Get a little more out of your PPC: 4 Simple Tests

2 Mar 2010 | written by Josh Summerhays for the PPC section(s)

Get a little more out of your PPC: 4 Simple Tests
Photo by blondyimp

Are you new to PPC? Stuck in a rut with some very mature campaigns?

If you’ve recently set up PPC campaigns, or even if you’ve been managing some campaigns for a while, here are some quick and easy tests you can run to try and squeeze some extra goodness out of your paid search campaigns:

  1. Cost shaving: try decreasing your max bids slightly to see if you can trim a little cost without sacrificing leads or sales. Depending on your budget, you can save a decent sum and maintain performance by cutting your bids even a few cents.
  2. Calls to action: if your click-through rate isn’t as high as you’d expect, create a few new text ads for each ad group and try different calls to action to see if a change sparks an uptick in your click-through rate. Searchers are more likely to click your ad if the CTA clearly indicates what the landing page will enable them to do.
  3. Ad scheduling: if you know which hours of the day generally bring you more sales/leads, try implementing ad scheduling for your PPC campaigns during those hours. Sometimes concentrating your budget during peak times will boost response and bring you more business. Those settings are easily changed in both Google and Yahoo.
  4. Match Types: running only broad match keywords can obscure which search queries are actually bringing you more business. If you have broad keywords bringing in conversions, try phrase and exact match versions of those keywords (Google only) to see if your conversions are coming from that term exactly or if your conversions are coming mainly from more specific “long-tail” keywords. The results of this test can trim a lot of wasted spending! Conversely, if you’re only running exact match keywords, you may be missing out on a lot of long-tail variations that would otherwise bring conversions. Consider adding a few broad match keywords at lower bids to help you identify long-tail opportunities that can be added as exact match keywords.
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