Are You Making These Money Wasting Mistakes on Google Ads?
Use These 7 Tips to Help Maximize Your Investment
At the time of this writing, we are in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic sweeping across the country, with many states on lockdown. With the current uncertainty into the future, it's more important than ever for businesses to invest wisely in all areas of their business and to eliminate any unnecessary waste.
In this article, we want to help businesses running Google Ads campaigns to understand several areas where they may be wasting money, so they can ensure their money is being spent wisely.
Many times businesses will have someone internally take over the task of running Google Ads campaigns to save money by not hiring an employee, agency or consultant. But often times, they are wasting more money by not doing so.
Having either audited or taken over a number of Google Ads accounts in the past, we come across some of the same mistakes that end up wasting you money on your Google Ads campaigns.
One question we receive quite a bit from clients is which digital marketing platforms they should be using to attract new clients or customers to their business. Inevitably clients ask us: Should I use Google Ads or Facebook Ads or both? Or none?
In this video and article, we will review the main differences between promoting your company on Google Ads or Facebook Ads and some things to consider before deciding what direction you should go. (more…)
Improving Conversion Rates by Improving Website “Calls to Action”
How a Simple Strategy Helped Us Dramatically Increase Our Clients' Leads
The main goal for a number of our clients is more “leads.” Whether they’re a national manufacturing company or a local dental firm, many of our clients come to us seeking more leads from our digital services.
Sure, our firm specializes in acquiring traffic through SEO, PPC and Paid Social, but we also consult with clients on improvements to their websites to help convert that traffic into more leads.
In this case study, we’ll show how the simple addition of sidebar contact forms and prominent mobile "click to call" buttons helped us dramatically increase online leads for two of our clients in just a matter of months.
What We Did
Implemented sidebar contact forms on each website to encourage visitors to contact our clients.
Automated the display of contact forms so they would show up on every blog post.
Added mobile "click to call" buttons so visitors could call our clients easily while surfing on their mobile devices.
Included prominent calls to action such as “Book an Appointment” or “Request a Quote” to encourage visitors to contact our clients.
After 9 months:
This dental practice saw a 103% increase in contact form submissions compared to the previous time period (108 contact form submissions vs. 53).
After just one month:
This retail fixture manufacturer saw a 22% increase in total goal completions (contact form submissions, emails, phone calls) compared to the previous time period.
Average PPC Conversion Rates by Industry (Updated for 2020)
Updated August 2020
PPC landing page company Unbounce has released an updated PPC conversion rate by industry report for 2020.
PPC and Paid Social marketing software provider, Wordstream, has released average PPC conversion rates based on its most up-to-date report published in August 2019. Wordstream breaks down a variety of standard PPC metrics by industry including: CTR (click-through rate), Average Cost per Click (CPC), Conversion Rate, and Cost Per Action or Acquisition (CPA).
If you're not familiar with Wordstream, this company provides software and tools to help agencies and companies more effectively and efficiently manage their search engine marketing and paid social campaigns like Facebook Ads. Having been around for over 10 years now, Wordstream is one of the leaders in the search marketing space and has thousands and thousands of data points they can analyze from the PPC accounts that run through their software.
As such, take this, and any report like this, with a grain of salt. We are looking at average PPC conversion rates from just one company's data and not all PPC accounts currently running right now. We would anticipate that individuals using the software are likely on the average to more advanced-end of the PPC marketing spectrum, so these conversion rates may even be a bit higher than all accounts taken in aggregate around the world.
Note: Leading landing page company Unbounce also released their own PPC Conversion Rates by Industry report specifically for "Lead Gen" campaigns. That report is here. And digital marketing platform Acquisio released an Adwords PPC benchmark report here.
PPC Conversion Rates by Industry
The data is broken down by industry, since we know that PPC conversion rates vary by industry:
Average PPC Conversion Rates by Network
In addition to breaking out average PPC conversion rates by industry, the report also outlines conversion rates by network on the Adwords platform. Most are familiar with the search network which includes Google search conversion rates and affiliated search engines (otherwise known as "search partners"). The report also breaks down conversion rates for the Google Display network, (GDN) which includes Google's vast network of websites, apps, videos and other placements where your ads can be shown via image or text format.
The average CVR (PPC Conversion Rate) in AdWords across all industries is 3.75% on the search network and 0.77% on the Google Display Network (source). Since the report was last updated, CVR on the search network has increased, while CVR for display has decreased. What could this mean? One sign points to the need for advertisers to pay closer attention to placements and audience optimization.
Summary on PPC Conversion Rates
The industry with the highest average PPC conversion rates was the dating & personals industry with 9.64% on the search network and 3.34% on the display network.
The industry with the lowest average PPC conversion rates was the “advocacy” industry at just 1.96% on the search network and 1.00% on the display network.
Those selling products online and classified as an eCommerce business saw conversion rates of 2.81% (so just under 3%) on the search network. That means about 97% of visitors to eCommerce sites are NOT purchasing something. Remarketing campaigns, anyone?
The legal space saw average PPC rates of around 7% on the search network.
The industry with the lowest PPC conversion rates on the display network is home goods with 0.43%.
Are your PPC campaigns converting at these rates? Every industry and client are different, so again take these with a grain of salt. It's interesting to see what the "industry" is seeing in terms of average PPC conversion rates, but what's good for one business isn't always good for another or even relevant for that business. If your PPC campaigns are suffering from low conversion rates, read our article on "Why Don't My PPC Ads Convert?" for some initial areas where you may be able to improve.
As a PPC and SEO Company in Columbus, Ohio, we routinely see higher conversion rate numbers with most of our clients. There are always exceptions, and it definitely varies by industry and client because there are just so many conversion rate variables to consider. In summary, these benchmark PPC conversion rates are a good barometer, but appear lower than what they probably should be.
SEO & PPC Monthly Roundup – October 2019: Google's BERT Update, Lead Gen Ads, Facebook Search Ads
Google Rolls Out "BERT" Search Algo Update
Google has made the biggest change to its search algorithm since the company introduced the "rankbrain" update about 5 years ago. This latest update (named BERT), stands for Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers. What does that mean exactly? (more…)
SEO & PPC Monthly Roundup - Sep 2019: Google Algo Update, PPC Avg. Position & New No-Follow Attribute Change
Google Ads - Say Goodbye to the “Average Position” Metric
Google announced in August that they were going to get rid of the average position metric, which provides advertisers an idea of their average position on the “paid” search results on Google relative to other advertisers. If you had an average position of 1.8, you knew your ads were typically showing in the first 2 positions on the paid results, relative to other advertisers. (more…)
SEO & PPC Monthly Roundup – August 2019: New PPC Bidding Tool, Domain Leasing, Bidding on Your Brand
This month we have updates on a new PPC bidding tool, how Google is cracking down on domain leasing and when it makes sense to bid on your brand.
Google Rolls Out New “Maximize Conversion Value” for PPC Campaigns
Retailers familiar with ROAS bidding (Return on Ad Spend) bidding for Google Ads campaigns, now have another bidding tool in their arsenal - Maximize Conversion Value. This new bidding feature aims to optimize for the greatest conversion value within your budget. Those who run eCommerce campaigns on Google Ads know that conversion value is associated with revenue and so maximizing conversion value is essentially helping to maximize your revenue. Per Google:
“To use or test out maximize conversion value, you’ll need to be using transaction-specific values or have set conversion values for the conversion types you’re optimizing for from the Conversion page under Tools.”
While this may be an interesting bidding strategy for some retailers on all or some campaigns, those with specific ROAS goals will likely want to continue using maximize ROAS unless the new maximize conversion value proves more fruitful.
Google has issued a warning about websites that lease their subdomains to other companies to improve their content rankings. Google is now penalizing the leased sections of these websites that have these leased out sections.
While Google should rank your website first for organic searches on your brand name, it doesn't always happen. Bidding on branded keywords can be a defensive tactic if your competitors are bidding on your product or company names. Bidding on your brand name also gives you the ability to send brand name related traffic directly to an optimized, high converting landing page.
SEO & PPC Monthly Roundup - July 2019: Low Volume Keywords, Changing URLs, and Mobile Page Speed
This month, we’re sharing important updates about low volume keywords, changing URLs, and mobile page speed. Check out these important SEO and PPC updates below!
Incorporating Low Volume Keywords Into Your SEO Strategy
Low volume keywords (those below 250 searches per month) often get overshadowed by keywords with a high volume of searches and low competition. You may not want to ignore those low volume keywords, and instead look for opportunities to use them to generate targeted traffic and more leads for your website.
Low volume keywords can give you a unique opportunity to target highly relevant terms that your competitors likely aren’t targeting at all. Targeting these keywords won't likely lead to a large increase in new website visitors, but you’ll have a good chance of ranking for those terms and converting that small number of visitors into customers.
We get questions all the time from clients about changing URL's and if that's OK for SEO. We typically always say the same thing - keep the URL's the same if you can do it, otherwise implement a thorough and robust 301 redirect strategy to try to maintain your rankings and current traffic levels. And now one of Google's own also says the same thing, John Mueller of Google recommends to keep the same URL's if you can do so, for the long run.
If you feel like you have been doing everything right but keep seeing a steady decline in organic website traffic, it might be time to take a closer look at your mobile page speed.
Last year, Google rolled out its Speed Update, which impacted the mobile search rankings of the slowest of sites on the internet. This means that Google is ranking your site based on its mobile experience and slow speeds must be addressed. So how do you determine if your mobile page speed scores are affecting your organic website traffic? And, if your score is low, what can you do to fix it?
Need help growing your business online with SEO and PPC? Get in touch with our team for a consultation.
SEO & PPC Monthly Roundup - June 2019: State of Paid Social, Google’s Diversity Update, Fake Google Maps Listings
Happy Summer! This month, we’re sharing important updates about the state of paid social advertising, Google’s diversity update and fake Google maps listings. Check out these great SEO and PPC news articles below!
New Research on the State of Paid Social Advertising
The State of Paid Social report for 2019 shows that 97% of marketers are now investing in social advertising. This is up 10% from last year. The most popular social ad platforms include Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and Snapchat. This past year, Quora and Reddit have joined the social advertising mix by releasing their own ad formats.
While Facebook is still the top platform when it comes to ad dollars spent, investments in platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and Quora are growing.
Google’s Diversity Update Did Impact Search Results
In early June, Google announced that it had updated its search results to show a more diverse set of search results, which means Google would aim to show no more than two results from the same domain in the top results for a particular search query.
A recent study shows that this diversity update is indeed having an impact on Google’s search results. The study showed that you are half as likely to see 3 listings from the same domain in Google search results since the update rolled out. Keywords returning more than three URLs from one domain in the top 10 are now effectively zero.
This is good news for smaller websites because they now have a better chance to rank for keywords that used to be dominated by large websites. A more diverse set of search results gives more domains an opportunity to rank for a given keyword, which allows more sites to compete in Google search.
Fake Google Maps Listings Hurt Real Businesses and Consumers
The Wall Street Journal recently reported that Google Maps contains about 11 million illegitimate local listings. These fake listings push real businesses further down the local search results, impacting their ability to reach customers.
Google is aware of the problem and says it has taken down over three million fake business profiles and is developing new ways to fight scammers. The company also encourages users to flag suspicious profiles for removal.
How can real businesses stand out amongst these fake listings? The best way to outrank the fake listings is to build a legitimate brand online and diversifying your local presence. Some local businesses have also turned to paid advertising to regain search visibility and outrank fake listings.