ads to every single search query by keeping your ad groups organized.

Bonus Tip: Organize your ad groups right when you set-up your campaign. Do not set-up a makeshift campaign and slowly organize it over several weeks or months, do it right the first time.

5. Not Using Ad Extensions

Ad extensions help you show more relevant information to potential customers. In addition, they increase the size of your AdWords ads dramatically, which leads to a higher click-through ratio. There is really no downside whatsoever to adding, setting up, and managing ad extensions.

Refer to the graphic below. The ad on the left has social and sitelink extensions and the ad on the right has no extensions. It only takes a split-second to realize which ad is more likely to be clicked.

Ads with and without Extensions

Bonus Tip: Ad Extensions actually have an impact on ad rank. If all things are equal and you utilize Extensions but your competitor does not, your ad will actually rank higher.

In Conclusion

There are plenty of AdWords mistakes to be made, but these five can really drag your account down. Make sure you set-up the best possible campaign the first time, you will be happy after several weeks when things start performing well.

Are there any major AdWords mistakes I missed? Let me know in the comments section!

In Categories: Pay Per Click Advertising

One response to “5 Major Mistakes to Avoid in Your AdWords Campaigns”

  1. Hosting says:

    Earlier this month, we discussed the power of visual content and showed statistics on it s impact on B2B social media marketing. As a B2B marketer, if you weren t leveraging social media yet, you will soon. And when you do, make sure not to make any of these 5 major mistakes! 

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