Make your ad spend go further
For advertisers large and small, PPC and digital marketing often comes down to making less money go further. Even the most experienced advertisers constantly look for ways to optimize their campaigns and save money, and for many small businesses, saving money on PPC can mean the difference between success and failure.
Here are WordStream’s 13 very best money saving PPC tips. Even if you’re a Pro, you’ll probably find one or two tips that could help your advertising budget go even further.
1. Increase CTR by Writing Better Ad Copy
One of the best ways to save money on Google AdWords is to write better ads. Better ad copy increases CTR, which in turn increases your Quality Score. Quality Score is pretty much the only metric that advertisers should focus on to run more cost-effective campaigns. Check out this guide to writing better PPC ads and see if you can raise those Quality Scores.
2. Use Extensions to Further Increase CTR
Our second money-saving tip is to use ad extensions to make your ads more clickable and increase click-through rate and Quality Score. There are dozens of ad extensions available on Google AdWords, so no matter what type of business you run or what you’re trying to sell, there’s an extension or two that could help your ads stand out. Make your ads more tempting to prospective customers – check out comprehensive guide to ad extensions.
3. Adjust Your Campaign Geolocation Settings
AdWords’ geolocation settings are awesome. They allow you to only display ads to certain regions, or within a specific distance of your business. Geolocation settings are also among the most overlooked features in AdWords, and many advertisers either improperly set geolocation parameters, or fail to apply them to their campaigns at all.
Make sure your geolocation settings are set to optimal hours of operation for your business especially if you’re selling goods or services sold from a physical location. To learn more about how to optimize these settings, check out this post on geolocation and local PPC.
4. Use Dayparting in Concert with Geolocation
Dayparting can help you maximize your business’ visibility during specific times of day – ideal for advertisers hoping to drive traffic to a store. By using dayparting in concert with geolocation, you can exercise a high degree of control over when and where your ads are shown to users. Learn more about this feature in this guide to ad scheduling.
5. Create a Negative Keyword Conflicts Report
If you’re using negative keywords, have you compiled a negative keywords conflict report? Some of those negatives you added to your account might be costing you money.
Negative keyword conflict reports are a feature of Bing Ads that allow you to identify any potential conflicts between excluded negative keywords and search terms that you’re actually bidding on. As well as alerting you to potentially costly keyword conflicts, this report can also help you identify negatives that could be harming your volume.
6. Find New Keywords to Target
When it comes to saving money, some advertisers’ try to reduce their spend or lower their bids. However, one of the most effective strategies you can use to save money on PPC is to go after entirely new keywords. Identifying new keyword niches and targeting new long-tail keywords can have a huge impact on your click-through rates, which in turn raises Quality Scores and reduces costs.
7. Examine Device Targeting and Optimize Bids for Mobile
With the balance of search volume tipping from desktop to mobile in a major way, your device targeting settings should also be on your list of account optimizations. More and more people are searching for goods and services as they go about their day, and even searches that convert from desktop may have actually begun on a mobile device.
Once you’ve made sure your device targeting settings are in order, take a look at your bids. Mobile CPCs, which were once at bargain basement prices, are climbing steadily to reflect increased mobile traffic and competition, so take a look at your mobile bidding strategy to make sure you’re not losing money on bids that are too high for your business. Also, you can set mobile bids at either the campaign or ad group level, so you’ve got a lot of control over how much you’re willing to pay for mobile clicks.
8. Refine Match Types to Avoid Overly Broad Matches
One PPC setting that can burn through even the biggest of budgets is sloppy match typing. Overly broad keyword match types can be brutal on your wallet. Some search terms will be naturally more competitive (and more expensive) than others, and there may be times when you simply can’t avoid using certain match types for certain search terms. Don’t waste money by using inappropriate match types.
9. Be Selective with Stacked Bid Modifiers
While we’re on the subject of match types, think carefully about whether using stacked bidding makes sense. Stacked bidding allows you to bid on two (or more) match types for a single keyword. For example, if you’re bidding on the keyword “crab cakes”, you may want to bid on this keyword at both the Broad and Exact match types. Broad match will offer greater volume, whereas Exact match offers greater relevancy, so there’s definitely a case to be made for stacked bidding.
However, in some cases, you could be paying above the odds for some keywords if you’re using stacked bidding, especially if you’ve left your account unattended for a prolonged period of time. Go through your campaigns and identify any keywords you’re going after with stacked bids. Are you getting the volume you want at the CPC you want? If not, it might be time to reconsider stacked bids.
10. Launch Call-Only Campaigns to Avoid ‘Leaky’ Landing Pages
For all their advantages, landing pages have a fatal weakness – they’re often the leakiest part of the conversion funnel. Visitors are more likely to abandon their shopping cart download when presented with a landing page (even a beautiful, well-optimized landing page) than they are at any other stage of the conversion process. So what can you do? Get rid of your landing pages entirely.
Call-Only campaigns are perfect for advertisers that are trying to attract phone calls from their PPC campaigns. Rather than wasting prospects’ time by sending them to a landing page form they may never complete, you can launch a Call-Only campaign that lets prospective customers call your business directly from your ads, eliminating the leaky landing page problem altogether.
11. Start Remarketing – Now
If you’re not remarketing to visitors who came to your site and left before converting, you’re really spending all this time, money and effort into trying to persuade them to convert in a single session.
Remarketing is one of the best ways you can save money in PPC and make your existing budget work much more effectively. Remarketing is also essential for paid social campaigns, as many of the same obstacles faced by paid search advertisers – multi-device/offline conversions, non-linear conversion pathways, simple abandonment-distraction – are also major roadblocks for social advertisers.
Remarketing itself is far beyond the scope of this post. Learn more here:
•How Does Google Remarketing Work?
•10 Remarketing Facts to Make You Rethink Your Entire PPC Strategy
•All the Remarketing Audiences You Should Be Targeting in PPC
12. Conclude Your A/B Tests
In their quest for statistical significance, many advertisers leave A/B tests running far too long. Concluding your A/B tests is very important. The longer the tests run, the less likely major “gains” are likely to be clear winners, as results from changes to your ads or landing pages tend to normalize over time. Don’t be afraid to pause all of the ads that didn’t make the cut. Be confident in your data.
13. Spend Time Actually Working in Your PPC Accounts
Actually spending time in your account is one of the best ways to identify problematic areas of your campaigns before the financial damage can be done. It allows you to identify – and correct – issues before they become major budgetary difficulties.
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