PPC optimization (pay-per-click optimization) is a vital element of running a successful campaign. The “set it and forget it” method will not help you accomplish your paid advertising goals, and you will be left wondering what went wrong. If this sounds like you, we have the tips you need to start conducting Google and Facebook optimizations to improve your ad performance and help you reach your overall paid advertising goals.
The Importance of Optimizing Campaigns for Maximum Ad Performance
The truth is, most campaigns won’t perform their best immediately after deployment. It may take a few tweaks to the copy or creative over the span of a couple of weeks to achieve your desired results. You must check up on all the campaigns you’re running at least once a week. This is because one campaign may perform well one month, and your KPI (key performance indicator) could be missed the next. If you fail to improve and maintain your campaigns regularly, any of the initial results you produced will quickly decline.
How to Improve PPC: Meeting Goals
One of the first steps to meeting your PPC goals is having S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely) goals in place. Establishing these objectives will help you set the most effective targets for your campaigns. S.M.A.R.T. goals are a critical driving factor throughout the life of your campaign, so be sure that you’re taking the time to think them through.
If you don’t outline your goals and objectives, it can be challenging to track progress and measure success. To create objectives, start by assessing your business needs. Then, create short- and long-term goals that fulfill those needs.
It’s a good idea to focus on the results you want your campaign to achieve. For example, you may want to increase overall sales by ten percent and decrease your CPA (cost-per-acquisition) by three percent. Whatever your S.M.A.R.T. goals and objectives may be, ensure they are sustainable for your business.
Sustain and Improve Ad Performance
When optimizing campaigns, almost every marketer has the goal of sustaining or improving ad performance. This is easier said than done, but the tips in this blog post will help you keep your campaigns running smoothly and achieve your business objectives—as long as you’re willing to put the time and effort into optimizing.
How to Improve PPC: Things to Look at When Performing PPC Optimization
There are certain aspects of campaigns that you should always look at when making PPC optimizations. These elements will differ, depending on which platform you’re using for advertising. We’ve broken our tips down into separate sections for Google and Facebook ad optimization.
Facebook PPC Optimization
Advertising on Facebook and optimizing your campaigns to achieve your desired results is simple when you have the knowledge to do it correctly.
Your ad copy has a significant influence on your campaign. It must be both creative and engaging enough to drive results while keeping your CPA down. You can create great copy by appealing to the emotions of your target audience. If your advertising message appeals to your potential customers’ emotions, they are more likely to take the desired action.
Another important aspect of your ad copy is that it is in line with what you’re offering on your landing page. If your copy doesn’t match up with your landing page, your potential customers will be confused by where the link leads them. This may lead to a reduction in conversions and distrust in your business.
If you suspect that copy may be the reason behind your campaign’s poor performance, go ahead and test a few new versions of your copy.
Creative can make or break your Facebook ad performance. In today’s digital age, your potential customers are driven by attractive graphics and images. There are many aspects of ad creative that can be changed. For example, you may have too much text on an image—or not enough.
When designing your creative, be sure to create all of the correct sizes for the placements you want to use. If your images are the right size in Facebook Stories, for example, they are more attractive to your potential customers and, therefore, more effective.
You should also keep in mind that video ads typically perform better than static images because Facebook’s autoplay feature allows the movement in videos to capture a user’s attention quickly. For this reason, we recommend you integrate video ads into your campaign strategy whenever possible.
Google PPC Optimization
You should pay close attention to the next few critical aspects when optimizing Google Ads.
Relevance Between Ads and Search Terms
Your ads need to be relevant to what users are searching for. Relevancy is vital when running ads on any platform, but this is especially true with Google Ads.
For example, if you’re selling dog food and one of your keywords is “dog,” your ads are going to show up for search terms like “dog training” and “dog grooming.” Using irrelevant search terms puts your ads in front of people who aren’t looking for your product or service. This only hurts your campaign attempts, which leads us to our next point about negative keywords.
If you discover that your ads are showing up for search terms that aren’t relevant to your offer, be sure to add those terms to your list of negative keywords. Adding negative keywords will specifically omit them from your campaign. When adding a negative keyword, you are telling Google not to show your ads when a user searches a specific term.
Including negative keywords is a great way to improve ad performance. Looking at your search terms report is an effective method to find ideas for negative keywords.
Your ad copy has a significant influence on your CTR (click-through rate) while your landing page influences the conversion rate. When making PPC optimizations, ensure that your ad copy is aligned with your landing page copy and offer in order to drive overall conversions. If these two sets of copy are misaligned, you should optimize them so that the language used is consistent across the campaign. Your copy also needs to be compelling (and clickable) enough for a user to take the desired action—even if they have never heard of your brand before.
Why Your Ads May Not Be Working
There are many reasons why your ads may not be performing as well as you’d like. As I mentioned before, your ads probably won’t perform well directly after you deploy them. High performing ads take time, but the good news is that it’s relatively easy to diagnose the cause of poor performance.
You need to stick with your ads and continually improve them. Don’t be discouraged if your ads aren’t reaching your goals immediately. Instead, learn what makes high-converting ads and use that knowledge to adjust your ads accordingly.
Three main factors can cause your ads to stray from meeting your goals: misaligned targeting, limited budget, and limited time.
Your ad performance can be broken down by age group, gender, location, and more. This gives you insight into who is interacting with your ads. It’s important to look at all of these factors when making PPC optimizations to understand better who’s engaging with your ads.
Sometimes, the data you uncover while optimizing your campaign may not align with the audience you are trying to target. You may reveal a new buyer persona that you weren’t aware of, or you may realize that the people interacting with your ads aren’t converting. If these or any similar scenarios are the case, you should adjust your targeting to achieve better results.
It’s essential to allocate resources to your paid marketing efforts for them to be worthwhile and effective. Having a limited budget can cause your ads to perform poorly, and, unfortunately, there are few things you can do to improve your PPC efforts without sufficient funds.
If your company has a limited ad budget but still wants to prioritize ads, you must keep a close eye on your campaigns to ensure that ad spend isn’t being wasted unnecessarily.
The industry standard for both Facebook and Google PPC budgets is five dollars minimum per day, per campaign. With this budget, the advertising platform will be able to get enough data to keep the campaign moving forward.
Limited time can be another inhibitor to properly performing PPC optimizations. This can mean insufficient time to learn what works best for your particular business or a lack of time to allocate to optimizations, which is a vital component of successful PPC campaigns.
If you are finding it difficult to set aside a large block of time during the week, try taking five to ten minutes a day to review your ad performance and make PPC optimizations, when necessary. Remember to keep your focus on what you’re trying to accomplish and check on your KPIs daily.
If you have limited time, you can also consider hiring an agency to create and run ad campaigns for you. Sometimes, it is best to allow professionals to handle your PPC campaigns. An agency can do your Facebook and Google ad optimizations, as well as deploy your ads for a fraction of the cost of paying a full-time digital ads manager. If you work with an agency, you can also expect monthly PPC reports that highlight your KPIs, so you’re able to see what matters most to you in your campaign performance.
Common Issues That Affect Ad Performance
Many factors can affect the performance of your advertising efforts on both Facebook and Google. We’re going to walk you through some of the most common issues that advertisers face on the two platforms so you can get a better idea of what to look out for.
Facebook PPC Optimization Issues
With sufficient monitoring and PPC optimization, you can identify and correct these common Facebook ad optimization problems.
Scaling Facebook campaigns can be difficult. Scaling too quickly can result in a higher CPL (cost-per-lead) or CPC (cost-per-click), and a lower ROAS (return on ad spend). The trick to scaling is to do it in ten percent increments each week. Your metrics will sometimes go up at this rate, but everything usually levels out in the end.
Another common issue with Facebook ad performance can be your offer. Maybe your offer isn’t appealing to the audience you’re targeting, or you’ve been running the same ads for too long and they’re no longer effective. Sometimes all it takes for an advertisement to perform better is a refresh of the copy or creative. Other times, you may need to look into the relevance of what you’re offering.
We’ve all seen an ad with negative comments while scrolling through our News Feed. You must regularly monitor the comments on the ads you’re running to ensure they aren’t hurting your conversions.
You can either hide, delete, or respond to negative comments, but the last thing you want to do is not address them at all. You should think of ignoring negative comments as paying for bad publicity about your business to be spread to your potential customers.
Incorrectly Placed Pixels
The final issue we will touch on is incorrectly placed pixels, which can negatively affect Google Ads as well. It’s crucial that your pixels are placed correctly and tracking enough conversions.
Pixels are significant to ad performance for a couple of reasons: they help you create better ads and help you enhance your targeting. The data that pixels pull ensures that your ads are seen by those who are most likely to take the desired action. In addition, pixels can be used to create valuable retargeting audiences.
Another common problem is having a landing page on a different domain from your main website and failing to place your pixel on that domain. It’s important to ensure that your pixel is placed on every landing page dedicated to an ad. This is because pixels help track conversions, and the information gathered by your pixel can be used later on to create valuable retargeting audiences.
Google Ads PPC Optimization Issues
Similar to Facebook ads, many challenges can arise while you’re running Google Ads campaigns. Let’s cover the most common problems that are often overlooked when performing PPC optimizations.
Irrelevant Search Queries
Monitoring search queries is a critical aspect of optimizing campaigns on Google, especially if you have broad match keywords. You need to ensure that your ads are showing up for queries that are relevant to what your ads are offering.
In other words, your ads need to match search intent for the keywords you’re bidding on. Sometimes, ads can show up for outlandish queries that you shouldn’t be wasting advertising dollars on. This is where negative keywords can help you put your ads in front of the right people—and avoid the wrong ones.
Landing pages can create issues when advertising on any platform. It’s important to frequently check that URLs for landing pages are working correctly. If they aren’t, you need to stop running ads to that URL and set up redirects immediately. Otherwise, you’re spending advertising dollars running ads that are sending potential customers to a broken link, which, in turn, decreases overall ad performance.
The Importance of PPC Reporting
Reporting on the performance and overall health of ad accounts is essential, whether you’re an in-house ads manager or working at an agency.
If you’re in house, reports will show your boss or coworkers how ads are performing. As an agency running ads on behalf of a client, reporting is especially important because it helps you share the success of campaigns with your clients and showcases your value as a partner of their company. If you’re an agency ads manager sharing a PPC report with a client, be sure to use metrics in the report that your client can easily understand.
Monthly reporting on your ad performance is a great way to track KPIs and gauge performance over time. With the historical data in these reports, you will be able to predict which types of campaigns you need more of to keep moving customers down your marketing funnel. These reports will also help monitor the efficacy of ads to ensure performance is trending positively.
To see how campaigns are performing at a moment’s notice, you can create a real-time dashboard with your PPC data. This type of dashboard also provides full transparency on campaign performance to clients. Keep reading to discover how to build one of these reports properly.
How to Properly Create and Present PPC Reports
Creating a PPC report is simple when you know which tools best suit your needs and essential metrics to include. At Uhuru, we use a reporting software called Databox to share ad performance with clients. This platform allows us to create templates that align with the goals and business objectives of each client.
Reporting software can be used to build out templates that pull the KPIs most important to you (and your client). Different platforms can do different things, like creating graphs and tables or sharing insights in real time. It’s important to do research and find the tool that works best for your needs.
Now You’re Ready to Optimize!
As you’ve learned, it’s vital to make PPC optimizations if you want to maintain and improve the success of your campaigns. PPC reports make it easier to show your clients and coworkers the progress you’re making toward your campaign’s overall goals in a way that they can easily understand. Use this knowledge to help make better improvements to your campaigns.
Ready to start optimizing your PPC campaigns? Learn how to calculate a profitable Google Ads strategy.