Optimizing Your Paid Search List of Keywords

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Written By Robert Dunford
I am a Marketing Consulting in the Great Toronto Area with over 25 years experience in building and implementing marketing plans for small business.

Optimizing your paid search list of keywords is an essential part of managing your PPC ad strategy. No marketer worth their salt is going to automate the process without analyzing the data and tinkering with the keywords. This is because optimization means precisely that: finding what works and doing more of that.

However, that takes knowledge – same as with SEO keywords. Within Google Ads, you’ll have a lot of data you can analyze. The trick is to analyze the right data that will help your business improve its SEM strategy. But what is SEM, and how do you optimize keywords for it? Let’s have a look at some tips and tricks that might help.

Do You Have Enough Data to Draw Conclusions?

In PPC advertising and SEO alike, you’re never done with keywords. After assembling your starting list, either through your own research or with the help of tools like Google Keyword Planner, you’ll need to evaluate how they’re performing.

The question is, do you have enough data to draw the right conclusions?

There are different opinions on how much data is enough data. Some marketers advocate waiting for statistical significance. With PPC ads, you want a lot of clicks to be able to analyze your conversion rates. To get those clicks quickly, your Cost Per Click should be as low as possible.

Scale Up on Keywords that Perform Well

Once you’ve got your analysis, you can look at individual keywords to determine which ones have performed best. Look at the top ten or twenty keywords and select the winners when it comes to conversion rate.

If you group your high-performing keywords properly into campaigns, you’ll free up a bigger budget to utilize. Once your valuable keywords aren’t competing for the same clicks, you can up the expenditure – and enjoy an increase in revenue. While you’re doing this segmentation, you can add more keywords to test with each campaign, as well as tweak your messaging.

Cut Your Losses

The analysis will also reveal the keywords that just haven’t been worth the investment for you. First, take a look at the expensive keywords, and get rid of every one that only spends your money without matching user intent. 

Your ads might be showing up for irrelevant keywords, and you should try to identify if you’re spending money on that. Cut your losses and make sure you’re only showing up for relevant queries. You can used negative keywords, in some cases, to stop showing up in relevant searches.

Improve What Could Work

If you’re getting clicks on relevant keywords, but there are no conversions, it might not be your campaign that’s the problem. In many cases, the landing page is to blame, whether it’s the copy or the design. Before you cut the keywords that are not performing conversion-wise, try to analyze your landing page and see whether it can be optimized to drive more conversions.

Both PPC ads and SEO might take some time to get right. Optimizing and gathering data for it could take months in some cases.

If you wish to start enjoying good results for your business more quickly, don’t hesitate to contact me. I’d love to discuss your marketing strategy and help in any way I can.

Rob Dunford is a Marketing Consultant in the Great Toronto Area with over 20 years of experience in implementing marketing plans for small businesses.

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