The Five Pitfalls Secretly Hurting your Paid Search Advertising Efforts

Just like an exceptional recipe, search advertising campaigns have to be done using the right ingredients in the right manner to yield positive results. Also, known as pay per click campaign, search advertising requires ingredients such as the right keywords, landing pages and ad copy to appeal to the target market and drive new leads to a business. On the other hand, the wrong combination of search advertising ingredients and the campaign topples over costing you lots of advertising money.

Search advertising keywords are the most essential ingredients of search advertising. They are a little bit tricky to grasp, but have enormous ability to impact your advertising success. Since there are different kinds of pay per click campaigns and each one has different advertising goals, the advice differs depending on the type of campaign. Our focus is on local businesses targeting local consumers in a bid to get more leads to their enterprises. So what are the pitfalls you need to watch out for? Here is a list of 5 pay per click keywords damaging your search advertising results secretly.

1. Competitor Keywords

You may not be aware of this, but adding competitor name keywords to your advertising campaign is like throwing your money away altogether. They run a high cost per visit because they are not as relevant to your website as the competitor’s site. In addition, consumers searching for your competitor know what they are looking for and, therefore, ignore your ad or contact since it is irrelevant. In the long run, competitor keywords suck your budget dry and do not produce any returns on the investment made. Worse still, if the name is trademarked, Google will restrict its use in the advertisement.

If your motive for using competitor keywords is to test their value, there is a safer way to do so without hurting your campaign. Create a separate campaign using the competitor’s keywords with its budget and track its performance. This way you can follow the return on investment of competitor’s keywords without affecting the results of your campaign.

2. Generic Keywords

As said before, a recipe calls for a well-defined and specific ingredients list, including whether to use specific or generic brands. In the same way, a search advertising campaign needs a very specific keyword relevant to the nature of the business. Take for example; a religious counselor who uses the term counselor as a keyword. His or her site will get traffic including from people looking for a different kind of counseling, for instance, mental health therapy. While the additional traffic may seem harmless, the searches are not relevant to the religious counselor and therefore, only yield insignificant results.

Concrete and descriptive keywords improve results significantly. For instance, in the above scenario, keywords such as spiritual therapy or pastoral counselor are more relevant and will drive relevant traffic to the business. Another way to improve results is the addition of geo-specific terms to the keywords, for instance, Spiritual Therapist Seattle. To maximize the success of search advertising campaigns, use long-tail and localized keywords to achieve relevancy.

3. Research-related Keywords

Keywords such as bankruptcy law, foot pain treatment and lose weight fast are all research related. Research related keywords, just like generic terms, generate a lot of irrelevant traffic. Although the keywords look relevant and may produce numerous clicks, they devour your budget without producing new leads or generating much in return. To craft a good keyword list, you must get into the mind of a consumer and understand how they think and search.

Research keywords are best for SEO since consumers using them are looking for advice, most probably from articles and blog posts. In search advertising, research related keywords are relevant only if you are trying to get the consumers to buy. This is because the keywords are used by consumers who are gathering information about a product or service before making the purchase decision.

4. High Spend Keywords

Tracking conversions is crucial for your search advertising campaign because it helps you calculate return on investment and most importantly helps tell productive from non-productive keywords. Non-productive keywords should be removed from the campaign because they cost a lot of advertising money without producing quality leads. If you are running your own pay per click campaigns, removing non-productive keywords calls for accurate and regular reviews of your performance. However, if working with a search advertising partner, your campaign can be optimized for conversions, not only for clicks but also for conversions. This way, you can ensure that your keywords and indeed your entire campaign concentrate on what really matters-leads that turn into sales, not mere clicks.

5. Keywords That Don’t Drive Clicks

A good way to measure ad relevancy is the Click through Rate (CRT). When a good number of consumers click your ads, it means that they find them relevant to what they were searching for, and this translates to a high CRT. On the other hand, a low click through rate means that your keywords are not very relevant to your target audience.

Click through rates affect the ad cost per click and its position in search results; therefore, it is imperative to ensure maximum CTR rate. Getting rid of under-performing keywords and those with a small number of clicks enhances CTR and consequently improves ad position in search results in addition to reducing the average cost per click.

Make it your policy to evaluate keywords that produce a large number of impressions but have a low click through rate. Eliminate starting with those with a CTR below 0.5%, and you can adjust to keywords with below 1% CTR. It is important to remember clicks are not the only measure of success. Consequently, focus on quality contacts left by leads such as calls and emails to evaluate the effectiveness of the ad keywords. For example, a keyword with fewer clicks, but with quality calls or emails is still successful compared to one with a dozen low-quality clicks.

Master Your Keywords

Do not expect to get it right with the first attempt, even master chefs don’t. There is a lot of learning along the way that will transform your campaign from average to exceptional. Try different keyword combinations until you find the best for your business. It does not have to be a very difficult process; there are automated solutions to help. Geoklix, for instance, employs optimization technology to help concentrate budget and effort on the keywords that drive more conversions and eventually more revenue from advertising.