20 tricks for your SEM campaigns on Google Adwords ads

Jul 4 by Kimberly Aris

Your SEM campaigns with Google Adwords can become more efficient than you’ve ever imagined. These 20 tricks will teach you the ins and outs of a successful SEM campaign.

First off, let’s define SEM!

SEM is the acronym of Search Engine Marketing, which is defined by paid ads in search engines, like Google. SEM helps you reach people that are looking for your products or services!

The main difference between Facebook ads and Google ads is that on Facebook you choose certain criteria, like age or tastes, in order to decide which profiles your ads will reach, while on Google Adwords you instantly reach a wider and more diverse audience.

Why Google Adwords? The answer is almost obvious, isn’t it? 82% of searches performed on the internet are done using the search engine Google. These are the tricks that deliver maximum performance when it comes to Google Adwords SEM.

1. Organise and Rename your campaigns and ad groups (simply and clearly)

Note that each Adwords account allows you to have up to 25 campaigns active at the same time. And if you manage several accounts at one time, the campaigns multiply! Therefore you should rename your campaigns to something as clearly as possible. This will make it easier for you to optimize them.

2. Orient your campaigns with geographical segmentation

Use geo-targeting to directly reach your potential customers. From the Locations tab, select those that you want to include, or exclude, in your campaign. It will generate high results in different campaigns, if you want your brand or product in different countries. Even sharing the same language, as far as the search terms go, can be very different, if users are interested in only one product. So separate the campaigns and configure your ad groups by selecting specific keywords for each of them. Also, if the locations you are targeting are in different time zones, this will make it easier for you to schedule your ads, independently.

3. Create multiple ad groups per campaign

You should note that one of the main factors that will determine your position in Google ads is the Quality Score. In order to have high quality ads, they have to be relevant for searches that users perform on Google. You should use separate groups for each different keyword that is relevant to your ads. It will give better results than a single ad group with a long list of keywords unrelated to the ads.

4. Use the keywords planner

With this tool you can find Adword keywords and ideas for your ad groups. Entering search terms, or even putting your website, on Google, will show the lists of terms that may help improve relevance depending on your segmentation.

These terms offer useful guidance, since they provide valuable information, like the approximate number of searches for keywords, bids and offers proficiency.

Keep in mind that the more your keywords appear in search results, the more users will see your ads. This will consequently improve the clickthrough rate (CTR) of your ads therefore your Quality Score will improve on Google. This will help you get in the top results, at a lower CPC cost.

5. Cross your keywords using Google Trends to know the search traffic

Google Trends is a very useful tool that will help you determine what keyword to use, after you’ve used the Keyword Planner. Getting a higher volume of traffic will become easier, if you cross your chosen keywords in Google Trends. You’ll see which one generates more traffic at that time.

6. Add negative keywords

There are certain words that are exactly opposite of the business goals that you have. They are the terms that will not generate any quality traffic to your site. In the same way that you can see how the settings match criteria that you have chosen for your keywords, you may also find that your ad is being shown for searches that do not interest you. By adding “-keyword” or selecting negative keywords in Adwords panel, in the Keywords tab, you can exclude those that do not interest you in your advertising strategy.

7. Eliminate or pause the keywords with lower CTR

When a particular keyword has a very low CTR, it negatively affects the quality of your campaigns. So it is convenient to delete, or pause, them. Although you would normally opt to eliminate them, because they can have a negative impact on your quality score, you could opt to pause them at any given time, since by removing them you also lose the stats and data from these keywords. You can use that information later when you optimize.

8. Go for different match types to choose your keywords

By including the keywords in your ad groups you help various types of match options to generate a greater number of matches to your ad. These match options have to be relevant to the user searches and get higher CTR levels. Depending on the goals of our campaigns, a higher exposure is preferred. For a branding campaign you would have a more targeted exposure if sales of a particular product or service are included. For this you have different match types available: broad, + modified broad, “phrase”, [exact], or -negative.

9. Make multiple ads for each ad group

Play around with an idea, until you figure out what works best. Within each ad group, work with several ads, with different texts, different titles, including different calls to action, highlighting various offers. Remember to adjust the content to the keywords that you have selected for your ad group. Google requires them, so you want them to be relevant to the text. The display in bold of all keywords that match the search will make it easier for the user to scan the results page.

10. Use the equitable rotation of ads

After the above advice is implemented, this 10th trick will become a good strategy. In the settings of your SEM campaign, Adwords will allow you to choose the rotation of ads, optimizing your ads to get more clicks, or prioritizing those with better conversion ratios. Select the best rotation of ads mainly at the start. This way you will know directly, outside of estimates that Google makes, which ads are working at the best offers, and use this data to make decisions.

11. Compose the text of your ads so that they are great

The way you write your ads plays a big part in the success of your campaigns. You need to use creativity to get the user’s attention and increase the number of clicks you get. You have a 25 character title, description lines of 70 characters and 35 characters visible in the URL. Use all this space to include your sales message; be as descriptive as possible, and try to stay relevant to the user’s search. Include calls to action; create a sense of urgency to stand out from the competition. It is a challenge!

12. Take ad scheduling to reduce costs of ads with few conversions

You can decide the days and times when you want your ads to appear. This is one of the most useful steps in strengthening your presence or improving the ad position in preferred times for your business options. This way you will also reduce the cost per conversion in times of low interest.

You’ll find this tool in the settings tab of your Adwords panel. In the ad schedule, you can increase or decrease the percentage, the maximum CPC you are willing to pay, depending on the day or time that your ad is displayed.

13. Use extensions to enrich your ads

Thanks to the extensions, you can provide additional information about your website, company or product. It’s all about increasing relevance! You can add different extensions that will appear next to ads when Google finds them. This improves the visibility of the ad. Types of extensions:

  • Location: You can add the address of your business, or add a pushpin on Google Maps to help users find you and increase the visibility in search results.
  • Links: This extension can add different parts of your website, specific landing pages, links to pages with relevant information about your company, membership forms, featured offers, etc.
  • Phone: Call extensions serve on one hand as direct contact information, and it can be used as “call button”, allowing the user to contact you by clicking it, without having to dial.
  • Reviews: You can include various sources of reviews that are related to your brand or product on the internet. You enter the source and URL where the review is located, and the system will then attract new customers encouraged by the positive ratings others have given you.

14. Upgrade your conversions. Insert the tracking code on Google Adwords

By tracking conversions on Adwords you are able to analyse what happened when users clicked on your ad and accessed your site. Conversion tracking is a code snippet that inserts into all your pages. This indicates whether users meet the goals that you have set for your ads: conversions as a sale, filling out a form, viewing a video, downloading a file or application, etc. It will also allow you to calculate the ROI of your advertising campaign.

15. Upgrade your conversions. Link your AdWords account with Google Analytics

An alternative to Adwords conversion tracking is to have all the data on your conversions, measure the ROI of your campaigns and make decisions for improving targets that will link your account to Google Analytics. With this web analytics tool you can measure the performance of the keyword conversions provided to you, the quality of the landing page that users who click on your ad get to, and the journey they take ​​on your website before beginning a conversion.

16. Make sure your landing page is related to your ad

This is another one of the factors that influence the relevance of your ad and therefore the level of quality that Google assigns you. Actually, it is essential to generate a great browsing experience. If users don’t find what you were advertising on your landing page they will abandon the website without producing any useful action. Try to build a landing page that meets the expectations you’ve generated with your ad. Create specific landing pages for products and offers that you announce.

17. Take care of charging time and other technical details of your landing page

Continuing the last point’s advice, you want your potential customers to be comfortable while browsing your website. The website has to be easily accessible, clear and well distributed. The users have to be directed towards meeting your goals. Implement a responsive design on your website, in order to provide a great user experience, regardless of the device that is being used. Make sure the loading time is optimal.

18. Add votes in your control panel columns

As you will see from creating your first SEM campaign with Google Adwords, some of the main tasks will be: analysing the performance of your ads, keywords and bidding strategies, improving your conversion ratio and increasing ROI. The interface of the tool, in the reports section, gives you a lot of valuable information, and also allows you to generate more views that help you in your strategy. Add or remove columns from the reports, as this will be very useful in your daily work in managing campaigns. Include columns showing competitive data, or information regarding conversions.

19. Make Remarketing lists

Using remarketing, you can reach users who have previously visited your website, by showing relevant ads when they are browsing or performing other related web searches. When users surf the web you will be added to a remarketing list, which will allow you to reconnect with them. So you will offer products and personalized offers using content that people have shown an interest in. If they buy, you can increase your ROI, multiply your conversions and increase your customer base. Create different remarketing lists personalizing by product type, by potential customers, or by repeating customers.

20. And finally, do not forget, OPTIMIZE, OPTIMIZE, OPTIMIZE!

Once you’ve created your campaign and your ad group, you have written the most striking texts that include your keywords, you’ve decided your bidding strategy and you’ve set the daily budget, it’s time to receive and analyze performance data. Then it’s time to OPTIMIZE!  Optimize to improve your CTR, optimize to improve the position of your ads and to get more conversions, optimize to adjust CPC bids, and so on. Optimize your campaigns in order to make your SEM strategy successful. Strive to get better exposure and higher quality, to help you achieve your business goals.

Have your own tips and tricks for successful SEM campaigns? How do you optimize? Feel free to share your knowledge!