Every budding google ads marketer can resonate with the words of John Wannamaker, who famously said: “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.” It can be hard to get a grasp of complex campaigns, and then understand what part of your spend is getting the best results. With, on average, 25% of a small business’s paid search spend currently being wasted, the importance of making efficiency gains cannot be overemphasised.
Here, you’ll find 5 ways that you can quickly and easily cut a significant amount of wasted spend within your campaign, and, in turn, see immediate improvements in campaign performance.
1) Negative Keywords List
It can be very tempting, when first starting out in google ads, to try to get as many clicks and as much engagement as possible, by matching campaigns to as many keywords as possible. However, perhaps the most important part of reducing waste in campaigns is adding negative keywords, those keywords that will prevent your ads from showing for search terms that you don’t want to appear for, thus avoiding people clicking your ad with no intention of buying from you. This is one of the most crucial parts of your campaign, yet 1 in 5 small businesses do not have a single negative keyword added. Don’t underestimate the importance of excluding keywords, for example, a specialist new car dealer may see waste in searches for “used” cars, which would be a crucial negative keyword to add.
2) Location Targeting
Google’s location targeting is a great tool, but many will fall into the common trap of allowing google to match their ads to those who search or view pages about their targeted location. This could be the cause of those odd locations popping up in your geographical reports, which can cost you for clicks that have no value to your business. Some advertisers may see benefit from using this setting, but make sure you check your own location targeting, to see if it works for you.
3) Modified Broad Match
The way that you match your keywords in your campaign can make a huge difference to the performance of your campaign, and may be resulting in a significant amount of wasted budget. Broad match is the match type within google that restricts matches the least, allowing for a huge number of search terms to be matched. This means your keyword ‘blue shoes’ may result in matches for searches for broadly relevant terms, such as ‘colourful shoes’ or ‘blue heels’. This can result in wasted spend on irrelevant clicks. By adding a ‘+’ before each keyword, we activate modified broad match, which restricts the matching to searches that contain the keywords themselves, such as ‘blue suede shoes’. Bear this in mind when creating your next campaign and setting keywords.
4) Conversion Tracking
What gets measured, gets managed. When tracking conversions, an advertiser can identify the best performing ads, from a conversion standpoint, and those that are not performing to the desired level, which are, in essence, wasting your precious ad spend. Make sure you have conversion tracking on all the relevant landing pages, and also any forms or phone numbers that need to be tracked.
5) Custom Ad Schedules
The time that your ad shows is another crucial factor to consider in your advertising campaigns. Consider when you want people to see your ads. If you are open between 9am and 5pm, there is little pint in having ads showing at 10pm, when people may click the ad, but not be able to call. Then, the potential customer may then forget about your ad, or even go back the next day, costing you two clicks for only one conversion. It is small improvements like this that add up to create an efficient, well-performing campaign.
So, there you have it. 5 ways that you can reduce the wasted spend in your google ads campaign. Give these a try throughout your campaigns and let us know how they work out. Make sure to check your campaigns for the areas of waste we mentioned, then take action. The best part about these tips is that they take only minutes to implement, so go ahead, start saving yourself your hard-earned money.