Three Reasons Your PPC Campaigns Fail

Do a quick Google search for How to make your PPC ads convert better and you’ll find a results page littered with blog posts that promise you “quick and easy rapid growth hacks” and all sorts of other “tricks” that will supposedly make your PPC campaigns convert better. The truth is, many of these websites are simply trying to upsell you into using their services and although some might turn out to help you, most of these hacks and tricks simply won’t. Optimizing PPC campaigns is not easy and often times it isn’t quick either. Still, it’s incredibly powerful if you do it properly. Listed below are three reasons your PPC campaigns are likely failing, plus some tips you can follow to try and improve them!

1. Time for Research & Strategy – Business owners are busy people and often times busy people don’t have enough hours in the day to do everything they’d like. This kind of time pressure forces them to rush. Rushing forces people to scramble around and look for the best practices, then apply them. Here’s the problem with that: general best practices aren’t specific enough to your business. Creating successful PPC campaigns require some dedicated time to both research and strategy. Know your audience and understand what drives them before creating campaign ads. Here’s a great example: Bob sells board games and wants to create a campaign that will drive him some new sales. He already knows that people (in general) tend to shop more early in the week as opposed to later in the week. Bob is smart enough to know that this applies even more strictly to him because people will often get online and purchase a board game early in the week so they can play at during game nights which usually take place towards the end of the week. Upon doing some research Bob also finds that people tend to look for videos about how to play certain games, so they can introduce new games when enjoying their game night. With this little bit of knowledge and research Bob can better improve his PPC campaigns by doing two things. One would be to focus a high portion of his advertising budget to ads displaying earlier in the week as opposed to later. Two would be to add “how to play” videos to his landing pages so potential buyers can quickly see how to play the game before purchasing it.

2. Consider the Customer Journey – Most people setting up pay-per click campaigns never really consider the customer’s journey. The analyze data, tweaks a word or two here and there, and fiddle with audiences and budgets. They’ll get happy over a 10% increase in conversion rates one week, then cry at a 10% decrease the next. Your average PPC campaign manager will simply look for marginal gains to cost per click or cost per acquisition. This means they usually think tactically as opposed to strategically and short term instead of long term. Thinking strategically can be difficult, but it will help you more in the long run. Map out your customer’s journey by going to Amazon or some other successful online shop and consider the journey they might be on when deciding whether to buy something. They journey should be short and simple, so cut out anything unnecessary. Then, consider having a more streamlined (and personalized) journey for specific campaigns you are going to run. One lander for this campaign, and another for that one. You should always want scalpel-sharp focus with your PPC campaigns. Always and forever!

3. Not Testing Ad Copy Properly – With your customer’s journey in mind, start writing better ad copy. Many PPC managers hunt through their company’s marketing materials in order to borrow text. They’ll look at competitors, hit up Google Trends and do all types of other things as well. The problem is, they don’t look at the lander or think about the customer’s journey. When writing ad copy for your campaign you should always focus on the action you want your customers to take. Build trust, reassure the user, and get them to take an action! Of course, it’s much harder than it sounds. There’s lots of text to play around with in today’s PPC ads. You might feel tempted to write about the benefits of working with your company, features of your products..etc. But, instead you should be thinking What’s the action you want them to take? What are the benefits to the user of taking that specific action? Keep it tight, keep it focused and keep testing your message!