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Top 10 mistakes in pay per click marketing

Pay per click advertisements are demanding

Pay per click (PPC) advertisements such as AdWords are the text advertisements that are placed on the side/top of the search result web pages and on websites that agree to display them under Google’s Adsense programme. By displaying content of the advertiser on the first search result web page, these advertisements enjoy a high exposure rate with the targeted audience. PPC advertisements are the way forward if you are looking for a rapid increase in website traffic and attracting targeted visitors.

However in their eagerness to launch a PPC campaign marketers tend to commit the following 10 errors which need to be avoided:

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1. Ignoring conversion tracking – Every internet marketer needs to measure conversion rates to know whether the campaign is delivering profits or not. Marketers often forget to measure this important conversion metric. These results allows you to justify the marketing spends. Conversion tracking is simple to set up and every campaign needs to leverage. Without this conversion tracking, marketers cannot know the effectiveness of their campaign and do not have a platform in place to improve their overall Internet marketing efforts.

2. Inadequate keyword targeting: This is a common mistake which marketers commit by not using the keywords that searchers use to find answers to the queries. For example a digital camera retailer’s PPC campaign may just have the keywords “digital camera”. As a person who is searching for “digital camera” may input a lot of different keywords like ‘digital camera reviews’ or “cheap digital camera” just using digital camera will result in high amounts of traffic, but generally low sales conversion rates. The key is to generate specific campaigns with more buying related keywords such as ‘buy digital camera’ or ‘digital camera shop’ for higher conversion rates.

3. Small Daily Budget: – This is a costly mistake often made by web marketers that are not too familiar with all the nuances of Internet advertising. For example if you have a $20 budget, decide to pay 50c per click, and you happen to reach $20  mark (of click throughs) by lunch time. In this case your PPC campaign will not appear for the remaining part of the day. The right solution is to work out exactly which parts of your PPC campaign are working for you, so you have confidence that the more you spend, the more money you make.

4. Not using location keywords: If you are a local business owner looking to attract location specific users then you can easily skip them if you do not include your specific geographic location details in your PPC. For example if you are a taxi operator in Sydney and if you just advertise for a cab operator; then you will end up buying a lot of useless ‘cab operator clicks’ specific to other regions. Ideally you should set up all your keywords as specific matches using (“[” and “]” around your keywords), and also set up keywords for your specific locations like cab operators Sydney.

5. Paying too much per clickthroughs: The number 1 spot is not always the best bet for grabbing the most attention. When competing against bigger competitors with large advertising budgets, people can burn a lot of advertising cash just by paying a premium for the #1 spot. If the idea is higher conversion rates (and not necessarily ‘top-branding’), lower position with well written content works far better and cheaper.

6. Not paying enough per clickthroughs: If you are achieving a positive Return On Investment from your AdWords or pay per click marketing, you need to keep spending to maximise your profits. Not doing so is leaving money on the table!

For example, if you find out through your conversion tracking that every visitor is worth $2, then do spend up to $2 per visitor. Do not stay at $1 as it is currently turning a profit. Also prepare to receive and effectively manage the extra workload more internet visitors do bring.

7. Paying too much for clicks from a content network: A content network is reasonably less targeted than the search network and therefore, will have a lesser conversion rate. If you do advertise on a content network, lower your PPC bids by a large margin.

8. Not using a landing page: A landing page is a web page where PPC visitors are taken to once they click. This specifically designed/written web-page should be a continuation of the PPC advertisement content.  Always use customised landing pages to keep the conversion rates of web visitors high. Landing pages often simplify shopping experience of users and prospects as people need to quickly locate offers they get attracted to.

9. Forgetting to test copy of the advertisement: No copywriter is perfect and hence he or she needs to test different writing style and key words /phrases that deliver the best clicks and conversion rates. The carelessness of using one wrong keyword can make a huge difference as even one minor spelling difference can make a huge difference. Once you’ve established what ad works best, see if you can better it by creating a new ad and comparing them. Repeat this process consistently for the best results.

10. Adding all Google recommended keywords – If you happen to use all the keywords that Google recommends you will be spend a lot of money on Clickthroughs of visitors you did not want. Always use Google’s Keyword tool as a guide, while consistently refining your keywords and targeting them very specifically in your market.


Too many Australian businesses are complacent about their Pay Per Click Marketing and have the general view that they have their AdWords under control. However, by dedicating resources to testing different pay per click campaign configurations your business can uncover lots of money that you may have been leaving on the table, or leaving on Google’s table in click costs.

Specialised web marketing vendors like roi.com.au have over 10 years combined experience in pay per click advertising which enables you to leverage our experience and increase the profits of your business.