April 04, 2024

10 PPC Mistakes Only Beginners Make

PPC (pay per click) is a great way to get your site in front of browsers. And while it can be difficult, it's not necessarily complicated.

In a recent poll conducted by a popular PPC blog, a whopping 73% of respondents said that they had made it to the second level of PPC mastery or beyond.

10 PPC Mistakes Only Beginners Make: eAskme
10 PPC Mistakes Only Beginners Make: eAskme

But, unfortunately, that leaves 27% who have yet to get past beginner's mistakes, and you could be one of them!

This article will highlight beginners' mistakes and what you can do to avoid them.

What is PPC?

PPC stands for "pay-per-click," and it's a marketing strategy that allows businesses to put their website in front of potential customers at the exact moment they're looking for something specific.

This is done through ads on search engines, such as Google and Bing, and social media sites like Facebook.

Most paid search results appear above organic (or free) ones. If someone searches for "organic carrots," for example, an ad from a business selling organic carrots should appear first (at least in theory).

The person clicking on this ad will then be directed to the advertiser's site rather than one that shows up below it due to its ranking within the algorithm used by the search engine.

This process is called Pay Per Click Search Engine Marketing.

What is the difference between PPC and SEO?

SEO, or search engine optimization, involves optimizing a website to make it easier for search engines to crawl and rank it higher when certain terms are entered into a search engine.

Specific factors come into play here, such as whether your site loads quickly, use keywords in its pages' titles and content, and much more.

You can read a more detailed analysis of how SEO works here.

It's important to note that while both PPC and SEO have their advantages, they're not the same. On the contrary, they're quite different from each other!

So if you want your business's website seen by potential customers at just the right time, consider using both.

10 PPC Mistakes Beginners Make:

Skipping Quality Score Analysis:

This means that when creating ads for PPC campaigns, you don't bother with ad testing and optimizing for clicks or conversions.

At first glance, it may seem easier to start your campaign and leave the ads as is, but you're not getting the most out of your PPC budget if you do so.

Not Getting The Most Out Of Keywords:

This means that when creating keywords, you don't use them efficiently. For example, let's say that you sell laptop batteries.

Using The Wrong Ad Extensions:

Ad extensions help make your ads more visible.

That's why you want to use all of the ones that apply to your industry and niche, not just the few that you like.

For example, if you're in the pet products niche and decide not to use Sitelink (the one extension that lets visitors see a list of specific pages on your website), this will affect how much traffic you get.

Moreover, ad extensions can also improve Quality Scores which will drop your CPCs when using Google Adwords PPC campaigns!

Not Having Negative Keywords In Place:

Negative keywords prevent irrelevant searches from bringing up an ad.

For example, if there is no negative keyword for someone searching "online dating," they'll still be served an ad even if you don't offer dating services.

This is bad because the user will never purchase anything from your website, and Google considers it wasted traffic.

Not Having A Mobile-Optimized Website:

Because mobile devices are becoming more popular, having a site not optimized for small screens could affect conversions.

As of Q1 2012, reports show that 21% of all web traffic comes from mobile devices.

So it doesn't matter whether you have an eCommerce store or not – being able to view your site on a smartphone or tablet can help improve CTRs which could increase how many clicks you get!

Not Using Ad Extensions For Phone Numbers:

Phone extensions give people another opportunity to reach out to your company.

This can be especially important for eCommerce sites!

Not Using Location Extensions To Your Advantage:

This lets you specify your location so that searchers can see if you have any physical locations near them.

For example, if you have brick-and-mortar stores near a large metropolitan area, then this could help increase your ad's visibility and boost conversions!

Not Reconciling AdWords With Your Site Analytics Software:

If you don't manually check your stats site (or something like Google Analytics), then it's easy to fall into the trap of believing that everything is going well with your PPC campaign.

Manually checking this will keep you from making the mistake of thinking that a low CTR means that something might be wrong!

Bidding Too Much on Brand Terms:

Brand terms are anything related to your website or business name – and because people expect these searches to show your ad, bidding on them can cost you more than what you'll get back in return.

This isn't like an auction where getting a head start will help you win – if someone types "East Side Hyundai" and your competitor has higher Quality Scores, then they'll still beat you even if you've been advertising for years!

The only time bidding on brand terms could help when you're trying to catch up to a competitor who has already established its presence.

Even then, bidding on your brand name doesn't usually bring back ROI!

Not Understanding Keyword Modifiers:

Keyword modifiers let you get more specific with what your ad is targeting.

For example, if you're bidding on the keyword "blue widget," adding this modifier will let your ad appear when someone searches for "blue widgets."

This helps narrow down your audience and create an increased chance of conversion!


There are many more PPC mistakes, but beginners make these are the most common ones!

Even though it seems intimidating to start advertising on Google Adwords, if you follow this list, you'll avoid all these rookie errors.

Furthermore, once you know what not to do, applying your newfound knowledge will help improve ROI!

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