Pay per click (PPC) advertising can be a very useful tool for affiliate marketers if used correctly. However, most times, affiliate marketers tend to jump into the world of PPC without proper research and end up spending much more money than budgeted for as most of the clicks they receive do not result in conversions while they still have to pay.
A poorly visualized PPC campaign might even result in the closing down of a business as PPC advertising becomes an expensive affair if not handled properly. Continuous tweaking in order to get the maximum return on investment is very necessary. If you are frustrated with shelling out money on a PPC campaign and do not see the profits, browse through these common mistakes that most affiliate marketers make at the beginning of their PCC campaigns. Are you making one of these too?
- Casting a Very Wide Net?
Broad keywords can be priced higher than more specific ones. Also, the amount of competition in broad subject keywords is much more than that in more detailed keywords.
While there might be some value in using broad match keywords at the start of your PPC journey, it is advisable to change to more detailed keywords in order to get optimum results and weed out the unwanted ones.
For example, if you bid on ‘Fried Chicken’ instead of ‘Fried Chicken in New York’, you will get a lot of unwanted clicks from people looking for recipes. Another mistake people make is grouping all keywords in one ad group. For Google, this might result in an accumulation of keywords in the hundreds. Always ensure you do not have more than 10 words in each ad group.
For example, Google AdWords gives users a wide range of options for keywords which include broad match, broad match modifier, phrase match, exact match and negative match. For ideal results, you can mix and match several of these options to get the kind of results that you need to pull traffic to your offer.
- Not Budgeting Properly
Budgeting for PPC campaigns is a bit more complicated than setting a figure per year and dividing it by months or days to get an approximation. You must first take a look at the pricing for the keywords you are bidding for. Work out the cost per click and then add an extra 20% to it in order to arrive at your budget. Not having a proper budget can result in failed campaigns or frozen ones which cause more harm to your business than good.
- Sending all Clicks to the Same Page
If you have set up your PPC account to send all clicks through to the same landing page, it just is not the best idea anymore. Any search engine user is looking for specific information from the internet and sending him to your home page with a whole range of products will simply result in a wasted click. While it may not be feasible for you to create a separate landing page for each product, at least try and group products in categories and direct the clicks to these category pages.
Also remember, mobile phone browsers need pages designed specifically for them. If you are not doing this, a lot of visitors to your site who have logged on from their smart phones are quitting it in frustration as the data display is skewed. Make sure that you have a contact details form on your pages in order to capture visitor details and generate leads.
- Not Using Negative Keywords
PPC service providers allow advertisers to see the keywords that triggered their ads. Inappropriate keywords can be added as negative keywords in order to avoid wrong clicks. For example, if you are offering an ebook for sale and not for free, you might want to add the word ‘free’ to your list of negative keywords. The next time someone types in ‘free ebooks’, your ad will not be displayed.
Remember to keep updating your list of negative keywords regularly. This will ensure that your ad shows up only for people who are looking specifically for the products you are selling.
- Not constantly monitoring your Campaign
Tweaking is an integral part of any online advertising campaign and with PPC, it becomes even more necessary in order to keep up with the latest trends. A business cannot afford to simply set up a few keywords and forget about the campaign. New features rolled out by PPC sites can help you improve your campaign but only if you check progress on a regular basis.
Not checking your campaigns regularly can also result in you having to shell out a lot of money for wasted clicks. Make sure you login at least once a day to tweak your settings on keywords and negative keyword lists. If that is not possible, at least hire someone to focus on your ad campaign. Constant re-assessment of keywords, headlines, text and landing pages is required for proper conversion ratios and PPC is not always only about keywords.
On the other hand, if you are the type of person who worries constantly that his/her ad is not running, do not simply search for the keyword or click on your ad. You will simply be paying for your own click. Use preview page services by the PPC company to properly check if your ad campaign is up and running.
Another common mistake made by companies who use the auto placement feature provided by Google AdWords is that in the absence of constant monitoring, your ads will be placed by Google on many non relevant websites which do not result in any returns for you. Unless you constantly monitor the kind of websites that your ads are being placed on and ask Google to stop placing them, you will lose a lot of money.
PPC campaigns are not easy to maintain. As mentioned earlier, it is not always about the keywords. However, if you are running a campaign and it is not working out for you, make sure you tweak it straightaway by keeping the above points in mind.