AdWords is too expensive

Posted by Aaron WeinerEmergency, Google AdWords

You’ve just logged into AdWords Account and you see that your cost per click is far too high. There’s no way you can continue to sustain an AdWords account at these levels.

One option is to give up and decide that AdWords isn’t for you. I suspect your competition would love that, but is that the right approach?

Isn’t it possible that you’re doing something wrong, which is why you’re paying too much for AdWords?

Don’t despair! I’ve outlined a list of possible issues that I have seen over my 10+ years of AdWords experience.

After reading, you should be able to reduce your AdWords costs and finally make AdWords work for you, not against you.

Possible issue 1: You’re not as relevant as you thought you were.

This is where you’ll need take a critical look at your entire account and website and ask the following:

  • Are all the keywords that you’re targeting directly related to your product or service?
  • Do your ads make a connection with your keywords?
  • Are your ads enticing enough to make you want to click on them?
  • Do your landing pages make a connection to your ads?
  • Do your landing pages convey exactly what you’re offering in an easy to understand way?
  • Do your landing pages have a clear goal?

If you answered no to any of these questions, you might be onto something.

Google will reward advertisers with a lower cost per click when they’re relevant. Keep in mind that Google want people to find what they’re looking for on Google.

If people aren’t clicking on your ads, it sends a signal to Google that you’re not relevant. If people are clicking on your ads but then coming back to Google to click on your competitor’s ads, it also sends a signal that you’re not relevant.

The more irrelevant your ads are, the higher your costs will be.

Possible issue 2: You’re being too broad.

If you’re using a large number of broad match keywords, you’re most likely receiving clicks from people who are not interested in what you’re offering.

I’m not suggesting that you shouldn’t use broad match, but they do need to be used sparingly and with caution.

Broad match keywords have a tendency of attracting the wrong types of visitors which can ultimately lead to higher cost per clicks.

Possible issue 3: You’re not being negative enough.

If you’re not using any negative keywords or only a few, it’s almost guaranteed that you’ll receive clicks that are off target.

For search campaigns, review the search terms report found on the dimensions tab. It will report all the actual searches that are resulting in clicks on your ads.

For display campaigns, review the placement performance report, also found on the dimensions tab. This report will help identify clicks that are coming from websites that are off target or not producing desirable outcomes.

Possible issue 4: You’re not doing enough keyword research.

If it’s been a while since you last did any keyword research, you might want to revisit that as soon as possible. Did you know, for example, that Google have stated that 15% of all queries it sees each day have never been seen before?

That means it’s possible that you’re missing out on searches that none of your competitors are even targeting.

More keyword research could lead to better keywords at a lower cost per click.

Possible issue 5: You’re spending too much in areas that don’t produce results.

When was the last time you reviewed your location targeting? If you haven’t done so in a while you might be surprised by what you find.

To begin with, Google don’t distribute your ad impressions across all your targeted locations evenly. One location might be dominating all other locations, and that location might not be producing the best results.

Depending on how you configured your location targeting, your ads might have been displayed and clicked on by people who are outside of your targeted location.

I would recommend that you review your user locations report – found on the dimensions tab. See if there are locations that are producing less than desirable results. If you find any, you can either exclude them or lessen their impact by using location based bid adjustments.

Possible issue 6: You’re showing your ads at the wrong time.

Visit the dimensions tab and review the various time reports. You’ll want to look out for days of the week or specific times in a day that tend to cost money but don’t produce good results.

For example, you might find that Saturday and Sunday are wasting your budget. If that’s happening, you could turn off your ads on those specific days through AdWords ad scheduling system within the campaign settings.

Important: The ad scheduling system is based on your AdWords account’s particular time zone. The time zone is something that you set when you initially created your account and it cannot be changed.

What this means is if you are targeting one or more locations that span multiple time zones, ad scheduling might not work as expected.

To get around this issue, you’ll need to setup campaigns that target locations within a single time zone. That way you’ll be able to adjust ad scheduling accordingly.

Possible issue 7: You’re too emotionally invested.

When it comes to AdWords, you periodically need to delete what’s not working and expand on areas that are working. Sometimes purging what doesn’t work can be difficult. It sounds strange but you might have strong feelings for particular keywords or a set of ads that you just can’t see yourself killing off.

If that sounds uncomfortably familiar, try pausing them instead, and let your account focus on the areas that are working. By doing so, you could send Google better signals that you’re being more relevant. This in turn should help at lowering your AdWords costs.

Once things begin to turn around, try to gradually reactivate some of the items that you paused. If they still don’t work, maybe it’s finally time to say goodbye? Listen to the data.

Hopefully these seven possible solutions will have your account performance noticeably improving. If not, drop me an email to see if I can help solve the problem.