Top 5 Google Ads Mistakes Distributors Make and How to Fix Them
Google Ads provide distributors the tools to appear at the top of the search results for selected products and services, so they can grow their business faster.
While showing up on the first page of Google is a step in the right direction, and Google Ads will achieve this much faster than SEO, you can end up wasting hundreds (or thousands) of dollars a month if your campaigns are poorly configured.
Here are the most common mistakes distributors make when running Google Ads, and how to fix them:
1. Sending Ad Clicks to Your Home Page
This is one of the most common mistakes we see. When someone clicks on your product or service specific ad and lands on your home page, they will find general information about your business and the many things you offer, but nothing that has to do with the ad. They’ll probably become frustrated trying to figure out how they got there and might end up clicking through your navigation, attempting to get to the information your ad promised them. Sooner rather than later they will leave to continue their search elsewhere, and you are paying for that wasted click.
What to do instead: Create a landing page with a headline that matches your ad and messaging with similar wording to ensure your audience feels that they came to the right place.
Having the landing page clearly related to the ad will provide your visitor with the information they are interested in, increasing the chances of them taking the desired action, such as filling out a form or requesting a quote.
2. Unorganized Ad Groups
You might have started running the ads yourself long ago by creating just one general group to keep things simple. Over time, you kept adding new keywords to that group and now you have all kinds of keywords lumped together in that one group.
Maybe later you created another group and added some of the same search terms you already had in the general group, so you wind up having one search term matching multiple different ad groups.
This grouping disorganization messes up ad performance tracking.
What to do instead: Split your ad groups so they have a tight theme. Even if the keywords are synonyms, it’s a good idea to split them out into different ad groups so you can easily see what performs better and then optimize accordingly.
Organizing your ad groups into themes also ensures that your ad copy and landing page align with what the user is searching for.
3. Messy Keyword Matching
When you first create your ad, Google suggests you use broad match keywords, and you might select that option because it’s easier. However, this is not what you want to do. You’ll spend more money this way, which is good for Google.
That said, Broad Match is useful for finding new keywords to bid on, but do it in a separate campaign with a small budget dedicated to finding new keywords. Ideally, you would have done keyword research to figure out what keywords you want to bid on, so using broad match should be limited to very specific purposes.
What to do instead: There are other keyword match alternatives that will give you better results and control of your ad budget:
- Broad Match is a modifier that allows you to show your ad for search terms with the keywords you designate with the "+" sign. But ,you have to be careful not to choose keywords that are still very broad. Using a phrase match is always a good way to keep it more specific.
- The other great match to choose is Exact Match. Even though exact match is not true to its name anymore because your ads can also appear for close variations or searches that match the intent of the keyword, it’s still a more accurate way to track ad performance.
Keep an eye on what search terms your ads are triggering. You can select the keyword and then view the search terms report for that specific keyword instead of the entire ad group.
4. Not Using Enough Negative Keywords
Using negative keywords prevents you from spending money on irrelevant clicks.
Negative keywords are those you don’t want your ads to appear for. For example, let's say you run an ad for “promotional products Fort Lauderdale.” Negative keywords would include:
- Jobs, job
What to do instead: Create a list of negative keywords. Add them either at the campaign level or at the ad group level. If you’re running multiple campaigns and you want them to have the same negative keywords, use your negative keyword list to apply to all the campaigns so you’re only maintaining one list which makes it easier to keep track of and manage your negative keywords.
One thing to consider is that negative keywords work a bit differently compared to the keywords you target. Include common synonyms, misspellings, or close variations of the keyword, as well as singular and plural versions.
You can find negative keywords your ad might be appearing for in your Google Ads account, in the search term tab where you’ll be able to see what people searched for when they clicked on your ad. This way you can add new negative keywords if necessary.
5. Not Tracking Conversions Properly
Some distributors are running ads and not tracking conversions at all, making it hard to see how Google Ads is impacting your business.
Others are tracking activities that can be useful when analyzing the overall performance of your website, but not when it comes to tracking ads. Such things as the number of pages visited, scrolling 80% down the page, viewed specific pages, for example, are not conversions.
A conversion generates leads, which generate business: someone fills out a form, calls you, starts a chat, places an order, or requests a quote.
What to do instead: Track only actions that generate leads and optimize your campaigns based on real conversions. Track and evaluate which keywords are performing the best and which ones aren’t working -but you might be spending a lot of money on, and make adjustments accordingly.
Google advertising can be very effective when done right, but it requires the ads to be set up the right way to maximize your investment. If you are making any of the mistakes covered in this post, make it a priority to make the necessary corrections, it make take some time to do, but it will be well worth it.
Don’t have time to manage your campaigns properly and need help fixing them? Our team can help you get better results. Contact us and set a time to chat.
This article was first published in the ActionMarketingco.com blog. If you’re interested in more digital marketing information specific to the distributor business, visit the Resources section of the Action Marketing website.
Gloria Lafont is a mother, grandmother and business owner. Throughout her business career she has started, bought and sold a dozen businesses in the branding and marketing field, including a distributor company. She’s currently president of Action Marketing Co., founded in 2007. Her company focuses on helping distributors increase visibility, generate awareness and drive traffic so they can connect with more of their ideal clients and generate more leads and sales.
Gloria is a big fan and supporter of education and the cultural arts, volunteering her time and donating marketing support over the years to help various organizations grow in membership and revenue. She also enjoys the South Florida lifestyle mix of business, beaches and arts.