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7 Reasons Why PPC Campaigns Fail

There are many reasons why PPC campaigns fail. And this usually has nothing to do with the competition. It has to do with a failure to have a plan for your Google AdWords or Bing Ads campaigns.

Here are 7 major reasons why Pay Per Click campaigns fail and what you can do about it:

1. Low budgets

A low budget will prevent your campaign from reaching its full potential. Your ads will be offline when it matters most and you’ll not appear for the important search terms in your industry.

One way to find out the ideal budget to set is to start with keyword research. After doing the research, collect all your keywords and input them in the keyword planner to get click volume forecasts and the budget required

2. Low Ad Position

Ranking high in the ad auction results is important for most businesses. Consistently ranking lower means you’re likely to receive low traffic volumes which affects conversions.

Having a high ad Rank means being in the top 4 positions above the organic search results. Anything lower means your ads will appear below the organic results – and worse on page 2.

When your ads are in the top positions you benefit from the following:

⁃ Greater visibility which means more sales and leads
⁃ More of your ad extensions showing with your listings
⁃ Descriptions for your sitelinks become visible if you’re in position 1
⁃ You get more space in the results unlike lower ranked websites

Ranking high has many psychological benefits too. Searchers generally trust sites that appear at the top. They’re perceived as the most relevant and most important players in your industry.

Searchers are also able to see you as being likely to be available when they need your help.

In some sectors like local services for example, searchers will only request a quote from the top 2-3 advertisers only. They won’t bother with lower ranked sites and that means you’ll miss out on some opportunities if you’re not visible.

To fix low Ad ranks, you should bid higher and also work on ad quality. Raising bids is quicker and more expensive of course but the benefits could outweigh the costs. Improving ad quality and quality scores is more of a long term strategy but one that has greater benefits in the long run.

3. Not studying the search terms report

The Search Search terms report is one of the most important reports for Search and Shopping campaigns. It reveals the actual searches that have driven traffic to your website.

It’s important to note that there’s a difference between a keyword and a search term. A keyword is what you put in your account. A search term on the other hand is what people use to find your website.

And the keywords and search terms are matched together by match types.

So, in your search terms report you can see how good that matching is. If it needs improvement then you can take action immediately.

4. Not adding negative keywords 
The search terms report mentioned above is one way to find negative keywords. The other is the keyword planner tool.

Many PPC campaigns fail because an extensive negative list is not built. It’s not always possible to find all the relevant negatives when you first launch a campaign. So that list needs to be built over time – using the search terms report and the keyword planner tool.

5. Not creating tightly themed ad groups
An ad group is a collection of Ads and related keywords. Only one ad and one keyword are required for an ad group to be eligible to run. However, best practice is that you have at least three ads for testing purposes and at least 5 keywords.

But, adding more keywords usually leads to ad groups underperforming. This can be seen in low Click Through Rates (CTR) and low Quality Scores. And the end result is lower conversions.

The solution is to split keywords into different ad groups to keep them tightly themed.

A good rule to follow is the rule of two. Every keyword in the group should have at least two of the primary words. For example:

PPC Specialist
Hire PPC Specialist
Where can I find a PPC specialist
PPC Specialist in Milton Keynes

The primary words in the example above are PPC Specialist. So, you should avoid adding a keyword like “PPC Expert”. Although it has the same meaning, it should be placed in its own ad group so that it can be included in the headline too.

6. Undifferentiated adverts
Many Ads are bland and look undifferentiated with no benefits, Unique Selling Points (USP), reviews, offers and more. They’re drowning in a sea of sameness. And it’s no wonder they fail. So, searchers find it hard to pick a supplier from the myriad of advertisers out there.

This is evident in poor performance for CTRs, Quality Scores and Conversions.

To create differentiated Ads, look at what your competitors are doing. You can use a keyword spy tool like Spyfu or SE Ranking. Or you could do a search on Google with your primary keywords to analyse the competition.

Then create 3-5 Ads per ad group with unique benefits and USPs. This will help to test the Ads and then you can go with the best performing ones.

7. Lack of consistency
Inconsistency is what kills many campaigns. You should be consistent in your AdWords strategy including where and how you appear, Testing, Optimisations, budgets and more.

Many advertisers take a haphazard approach to their advertising. They have no plan and don’t follow a process to optimise their campaigns. No wonder it doesn’t work for them and money goes down the drain.

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