When considering how to improve your PPC campaign, the main aim of the game should be increasing click through rates whilst reducing your cost per click. One of the best ways to do this is simply to improve the quality of your PPC ads – which are effectively your “shop window” in the online world.
To see your ad placed highly on a SERP, you’ll need to score highly on Google’s Ad Rank metric. Here’s some quick and easy ways to create ads that both Google and users love.
A common mistake that businesses often make is to bunch very different keywords together into one ad group. This makes it impossible for the resulting ads to be highly relevant to the search term. However, relevance is a key factor you should look at when you’re looking to improve your PPC campaign.
If your ads aren’t actually relevant to the landing pages they link to or the search term the user has typed in to find it – what’s the point? It’s a good idea to group keywords tightly together and relate them to just one theme, as well as using your keyword within the copy of that ad. Keeping your ads contextual and relevant will not only naturally improve your click through rate but will also help to boost your Quality Score, meaning your ads will get placed higher up and your ROI will, in turn, improve.
You ads might be relevant and look great – but if they don’t clearly provide the customer with a next step to take, they won’t be compelling or inspire immediate action. Don’t risk losing your click-through at this point, after all of your hard work!
It’s not good enough to insert a simple “click now”. You need to consider what you want your user to do next – and, more widely, what the point of your PPC campaign actually is. If you just want to drive search traffic and user engagement, a softer prompt like “browse now” or “find out more” will do nicely. To drive sales however, these are unlikely to do the job well. For this purpose you’ll need a much stronger command to persuade users to click, such as “buy now”. Don’t underestimate the power of a good, clear call to action – it can really make the difference between a user looking through your products, or actually buying something.
We’re constantly surprised at how many PPC ads haven’t been thoroughly tested before being rolled out. Using A/B testing and having two or more slightly different versions of your ads running at any one time will provide you with essential insights into what’s working and what isn’t, so you’re constantly improving your click through rates and ROI.
So, what elements could you vary and test? Good places to start are display URLs, descriptions, promotions and prices. Use your findings to fine tune your ads, and you’ll be unstoppable. Also, consistently testing your ads will make sure they’re kept up to date and relevant, and that old promotions don’t creep in. There’s nothing worse for your PPC campaign (and your customer loyalty) than outdated ads.
A lot of businesses don’t take real advantage of – or even know about – the brilliant range of ad extensions available to help you improve your PPC campaign. These extensions are basically extra bits of information you can add on to your ad to more accurately represent your landing page and give the user the information they’re looking for.
Common extensions include:
Google recommends the use of these extensions – as they help to further serve the needs of searchers. In fact, Google recently revealed that use of extensions can improve click through rates by up to 30%.
Strong PPC ads have three things in common when it comes to copy: they all mention features, benefits and a strong call to action.
We’ve already been through that last one, so let’s concentrate on the first two aspects: how to pull out features and benefits within your copy.
Start by identifying your USP (unique selling point). What makes you different from your competitors? Why should users click on your ad, and not theirs? Including this in your copy will help your ad to leap from the page. When it comes to benefits – ask yourself what’s actually in it for your customer. If your ad is selling lawnmowers, you need to look past the product itself. When a customer purchases a lawnmower, they’re actually looking for a perfectly manicured lawn; somewhere they can be proud of and go to relax. Pinpointing the emotional reasons behind a user’s purchasing behaviour is the key to great ad copy.