PPC can be a huge game changer for businesses – when it is done right. When it’s not, you can find yourself spending hundreds or even thousands of pounds a month on incorrect targeting. How can we stop this?

PPC ads can be really effective, but it’s a case of ensuring you are targeting correctly. What are the do’s and don’ts of using PPC?

Incorrect Targeting

Targeting in Adwords is a very useful and important tool when it comes to your PPC activity. You can target people by location, demographics, browser, operating system and device. A good example of this is if you were selling iPhone cases. One of the targeting options you might want to consider is the operating system, where you target people searching for iPhone cases on iOS. These are better target audience to attract rather than people who are searching using an Android or Windows device.

When looking to improve your conversion rate you are going to want to consider your target audience: Who are they? Is your product/service something you can provide internationally? If you have a separate version of your landing page for mobile, are you ensuring that you’re targeting only mobile devices on that ad? When you are looking at your targeting options you have a lot to consider…

You can also use Google Analytics to look at who your previous conversions are coming from. If they are mostly based in one location, you might want to increase your bid for that location. Or if the majority of your conversions are coming from mobile devices, you can then increase your mobile bid for these ads.

Use of Call to Actions

A good PPC ad would have a good use of call to actions within the adcopy and possibly even the callout extensions. Make sure you use things along the lines of speak to our expert advisors or call us for a quote. Many people don’t realise the impact that a good call to action can have on a PPC ad.

Use of Extensions

Google has so much to offer when it comes to ad extensions (which don’t cost extra), yet so many people still aren’t using them (which really is a waste of your PPC budget). Recently introduced are callouts, and these are a very simple extension that gives you an extra line of text. The recommended length per callout is 12 – 15 characters and it can show on average about three per ad. Callouts are designed for you to advertise your USPs and promotions e.g. free delivery, award winning, 24/7 service.

Other extensions that are really great to have are site links, which enable you to have multiple landing pages on one ad (so you can have your top category pages or company information). These really make an ad stand out. Location extensions which have a Google Map showing where you are located shows on the SERP on your ad. There are also call extensions so people can call you directly from your ad without having to go to your site. You can also have reviews, apps and so much more to make your ad really stand out from your competitors.

Only Having One Focus

You may not have considered using your PPC advertising budget across various platforms such as the Display Network, Remarketing campaigns and Google Shopping. Don’t just focus your budget on search if you don’t need to. Experiment across the different platforms, seeing what works well and what doesn’t.

Remarketing can be a really effective PPC campaign in your account because you target people who have previously visited your site. It could be a case of someone was considering making the purchase and forgot about it or they have already converted and might need a similar product/service again.

People use Google Shopping as it enables them to compare the different types of product and the prices all across the web, so if you are selling a product Google Shopping is a great platform to consider using a percentage of your PPC budget on.

Keyword Stuffing

We are always telling you how important keywords are and how they should be included in everything, but don’t go over the top. Keyword stuffing can make your site look spammy and can affect your rankings. Always include keywords in your content and adcopy, but make sure it still makes sense and is not in there too often. An example of keyword stuffing would be:

Google will rank your landing page higher if it knows that the page is a lot more relevant to the ad then what your competitors are doing, but it will consider it as spam if it is over stuffed meaning your PPC ranking will drop. This also affects your SEO activity too.

Landing Pages

An important aspect of PPC is ensuring you have relevant landing pages for your ads. If you are advertising for women’s hats and someone has clicked through and landed on a page for men’s shoes chances are they will go back to the search results as the page they have ended up on is not what they are looking for.

To make sure your landing page is relevant, another thing to consider would be the content on that landing page. Ensure your content is correctly optimised and keyword inclusive, but not stuffed. You can amend the landing page for each individual ad and ad group enabling you to make your landing pages as diverse and relevant to your ads as possible.

Search Term Reports and Negative Keywords

You can get Search Term Reports from your Google Analytics account. A search term report provides you with every search term someone has made that has brought up your ad. These can be used to your advantage as you can use them to look for keywords you have never targeted as well as irrelevant searches (which can be added as negatives).

Not using the negative keywords feature or not using it correctly, can result in a lot of irrelevant traffic which you are paying for. Do not make negative keywords a guessing game, do your research and find out exactly why you are spending so much money on irrelevant clicks. A good example of this would be if you were a company that sold only floor tiles and your ad kept appearing for wall tiles search term, you can then negative the word wall.


When you are considering using PPC advertising, you should always look into all the aspects of your PPC account and what your individual campaigns need for them to be successful and not waste all of your budgets on irrelevant clicks.

Do you need help with your PPC? Find out more about our Paid Search services here.