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13th December 2011 |  Written by Ben Reed

10 Ways To Save Money Using Google AdWords

1. Avoid Broad Match Keywords

Broad Match Keywords

Whilst the use of broad match keywords can be worthwhile in the right hands, they can be lethal to the unseasoned amateur. Be warned… Using nothing but broad match keywords will burn you.

Broad match keywords are a very basic match type, and if used, will result in your ads appearing for a search query that is vaguely related to the targeted keyword. For example, if you use broad match keywords for the term ‘car insurance’ it is quite likely that your advert will also appear for terms that include ‘caravan insurance’ or possibly even ‘holiday insurance.’ This will result in a strong flow of unwanted and irrelevant traffic to your site.

Use an ‘Exact match’ when you only want your advert to show when someone searches for the exact keyword you have defined, or ‘Phrase Match’ when the advert is only triggered by a search which includes a certain phrase you have defined. A ‘Modified Broad Match’ is a hybrid match type which gives flexibility and control. In order to establish what people are searching for before landing on your ad, look through your search query reports, however you might not like what you see.

2. Add Negative Keywords

Unless using exact match keywords, your ads will appear for other related search terms. In order to combat this, use negative keywords to stop your ad from appearing in non-related or proven unprofitable searches. For example, if you are a private dentist, and would like your ads to appear within search queries for the term ‘dentist’, you may want to use ‘NHS’ as a negative keyword, i.e. don’t show my advert when the word NHS is included in the search.

3. Make Your Ads Relevant

Make Google Ads Relevant

When reviewing accounts, a common mistake that we often spot is an advertisement that uses a range of irrelevant and generic keywords. It is important to include as many relevant keywords as possible into your ads. This will entice and capture the searcher’s attention, which will then increase the click through rate and over time will improve quality score, which in turn, reduces the cost per click.

4. Use Multiple Ad Variations

It is important to constantly trial and review different ads within each of the ad groups. Subtle changes to your advertisements, such as display URL extensions, can have a dramatic and positive effect.

Constantly trialling different ads will enable you to understand which ads perform better than others and can make it possible to reduce CPA (cost per acquisition – AKA how much it costs you to get a new enquiry or sales).

5. Make Sure You Track Everything You Can

Google AdWords Tracking

It is a necessity to setup conversion tracking and to link your AdWords account to your Analytics account.

Conversion tracking is one of the most important tools in your arsenal, as it shows you which keywords and ads have converted. This helps to optimise campaigns, ad groups, keywords and ads by finding out which perform better.

Linking your account up to Google Analytics will enable you to see other important metrics such as bounce rates and time spent on site. For example, if you have a keyword that has not converted but has visitors who have on average spent two minutes on your site, this illustrates with some website tweaks there is potential to convert in the future.

6. Place Content Network Ads In Their Own Campaign

Display ads require a completely different advertising technique than search so should be treated differently. Creating their own specific campaigns and ad groups allowing for the management of budget, ads and cost per click allows much finer control and testing. After making these changes you will either see better results or make a decision that display ads are not suitable for your Adwords strategy.

7. Position 1 Isn’t Always King

Google Position One

For the majority of people the number one position within Google is the overall aim for their company. This however depends on a number of factors such as the levels of traffic to your site, the quality of the traffic and your overall budget. However, this is not always the case.

There is a strong argument that suggests ads listed at position one will receive the majority of clicks as people will have to read it. In many cases, this is not the most profitable place to be so we recommend testing to see which ad position results in the best Return On Investment for your site.

8. Landing Pages Hold The Key

This is so simple, yet so many people still get it very wrong.

Always make sure that you are sending traffic to the most suitable landing page on your site. This will make the visitor journey easier and will improve the number of conversions you receive. If you do not have suitable landing pages, why not make them or review the chosen keywords in your account.

Furthermore, you can go one-step further and use Google’s Website Optimiser tool. This enables you to try some A/B split testing, which shows the pages that will provide you with the best conversion rates. Overall, this should be a never-ending cycle of constant improvement.

9. Ad Scheduling & Location Targeting

Google AdWords Ad Settings

For most companies there are certain times within the day where more conversions are made at the lowest cost. For example, a property site may convert better during the ‘lunch breaks timeframe’ of 12pm until 2pm, or in the evenings after work, when people have more time to look at the site.

There is the possibility to schedule your ads to show at different times of the day or to change the maximum cost per click at different times of the day to get the most from your budget.

It is also wise to consider the geographical locations that you would like to target. It is possible to target the whole of the country or to target specific areas, such as the North West or Midlands, if you have issues surrounding delivery or logistics.

10. Use our PPC Management Services

We are the best at what we do, as some of our client results show.

We offer a FREE PPC Account Review which will allow us to give you an insight into how we can revolutionise your paid search return on investment.

Contact us on 0845 86 22 122 or fill out our contact form and we will be in touch.

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