5 Common Google Ads Mistakes to Avoid. Google Ads is one of the most popular online advertising platforms. It is very affordable and allows small businesses to compete alongside the largest players in their field. It can also get results very quickly whereas other methods like SEO can take time.
Another reason for the popularity of Google Ads is that just about anybody can use it without having to be a marketing guru. All it takes is some research and a reasonable level of computer literacy, and you can have your own Google Ads campaign driving good quality, profitable traffic to your website. However, it can be easy to make costly mistakes when setting up Google Ads. Here we take a look at some of these mistakes and how to avoid them.
Not using the right keyword matching types
This is perhaps the most common mistake of all – and the most costly.
When setting up your Google Ads account you will have the option to choose from three different keyword match types: Broad match, phrase match, and exact match. Which you choose will make a big difference in the volume of traffic and your conversion rates. Let’s take a closer look at each one.
If you select broad match, your ads will be sensitive to any searches that contain your keywords and in any order. Your ad will also appear to people who use searches that Google thinks are similar. Let’s say you have a restaurant in London and you want people to find you. For example, you might use the keywords “restaurants in London.”
Your ads will show up to people who type in the keywords in an exact manner. They will also show up to people who use searches like “London restaurants,” “budget London restaurants,” “London Cafés,” and even “restaurants for sale.”
Using this match type will get your ads seen and clicked on most frequently, but as you’ve probably already guessed, you’d get a lot of traffic that is not relevant.
You can also use a modified broad search, which is very similar except it makes it mandatory that certain keywords are targeted. So, for example, you could make it mandatory that your ads are only triggered when the word “restaurant” is used.
Broad match is not usually going to be profitable because the traffic, although plentiful, will convert very badly. It does have its uses, however. A lot of marketers will use broad match as a keyword research tool. It can help them find out what people are searching for, discovering keywords that can then be used with other match types.
Selecting phrase match will bring you more accurately targeted traffic, but less of it. Phrase match will trigger your ads when the keywords are searched in the same order you specify, although other words can also be included.
So, using the London restaurant example, your ads will be triggered by searches like “restaurants in London,” “fine-dining restaurants in London,” “Indian restaurants in London,” and so on.
Using phrase match won’t get you as much traffic as broad match, but it will provide a better quality of keyword that will convert better.
The balance between quantity and quality make phrase match the best option for many campaigns.
As the name suggests, the exact match option means your ads will only appear when somebody uses your keywords exactly as they are.
No other combinations of words will trigger your ads, not even close matches like “Indian restaurants in London.”
Exact match keywords will deliver the best quality traffic. However, it’s likely to limit the volume of traffic.
This option works in conjunction with phrase match keywords to help ensure sufficient quantity as well as quality.
Not using negative keywords
Some people will run a Google Ads account without being aware of what negative keywords are. This is despite the fact they can be very effective at helping your campaign be more profitable.
Let’s say your ads were triggered by the keywords “Indian restaurants in London.” This would be ideal for Indian restaurants but not so great for restaurants that serve other cuisines. In this example, adding “Indian restaurants in London” to your negative keywords list will mean triggering won’t happen by that particular search.
It’s easy to see how this will prevent a lot of waste in terms of unsuitable traffic. To find out which negative keywords you should use, go to your account and see the history of searches that are sending traffic your way. It’s then easy to select those keywords to add to your negative keyword list.
No ad extensions
Ad extensions allow you to add extra information to your ads, helping them to become more effective. Providing more information will help encourage the right people to click on your ads more frequently. For example, sitelink extensions allow you to link to specific pages on your website, along with a brief description, helping to highlight specific pages on your site. This is ideal when people are searching for specific products and services.
Another example of a site extension is a call extension. These allow you to add your phone number to the ad, and these can be clicked on, encouraging people to contact you and improving your click-through rate (CTR). A good CTR is important because it is beneficial for Google, so they reward you accordingly.
If more people click on your ads then Google makes more money, so they will rank your ads higher and each click will cost you less. This will make your ads more impactful while simultaneously helping to improve your profit margins. It will also help with customer value management because the ease of use will help enhance the user experience.
Not only that, but a good CTR on Google ads can also improve conversion rates. Also, it can improve your organic search results.
With this in mind, it’s easy to see how ad extensions are something that you can’t overlook. The number is also clearly visible in searches. So, people don’t even have to click on your ad to contact you.
Poorly written ads
Another common issue is that the ads themselves Have poor writing. Thus, people are less likely to click on them.
It’s not uncommon for people to try and be too clever in their advertising text and, while clever is good, it should not be at the expense of clarity. Ads are too often confusing – full of catchy slogans without actually telling people what the company, product, or service is. If people don’t know why they should click on something then they’re just not going to.
Another common issue when writing ads is relevance – or lack thereof. A lot of people make the mistake of thinking ANY traffic is good, but this is just not true. If people arrive at your website and discover that it’s not what they were expecting then they’re not going to suddenly change their mind about what they want. They’re just going to leave instead to find a more appropriate website.
Your ads should let people know exactly what they will find on your landing page. If they don’t then you might as well be burning money.
Bidding for position 1
Your Google Ads will not always show in the top position. They will not even show on the first page much of the time – but this is OK in most cases. Most people will have a daily budget to spend. So, they will still meet their daily budget even if they are not always at the top.
The problem with always bidding for the top spot is that it’s expensive per click. Whether somebody clicks on a first-placed ad or an ad in third place makes no discernible difference to click-through rates. If you do bid for the top spot every time, then you will end up with the same quality of traffic but less of it because your daily budget lasts less. If you haven’t set a limited budget, then you can expect your overall ad expenditure to get considerably larger.
It’s best instead to set Google to automatic bidding, which will help you get more quality traffic for your money.
Conclusion of 5 Common Google Ads Mistakes to Avoid
There are other mistakes you can make with Google Ads.
However, those listed above are some of the most common, and the most costly. These mistakes turn successful campaigns into failures.
Once you’ve mastered the basics of using Google ads, you can start paying more attention to the more advanced features.
Regardless, the overall premise remains the same.
Use the right keyword matching type, keep your negative keyword list updated, create clear ads, add user extensions, and be cost-effective in your bidding strategy.
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