We recently did an audit of client’s PPC Ad campaign strategy. We’ll hide the actual ad content, modify the key words a bit and remove the client’s name but we’ll share our actual thoughts on PPC campaigns from our actual analysis.
Observation #1: Change Keywords to Exact Match
There were different matches depending on the ad group. Most of the keywords in this ad group were broad match.
It sometimes makes sense to have a few broad match keywords in the account. But in 99% of cases, exact or phrase match is the best option.
Because bidding on broad match keywords can often show your ad to people that have no interest in your product.
For example, let’s take the broad keyword “mobile app development solutions”. When someone searches for “mobile app development help” or “mobile app development tips”, it may trigger the ad.
And at an average CPC rate north of $30, you definitely want ads laser-targeted to people that are going to become leads and customers.
We would start off by deleting the BROAD and PHRASE Ad Groups and make sure every keyword in the account to exact match. Traffic will likely go down temporarily, but you’ll get much better insights about which keywords convert best.
And once you have that data, the ROI from PPC jumps dramatically as you delete low-performing keywords and put money behind those that consistently bring in customers.
Observation #2: Adjust Bids Based on Buyer Intent
More thoughts on PPC…We recommended lowering bids on general keywords and funneling that money to keywords with strong buyer intent.
Bidding much less on a general keyword like “mobile app development solutions” and higher for “mobile app development solutions provider”.
Someone searching for “mobile app development solutions” may or may not become a customer. They may be looking for general tips about mobile app development And even if they’re interested in development at some point, they’re not a hot lead.
On the other hand, someone searching for “mobile app development solutions provider” is an ideal lead. That’s the type of keyword that we should set as exact match and put money behind.
Observation #3: Delete Low Quality Score Keywords
Another issue with broad and phrase match is that it can hurt Quality Score. Remember that 70% of Quality Score is based on CTR. And it’s hard to get a high CTR on broad match keywords because the searchers are all over the place.
While you’re working on getting the campaign on the right track, we recommend deleting or pausing any keywords that show the message: “Rarely shown due to low Quality Score”.
Remember that one Quality Score factor is the account’s overall Quality Score. And those 1/10 keywords can drag down the performance of the entire account.
It’s definitely possible to get some of those Quality Scores improved over time. But wee recommend deleting them and revisiting them later once everything else is running smoothly.
Observation #4: Split Test Very Different Ads
The best way to split test ads is to start with two very different ads, keep the winner, and then test elements of that ad.
It’s likely that the two ads in the split test have always been similar.
We recommend testing out a very different ad for every ad group: different headlines, copy and URLs.
Base the new ads on those with a track record of performance.
Observation #5: Improve Landing Page Performance
The following improvements to the landing page should make a huge difference:
- Shrink or reduce the top header: You want your copy and opt-in high above the fold. The large header pushes the copy and opt-in form below the fold.
- Delete Social Buttons: It’s best to have one option for the user to take. And every extra button makes them less likely to opt-in. Besides, you don’t want to leak expensive traffic like this to a social media site where they’re unlikely to come back.
- One Clear Call to Action: When a new user lands on this page, it’s unclear what they should do next. The headline is quite clear in terms of what you’re offering, but there’s no place to view plans and pricing for people ready to buy. And there’s also the banner for the checklist. We recommend going for the sale or the lead/opt-in. We’ve found that giving users a clear call to action boosts conversions considerably.
- Revamp the Design: Obviously you’ll want to test different designs in Google Analytics, but we recommend going for a very clean, clear design, preferably with a person on the page. I think this is the angle that one your competitors took with their sliders – real people. We suggest professional photography of your key members… all smiling and looking warm.
- Here are two landing pages that convert well:
Thanks for reading about our thoughts on PPC for my client. Hopefully you can use some of these techniques to improve your click-through and conversion rates in the future!