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Google Ads Campaign – 8 Mistakes Which May Cost You a Fortune!

Ads Campaigns – 8 Mistakes You Can’t Afford to Make!

The Google Ads campaign is now one of the most popular methods of online promotion. If managed well, Google Ads campaign can provide you with fabulous results – primarily in the form of increased sale of products and services. The web offers an unlimited number of guides on how to conduct AdWords campaigns effectively.

A vast majority of them present important hints that can help you improve your campaign: lower costs, increased ad quality score, and eventually more conversions, which means profits! Nobody would like to lose the money invested in a campaign. It is equally important that you avoid mistakes which may cost you a lot.

Read below to see 8 mistakes in the Ads campaign which may cost you a fortune. I advise you to analyze all campaigns in terms of potential mistakes, repair the ones which require it and make sure – preferably twice – that everything works properly.    

1. Lack of conversions:

Lack of conversions is one of the main issues of Google Ads campaigns because it prevents its full optimization. The campaign without conversions is like a travel without destination – you don’t know where it goes, what costs it may require and if it is a dead end.

It is conversion that demonstrates whether the campaign achieves the goals. It is also one of the most important elements based on which campaign is optimized. The examples of conversions are: making a purchase, sending a request for proposal, making a phone call or downloading a mobile app. Even if the website advertised does not let you measure the most important type of conversion, it is advisable to focus on the so-called micro conversions (visit time, number of tabs visited, redirection into contact subpage).

Every single form of conversion informs you about essential data. Thanks to this, you can see which adverts/keywords/targeting are the most effective and, in effect, which of them you should invest in. No other – even the best – campaign statistics (clicks, displays, CTRs, quality result 10/10) will show you if the interaction with the ad ended with the most important result for you.

As part of conducting Google Ads campaigns, there are few ways of measuring conversions. Thanks to this, even if the website is very complicated or problematic, you have a chance to measure conversions.

In order to track conversions, you can:

  • use conversions in Google Ads account:
  • use actions taken on the website which are measured by pasting the Ads conversion code onto the website,
  • track downloads and actions on mobile applications,
  • record the number of phone calls from ads,
  • import data from other systems,
  • use conversions in Google Analytics account:
  • e-commerce transactions which let you check both the quantity and value of the conversion,
  • events and purposes which let you track micro-conversions, e.g. website visit time.

This article gives an insight into how to configure goals on Google Analytics accounts.

2. Lack of e-commerce/malfunctioning e-commerce module:

E-commerce module is indispensable with regard to campaigns, which promote online stores. The module shows you not only number of conversions but also their value:

Lack of an operational e-commerce module substantially hinders optimization and Google Ads campaigns due to lack of information on revenues. Sometimes, despite a large number of conversions, the campaign turns out to be ineffective. After all conversions are counted, you can say… Indeed, they are – it is good news. But the number of conversions is not always sufficient.

Why? Let’s assume you advertise the cosmetics shop.

First case – you record 300 conversions with a total value of about USD 5 000 a month because you have sold lots of cheap face creams and masks and peelings – about USD 16 each.

Second case – the campaign generated 130 conversions only, but their total value was about USD 30 000. In this case dermocosmetics and organic creams with the average value of USD 230 were the best-selling products.

As you can see, the situation may vary. To estimate its value precisely and then optimize the campaign properly (focus on promotion of the words/products which generate higher-value conversions), you HAVE TO use an e-commerce module.

Lack of the module may result in investing primarily in keywords/products which generate a large number of conversions of low value, instead of those which assure best profits.

In most modern shop platforms, all you need to do is install a suitable plug-in in the store’s administration panel. Then configure e-commerce on Google Analytics account and conduct a test purchase (to check if it works).

The last step is to import transactions as conversions on Google AdWords account and import all website data (to track the value of conversions on AdWords account).

3. Lack of exclusions:

Excluding keywords in your AdWords campaign are all those terms that you don’t want your ads to show up for. If you fail to exclude words, you will spend your funds on improper keywords or the ones which generate high costs in the long run but fail to assure conversions.

Example: the campaign which promotes mdf skirting boards

The first exclusions should be added before you launch the campaign – it is advisable to choose at least a dozen most important phrases which the advertisement may react to but should not. During the campaign you have to inspect the search report on a regular basis, analyze keywords, and exclude the redundant ones.

You can add exclusions both at the ad group and campaign level. If the mdf skirting boards advert is displayed in reaction to the phrase “white wooden boards”, we can exclude the entire phrase at the ad group level and a single word “wooden” at the campaign level, so as not to waste budget on other wrong keywords in the future:

Excluding keywords are therefore a very important element of the campaign. Their proper selection lets you save a lot. Nobody wants to invest funds into something they do not have for sale. Remember, however, to add exclusions carefully – sometimes one wrongly excluded word may limit availability of your campaign.

4. Wrongly implemented conversion:

Wrongly implemented conversion usually applies to improper implementation of conversion code/tracking on the website. This problem occurs when the Google Ads conversion code is pasted into the wrong tab and counts wrong actions. The result of such a mistake is false data and this may end up with wrong campaign optimization and investment in ineffective channels/adverts/keywords. Finally you may lose cash.

Therefore, it is essential that you check conversions (“live” at best and shortly after the campaign is launched), as well as verify their number from time to time and compare with Google Analytics, store’s administration panel, or CRM.

Example:

The advertiser who sells products online posted a conversion code on each subpage instead of the so-called thank you page (page confirming the purchase). The effect of this mistake was calculation of a large number of conversions.

Having familiarized with campaign statistics, the advertiser was very satisfied and decided to raise the budget. When he checked the results in the administration panel of its store, it turned out that nobody made any purchase at all.

5. Double conversion:

Double conversion – similar to wrongly implemented code – shows false campaign statistics. Since it indicates a higher number of conversions than it is in reality, it may be the cause of wrong campaign optimization.

Wrong campaign optimization entails a considerable expense which in effect cannot translate into increase in the number of actual conversions and cannot bring higher revenues.

Double conversion may take place when you implement AdWords and Analytics conversions at the same time:

Remember not to add two identical categories of conversions at a time, even if they come from other sources. You need to select one category based on the type of campaign at best.

Please remember that the aforesaid situation does not apply to separate types of conversions. You should therefore, feel free to measure connections, purchases, and subscriptions to the newsletter. This being the case, please remember that the number of conversions presented in the campaign tab is the total of all kinds of conversions implemented in Google Ads. In order to check particular types, you need to go to Conversions tab or use the Segment/Conversions tab.

6. No link between Google Ads and Google Analytics accounts:

No link between the above-stated accounts results in lack of access to a large amount of data which the Analytics account provides. This account gives you an opportunity to check many pieces of information on the website traffic. It presents channels which generate traffic, shows time, traffic rate and rejection ratio, allowing you to analyze website users’ behaviors. Importantly – it allows keeping track of e-commerce transactions and checking the value of conversions.

What is more, it shows the number and value of supported conversions, as well as the most important conversions paths. Thanks to these data, you can check which campaigns have impact on conversions from other sources. In some cases it may seem that campaigns do not converse. When you analyze data you can, however, see that specific campaigns have an influence on conversions and their cancellation would affect the revenues.   

No link between Google Ads and Google Analytics accounts is the main mistake because it prevents full optimization of campaigns due to lack of essential data.

The combination of accounts should occur before the Ads campaign is launched. These accounts can be linked in two ways:

  • from Google Ads account,
  • from Google Analytics account.

Please read this article to learn more about linking accounts.

7. Disabled automatic tagging of target URL address:

Automatic tagging lets you control important data related to Google AdWords campaigns on your Analytics account. It helps you optimize the campaign as it shows behaviors of Internet users on the website after clicking the ad (how much time they spend there, how many subpages they visit, when they leave the shopping cart). After you have activated the automatic tagging,  gclid parameter is added to the URL address of the target website:

Source: https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1034389?hl=pl

However, sometimes websites do not authorize you to use this parameter in URL addresses. When you click the link with gclid, instead of a proper website, you see the error 404 page. Until the problem is solved (e.g. automatic tagging function is activated and manual link tagging is added), every ad click leads to the following message:

as well as loss of some budget because the Internet user got interested in the ad but was unable to visit the site.

Proper tagging is thus another element which must be inspected shortly after the campaign has been launched. To do so, click the ad “live” and check if the target website opens properly.

If the error 404 shows up or the website with disabled buttons/links opens, you have to deactivate automatic tagging and configure relevant tags manually.

8. Lack of campaign optimization:

Failure to optimize the campaign proves to be – to many advertisers – wasted investment. What else would you say about lack of reaction to too high rates per click or ad display to improper keywords?

The term campaign optimization encompasses many actions which must be taken regularly to improve adverts.

To learn what and how to optimize, please get familiar with our Google Ads optimization Checklist.

A Short List of Basic Mistakes of “Funds-wasting” Campaigns:

  • lack of excluding keywords – they generate costs but do not result in conversions,
  • too high rates per click – you should not always stick to position no. 1. It often turns out that ads from 2nd and 3rd position are equally or even better clickable,  
  • too low advert quality result/no work on ad contents – it requires higher costs per click thank in the case of high quality result,
  • budget limits – it may lead premature budget loss on the first half of the day, which results in lack of conversions,
  • failure to exclude old advertisements/keywords which have never conversed – it is costly and is unlikely to lead to conversions,
  • lack of adaptation of rates to mobile devices – and more precisely lack of reduced cost per click in mobile ad in the event of a failure to adjust the website to mobile devices.

As you can see, mistakes and lack of ad optimization may cost advertisers a lot. Only proper operation of the campaign, conversion, tagging and all other settings help you achieve good results and even lower some minor costs.

It is therefore necessary to check campaigns carefully when they are to be launched (assurance that the campaign works well is more valuable than a few or a dozen zlotys per a few clicks in “live” ads) as well as optimize adverts regularly and precisely in order not to waste funds.

Reduce your advertising costs by  20%!

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Author of the article

It’s been 8 years since Maciej took his first steps in the world of marketing - especially the one related to content. So far, he has worked for politicians and the b2b and b2c industries. A fan of content marketing in the digital strategy and its influence on customer navigation and brand reputation. He is also interested in the issue of Corporate Social Responsibility and sees this topic as a springboard for the communication development of many businesses. Responsible for marketing in Verseo. In his free time Maciej reads reports from the world and scientific + sci-fi literature. :)
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