Saturday, August 21, 2010

Five of the Best for Google Adwords

We’ve all had that sinking feeling when our Google Adwords campaigns just seem to be going south. Our clicks are getting more expensive and our ads are appearing lower and lower on the page.
The good news is that you can get yourself out of this by applying some simple and yet very effective tips.
I guarantee that if you apply the five tips below you will see a big improvement in you Adwords campaigns. If you don’t, then you can certainly count yourself as very unlucky! Seriously, these work. Try them.
Step One: Check and improve your Quality Score
Have you ever wondered why some of your keywords have a higher minimum cost more than others? You probably think it’s because there is greater competition for that keyword. That might be true, but the real reason the minimum cost varies is because of the quality score that Google sets against each of your keywords.
So what is the Quality Score?
Well it’s a measure of the relevance and relationship between your keyword, your ad and the page you are sending your visitors to when they click on your ad (this page is referred to as the landing page). If your keyword appears in your ad and also prominently on your landing page then it should get a good quality score. If it doesn’t, it will probably have a poor quality score. The better your quality score, the less money you will need to bid for your clicks and the higher up the page you will appear.
It is good practice to arrange your keywords into AdGroups where the keywords are all similar and feature well in the Ad and the Landing Page. Obviously you can’t get every keyword into the Ad but you should be able to spread them a lot of them into the landing page.
To check the quality score of your keywords simply click on the customise columns link in your adgroups. You will see the an option to Show Quality Score. Select it and you will see the Quality Score for each of your keywords. Avoid any keywords that are reported with a Poor Quality Score. You should either delete them or improve their score by moving them into their own Adgroup with their own related ads and landing page.
Step Two: Look for the best match
Don’t forget to use Phrase and Exact matching? A Phrase match is one where the keywords will only match if they are used in the exact sequence of your keyword. A Exact match is one where the keywords will match only if that exact phrase is entered and no other words are used for the search.
To make a keyword a Phrase match you put quotation marks around it and to make it an Exact match you put square brackets around it.
As default Google sets up keywords as broad matches. This means that you keywords would match to a search query if your keyword were included anywhere in the search query. It would also accept synonyms as well.
Broad matching is probably best explained with an example.
Let’s say I am selling red paint and my keyword is red paint then it would match with the following searches.
red paint,
red painted cars,
painter sees red over forgery,
paint your garden fence red
and so on.
Not many of the results listed above were about buying red paint and so a click is hardly likely.
By using Phrase and Exact match keywords you can target the searches more closely for your keywords.
Step Three: Try to be negative!
Are you using negative keywords for your ads?
Negative keywords are another form of matching. If you set a word as a negative keyword then any searches that contain that word will not be able cause your ad to be displayed. A common negative keyword used by people trying to sell something is free. Any searches containing the word free will not display their ads. To add a negative keyword you type it with the minus sign in front of the word like this -free.
Step Four: Schedule your ads.
Did you know that you could pick the time of day (and which days) that your ads will appear. So think about your target audience and when you think they are most likely to be looking for your goods or services. Set your ads to only appear during those times. You can make changes to the schedule through your campaign settings.
For example: if you sell business to business, should you really run any ads over the weekend? Is your target audience likely to be surfing in the evening at home or at work during the day?
You can even get reports out of Google that will tell you the times of the day and what days people are clicking on your ads. Work out when your popular click times are and schedule accordingly.
Step Five: Remember its customers not clicks.
In everything you do, keep in mind that it is customers you want and not just clicks. Implement Conversion Tracking and measure the success of your ads by how many conversions you get and not by how many clicks. Shops don’t normally count customers through the door. They count money in the till and stock sold. So should you.
These five simple steps should help to get your Adwords campaigns back on track. There are many, many more techniques you can apply that will further enhance your success but if you aren’t doing the five listed here then you have little chance of success.

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