The greatest Houses in Westeros were not built in a day and your Pay-per-click campaign will not be either. If done effectively, PPC optimization can be your path to the Iron Throne. It was reported by Search Engine Land that internet users are performing over 63,000 searches per second, with 15% of these searches being new, never searched phrases. This means that it is more important than ever to be on top of your PPC game. The most successful campaigns require not only great setup but also continuous maintenance and optimization. PPC campaign optimization comes from setting up a schedule of daily to monthly tasks. These tasks are on a scale that ranges from minor keyword changes to account changes that will help your kingdom flourish against the upcoming winter.
The first step to successful PPC campaign optimization is to check your account daily. You want to ensure that it is continuing to run smoothly. If you are not checking your campaigns daily then a simple error (such as an ad being disapproved) can make a huge dent in your structure. That one simple error can prevent your campaign from appearing in Google searches, which in turn causes all of your PPC efforts to fall short. Time is a valuable resource, so thankfully many of these daily tasks take no time at all.
Tasks that should be performed daily are the following:
Check Approval and Performance Status
Google will not send notifications for errors, such as your ad being disapproved, needing a new form of payment, a missing conversion tag, or other possible issues. That is what makes it important for you to consistently check your campaign’s progress. Not only does it keep you updated on your campaigns, but it helps ensure that your army is fully equipped to march towards the North.
Check New Recommendations
We’re humans, we can not think of everything (no matter how much we like to think that we can sometimes). That’s why Google offers specific recommendations to help improve your campaigns. Each recommendation does not have to be applied. Some of the suggestions may not align with your pay-per-click techniques, but they are worth checking out. Every king has a trusted small council to help offer suggestions on ways to handle tasks and improve their kingdom, Google is your small council.
The next phase of your PPC campaign optimization involves tasks that you should be performing on a biweekly basis. These tasks require a little more work. They can be spread out to give yourself more time to complete them.
Tasks that should be performed biweekly are the following:
Select Search Terms
There is an estimated total of 5.6 billion searches happening every day. That means there are 78.4 billion searches happening every 2 weeks. This means that an important part of your maintenance is checking search terms. You should go through the list of search terms and decide which ones fit best as positive and negative keywords.
Refine Keyword Optimization
While you are adding in positive and negative keywords, do not forget about the keywords you have already established. Certain keywords might be under performing so they will require some attention. This fine tuning might range from experimenting with different match types, to possibly even removing the keywords completely.
Check Bid Optimization
With new campaigns constantly entering the race for the throne, it is necessary to consistently check where your bids are at. This requires checking to make sure that your bids are not too low. If your bids are set too low then your ads will never stand a chance in Google’s ad auctions.
Now that you have taken care of your daily and biweekly tasks, it is time to focus on what you should be doing on a monthly basis. These are the tasks that help refine most of the targeting for your PPC campaign. They also play a large role in PPC optimization.
Tasks that should be performed monthly are the following:
Review Audience, Demographics, and Topics
Unlike the King of the North, it’s not important for your ads to appeal to all Google users. Users outside of your target market are not helping your campaigns. In fact, they are doing the opposite. Their clicks provide false data for your campaign performance. Fine tuning the audience that is reached will reduce your campaigns accrued costs and clear up your performance data.
In just a week, your account can acquire hundreds, if not thousands, of placements. When checking through your placements, you might notice that there are certain locations showing your ads that are not the appropriate places you want your ads to be shown on. It’s important to review the list and determine which placements you want to keep and which you want to exile from your PPC campaign.
AB Testing Ad Copy
If your ad copy from a couple of months ago doesn’t match up with the latest updates you have done to your keywords and landing pages, then it will negatively impact your Quality Score. AB testing your ad copy monthly is a way of ensuring that everything is on the right track. AB testing your ad copy to see which phrases perform better in auctions is vital for your climb to the Iron Throne and a prominent Quality Score for your campaigns.
Check Auction Insights
Google provides insight into how many other advertisers are in your market and competing against you. Reviewing Auction Insights will provide you with data to grade and assess the results of your scheduled optimization tasks.
The timeline of this schedule is not written in stone (like the story of the First People), so it is up for personalization and rearranging to better fit your personal needs. When it comes down to it, you will have to use your own best judgment to determine when you want to perform optimization tasks, as no two pay-per-click accounts are the same. Each has its own characteristics that will require different amounts of time and maintenance. Your maintenance schedule may also be rearranged based on how much focus and attention you want to put towards specific pay-per-click campaigns. Whatever you do, remember to never set it and forget it. May the old gods and the new gods continue to watch over you on your path to PPC campaign optimization!
For a list of some more account maintenance tasks that weren’t touched on, check out The BIG List: Recurring Account Maintenance Tasks. If you have any questions or would like help creating your own PPC optimization strategy, feel free to contact us!