Four Tips For Improving PPC Performance

October 14, 2014

PPC is one of the fastest and most effective ways of attracting new customers online, however many businesses end up squandering money on wasted clicks because they fail to get the basics right. The main factor of PPC success is achieving an excellent quality score – this will not only improve the position of your ads, it will also help you attract more clicks for less money.

In this post we look at some of the ways you can improve your quality score and set your PPC campaign up for success.

Nail your account structure

Ensuring your account is well-structured not only helps to improve your quality score, it also makes it easier for you to measure and report on the performance of campaigns. Taking some time to plan the structure of your account means you’ll have already got your campaigns off to a great start, even before they go live.

Google recommends that the structure of your account should reflect the layout of your website. Using your website as your guide will help you determine how your products or services should be grouped. Aligning the structure of your account with your website also makes choosing your landing pages easier as you should already have a page on your website which corresponds with each of the ad groups you create.

A well-structured account might look like this:

Google Ads Account Structure

Create an awesome keyword list

Keywords research is an intrinsic part of the success or failure of your campaign. When creating a keyword list for a PPC campaign, some of the main considerations to keep in mind are:

  • Search intent – a user searching for the term “digital camera reviews” is likely to be at a different stage of the buying cycle than someone searching for “cheapest Nikon d3200”. The latter search indicates a higher intent to buy and it is these types of keywords that you will want to focus on for your campaigns.
  • Audience language – consider the type of language your target audience use to refer to your products or services and the fact that it may not be the same terminology as you would use. Avoid overly-complicated terms and unfamiliar industry jargon.
  • Misspells – it is estimated that between 10-20% of Google searches contain spelling mistakes. You can use the Google AdWords Keyword Planner to identify the most common misspells of your products or services and incorporate these into the keyword lists for relevant ad groups.
  • Inclusion of brand terms & variations – Many businesses tend to forget or avoid bidding on their brand terms in PPC campaigns but there are several good reasons why it makes sense to target your company name:
  1. It increases the amount of space your company takes up on the search engine result page.
  2. As the keywords are highly relevant, brand term campaigns will help increase the quality score of your account, which in turn improves the performance of your other ads.
  3. Cost-effective – brand terms are generally cheaper to bid on, as there is not much competition for them.
  4. Users searching for your brand terms indicate a higher tendency to convert. They are already aware of your brand and are actively searching for it, meaning they are more likely to be interested in the products or services you offer.

Choose your landing page carefully

Landing page selection is one of the factors determining your quality score. A good landing page should:

  •  Be extremely relevant to the ad – the landing page content should meet the expectations of the person clicking the ad.
  • Make the conversion process as easy as possible – ideally people should be able to complete the conversion on the landing page.

For example, if you create an ad for “women’s red coats”, it makes sense to send people clicking on the ad to a page on your website which shows a selection of red coats for women. Make sure you never send people to the home page as this will most likely leave them frustrated at having to navigate their way through your website to find the product or service they were looking for, and may result in them leaving and looking elsewhere.


Don’t neglect your account

Finally, just because you’ve launched your campaign doesn’t mean your work is done! In order to achieve the best results possible you need to keep monitoring and optimising your campaign – changing bids, removing underperforming keywords, amending ad copy, and not to forget, making sure you aren’t going over budget! Ideally you should be monitoring your campaign on a daily basis, or 2/3 times per week at a minimum. While planning your campaign, take some time to identify some key performance indicators – keep these in mind when monitoring your campaigns so you can quickly determine if they are heading in the right direction.


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