7 Google Tactics Top SEM Agencies Are Implementing

Nicole Chang

Do you feel that your site’s conversion rate is low? Even after driving huge traffic to your website, the number of people who actually make a purchase is few and far between.

The problem boils down to this: You’re not attracting the right traffic.

After years of selling your products or services and engaging with your customers, you have built a profile of your target audience – their demographics such as age and gender, location etc.

This is the group of people you want and should target – people who are similar to your existing customers.

There are numerous ways to make your ads more highly targeted to this small pool of potential clients, especially for Google ads.

AdWords, Google’s online advertising service, allows your ads to appear on Google’s search results and millions of websites and mobile apps.

Here are 7 AdWords tactics top SEM agencies are implementing to acquire qualified leads:

1. Location Targeting

Before running your Google campaigns, always ensure that your location setting is tightly targeted. There is a simple way to further refine your location targeting.

Step 1: Go to the Settings tab of your campaign and select the targeted locations
Step 2: Expand the location options (advanced) section and select the second option (people in my targeted location)

Why choose the second option?

Although advanced location targeting has 3 options, you should always choose the second option (people in my targeted location) for all your campaigns because this setting allows your ads to appear only to people physically located in your targeted locations.

The first and third options, on the other hand, allow your ads to appear to people searching for your targeted locations or viewing websites with the targeted locations’ domains (eg. www.google.com.sg), regardless of whether they’re physically located in your targeted locations.

Let’s say for example that you’re targeting Singapore. The first and third options will allow your ads to appear to people

  • who are in Korea but searches for ‘Singapore’
  • who are in Japan but viewing www.yourwebsite.com.sg

I assume you don’t want to spend marketing budget in attracting the above people… right?

2. Keyword Match Types

Our Google Search ads are triggered by keywords that we target. When running Google Search campaigns, we target certain keywords so that when a user types any of these keywords in the Google search box, our ads appear. Hence, keywords is a crucial targeting element for Google Search campaigns.

According to Google, there are 4 basic keyword match types, from broad to narrow:

Choosing the most appropriate keyword match type is the key in targeting your prospective customers. Broad match and broad match modifier target a larger audience while phrase match and exact match target a smaller audience.

3. Targeting Combinations

There is a multitude of targeting combinations you can choose from when setting up your Google Display campaign. Here is a list of targeting options available:

  • Demographics: Gender (Male, Female), Age (from 18 to 65 or more)
  • Keywords: Choose keywords and your ads will be displayed on websites related to these keywords
  • Topics: Choose topics that are related to your products or services and your ads will be displayed on websites about these topics
  • Interests: Choose interests that your target audience will have (eg. News Junkies, Beauty Mavens, Luxury Shoppers) and your ads will be shown to people with these interests
  • Placements: Choose specific websites that you want your ads to appear
  • Remarketing: Show ads to people who have already visited your website

For Keyword Targeting, bear in mind that keywords are treated as broad match for Google Display campaigns. Hence, remember to remove all +keywords, keyword and [keyword] from the keywords as the system might pick them as part of the keywords! Keywords should be broad match only.

It’s highly recommended that you use targeting combinations. By adding multiple targeting methods to your ad groups, your ads will only show when those targeting methods you’ve chosen match. For example, you can choose targeting combinations like keywords + topics or topics + interests. Therefore, use targeting combinations to reach a tightly targeted audience.

Exclusion Targeting

Prevent yourself from wasting marketing dollars on irrelevant traffic by excluding certain people from viewing your ads. Just like how you use the targeting options above to target a group of people, you can use the same targeting options to exclude certain people (demographics, keywords, topics, interests, placements and remarketing).

For example, you sell beauty products for women and hence, you may decide to exclude men. Or that you discover that customers of your products or services are mostly of the younger generation, you can then exclude those aged ‘55-64’ and ‘65 or more’. You can even create a list of people who purchased items during a time-limited sale on your website and then, exclude this group of people!

Set up your targeting combinations and exclusion targeting by following these steps:

Step 1: Go to the Display Network tab of your Google Display campaign
Step 2: Click on ‘+ Targeting’ to set your targeting

After clicking on ‘+ Targeting’, you will land on a page where you can set the targeting.

  • Targeting: Choose the targeting you want to include for your Google Display campaign
  • Ad group exclusions and Campaign exclusions: Choose the targeting you want to exclude for your Google Display campaign

4. Negative Keywords

Similarly, you can add negative keywords to your Google Search campaigns.

Negative keywords prevent your ads from showing to people who search for these terms.

For instance, if you add the keyword, +baseball +hats and the negative keyword, -women, your ads will only appear to people who search for ‘baseball hats’ but without the term ‘women’ in their searches.

To add negative keywords,

Step 1: Select the Google Search campaign then click on the Keywords tab
Step 2: Scroll down until you see the Negative Keywords section or click on ‘+’ beside Negative keywords if the section is not expanded
Step 3: Click on the ‘Add’ button to add negative keywords to the campaign or ad group

If you’re not sure what negative keywords to add to your Google Search campaigns, you can always refer to the Search Terms Report.

Step 1: Click on the Keywords tab of your Google Search campaign
Step 2: Click on ‘Details’ above the table
Step 3: Click ‘All’ or ‘Selected”

To view the search terms for all your keywords: Select ‘All’
To only view the search terms for specific keywords: Select the checkboxes for keywords you’re interested in then choose ‘Selected’

Next, your Search Terms Report will appear.

From this table, you can see what are the terms that your audience are searching for and adding those terms as negative keywords if they are inappropriate. Ensure that you keep an eye on the Search Terms Report every now and then to add negative keywords.

Some negative keywords you can consider adding are jobs, career and “how to”. “How to” signals that your audience are currently researching and may not be interested in purchasing anything.

5. Frequency Capping

When running Google Display campaigns, you can limit the number of times your ads appear to the same person.

Step 1: Go to the Settings tab of your campaign
Step 2: Scroll down to the Advanced settings and expand the Ad delivery: Ad rotation, frequency capping section
Step 3: Click on ‘Edit’ to change the frequency capping

In this example, the maximum number of times a person can see the ads is 3 times per day for this campaign.

On top of choosing the maximum number of impressions, you can also choose whether this maximum number of impressions applies to a person per day, per week or per month as well as whether the limit applies to each ad, ad group or campaign.

With so many options available, you can easily find the most appropriate frequency capping for your campaigns.

6. Site Category Exclusions

There are numerous site category options that allow you to control where your ads are shown on the Display Network.

Step 1: Go to the Display Network tab of your Google Display campaign
Step 2: Click on either the ‘+ Targeting’ button or the ‘+ Options’ button

Here, you can choose to exclude categories of sites, content or ad placements where you do not want to show your ads. For example, you can choose to prevent your ads from appearing on error pages, in-video etc.

7. Exclude Mobile

Sometimes, you may not want your ads to appear on mobile devices or mobile apps.

You may have your owns reasons for excluding mobile such as your website not being mobile-friendly or you feel that traffic from mobile apps are not converting.

Here are a few ways for you to exclude mobile for your Google campaigns:

Exclude all mobile devices from your Google campaign

Step 1: Go to the Settings tab of your Google Search or Display campaign
Step 2: Click on ‘Devices’
Step 3: Decrease bid adjustment for mobile devices by 100%

Exclude all mobile apps from your Google Display campaign

Exclude all mobile apps from your Google Display campaign

Step 1: Go to the Display Network tab of your Google Display campaign
Step 2: Click on ‘Placements’
Step 3: Scroll down until you see ‘Campaign placement exclusions’
Step 4: Click on the ‘Exclusions’ button and add adsenseformobileapps.com

Exclude all mobile apps from your Google Display campaign

Step 1: Go to the Display Network tab of your Google Display campaign and scroll down until you see ‘Site category options’
Step 2: Click on the ‘+ Options’ button and exclude In-game and GMob mobile app non-interstitial
(Refer to Site Category Exclusions above for more detailed explanation)

* You can even go as far as to exclude all sites related to games from your Google Display campaign

Step 1: Go to the Display Network tab of your Google Display campaign
Step 2: Click on ‘Topics’
Step 3: Scroll down until you see ‘Campaign topic exclusions’
Step 4: Click on the ‘Exclusions’ button and add Games

Conclusions

Top SEM agencies have implemented these 7 AdWords tactics to acquire more qualified leads for their clients.

Why do these tactics work?

Because they target the most relevant potential clients, improve the campaign’s performance as well as save costs by displaying ads to a smaller group of people who are most likely to make a purchase.

Feeling frustrated that you’re not gaining more qualified leads from your marketing campaigns? Find out how you can boost sales and make every marketing dollar count with laser-targeted campaigns. Send us an enquiry today!

 

Photo Credit: Keywords via Google AdWords, Search Terms Report via Google AdWords, Site Category Exclusions via Google AdWords

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