16690 Swingley Ridge Rd., Ste. 260
AdWords PPC Campaign
Chesterfield, MO 63017
Management Best Practices
You have set up one or several PPC campaigns in Google AdWords, now
what? How often should you check them? How closely do they need to be
16690 Swingley Ridge Rd., Ste. 260 monitored and what are the best ways to do so?
Chesterfield, MO 63017
This guide will help you in optimizing your PPC management, including:
advice on what information to analyze and how often, what reports should
be automated, and which ones should be run as needed, and finally,
To begin with, we find that there are generally three basic levels of
The most important step in 1. Ongoing - Includes daily, weekly, monthly reviews and
ongoing PPC management optimization.
is to identify your goals.
2. Event - Occurs during a unique situation, such as a new product
launch or holiday season.
3. Troubleshooting - When there is an unforeseen change, when
information surprises you or an issue occurs in your account that
Each of these three situations requires a different approach for campaign
management and different sets of reporting metrics.
1 Ongoing Pay Per Click Management
The most important step in ongoing PPC management is to identify your
goals. If you have an E-commerce site, the number of conversions or the cost-
16690 Swingley Ridge Rd., Ste. 260 per-conversion are probably your most important metrics. If you have an
Chesterfield, MO 63017 informational website, driving click-through rate may be of the most interest
to you. Once you have identified the metrics that define “success,” you know
what you want to measure. The next step is to decide which reports to run
and how often. Here are a few of the most common and helpful reports in
Campaign and Ad Group Level Reports
Each of these reports is pretty straight-forward and makes it simple to
summarize data by account, campaign, or ad group depending on what level
of detail is of the most interest. They are especially helpful in understanding
trends over time.
For these reports (as with all reports), you can choose the date range, which
metrics you want displayed (including cost, CTR, ad position, conversions,
cost-per-conversion, etc.) and automate them. Scheduling these reports (or
any of the following reports) to run on a regular basis and to be emailed to
you and others in your work group is a great way to ensure they are being
Search Query Report
This is one of the most important reports to run and can help to determine
which keywords need to be added as well as negative keywords. Depending
on the volume of keywords and traffic your ads receive, you may want to
consider running this report weekly or monthly.
The search query report identifies which keywords are triggering your ads,
which can be especially helpful if you are running broad or phrase match
keywords. This will allow you to determine keywords that should be in
your campaign or negative keywords to add to prevent your ad from being
triggered by unqualified searches.
16690 Swingley Ridge Rd., Ste. 260 This report gives you a detailed look at your keywords and the data associated
Chesterfield, MO 63017 with each, including: CTR, average cost-per-click, conversions, average
position, and quality score. Keywords make up the backbone of your
campaigns, as a result understanding how each keyword is performing is vital
to success. Comparing trends in keyword data over time can let you know
which keywords are working, which need to be changed, and how you should
adjust your bidding strategy. This report (as with all reports in AdWords) can
be exported into Microsoft Excel for easy viewing, sorting and making notes.
Understanding Quality Score
The Keyword Report lets you view the Quality Score for each keyword,
but why is this so important? Quality Score affects the amount you
pay per click and what ad your position is in on the page. If your
keywords have a low quality score, take a look at your ad groups and
the keywords in your ad groups and make sure they are closely related.
Consider breaking your ad groups into separate ad groups to make
sure only closely related keywords appear in each. Also, make sure
the ad text and landing page is closely related to the keywords. A high
historical CTR can also help improve Quality Score. AdWords takes all
of these factors into consideration when determining Quality Score.
Geographic Performance Report
This report allows you to view your performance by location. You can analyze
your impressions, clicks, conversions and other metrics by their geographic
distribution. You can use this report to calculate data on a daily basis by
country/territory, region (state), metro area, and city. Based on what you see
in your report, you may want to separate your campaigns into several smaller
campaigns that are specifically targeted to different locations. You can also
create ads customized to a particular region and allocate your budget among
Destination URL Report
16690 Swingley Ridge Rd., Ste. 260 The URL Performance Report breaks down metric s such as conversions by
Chesterfield, MO 63017 landing page. This allows you to determine which landing pages are most suc-
888.629.4672 cessful in driving conversions. If a particular landing page is receiving high
traffic but not receiving conversions, visitors may not be finding what they
are expecting when they click on your ad. Revising your landing page to drive
conversions with a clearer call-to-action may be necessary, or revising your
keywords and ad text to drive more targeted traffic to the landing page may
Placement Performance Report
If you are running ads on the Display Network, this report will allow you to
see how each placement is performing, including CTR, conversions, and cost.
You can also choose to view placements by domain or individual URL. By
understanding how each site is performing, you can determine whether you
want to add them as a managed placement and increase the bid or add the
domain or URL as a negative, meaning ads will no longer show there.
Linking your AdWords and Analytics accounts and viewing data in
Analytics can be critical in understanding how visitors from a PPC ad
are behaving once they arrive at your site. From Analytics, you can
determine how long a visitor from a PPC ad is spending on your site,
how many pages they viewed and if they left the page immediately after
they landed on it. You can also view conversions by time of day, which is
not available through AdWords reporting.
2 Event Pay Per Click Management
As with ongoing PPC management, defining your goals when managing
PPC during an important event is also critical. During a new product launch,
16690 Swingley Ridge Rd., Ste. 260 your goal may be to increase sales; therefore, conversion-related metrics
Chesterfield, MO 63017 would be the most important to review. However, if you are launching a
new website, increasing traffic and creating brand recognition may be the
most important objection. Therefore, CTR and total clicks may be key while
During event management, all of the reports previously mentioned can be
used to monitor performance; however, the frequency that they are reviewed
should be increased to match the level of increased advertising. For example,
watching bids closely and adjusting frequently can ensure the best ad position
during the critical marketing period. Keeping a close eye on the Search Query
Report can allow you to include negative keywords that may be costing you
money as well as Display Network Placements that are not performing.
Comparing trends not only to the previous month, but also to a similar event
in the past, such as a previous product launch or last year’s holiday season,
In addition to changes to how you monitor reports, remember to make your
keywords, ads, and landing pages all relevant to the event. This can result in
higher user satisfaction, better engagement once on your site, and a better
With Scheduling, you can be sure never to forget when to stop or start
a campaign during an important event. You can find this under the
Settings tab within your Campaign.
3 Troubleshooting Pay Per Click
Of course, no one wants to have to go into “troubleshooting-management”
mode when it comes to their PPC campaigns. Unfortunately, at one point or
16690 Swingley Ridge Rd., Ste. 260 another, most will have to troubleshoot some aspect of their PPC. Here are
Chesterfield, MO 63017 some examples of issues that can occur in a PPC campaign:
Keyword has become inactive for search – this may occur if your keywords
do not have a high enough Quality Score or maximum CPC to trigger ads.
Try refining keywords, adjusting match types, making the ads and landing
page more relevant to your keywords, increasing CPC, or trying a new
New competition, increased spend by competition and changes in
a competitor’s campaign can all put pressure on your campaign’s
effectiveness. You may see the effects of this through a lower ad position
and a higher CPC needed to maintain your target ad position. Since Quality
Score determines the CPC for your desired ad position, making sure your
Quality Scores are high is a great way to keep costs down and increase ad
position. You may also need to increase your maximum CPC bids in order
to maintain your desired ad position.
Disapproved ads – this may occur if an ad does not meet AdWords’
advertising policies. If this happens to an ad you have created, review their
policies to determine how to correct the ad.
You search for your ads but do not see them – this could be due to a
number of issues, including ineligible keywords, budget or billing issues, or
if you have targeted your ads to a different location than you are located in,
your ads will not show when you conduct a search for them.
Budget and Billing Issues
16690 Swingley Ridge Rd., Ste. 260 Daily budget exhausted – your daily budget has been used up, so your
Chesterfield, MO 63017 ads will no longer show on that day. Consider increasing your budget or
experimenting with different ad scheduling or geo-targeting to narrow down
Daily budget is too low so ads are spaced our very far – if your daily budget
is set too low for AdWords to display your ad on most clicks, it will show
your ad infrequently to stretch the budget out across the day. Again, consider
increasing your budget or experimenting with ways to make your budget
Account billing issues – if you prepay, you may need to refill your spend, and
if you postpay, you may need to check that the credit card is still valid and has
If you have noticed a huge increase in clicks or drop in conversion rate and
feel it may be due to click fraud, you may want to report this to Google.
Google AdWords usually detects and blocks click fraud; however, it can
occasionally go undetected. Google can help to determine if click fraud is
occurring, help you claim back the money spent on these clicks, and then you
can also block these IP addresses in the future (in AdWords tools under the
16690 Swingley Ridge Rd., Ste. 260 The most important steps in any successful PPC campaign or Internet
Chesterfield, MO 63017 marketing strategy are identifying goals and then identifying the metrics
and reports needed to monitor those goals. Depending on goals and
traffic, reports can be reviewed every day to every month. Once a reporting
frequency is established, normal changes and trends can be easily identified.
Having a good understanding of how your campaign performs can help when
monitoring the outcome of an event or noticing an issue that arises within a
campaign. Deciding on what to review, how often to review, and automating
the reports to be sent to your email regularly can all help in understanding
and monitoring your campaigns simply and effectively.
If you have any questions about our Pay per Click Management
services, please contact a consultant at The Net Impact today by
phone at 1-888-629-4672 or online at www.thenetimpact.com.