If you want your pay-per-click campaign to succeed, you need to consistently monitor and manage it. Because the bidding auction is continuously changing with the addition of new advertisers and keywords, managing these campaigns can require some additional knowledge.
There are multiple ways to ensure that your campaign is performing its best. Here are five tips to help manage your pay-per-click campaign:
Manage negative keywords and underperforming keywords
Adding negative keywords is a feature that prevents your ads from showing up to the wrong users. For example, if you are selling Maine lobsters and your ad continuously appears for queries relating to users searching for Alaskan crabs, you will want to add the term “crabs” as a negative keyword to ensure you receive more qualified clicks. Put simply, you do not want to waste clicks and marketing spend on users who are searching for products or services not related to yours.
To properly manage your pay-per-click campaign, you should start by consistently building your list of negative keywords. You’ll discover over time which keywords are adversely affecting your campaign, and you can add those to your list. Make sure you manage your negative keywords every day as you start out, then, as your list grows, you can cut down on the amount of time you dedicate to the task. Ultimately, adding negative keywords can improve the effectiveness and quality of your pay-per-click campaign.
Additionally, it’s important to keep an eye on keywords that aren’t performing well. Don’t delete them right away, but keep an eye on them and adjust bid amounts as necessary.
Audit keyword trends
Things change quickly on the web, and if you want your campaign to be effective, you’ll have to change quickly, too. Examining searches so you can discover new and useful keywords to use will also help you manage your pay-per-click campaign. Remember: new search trends are new opportunities for your ads to perform better! How users search will change over time, so it is important to stay on top of these digital trends.
Examine quality score
According to WordStream, “Quality Score is Google’s rating of the quality and relevance of both your keywords and PPC ads. It is used to determine your cost per click (CPC) and multiplied by your maximum bid to determine your ad rank in the ad auction process.” Managing quality score is important because a low score could point to an issue with your campaign. Essentially, quality score is used to determine your ad and keywords’ relevance. Quality score problems are sometimes the result of a landing page with multiple conversion paths. The landing page may not reflect all the keywords used in the campaign, which leads Google to find that the page is providing users with information they don’t want. This results in some keywords being assigned low quality scores, which can be fixed by adding missing keywords to the landing page.
Avoid duplicate keywords
AdWords doesn’t like duplicate keywords, so getting rid of them can help your ads perform better. A tool that can help with this is called AdWords Editor. “AdWords Editor has tools to find and edit duplicate keywords, giving your ads a better chance of success. We never show more than one ad at a time from a given advertiser, so duplicate keywords can hurt your ad performance. If two of your ads are using the same keywords, they are essentially competing against each other instead of other advertisers,” Google reports.
AdWords Editor can help you find and delete duplicate keywords so you don’t hurt your campaign’s success. You can also use features and formulas in Microsoft Excel to remove duplicated keywords, if you have more experience with that platform and prefer to use it.
Monitor keyword click-through-rate
Click-through rate (CTR) can help to determine interest in your campaign. Click-through rate equals clicks divided by impressions (how many times your ad appears). A good CTR can help improve quality score and impact search rank and cost. A strong CTR can also indicates you’re bidding on the right keywords and audience. Typically, we recommend a CTR of above 2% for pay-per-click ads. If it is below this benchmark, try adjusting ad copy and test different ad variations.
Monitor ad position and conversion rate
Lastly, you will want to ensure that your ads appear in a relevant position that is cost-efficient for you and your marketing budget. Bidding into the number one overall position can sometimes be too expensive, so ensuring that you are optimizing your ad’s position is extremely important. We recommend testing different bid amounts to see how conversion rates are impacted. You will want to find an ad position where you are making a profit while still being relevant in the search engine.