ppc-mistakes-that-can-hurt-roiPay Per Click Advertising (also known as PPC) plays an indispensable role in your digital marketing campaign.  However, unless you do this for a living,  there are a few mistakes that will inevitably affect your performance, which will affect your ROI, which is the whole reason for doing this in the first place.

There are three common PPC mistakes that we help address all of our clients with.  By addressing these, you can usually turn your PPC campaigns

1.  PPC Mistake #1:  Not Protecting Your Brand

One of the things that we do for our clients is actually bid on their competitors names, especially if it is big in that niche or in their geographical area.

Have you done a Google or Bing search for your brand name to see if your competitor was bidding on it?  As long as it is not in the Ad Copy, they can bid on your name in Keywords.  It’s legal and it is done all of the time.  It seems silly, but if you don’t protect your brand name online, you can really hinder your offline marketing efforts (direct mail, Radio advertising, TV, etc.)

In addition to protecting your brand from your competitors, there are other benefits to advertising for your brand name.  A lot of marketers feel that they should not have to pay for users to click on an ad for their brand name.  However, when you take into account that there will probably be three paid search ads and a map listing before the first organic result is even shown, it makes sense.  The highest most organic listings can me is between 5th and 12th (depending on how many maps listings are shown), knocking the organic listing down up to several folds.

PPC Mistake #2:  You’re Not Tracking Everything You Can

Hopefully you’re using Google Conversion Tracking for both AdWords and Google Analytics.  This would including having some conversion code on the “thank you” page or whatever page you have that pops up after a conversion (sale, application, contact form, etc.)  However, there is a lot more that you can be tracking that will help you in making your PPC Campaign better.

Like what, you ask?

First, make sure you have linked your AdWords campaign to your Google Analytics campaign.  You can do this within your  Google Analytics account.

You can also track occurrences with Event Tracking in Google Analytics to track things like how many people are clicking a button for submitting a form or applying for a job.  You can also track the number of unique browsers who are downloading a newsletter, EBook or course manual.  You can then import this data into Google AdWords so you can see the cumulative ROI that’s being created through PPC.

PPC Mistake #3: Quality Score Factors

You cannot ignore your Quality Scores (QS Scores) if you want your PPC Campaign to succeed.

Quality Score is Google’s way of making sure that you’re allowing users to have a positive experience. In order to ensure this, Google wants to make sure that your website is guiding the user to relevant and useful content related to their Google (or Bing or Yahoo) browser search.

What this means is that Google is searching (another word you hear a lot is “crawling”) your landing page and making sure that you are consistent with the use of keywords in your campaign, PPC ads AND landing page.  When working together as a unit, you’ll likely see your campaign QS scores, which you can measure at the keyword level, are high.

QS is based on a starting score of 6 at the start of any campaign and they can then raise you to 10 or lower you to 1 depending on the quality of what they have inspected. The benefit of having a high quality score—aside from the fact that your content will be more relevant to the searcher—is that Google will “reward” you with a lower cost per click, which can lead you to a higher CTR & a lower cost of conversion.

These 3 factors will ultimately help not only with the performance and results of your PPC Campaign, but will also increase your ROI with better information and and integrating that information into your PPC Campaign.