How to Mess-Up your AdWords Pay-Per-Click Campaign in 10 Easy Steps
The following are common miscues when you set up your law firm PPC campaign. If you're a law firm setting up its first AdWords campaign, then you will want to avoid these steps to improve your conversions.
Using Your Home Page as a Landing Page – Create a landing page for every AdGroup! Do not just lead your users to your home page. Yes, it is easier to point users to your home page, but your copy will probably not convert. In a perfect world, your website home page would be itself a landing page and lead funnel. However, most likely your home page is not a good first impression for a specific topic area. Overall, your home page may even be lousy. We recommend creating unique landing pages for every AdGroup. The more time you have to create landing pages, the better your campaign will perform.
Failure to Install Analytics – Make sure you install analytics on all landing pages. We recommend Google Analytics, as it nicely syncs with Google AdWords. Failure to install any analytics will lead to poor data. You will have click metric and conversions from AdWords, but if you have no analytics on your page, then you'll be missing out on key information. For example, you will not know how long people are staying on your pages, where they are going next, the bounce rate, and if there are any errors. For bonus points, make sure you install remarketing and click tracking conversions on downloads and video plays.
Set It and Forget It Mentality– Not paying attention to your AdWords campaign on a weekly basis is one way to mess up. In a perfect world, you would check daily, but that can be time consuming and not cost effective. However, you should check at least weekly. Bid prices can change constantly, new ads should be tested, quality scores should be checked, conversions should be monitored. There is always something you can be doing to improve. Now, there are budget constraints too. You could hire a full-time PPC analyst for almost all campaigns and they could work on your groups, ads, keyword phrases, landing pages and conversion funnel all day long. That said, there is a point of diminishing returns for most law firm AdWords campaigns. The key is finding the right balance.
Ineffective Ads without Keyword Phrases, Benefits and Call to Action – Your ads need to have the keyword phrase contained in the ad. They need to have a benefit. They need to have a call to action. Also, you need to try out expanded ads and ad extensions. Take up as much room as you can and draw attention to your ads.
Landing Pages that Do Not Reinforce Ads – Again, your landing pages need to be unique. If a user clicks on an ad expecting a free consultation about motorcycle accidents and they come to a generic page about auto accidents, then that does not work. Yes, it is similar, but not quite the same. You need unique landing pages that reinforce the ad theme.
Low Quality Keyword Score – Your quality score matters. You pay more when you have a low quality score and actually pay less when you have a high score. Match your ads to your landing page copy to improve the quality score. It is as simple as having a solid design and matching keyword terms from the ad itself to the landing page. If needed, setup different AdGroups, ads and landing pages.
Extreme Expectations – Think that you can sign new clients for a few dollars per click in a highly competitive field? Think that every visit to your website should convert? Think that spending $500 a month will lead to millions in new cases? Sorry, but you need to set realistic expectations. Your campaigns will be doing well if you get above a 5% click thru rate (above 10% is doing really well). If you convert above 10% you are also doing well, but some campaigns can convert as high as 25% or more. It all depends on the quality of your campaign and number of competitors. However, keep in mind that not every click will convert. You need to look at the data in total and figure out how many need to convert to make your campaign work for you.
Broad Matching your Phrases – Yes, you can use broad match. Yes, it sometimes can be used effectively. But more often than not, it is waaaaaay too broad. If you type in “tax report” as a broad match phrase, then you will end up targeting users who ask, “how do I report a tax cheat” – probably something you are not targeting. Instead, you may want “how to file a tax report” as a phrase match. Overall, if you use broad match too much, you will end up spending your budget on clicks that will never convert. If you do use broad match, make sure your ads are very specific. Also, make sure you update your negative keywords.
Ignoring Negative Keywords – You need to check on adding negative keywords. Most campaigns are bidding on extraneous phrases that won’t convert. This wastes your budget. Add in negative keywords to help your campaign narrow its focus.
Poor Landing Page URLs – Don’t just call your landing page /landing/ or /google/. Instead, give it a really good name that will help with your quality of your landing page. Get creative with the name and include keyword phrases if possible.
So there you go, avoid these miscues and you can improve your ad campaigns.
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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.