If you don’t have the time and money to invest into search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising provides the opportunity to drive highly targeted traffic to your offers instantly. The competition is intense, so any opportunity to lower your overall cost-per-click should be welcomed with open arms.
Some keywords related to competitive industries have an extremely high cost-per-click (CPC), and if your campaigns aren’t properly optimized it will result in reckless over-spending. When you are able to drive your average CPC down, it translates to a lower cost-per-acquisition, allowing you to drive more business at a lower price.
To help you lower your costs and increase the performance of your pay-per-click campaigns, here are six Google AdWords hacks for improved optimization. They are universal and work for campaigns of all sizes.
When you start with a large campaign, with several ads, each focusing on one keyword each, it allows you to really trim the fat and create a lean campaign, with a lower overall cost-per-click. A lot of people don’t think beyond the ad, but relevant landing page copy and an offer that is directly tied to the ad that brought the visitor is just as important.
Many people are lazy, and just group large amounts of keywords into ad sets, and hope for the best. Take your time building out a very fine-tuned campaign. While it requires more initial hands-on work, the cost-savings and overall performance benefits are well worth your time.
One of the benefits of improving your campaign’s quality score (QS) is lowered costs, but don’t assume Google is going to automatically lower your costs. If you leave your bids alone, there is a good chance you will continue to pay the same CPC, even with an improved quality score.
Manually decrease your bids, a little at a time, to see if you can lower your cost-per-click while still attracting the same amount of click volume. Even achieving a CPC that’s just ten cents lower can equal tremendous savings across your campaign.
Never stop testing new ads, even if you achieve the highest possible quality score. There is always room to improve your click-through rate and conversion rate when you constantly test new ads. Create multiple ad variations and test them against your best performing ads. A small change can be responsible for real improvements to your performance. Even the smallest click-through rate (CTR) improvement makes a big difference.
If you aren’t including negative keywords in your AdWords campaigns, you are wasting a tremendous amount of money on clicks that have no intention of buying whatever it is that you are selling.
Imagine if you ran a travel company and you dove into the search query report only to discover that you have been paying for clicks triggered by the keyword “Bora Bora pictures.” These are people that have absolutely no interest in booking a vacation, so you would want to add that to your negative keyword list immediately.
Improving your quality score should be your main focus in order to lower your click costs. Creating targeted ads matched with targeted keywords, your quality score improves, along with your click-through rate. Because of this, your ad rank improves and your campaign will see lower click costs.
The quality score is based on a 1 to 10 score, and it’s an estimate of the overall quality of your campaign. It factors in your keywords, ad copy and landing pages. Lowering your quality score requires constant tweaking and testing.
Your ads could have high click-through rates and send a lot of visitors to your website, but if you are sending your traffic to poorly-optimized landing pages your campaign will suffer, for several reasons. First, it will kill your quality score, and second, if the landing page isn’t relevant to your ad or offers a poor mobile viewing experience, your traffic won’t convert. Build your landing pages specific to the ad you are sending traffic to. This ensures proper optimization and will benefit your quality score and conversion rate.