Are You Making These 6 Deadly Google Ads Mistakes? Find Out How to Avoid Them and Boost Your Profits
How to Avoid Common Google Ads Mistakes and Pitfalls That Can Waste Your Budget and Lower Your ROI
Google Ads is one of the most powerful and popular online advertising platforms that can help you reach your target audience, generate leads, and increase sales. However, running a successful Google Ads campaign is not as easy as it may seem. There are many factors to consider and optimize, such as keywords, bidding strategies, ad copy, landing pages, conversion tracking, and more.
If you are not careful, you may end up making some common Google Ads mistakes that can hurt your campaign performance, waste your budget, and lower your return on investment (ROI). In this blog post, we will share with you some of the most common Google Ads mistakes and pitfalls that you should avoid and how to fix them.
Mistake #1: Not Setting Up Conversion Tracking Properly
One of the most common and crucial Google Ads mistakes is not setting up conversion tracking properly or at all. Conversion tracking is a feature that allows you to measure how many users take a desired action on your website after clicking on your ads, such as filling out a form, making a purchase, downloading a file, etc.
Without conversion tracking, you will not be able to know how effective your ads are at generating conversions and revenue for your business. You will also not be able to optimize your campaigns based on data and insights. You will be flying blind and wasting money on ads that may not be working.
How to fix it:
To avoid this mistake, you should set up conversion tracking correctly for your Google Ads campaigns. You can use Google Analytics or Google Tag Manager to create and install conversion tracking codes on your website. You can also use Google Ads conversion import feature to import conversions from other sources, such as phone calls or offline sales.
You should also make sure that you are tracking the right conversions that align with your business goals and campaign objectives. For example, if you are running an e-commerce campaign, you should track sales transactions as conversions. If you are running a lead generation campaign, you should track form submissions or phone calls as conversions.
You should also assign different values to different conversions based on their importance and profitability for your business. For example, if a sale transaction is worth $100 and a form submission is worth $10 for your business, you should assign these values accordingly in your conversion settings. This way, you can measure the value of each conversion and calculate your ROI more accurately.
Mistake #2: Using the Wrong Bidding Strategy
Another common Google Ads mistake is using the wrong bidding strategy for your campaigns. Bidding strategy is the way you set your bids for your keywords and ad groups. It determines how much you are willing to pay for each click or impression on your ads.
Google Ads offers various types of bidding strategies that can help you achieve different goals, such as maximizing clicks, conversions, impressions, or revenue. However, not all bidding strategies are suitable for all campaigns. Choosing the wrong bidding strategy can result in overpaying for clicks or impressions that do not lead to conversions or revenue.
How to fix it:
To avoid this mistake, you should choose the right bidding strategy for your campaigns based on your goals and budget. Here are some of the most common bidding strategies and when to use them:
Manual CPC: This is the simplest bidding strategy that allows you to set your own bids for each keyword or ad group. You have full control over how much you want to pay for each click on your ads. This bidding strategy is suitable for campaigns that have a limited budget or require precise control over bids.
Enhanced CPC: This is an automated bidding strategy that adjusts your manual bids up or down based on the likelihood of a conversion. It helps you get more conversions while staying within your budget. This bidding strategy is suitable for campaigns that have a moderate budget and want to optimize for conversions.
Maximize Clicks: This is an automated bidding strategy that sets your bids to get as many clicks as possible within your budget. It helps you drive more traffic to your website without worrying about setting bids manually. This bidding strategy is suitable for campaigns that have a large budget and want to increase brand awareness or site visits.
Maximize Conversions: This is an automated bidding strategy that sets your bids to get the most conversions possible within your budget1. It uses machine learning to automatically adjust your bids based on the likelihood of a conversion2. This bidding strategy is suitable for campaigns that have a flexible budget and want to maximize conversions or conversion value.
However, this bidding strategy may not work well for campaigns that have a low conversion volume, a limited budget, or a specific target cost per conversion or return on ad spend. In these cases, you may end up paying too much for each conversion or not spending your entire budget.
How to fix it:
To avoid this mistake, you should use Maximize conversions bidding strategy only when you have enough conversion data, a sufficient budget, and no specific target cost per conversion or return on ad spend. You should also monitor your campaign performance regularly and make adjustments as needed.
If you have a low conversion volume, you may want to use Manual CPC or Enhanced CPC bidding strategy instead. If you have a limited budget or a specific target cost per conversion or return on ad spend, you may want to use Target CPA or Target ROAS bidding strategy instead.
Mistake #3: Auto-applying Recommendations
Another common Google Ads mistake is auto-applying recommendations without reviewing them carefully. Recommendations are suggestions that Google Ads provides to help you improve your campaign performance. They can include things like adding new keywords, changing bids, creating new ads, optimizing landing pages, etc.
However, not all recommendations are relevant or beneficial for your campaigns. Some recommendations may be based on outdated data, generic best practices, or Google’s own interests. Auto-applying recommendations without reviewing them can result in unwanted changes to your campaigns that can negatively affect your performance and ROI.
How to fix it:
To avoid this mistake, you should always review the recommendations before applying them. You should check the data and logic behind each recommendation and evaluate how it aligns with your goals and strategy. You should also test the impact of each recommendation on a small scale before applying it to your entire campaign.
You can also customize your recommendations settings to choose which types of recommendations you want to see and which ones you want to dismiss. You can also opt out of auto-apply recommendations if you prefer to apply them manually.
Mistake #4: Using Only Broad Match Keywords
Another common Google Ads mistake is using only broad match keywords for your campaigns. Broad match keywords are keywords that allow your ads to show for searches that are related to your keywords, including synonyms, misspellings, variations, etc.
For example, if you use the broad match keyword “shoes”, your ads may show for searches like “boots”, “sneakers”, “footwear”, etc.
Broad match keywords can help you reach a wide audience and capture potential customers who may not use the exact terms that you expect. However, they can also result in showing your ads for irrelevant or low-intent searches that can waste your budget and lower your click-through rate (CTR) and quality score.
How to fix it:
To avoid this mistake, you should use other types of keyword match types besides broad match. These include:
Broad match modifier: This is a type of broad match keyword that allows you to specify certain words that must be included in the search query for your ads to show. You can add a plus sign (+) before each word that you want to be mandatory. For example, if you use the broad match modifier keyword “+shoes +women”, your ads may show for searches like “women shoes”, “shoes for women”, “best shoes for women”, etc., but not for searches like “men shoes” or “women clothes”.
Phrase match: This is a type of keyword match type that allows your ads to show for searches that include your keyword phrase in the exact order, with possible additional words before or after it. You can add quotation marks (") around your keyword phrase to use phrase match. For example, if you use the phrase match keyword “women shoes”, your ads may show for searches like “women shoes”, “buy women shoes online”, “best women shoes for running”, etc., but not for searches like “shoes women” or “women sneakers”.
Exact match: This is a type of keyword match type that allows your ads to show for searches that match your keyword exactly or are very close variations of it. You can add brackets () around your keyword to use exact match. For example, if you use the exact match keyword [women shoes], your ads may show for searches like “women shoes” or “womens shoes”, but not for searches like “women shoe” or “women footwear”. Using different types of keyword match types can help you balance between reaching a broad audience and targeting a specific audience. You can also control your costs and improve your quality score by using different match types. You can test and compare the performance of each match type and find out which one works best for your campaigns1.
Mistake #5: Neglecting Negative Keywords
Another common Google Ads mistake is neglecting negative keywords for your campaigns. Negative keywords are keywords that you do not want your ads to show for. They help you exclude irrelevant or low-quality searches that can waste your budget and lower your CTR and quality score.
For example, if you sell new shoes, you may want to add negative keywords like “used”, “second hand”, “repair”, etc. to prevent your ads from showing for searches that are not related to your products or services.
Neglecting negative keywords can result in showing your ads for searches that do not match your target audience’s intent or needs. This can lead to low conversions and high bounce rates.
How to fix it:
To avoid this mistake, you should regularly research and add negative keywords to your campaigns. You can use tools like Google Keyword Planner, Google Search Console, or Google Analytics to find out what terms people are using to find your website or ads. You can also use the search terms report in Google Ads to see what queries triggered your ads and identify any irrelevant or unwanted terms.
You should also organize your negative keywords into lists and apply them at the campaign or ad group level. This way, you can save time and ensure consistency across your campaigns.
Mistake #6: Not Having an Ad Copy Testing Strategy
Another common Google Ads mistake is not having an ad copy testing strategy for your campaigns. Ad copy testing is the process of creating and comparing different versions of your ads to see which one performs better in terms of clicks, conversions, and revenue.
Ad copy testing is important because it helps you improve your ad relevance, CTR, quality score, and ROI. It also helps you discover what messages resonate with your target audience and what motivates them to take action.
However, many advertisers do not have a clear or consistent ad copy-testing strategy for their campaigns. They either do not test their ads at all, test too many variables at once, test without a clear hypothesis or goal, or test without measuring the results.
How to fix it:
To avoid this mistake, you should have a well-defined and structured ad copy testing strategy for your campaigns. Here are some steps to follow:
Start with a clear hypothesis or goal: Before you create different versions of your ads, you should have a clear idea of what you want to test and why. For example, you may want to test whether adding a discount offer or a call to action will increase your conversions.
Create different versions of your ads: Based on your hypothesis or goal, you should create at least two different versions of your ads that differ only in one element, such as the headline, description, display URL, etc. This way, you can isolate the effect of each element on your performance.
Run your tests for a sufficient period of time: You should run your tests for at least two weeks or until you have enough data to draw a conclusion. You should also make sure that your tests are running under similar conditions, such as the same budget, bid strategy, targeting, etc.
Analyze the results and implement the winner: You should use tools like Google Ads experiments or Google Optimize to analyze the results of your tests and compare the performance of each version of your ads. You should look at metrics like impressions, clicks, conversions, revenue, etc. You should also use statistical significance calculators to ensure that your results are reliable and not due to chance. Once you find the winner, you should implement it in your campaigns and pause or delete the loser.