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Listen in! Pick up some expert advice to a reader's question that we selected from CyberSchmooz.

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7 Mistakes Your PPC Campaign is Making

PPC campaigns can provide tremendous value to your business, and knowing how to smartly manage those campaigns can mean the difference between success and failure. To make the most of your campaign and receive higher conversions, clickthrough rates, and quality scores, you need to be able to recognize when you're making costly mistakes.  

You might want to enlist the services of a professional PPC management agency to provide you with a full audit on your current campaign. These types of audits generally optimize the campaign while lowering costs, and generating even more sales.

According to Moz, understanding and fixing simple mistakes can save you thousands each month and bring in an extra 70% in revenue. To better recognzie where you can make improvements, here are seven mistakes your PPC campaign is making:

1) Not looking at your competitors. When you post ads, you're competing against potentially thousands of others for the same keywords. This means you need to be better than the rest. You should know who you're competing against and what keywords they're using. You can use tools like iSpionage to see how other brands are using their keywords, and what's most effective for them.

2) Writing ads that aren't relevant. It's understandable that you might get frustrated by having to fit so much information into a small amount of text. There are character limits and quality rules to consider. However, if the ad isn't relevant to your brand's landing page, it could have a negative impact on your Quality Score, which in turn makes your clicks more expensive. This can happen for a variety of reasons. For example, an advertiser trying to make the most of an ad might group several keywords together into one an. This isn't an effective strategy, as it fails to convey the intended message.

3) Avoiding Ad Groups. By not properly utilizing Ad Groups, you miss out on clicks. Ad groups help you manage different types of campaigns by grouping keywords into common themes. The alternative to not using Ad Groups is clumping all keywords together into the same campaign, which can get messy quickly. For example, Best Buy wouldn't put all of their ads in the same category: they'd have ads for laptops, cell phones, audio equipment, etc.

4) Not using geo-targeting. Even if your brand or service is universal, users still have a habit of searching locally. Because of this, you can geo-target your ads by state. Simply use all states in the ad title, and you're likely to receive a higher CTR. You can then analyze your stats and see which state is performing best. The results may surprise you.

5) Nixing the call to action. There are many areas of your ad copy you can skip out on in exchange of more favorable options, but the CTA isn't one of them. Never underestimate the power of a good CTA. In fact, CTAs are key to increasing conversions. When writing them, consider your goals - is it to download something, purchase a product, subscribe to a list? This should be conveyed in your copy.

6) Not split testing. To continuously improve your CTR, you should always be running at least three ads at the same time. This ensures that your messaging is up to date, and that you're running the best versions of your ad possible. There are several different elements to test: display URLS, descriptions, CTAs, and promotions among them. Once you identify the higher-converting ads, you can continue to attempt to find even more profitable versions based on your tweaks.

7) Not using ad extensions. Ad extensions provide a personal touch to your ad by offering potential visitors several link options to getting exactly where they need to be on your site. For example, a site promoting beauty products might have several ad extensions to different, popular beauty products. According to Google, using ad extensions generally increases CTR by an average of 10 percent.



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