ppc

6 Rules for PPC

It’s easy to get lost in all the detail of PPC. There’s so much you can do and measure, it’s hard to keep track of what matters. Here at Boutique, we have six “rules” that our PPC accounts live and die by. We’re not going to say you have to stick to them too – because after all “your PPC accounts, your rules” – but, these are the best practices that we stick to here at Boutique, and we believe that they make us amazing at our jobs.

 

Keep it Organised!

 

We’ll start from the beginning. A messy AdWords account is a bad AdWords account. This is the foundation for everything you are to do PPC wise – and the more disorganised and difficult it is to understand the less likely you are to be able to manage it.

 

Google are very keen on hammering this home. One campaign per business goal or product category is drilled in to our brains, and so should it be yours. This makes it easier to optimize and set relevant ads for your keywords. It helps not only with your Quality Score, but also should help your Click Through Rate (CTR) and general performance of your account.

 

An organised AdWords account allows you to better understand what is happening. And knowledge is the source of all power after all. So, structure your account in a logical way, and make your job easier for yourself.

 

Be Clear on KPIs

 

Let’s ask a simple question here – if you don’t know what you want to achieve, how do you know when you’ve achieved it?

 

This goes even further; if you don’t know what you’re aiming for how are you going to make changes that help lead you towards your goals?

 

Without effective KPIs you’re setting yourself up for failure. They help you remember what is important and what you want to achieve. Every action you make should be focused towards those KPIs and smashing your targets. This way you never lose sight of what truly matters, therefore making you more likely to succeed.

 

So, be clear on what exactly you want to achieve from PPC, whether that’s to drive impressions and brand recognition, or conversions and profit. And always remember that ultimate goal when you’re in an account. This way you are more likely to achieve what YOU wanted to achieve.

 

Good Mix of Generic and Long-Tailed Keywords

 

Your account is built upon your keywords, so it makes sense that choosing the right ones is crucial to achieving those KPIs. A major part of this is making sure that you have the right bases covered. Not only do you want those generic, broader keywords, but you also need those longer tailed keywords as well.

 

By doing this you target people on all stages of the purchase funnel. The generic keywords are there for the people at the beginning of their purchase journey, who aren’t sure what they want yet but need some ideas.

 

This then feeds through to the more product specific, long-tailed keywords which cater for those further down the funnel. They have a clearer idea of what they want and are therefore more likely to convert as your site sells what they’re looking for (provided you’re not advertising for things you don’t sell because we shouldn’t have to tell you that isn’t going to work). Additionally, it gives you a good range of Average Cost-Per-Clicks (CPCs) as longer-tailed ones tend to be cheaper, due to less competition over them. This especially helps businesses on a tighter budget who don’t have the funds to splash out on all the generic keywords that might not even convert for them.

 

The long-tailed keywords might not get as many impressions, but they usually have higher rates of conversion. This is because they are more like what the people want. Sure, have the flashy generic keywords to get your impressions because we’re not saying they’re redundant – just don’t forget about those sweet longer-tailed product specific ones too.

 

Optimise, Optimise, Optimise

 

Optimising your bids is the PPC equivalent of having a dog – you don’t need one to survive but everything is much better if you have one. Optimisations or bid adjustments allow you to bid higher for keywords that you believe are better at achieving your goals, and reduce your bids on keywords you don’t think are as likely to achieve. This way you are spending the money in the right place, i.e. where you are most likely to achieve those beautiful conversions, or whatever your goals are.

 

There is an art to this. Adjust your bids too often and it won’t have enough of a chance to have an impact; too little and your account won’t be performing as well as it should be. Every week is a good benchmark, but of course this varies by how big it is and how granular your optimisations are.

 

Stay on Top of The Little Tasks

 

The little tasks may seem like a waste of time, but trust us when we say it’s the little things that make a difference. They have the power to change your account from average to amazing.

 

Handling large accounts, it’s easy to let the little tasks slide. Those seemingly mundane jobs, like adding negative keywords and refining your display placements, don’t seem to affect much in the short term. However, they help with everything from improving conversion rates to maintaining your brand image. Reviewing your display placements makes sure you’re not advertising anywhere that might damage your brand. By adding negative keywords, it helps make your adverts more targeted and only reach the people who are interested in what you sell. It also saves you money because you’re not paying for people clicking through to something that wasn’t what they wanted. On top of this, it gives you the opportunity to add keywords that you might have missed when creating the account.

 

The littlest tasks really do make the biggest difference, and whilst we’re not saying the big ones don’t matter (they are big tasks for a reason), we do think that the key to making your PPC accounts truly stand out lies in the little tasks that are often put on the backburner.

 

Granularity

 

Granular is a word we really do love here at Boutique. It is key to what we do. Granularity feeds into all the other rules. By being specific, you are taking everything that little bit further than just “organised” for so much more gain.

 

The more detailed your account is, the more positive your impacts will be. Same goes for being clear on your KPIs; if you know exactly what you want to the smallest possible detail the easier it is to aim for and hopefully achieve it. Optimizations-wise, you can do the basic level or you can go that step further. Delve into all the information AdWords gives you on locations, ages, genders, times of day etc and truly make your account as optimized as possible. And that’s just a few examples of how granularity feeds into everything.

 

Whilst granularity might not feel like a word anymore because we’ve repeated it that much, it is very important. It feeds into all the other rules, helping you to improve. So, never forget: be granular in everything you do.

 

So there you go, follow these six rules and you’ll enjoy successful PPC accounts. Let us know how you fair and if you have any questions then don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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Rory Dunlop Nov 27

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