Organizing and Managing PPC Marketing Accounts for Success
Important: The more specific and finely tuned you make your account structure, the more relevant your ads will be and the better your quality scores will be. The better your Quality Scores, the greater the discount and Ad Rank you receive on your advertising. High spend, high volume campaigns should especially have tightly themed, narrow ad groups with focused keyword themes so ads can be highly relevant to each individual search query. The graphic on the left conveys all the main elements that go into calculating a Quality Score. Then Google takes your cost per click multiplied by your quality score to give you an ultimate Ad Rank for every keyword auction you enter to determine what position your ad will show up in on the search results page. With the new Ad Rank formula, you can actual pay less for being in the number 1 advertising position if your ad is more relevant, has a higher quality score and ultimately a much better Ad Rank than the other advertisers competing against you or your company.
Ad Groups and Keywords:
– Very specific targeted Ad Groups & Keyword phrases allow you to narrow your focus and remove any clutter. The idea is to carry the relevant keyword themes from the original keyword search – through to Ad copy – to the Landing Page.
Poorly structured ad group
Ad group: Bakery
chocolate chip cookies
brownies with nuts
dark chocolate brownies
red velvet cupcakes
ice cream cake
red velvet cake
Effectively structured ad group
Ad group: Cookies
chocolate chip cookies
Ad group: Brownies
brownies with nuts
dark chocolate brownies
Ad group: Cupcakes
red velvet cupcakes
Know Your Target Market, Product and Goals
Who is the client or companies target market? What are they searching for? What are their pains and needs?
Learn more about the products or company your are advertising for and try to learn all the keywords one might search on related to that product to learn more, signup, download or buy their product.
Before any keywords or ads go live; understand the ultimate goals of the client’s marketing campaign.
Some Samples Goals Could Include:
- Increase Total Conversions
- Increase Conversion Rate
- Increase Clicks or Impressions
- Improve Campaign or Overall ROI
- Improve Campaign Quality
- Improve Ad Text/Copy
- Improve Quality Scores
- Improve Click Through Rates
- Improve Brand Awareness
1. If client has past data, start by reviewing past campaigns for keyword ideas, impressions and click-through rate (CTR) data, as well as ad copy ideas. See what keywords were irrelevant and which worked better in terms of Clicks, Conversions and CTR. Draw up negative keywords accordingly to avoid unwanted impressions.
2. Organize the campaign by keyword theme or current website URL Structure, if website has been optimized — consider the slight nuances in intent between keywords and put yourself in the searcher’s shoes. What exactly do they have in mind? Use campaigns liberally as an organizing concept.
3. For each campaign, jot down specific terms that match those slight nuances to show searchers that you have what they want, exactly.
4. Use Google’s keyword planner, ubersuggest.org or SEObook’s keyword tools for quickly building variations and adding the word “Phrase” or “Exact” at the end, so you can easily paste into AdWords Editor and have the match type set up. You can also use SpyFu.com, KeywordSpy.com and SEMRush.com to look at what some of your competition is currently doing and spending in the PPC market and for additional keyword ideas.
5. Write the ads, using the ideas from step 3. Leave the destination URL blank for now. Writing the ads before the landing pages and their URLs are finalized can sometimes require you to backtrack and lose some time. This can mean changes to the ads that can take up more time and could hurt costs if landing page is not relevant to ad copy and keywords.
6. Adapt the landing page template for message match. Create one landing page for each ad group. Ad titles become h1s, ad copy becomes h2s, display URLs roughly match the destination URL, and the rest is generic.
7. Edit ads to include URLs of message matched-landing pages.
Managing Campaigns to Maximize Performance
Ensure budgets are spent at most profitable time periods, campaigns, and engine sources.
- Analyze campaign budgets two or three times per week to ensure that profitable (relative to others) campaigns are getting the appropriate incremental budget.
- Examine performance by platform/engine to evaluate if shifts across engines could increase performance.
- Continually update a Paid Media Optimizations and Paid Media Budgeting Spreadsheets.
2. Network Settings and QA:
It is imperative that you ensure settings, tracking, keywords, ad copy, targeting, geo-targeting, device targeting and budgets are aligned appropriately to achieve the client’s goals.
3. Keyword Coverage & Structure:
Analyze top spending campaigns and ad groups first for performance and to ensure they are hitting their expected goals.
Use the 80/20 Rule (Pareto Principle) within Adwords campaigns and by regularly checking the highest traffic terms in your campaigns and Ad Groups.
- Ensure that irrelevant keywords are not being matched to the campaign’s advertised keywords. Use Google’s Search Query Tool to discover any unwanted matches. Add appropriate negative keywords to campaign or ad groups if they are irrelevant.
- If keywords are generating a lot of clicks & costs and not many conversions, evaluate whether to bid down the keyword or pause the keyword altogether in the campaign if you determine the keyword is not helping you to achieve the client’s goals.
- Expand relevant, high-performing keyword matches with the same tools or break out into separate ad groups if more relevant ad copy or landing pages can be used for those keywords. You can also make some evaluations on how relevant a keyword may be to an ad group by looking at the Quality Score of the keyword. If you see many keywords with Quality Scores of 4 or below you may want to think about breaking them out into a new relevant ad group with new ad copy and a new relevant landing page.
4. Ad Copy and Landing Pages:
- Ask yourself if you were the one searching for one of your client’s keywords does the ad/landing page serve you exactly what you are looking for and quickly? If there is a more relevant experience available, create it, or suggest client begin to create it.
- Restructuring Ad Groups is often the best and most effective way to improve a campaign’s overall performance metrics.
- Ad Relevance/Count: Ad relevance is a major factor in CTR and thus, Cost-Per-Click. It is ideal to have about 3 or 4 desktop ads running and 1 or 2 mobile optimized ads for Enhanced campaigns on Google Adwords.
- This can help you constantly test new messages and ad copy, but will also prevent the campaign from having so many ads that no single ad gets significant impression volume.
- Landing pages should be very specific and very targeted to the keyword phrases you are attempting to advertise for. This allows you to narrow your focus and remove clutter.
- Use clear, concise, headlines and language with direction. Match headline to what audience is searching for. Create a solid value proposition that shares how your brand is different or what problem you are trying to solve.
- Then test, track, measure and refine based on analysis, performance metrics and the client’s goals.
- Analyze accounts to increase high performance exposure relative to client goals and cut overall CPC’s, especially on lower performing keyword terms.
- Make sure you have enough data (around 30 days) on a keyword term before making a decision on whether or not to pause it in campaign.
- Once campaign has aged and you have a strong idea of the top performing ad groups and keywords you can begin to utilize bid rules or bid strategies to help maximize your performance. You can learn more about these through various Google Partner Tools or other PPC Marketing Blogs.
- Continue to manually review bids for high traffic terms, evaluating historical performance, conversions and costs at different average positions to try and get a good understanding of what the best avg position for each keyword is in accordance to ROI or other goals.
- Consistently test campaigns to improve performance and gain valuable insights to help with recommendations to improve goal orientated results for clients.
- Test various landing pages or items on landing pages to improve conversion rates.
- Test ad copy variations to determine which resonate most with the search audience. Analyze winners in Ad Copy by evaluating the Click-Through-Rates of the various ad copy.
- Test new options on new platforms or engines such as Google, MSN, Adroll, Google PLA’s, Affiliate Networks, Display Networks, Social Advertising and other Paid Content Distribution Platforms(ex: Outbrain). Know what the potential may be for each platform and have a solid understanding if it is the right channel to expand to, to achieve your client’s goals.
Common Areas of Landing Page to Test
- Body Text, Bullet Points (Features, Benefits, etc.)
- Calls to Action
- Contact Forms
- Offer (Value Proposition, Competitive Advantages, Differences)
- Trust Seals or Badges
- Directional Cues
- Live Chat
PPC Executive Summary:
When analyzing performance metrics in accordance to your ad copy and landing pages ask yourself: “Did the result deliver on the user’s expectations. And if not, how can we make it a better experience to help them find what they are looking for.”
5 Main High Level Habits for PPC Success:
1. Regular Account Activity
Commit to regular consistency in each account you manage
2. Reducing Wasted Spend
Filter out irrelevant clicks
3. Optimizing Towards Relevance
Work to raise the quality scores of your keywords and Google will reward you
4. Raising Click-Through-Rates
Test new ad text, call’s to action and ad extensions to keep improving CTR
5. Testing Relevant Landing Pages
Make every click count by continually testing various landing page elements in an effort to create a very high converting landing page for each ad group.
If you still have some questions and need some assistance with your PPC Marketing Campaigns you can email me or contact me through my website for some more assistance. I hope this was able to provide some more insights to small business owners or those just getting started in the world of PPC Marketing. It is a wild, constantly changing environment that will always keep you excited, on your toes and intrigued. Remember to dig into the data to find the answers you need and enjoy the ride!