1)      Sticking to Broad Terms – This has got to be the most common mistake.  Don’t get lazy… get precise.  Narrow down keywords to hit your ideal target user that brings you home the bacon.  Yes this may take some testing, but it’s worth it.

2)      Thinking Global – People like to know you’re a local company, don’t make them guess.  If you’re advertising in Calgary, put Calgary in your ads. Yes, this will force you to build multiple targeted campaigns, but your conversions will surely make it worth your while.

3)      Sticking to One ad – First set your ads to run evenly (despite Google’s warning) and always be running two ads against each other.  This is called A/B multivirate testing, and all the pros do it.

4)      Letting the Content Network Fly Solo – the content network is one of the largest contributors to useless clicks. Be sure to keep a close eye on the networks your ads are showing on and “exclude” ones that are not relevant.  Better yet, consider picking them yourself.

5)      Forgetting Negative terms – Negative terms are your lifesavers in the Google search pool. To ensure your ads are being shown to the right eyes, use negative keywords to weed out bad searches.

6)      Using Telephone Numbers– Telephone numbers in ads are nearly useless.  This person is searching via their computer, they are much more likely to click than pick up a phone.  Use all the copy room you can to encourage clicks.

7)      Stagnant Copy – If you’re trying to produce run of the mill ads, copy the competition.  If you want results, you have to be unique and different.  Be seasonal, be funny, be different, and reap the benefits.

8)      Forgetting URLs – Google allows you to customize your display URL… so take advantage and add relevant keywords.  These keywords will show up bolded if someone searches them.  Bolded keywords draw your customers eyes and results in more clicks.

9)      Not Refining Keywords – If you have deadbeat keywords sucking life out of your CTR, drop them like a bad habit.  The end result is a higher click-through rate and a lower CPC.

10)    Not Using Google Extension – Google extensions is also often overlooked.  This add-on allows you ads to be “click-to-call” ads on mobile devices, or they integrate with a Google Places account to show you on a map – cool… and effective.

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Brian Siddle

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