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While many small businesses are using Google Ads to bring web traffic to their website, many aren’t maximizing the potential of this digital marketing platform. Small businesses aren’t engaging in Google Ads optimization approaches such as bidding on specific keyword phrases based on shoppers’ intent or creating multiple ad copy for A/B testing. Not performing these optimization approaches cost small businesses advertising dollars in the short as well as long-run.

To help you optimize your Google Ads digital marketing campaigns, we’ve come up with five approaches you can use:

1. Avoid Using Single Keyword Ad Groups (SKAGs)

Single keywords such as “screen” or “filter” can have multiple meanings. For example, screen can refer to a computer screen or iPad screen or screen printing for t-shirts. Filter can refer to “hvac filter” or “car air filter”. By bidding on a singular word such as “screen” or “filter”, you may show your ads to customers who are seeking completely different products. When this happens, you may generate low-quality website traffic from customers who inadvertently click on your Google search ad thinking that you’re selling a product that they’re looking for. These clicks are irrelevant and a waste of advertising dollars.

To avoid this potential problem, bid on keyword phrases that are two or three keywords long. For example, instead of only bidding “filter”, bid on “car air filter” to increase the specificity of your keyword bid and tailor your keywords based on your customers’ intents.

2. Include Negative Keywords

Negative keywords let you exclude search terms from your campaigns and help you focus on only the keywords that matter to your customers. Better targeting can put your ad in front of interested users and increase your return on investment (ROI).

For example, if you’re a premium chocolate retailer and you’re advertising your new chocolate box via Google Ads search campaign, you can add keywords such as “cheap” or “free” in your negative keyword list to prevent your Google search ads from appearing on Google search results when shoppers search for “cheap chocolate” or “affordable chocolate” on Google.

If you don’t include negative keywords in your Google Ads search campaigns, you’ll show ads to customers who aren’t in your target market. In the case of a premium chocolate retailer, showing Google Ads who are looking for “cheap chocolate” or “affordable chocolate” means that you’ll show ads to customers who don’t fit the premium chocolate market.

3. Include 3 Ads Per Google Ads Ad Group

Every ad group should have at least three quality ads. That way, Google Ads’ machine learning system can optimize your performance by using ad rotation, and you can check your performance data to learn what message resonates best with your audience. For example, if you’ve three ads in your ad group, Google Ads will rotate these three ads evenly and determine which ad generates the optimal click-through rate or conversion rate. Once Google’s machine learning technology or system identifies the ad that garners the best results, Google Ads will serve that ad more frequently. Alternatively, you can manually pause ads that have lower return on investment and increase the cost-per-click for ads that generate better performance to serve the better performing ads more proactively and frequently.

4. Adjust Bidding for Geo-targeting

When you launch a Google Ads campaign, you can start by casting a wide net and target a wide region such as British Columbia or California. Once you run the Google Ads campaign for a short while such as a few weeks and have collected some campaign data, you can adjust bidding for geo-targeting to maximize campaign results. For example, if you run a Google Ads campaign targeting Calfironia for three weeks and discover that you’re generating most of your traffic and sales from Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego, you can increase the bid for these cities or only target these cities. Focusing your Google Ads campaign on geographic locations that garner the best results will help you achieve optimal return on investment from your Google Ads campaign.

Google Ads is an impeccable digital marketing platform that lets you market your brand or products or services worldwide. While Google Ads is incredibly powerful, you must configure your Google Ads campaign properly to achieve optimal results. By using optimization approaches such as including negative keywords or avoid using single keyword ad groups (SKAGs), your Google Ads campaigns will be more geared towards your target audience and achieve better performance.

If you have any questions about Google Ads campaigns or digital marketing campaigns, please kindly get in touch and we’ll be more than happy to help!

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