6 Google AdWords Mistakes to Avoid

Do you avoid Google Adwords mistakes? Google AdWords has been a major form of online marketing since 2000 and has only increased in use by businesses and individuals. In 2008 Google’s total advertising revenues through AdWords were $21 billion, and it’s still growing.

This increase in use by many users means that to succeed at use of AdWords requires more stringent use of it. Knowing what not to do is just as important as knowing how to use it properly. Being careful with AdWords is worthwhile, to keep a solid ROI when using this tool.

There are some elements of AdWords to be cautious with – here are 6 mistakes you should avoid making when using Google’s PPC tool:

1. Create only one ad group for various keywords

It’s very tempting to just put all your keywords into one campaign and one ad group. However, this will only keep it difficult to target your keywords with the ads you use, since you’ll be trying to target multiple variations on keywords.

The best thing to do is create separate ad groups for each set of keywords. This way you can make unique ads that fit the keywords well, and stay relevant.

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2. Make only one ad for your ad groups

You need to have an ad in place to communicate with the people searching for your keywords. However, having only one means you will never know for sure if it can be improved upon.

A better approach is to create at least two ads, this way you can see which ad performs better, keep it, and then revise the other ad. This is called “split testing” and is commonly used by professional AdWords users.

3. Leave all networks active for your campaigns

By default AdWords uses both a search network and a content network. However, leaving the content network active can make it more difficult to focus on pure keyword marketing through the search engines. Google is improving this, but even now it’s better to unselect the Content Network inside your Campaign Settings.

The Content Network is the placing of ads on websites instead of in the search results, and is a different advertising approach. If this is something that you want to do in addition to the Search Network, it’s best to create a separate campaign for the Content Network. This way you can adjust your keywords to be much more targeted for this style of advertising, and you can track each more easily.

4. Use only broad match keywords

When entering keywords into AdWords, the default listing for all keywords is “broad match”. To get more specific, place double quotes around your keywords to get “phrase match” (which will match all keywords that contain that phrase) and double square brackets to get “exact match” (which will match only searches that contain that exact keyword phrase, nothing more, nothing less).

When you use only broad match, your ads will show to a much broader range of keywords, in many cases keywords you would not specifically choose to advertise for. By using phrase and exact match, you can have much tighter control over what keywords will prompt your ad to show.

5. Never use negative keywords

Even though most AdWords users have heard of negative keywords, many don’t realize the power they contain. By using the negative keyword properly you can reduce your expenses on keywords you’re not targeting to a very large degree.

To use it, put a hyphen in front of any keyword you do not want your ad to show. This can also work with phrase and exact match keywords. For example: -keyword, -“two keywords”, and -[exact keyword] will all work to ensure that those particular keywords will never bring up your ad.

Often a word such as “free” will get a large amount of traffic that is not converting, and can cause a lot of unnecessary expenditure. By placing it as a negative keyword you can cut a lot of cost.

6. Don’t track conversions

Conversion tracking is a way to optimize your AdWords campaigns heavily. For example, if you want to keep the keywords that bring in the most opt-ins for your site, set up conversion tracking for your opt-in, to track how many people land on the “thank you for signing up” page.

When you do this you’ll be able to see specifically which keywords are bringing these conversions, and you’ll be able to drop keywords that don’t convert and expand on keywords that do. Not doing conversion tracking means you will never know which of your keywords are bringing the best results.

Making any of these Adwords mistakes can often cause a heavy loss of advertising expenses or an inability to improve well upon your PPC campaigns. Being careful about not making these mistakes can help improve your AdWords campaign (or campaigns), and it will increase conversions and make your spending more effective.

This guest post is by Eric Gesinski who does website design at tulsamarketingonline.com and internet marketing, including AdWords management. You can also become star guest blogger and get more exposure for your articles.

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About the Author: P Chandra is editor of QOT, one of India's earliest tech bloggers since 2004. A tech enthusiast with expertise in coding, WordPress, web tools, SEO and DIY hacks.

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