First and foremost, the best way to think of Google AdWords is as a live auction. Like an auction, imagine that everyone is bidding on one item (keyword) and trying to get that keyword for the best possible price.
However, unlike an auction, it isn’t solely about who has the most money to bid, it is about being strategic with your bidding and making your money work smarter.
With competition being so high in AdWords, especially since the removal of the right hand ads, it is essential that you are using best bidding practices correctly and consistently for success. If you’re bidding too high on a keyword, it can result in you blowing precious budget at a rapid speed with little to no ROI. If you’re bidding too low, it can result in you missing valuable opportunities for your business. It is all about seizing opportunities and getting the best ROI for your set budgets.
There are several ways, however, to cut costs and get the most bang for your buck:
Manage the cost and value of your customers through careful Cost-Per-Click optimisation. Use your Max CPC bid to increase or decrease your cost per click, where required, so that you can achieve an affordable CPC, whilst retaining a strong average ad position.
You are quite literally throwing money away by keeping non-converting keywords switched on, as you are getting nothing or little in return. Set keyword boundaries for your business based on its size and/or how much disposable budget you have.
Google wants its users to see ads for products and services that they are actually interested in, supplied to them by quality businesses. Ergo, the higher your quality score is, the more your ads will be shown to prospective customers and the less money you typically end up paying. You can improve your quality score by adding in relevant ads and keywords and ensuring the ads all go to the most relevant landing page for that ad group. Put yourself in the shoes of your customer, remembering the user journey needs to be as painless and efficient as possible.
Think about your keywords in detail. If you have several different match types in one ad group such as [cat], +cat and “cat” they will be bidding against each other, pushing your CPCs up as a result. Separate the different match type keywords into their own clearly labelled ad groups e.g “Cat – Exact Match” and add in cross-match negative keywords. You want to keep your AdWords account as clean and concise as possible, as clutter will inevitably cause problems for you later on.
If you are using keyword match types outside of [exact match], you run the risk of driving irrelevant traffic to your website. Adding negative keywords to your AdWords account helps you to improve relevancy and click through rate, ultimately resulting in a higher quality score and lower CPCs.
Albeit obvious, this is probably one of the most important things you can do to cut daily costs. Two of the benefits PPC has over other marketing models are that you only pay for clicks and that you can set your own budgets. Ensure you set your budgets at an affordable level that you can sustain throughout the month.
Mobile generally has less competition than desktop, which means you can often acquire a higher position at a lower bid than other channels. Carefully assess what you can sensibly set your mobile CPC bids at, so you can still retain a high ad position.
This is an important factor in successful AdWords bidding. It is easy to forget that potential customers have to go to work, do their housework, go shopping, pick their children up etc. and aren’t always by their computers. Check the dimensions in AdWords for the best performing days and times and the worse and increase or decrease your bids respectively for maximum impact.
If you apply a combination of two or more of these simple changes, you are sure to notice a difference in your AdWords account spend.
The great thing about AdWords is that it is almost instantaneous, so you should start to notice a change in your costs within 24 hours.
Go ahead, start saving money today!
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