Google Adwords Cheat Sheet: Tips and Tricks to Boost Your ROI
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By John Alexander Adam
Google adwords are the cornerstone of most direct marketing campaigns in modern online marketing. As an online marketing professional, being able to optimize ROI on your company’s adword spend more effectively than competitors is often considered a key indicator of your performance. While having the basic skills to set up and monitor campaigns on the Google Adwords platform is basically a must-have for anyone in online marketing, knowing how to go about maximizing ROI is what will get you noticed.
It’s all about optimization and knowing how to make the most of the full suite of features on the adwords tool, as well as being able to use other third party tools and utilizing the little tricks your competitors hopefully don’t. PPC stats site Sitewit says that on average businesses make $2 for every $1 they spend on adwords. As an online marketing professional, you of course want your performance to exceed the average. So here’s a few tips top Google Adwords gurus use to keep them one step ahead of the curve!
- Patience – Build Your Funnel
One mistake that many Google adwords campaigns make is having the primary goal of a direct sale. The ‘conversion’ is considered to be a direct sale or enquiry. It depends on the product or service you are selling but users clicking on your ad can potentially be at several different points along the sales cycle. They could still be trying to figure out exactly what they need, or already know but are exploring what the different options are. They may already be familiar with the different options and are in the process of comparing them or they could be ready to make a purchase.
If all of your efforts are focused on only the last category of ‘Clicker’, then you are essentially wasting the spend generated by those at earlier stages of their buy cycle. However, if your main conversion goal is getting their email address you can then communicate with them and educate them along their path to a final decision, greatly increasing the percentage of ‘Clickers’ that eventually buy from you. It’s a longer process but building up a sales funnel in this way can over the longer term hugely increase your final ROI.
- Understand Your Visitors
The Google Analytics tool can give you great insights into who your visitors are if you know what to look for. Understanding prominent behavioral patterns will allow you to better understand the best conversion approach once they are on your website. For example, if the number of new visitors to your site is significantly greater than the number of returning visitors this suggests that most visitors to your site are not familiar with your brand. In this scenario you will most likely be far more successful if your approach is to educate them rather than go directly for the sale. This is just one example but educating yourself on how to interpret that kind of statistic correctly will go a long way to improving your eventual ROI.
- Leverage Remarketing
Many adwords marketers admit defeat at the point a ‘Clicker’ leaves the site without having responded to any potential conversion point, such as leaving an email address, making a purchase, or something in between. This fatally ignores the fact that using remarketing can significantly boost conversion rates of visitors that have initially been directed to the site via adwords campaigns.
Statistics show that 70% of online shopping carts are abandoned before the purchase is completed. But by having already come to your site via adwords you know that there is a high chance the ‘Clicker’ is genuinely interested in your product or service. Direct, targeted messages delivered via remarketing campaigns are statistically the most effective ad display strategy and using them to follow up on visitors initially arriving via adwords campaigns increases subsequent conversion rates significantly.
- Keep A/B Testing Your Landing Pages
The actual adword is only the first part of an adwords marketing campaign. Integral to the conversion rates of any adwords campaign is the landing page ‘Clickers’ arrive at once they have clicked on your add. There is a lot of extremely interesting statistical analysis that has been published in recent years on how subtle changes to the wording of messages and design of landing pages can make a significant difference to conversion ratios.
Despite that, statistics from SEO consultants SEOGadget show that only 44% of companies use A/B testing to compare potential differences in conversion rates between variations of the landing pages they use. And far less employ a strategy of ongoing A/B testing to continually optimize results. The likely lack of effort by your competitors in this regard can give you a great advantage if you do things correctly and keep optimizing the conversion ratios of the landing pages you use with your adwords campaigns.
- Analytics, Analytics, Analytics
Whatever you do and try with your adwords campaigns, the key to success and improving conversion ratios is to constantly analyze the data. Google Analytics is a good enough tool for most businesses and there are also other 3rd party analysis tools you can try. Adwords marketing is essentially a statistical science. If you constantly analyze the statistics available you will receive insights that will enable you to continually improve the performance of your campaigns, improving ROI.
If you want to take your adwords marketing skills to the next level, Morgan International offers a number of different digital marketing diplomas at locations across the Middle East. Learn more about our Professional Diploma in Search Marketing class launching in Beirut this Fall, in partnership with the Digital Marketing Institute (DMI).