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Google Ads is one of the most powerful ways to acquire new customers online. You can leverage Google’s authority to be found by people actively searching for a company to provide your services. This is highly targeted traffic from potential customers who want to contact you for an estimate or to schedule a consultation.

Sounds good, right?

There’s just one problem: it’s EXTREMELY easy to waste money if you aren’t a Google Ads expert

Many business owners who attempt Google Ads on their own squander ALL their budget with zero return.

Google Ads is rife with tricky and counterintuitive settings. If you don’t have a lot of time to dedicate to learning its intricacies, it’s going to eat up your money fast. Your ads will show for searches that are not relevant to your business, and your budget will go to waste on clicks from people who aren’t even in the market for your services.

Even when a Google Ads program is professionally managed, if the campaign manager doesn’t have good systems in place to avoid bad spend, they’re simply not going to maximize your return. They’ll leave leads on the table you could have had for your business.

The good news is that LinkNow is here to help. We want you to get the most out of your Google Ads budget even if you’re not having it managed by us. We’re offering a free Google Ads audit to anyone managing their own campaign or having it managed by another agency. Note: we’ve yet to find a single campaign we didn’t have recommendations for.

Here are some of the most common errors we find during Google Ads audits.

Issues with the Negative Keyword List or no Negative Keywords

Negative keywords are one of the simplest, most effective tools for ensuring your Ads budget isn’t going to waste. When you have a word added as a negative keyword, your ads won’t show if a searcher includes that word in their query. If you’re a commercial cleaning company that doesn’t offer residential services, you don’t want your ads showing when people include terms like “home”, “residential”, or “housekeeping” in their searches. That’s where the negative keyword list comes in.

We’ve seen clicks from people looking for products when the advertising company offers services. We’ve also witnessed clicks related to car repairs for a company that doesn’t service vehicles. An abundance of clicks from people looking for information who have no intention of hiring a company is also a common mistake that can be easily avoided with an effective negative keyword list.

The worst part is when the negative keyword list is mismanaged, and the same bad clicks happen repeatedly. This is one of the easiest ways to rack up wasted spend and blow through your budget with nothing to show for it. The only thing worse than spending money on an irrelevant click is doing it repeatedly.

Poor Campaign Organization – Are You Lumping Too Many Services Into One Ad Group?

A tightly organized campaign ensures that the most relevant information possible is shown to every searcher. For a given ad group, if the keywords, ad copy, and conversion page are all centered around one service or category, every time the ads display, the searcher will see information that’s highly relevant to their search query.

Conversely, if everything’s lumped into one ad group, the searcher will only ever see general ad copy and land on catch-all conversion pages. This reduces the overall relevancy of your campaign, which means a lower click-through rate, conversion rate, quality score, and ultimately a higher cost-per-click.

In plain English, this means less bang for your buck.

Not Using Dedicated Pay-Per-Click Conversion Pages

A final error we see very often is campaigns that direct traffic to a website’s home page rather than a dedicated pay-per-click (PPC) conversion page. Home pages are great when people are just browsing, but they aren’t optimal for converting traffic into leads. That’s because someone who arrives at a site’s home page will have to do a bit of digging to find what they’re looking for. Each step a visitor has to take before finding what they’re looking for increases the bounce rate and decreases the chances of them contacting you for a lead.

Running Google Ads to a dedicated PPC conversion page allows you to show the visitor everything they may need to see become a lead. This drastically increases the likelihood that they cross the finish line by sending you an email or giving you a call.

Our conversion pages include:

  • Selling points
  • Pain points
  • Testimonials
  • Photos
  • A clear and convincing call to action

Here's and example of one of our conversion pages:

More Things That Are Probably Going Wrong

The above are just three of the most common errors. However, we’ve also seen issues with informational rather than transactional keywords, use of the wrong match types, failure to capitalize on all useful ad extensions, a poor choice in bid strategies, and a whole host of other issues. Google Ads is an amazing tool when used correctly, but there’s a lot that can go wrong.

We’ll gladly look at your campaign FOR FREE and see if there’s anything that needs to be corrected. If you’re working with us in any capacity, we want you to be successful in all your online endeavors.

Book a call with one of our Certified Google Ads experts, and we’ll make sure you’re on the right track.

Click here now to schedule your free audit!

Andrew Mendel

Author: Andrew Mendel

About Andrew Mendel

Andrew Mendel is the Director of Marketing at LinkNow Media and has over 15 years of experience in SEO, including on-site, organic, local, technical, and paid ads. Andrew has multiple certifications including Google Ads and SEMRush Advertising.