Wasting money on unfruitful campaigns is a thing of a nightmare for any business owner and Google Ads can be an easy money pit to fall into.

We are always looking to get more out of our marketing efforts. If you do own an online business, chances are you are aware of Google Ads and might have used it as well. Google Ads is an online advertising platform that follows the pay-per-click model.

This means that advertisers pay Google in order to reach potential customers using Search keywords, device used and location.

When used properly, you drive targeted traffic to your landing pages resulting in higher click rate. The higher the click rate, the higher would be the volume of sales or leads.

However, a lot of advertisers follow the suggestions made by Google and end up losing a lot of money with little to no results to show for. So here are 7 things to keep in mind while using Google Ads to avoid getting broke.

1. Google Ads takes a lot of time to optimize

You play the long game on Google Ads and for this you must have a big budget. If you are a small company with a small marketing budget and seeking quick results, then this is not the right platform for you. The reason being, initially, the spend to conversion ratio will be very low and might take at least 3-4 months to get optimized. For example, if you have set your budget limit for per click at Rs 40, initially that entire budget would get used up. It takes a lot of time for that Rs 40 to come down to say Rs 8.

During this time, you will also get a lot of unqualified traffic due to lack of keyword optimization. Google aims to give you traffic to your website through your ads, they don’t care whether the ads lead to any sales/leads or not.

So, if you are losing heart in the initial months from not getting any qualified results from your ads, then understand that you are not alone. In the long run, once you figure out the keywords that do work for your ads, you will get the right audience for your website.

2. Recommendations are designed to favor Google, not advertisers

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This is a very common mistake that a lot of advertisers make. Google has this feature which gives you keyword, device and location suggestions for your ads. What novices don’t realize is, these suggestions are all Broad Matched i.e. they will drive very generic and unqualified traffic to your landing page.

The keywords that Google suggests are also the ones which have the highest bids on them. Google programmatically recommends keywords on which other advertisers are already bidding. If you accept these recommendations blindly, your cost per click will increase with no improvement in reach.

Don’t rely on Google to set up the ads for you. It is incentivized to have you spend more money and pay more for per clicks. There is an inherent conflict of interest.

3. Quality trumps quantity

Poorly written ad copies that do not match the keywords will get ranked lower in quality scores in effect increasing the cost per click. This will also mean that you will not reach the desired traffic and the bounce rate would increase.The quality scores determine which bidder’s ad gets shown on top. The higher the score, the higher the chances that your ad will get displayed on top when searched.

4. Game of keywords

Google keywords are categorized into 4 types: broad match, phrase match, exact match and negative match.

Broad match targets the widest range of audience. For example, if you used broad match on yellow bags, your ad will be displayed when a user searches yellow bags, yellow dress or how to mend bags.

Google may also match your ad to queries using synonyms like bright colored satchels which might not even have any term from your keyword. Because of this, users might click on your ad while searching for irrelevant topics and these costs can add up very quickly. Though it’s useful to get a lot of clicks, the quality of traffic is very low in this type of match. Since it’s the default match type, advertisers must be careful while choosing the type.

Phrase match, denoted by {…}, provides a higher level of control than broad match type. Your ads are only shown to users who have typed in the exact keyword phrase that you have mentioned in the same order. However, there might be other words before or after it. For example, if your key phrase is {digital marketing}, then your ad will be shown to users searching for digital marketing jobs, digital marketing services or courses to learn digital marketing.

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Recently Google has included modified broad match into phrase match. This means that your ads will be shown to a slightly wider variety of audience. For example, an ad with the above key phrase will also be shown to users searching for digital courses useful for marketing, digital and website design for marketing, etc.

Exact match, just as the name suggests is the most definitive and restrictive type. With this match type, the users will see your ad only if they have typed the exact key phrase. For example, if your keyword is [green skater dress], your ad would appear to users searching for ONLY green skater dress. The downside of this match type is it gets the least impressions out of all the match types. But it ensures that you get high quality traffic to your landing page.

The last type is Negative match which is used in conjunction with either broad or phrase match types. It is used to eliminate words/phrases that you don’t want your ad to show for. For example, if your broad match keyword is digital marketing and for negative match your keywords are courses and job, then your ad won’t appear for users searching for digital marketing courses, digital marketing job opportunity or best courses for digital marketing. By using negative keywords, you can exclude keywords that aren’t a good match for your product/service.

Hence, lowering cost and increasing revenue. Choosing the correct match type for your marketing goals is very important to convey Google how aggressively or restrictively you want your ads to appear on searches in order to get your money’s worth and achieving a successful PPC campaign. An interesting thing is, about 15% of keywords haven’t been registered by Google yet. What this means is, some of these keywords will be very high quality with low bids on them.

5. Track what you pay for

To some new advertisers, Google Ads might look almost like a sweet gambling joint. You put in money and get the reward of sales/leads. But what they might forget to do is conversion tracking- keeping a record of the amount being spent on campaigns versus the number of sales they are potentially bringing in.

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Also remember you are here to increase your revenue, not just your short-term profit.
Another important thing to keep in mind is to remember to turn off the campaigns. By default, the campaigns keep running indefinitely until you manually pause/stop it. Before you know it, Google would have exhausted your credit card and they are very unforgiving about a runaway ad spend. Apart from the hefty price you paid, you run the risk of your account getting suspended or banned.

6. Google per day budget works on averages

When it comes to spending, Google’s per day budget is not what it looks like on the surface. Let’s say you created an ad and it gets approved at 11:30 PM. You would discover that weirdly Google would have spent the entire budget in about 30 min. Hence, it’s recommended to never start a campaign towards the end of the day.

Also to add to this, you should never increase your budget towards the end of the month. Let’s say you started with Rs 1000 per day budget on the 1st of the month and changed it to Rs 2000 per day budget on 25th of the month, then Google will in total try to spend 2000 x 30 = 60,000 i.e. Rs 35,000 in the remaining 5 days making the budget Rs 7000 per day. If not taken into consideration, this will break your bank especially in the case of automated payments.

7. Scaling Recommendations are designed to make you spend more money

If your campaign does well, Google will start showing you projections on how much more traffic you can get by increasing your budget. Do not blindly accept these recommendations as it will automatically increase your bid. It is always better to edit your budget manually.

Successful Google Ads come down to targeting the right keywords, reducing your cost per customer acquisition and driving quality potential customers to your website, all the while remembering your long-term goals and not just focusing on present number of clicks to your website. #KhabarLive #hydnews

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A senior journalist having 25 years of experience in national and international publications and media houses across the globe in various positions. A multi-lingual personality with desk multi-tasking skills. He belongs to Hyderabad in India. Ahssanuddin's work is driven by his desire to create clarity, connection, and a shared sense of purpose through the power of the written word. His background as an writer informs his approach to writing. Years of analyzing text and building news means that adapting to a reporting voice, tone, and unique needs comes as second nature.