So, you’ve structured your AdWords account beautifully, you’re getting a good click-through rate and you’re seeing some qualified traffic come in. I won’t say “good job” yet, because the real work hasn’t even started.
Optimizing a PPC campaign is what makes the campaign successful. Constantly striving to bring down your spend, lower your CPC, increase keyword quality scores, increase CTRs and conversion rates, etc, is what is going to separate you from the average PPC account manager.
PPC campaigns don’t optimize themselves. So get out there and start optimizing now with these three detailed PPC optimization tips:
1. Use Negative Keywords Correctly
You’ve heard this before. But don’t just add the standard list of negative keywords that you always use, check to see what search terms your keywords are triggering ads for and find the ones that don’t fit with the account. Once you find them, add them to the negative keyword list.
How do I find negative keywords to add?
Head over to the “Campaigns” tab in your AdWords account and click on the campaign you want to optimize.
Then click the “Keywords” tab and click the “Search Terms” button. Hopefully you have at least a couple of weeks of data in your account, so make sure you select a date range that will give you a good number of search terms (like, Last 30 Days, for example).
I normally sort the keywords by “Cost” and then filter out the keywords that have recorded conversions to give you a list of all of the non-converting, high spend search terms. At this point you may be shocked at how much you’ve spent on bad search terms so hurry up and make any terms you see that don’t fit with your account negative keywords.
When you’re adding terms as negative keywords, don’t just add them all at the campaign level. It’s possible that some terms may be relevant for some Ad Groups and not others, so think carefully before adding negative keywords and make sure you’re adding them at the correct level.
Pro Tip – Find some terms that shouldn’t be coming up for any of the campaigns in your account? In the left hand column of your AdWords interface, click “Shared Library”, then click “Campaign Negative Keywords”. Click the red + List button and create a new negative keywords list. Add in the common terms you don’t want any ads showing up for, save the list, and then apply the list to your desired campaigns.
2. Use Keywords with High Commercial Intent & Use Different Keyword Match Types
This is almost like two separate tips in one, but they both tie in to each other. You’re (hopefully) already doing this, but make sure you’re doing it right. Before you go adding tons of broad-match keywords to your campaigns, make sure you really think about “keyword intent”, a crucial point to understand before I talk about match types.
Keyword intent is what the user was intending to discover when they entered a keyword into Google. For example, a user querying Google for “do I need to see a dentist” is looking for information and is not yet convince that they need to see a dentist. If the user searched for “dentists near me” or “root canal dentist Vancouver BC”, there is a much higher chance that the user has identified that they indeed need to visit a dentist and are looking for one within their city. These are called keywords with High Commercial Intent.
So, if the focus of your AdWords campaign is to get people to call your dentist office to book an appointment, go for keywords like “dentists near me” etc. But, in order to do so, you must use different keyword match types.
In order to specifically target users looking for root canal dentist, you need to use exact match, which looks like this: [root canal dentist]. But, maybe that exact keyword doesn’t get a lot of traffic. So, also target using phrase match, which looks like this: “root canal dentist”.
Exact match targets exactly the keyword you have in brackets, while phrase match targets the phrase and could also include search terms that include words before and after your chosen phrase. For example, “root canal dentist” will also target search terms like “root canal dentist near me”, “where can i find a good root canal dentist”, etc.
To get a really diverse array of search terms, use broad match modifier. Broad match modifier keywords target search terms that include all of the words in the keyword you’re targeting in any order. To make a broad match modifier keyword in AdWords, make sure the keyword looks like this: +root +canal +dentist
So, a search term could be: “where do i find a dentist for a root canal” etc.
3. Hyper Targeted Landing Pages
Make sure your landing pages are very specific to the keywords you are targeting. The more specific, the better. In fact, I find that having a different landing page for every ad group can greatly increase keyword quality score and can help boost your conversion rate because it forces you to create landing pages that are extremely relevant to your ad group themes.
This doesn’t mean that the layout of every page needs to be different, just the content. For example, let’s say you have an ad group targeting the root canal theme. You would want to make sure your keywords are targeted as I mentioned in section 2 above, your ads are written specifically for someone looking to get a root canal, and then your landing page would be all about how your company offers root canals.
The same would then go for any other services you offer such as cosmetic dentistry, crowns, or braces. Just make sure that you use the same words in your landing page text as you do in both your keyword targeting and your ad copy. Ideally, the search term a user types into Google should be the same as the ad heading as well as the heading on your landing page.
Finally, make sure the most relevant information to your user is above the fold. Your heading, subheading, call to action, and if possible, any selling points should all be above the fold. Keeping this in mind will ensure you reduce any redundant information above the fold and that you make use of your most valuable landing page real estate.
Now get out there and start optimizing!