9 Ways to Improve Your Google Ad Campaigns

Pay attention to crucial details such as budget, A/B testing and negative keywords.

Written by Ray Blakney
Published on Nov. 01, 2023
9 Ways to Improve Your Google Ad Campaigns
Image: Shutterstock / Built In
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In today’s evolving digital era, a well-executed Google Ad campaign can make a significant difference for your business. Strategic and robust Google Ads can attract visitors to your website, increase sales and assist you in attaining your marketing objectives. 

9 Ways to Boost Your Google Ad Campaigns

  1. Use negative keywords.
  2. Plan a sufficient budget.
  3. Use ad extensions.
  4. A/B test your ads.
  5. Write sparkling and tempting ad copy.
  6. Track conversions.
  7. Schedule ads appropriately.
  8. Use long-tail keywords.
  9. Optimize ads for mobile users.

The keywords there? Strategic and robust. 

In my journey as the creator of the 9 Year Letter™ Method, a goal-setting system for the four pillars of life — relationships, finances, health and fun — I have discovered and will share with you nine critical details business leaders should pay attention to when executing Google Ad campaigns.

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Negative Keywords

Targeting certain keywords is essential for a Google Ad campaign. However, many overlook the need to designate keywords they don’t want their ads appearing for, a.k.a. negative keywords. Neglecting negative keywords can result in wasted clicks from visitors who wouldn’t really be interested in buying your product or service, which ultimately drains your advertising budget. 

For example, if your business specializes in selling high-end luxury watches, pinpoint negative keywords like “cheap watch” or “affordable watch” so that your ads don’t show up for users searching for budget-friendly options. Or, if your business sells cruelty-free sandals online, designate negative keywords like “leather sandals” and “suede sandals” so your ads won’t appear for users searching those phrases. 

Including negative keywords makes the most of your advertising spend, raises click-through and conversion rates and ups your ads’ quality score, which will cause them to appear in a more optimal position on search results pages. Make it a habit to regularly review your search term reports and designate any low-converting search terms as negative keywords.


Budget Planning

A strategic, thought-out budget aligns with the overall campaign objectives and takes into account market competitiveness and cost-per-click rates in the industry. Moreover, a thoroughly planned budget enables advertisers to make decisions when it comes to ad placements, targeting options and overall campaign strategy. 

By taking time to carefully plan a Google Ad campaign’s budget in line with market dynamics and their own ambitions, business leaders will position their campaign for increased exposure and success.


Ad Extensions

Ad extensions play a vital role in enhancing the visibility and effectiveness of Google Ads. Ad extensions offer details that expand the reach of each ad campaign, such as buy-at links, phone numbers that potential customers can contact with inquiries, and positive customer reviews. When used effectively, these extensions can amplify the overall user experience by providing potential customers with greater context and clear calls to action.

Many business leaders overlook the need for ad extensions and therefore miss out on the chance to provide information and compelling CTAs that can significantly boost ad performance. Neglecting ad extensions can lead to lower click through rates, decreased engagement, and, ultimately, a diminished return on investment. Skillful use of ad extensions will maximize your Google Ad performance and ensure you achieve your campaign objectives in the competitive world of digital advertising.


A/B Testing Ads

A/B testing means comparing two versions of the same advertisement to determine which one would perform better. It helps business leaders understand whether the language used in an ad, its images or overall design, or the landing page it directs to would resonate effectively with the intended audience. If they don’t conduct A/B testing, business leaders may find themselves without data-driven insights that could help refine their ad campaigns. This often leads to ads that fail to reach their full potential.

For example, a fast-food chain can test to see whether an image of a cheeseburger in its Google Ad would convert better than an image of chicken nuggets. Overall, A/B testing can result in efficient use of ad spend, more opportunities for engagement and higher conversion rates, all of which boost a Google Ad campaign’s overall effectiveness and ROI.


Ad Copy

Crafting ad copy is an art that requires finding the right balance between being relevant, attractive and clear. The language used in ads should be captivating enough to entice customers to click while also aligning with keywords that reflect the content on the landing page. Weak or irrelevant ad copy can seriously damage your campaign’s effectiveness, as it often leads to lower click-through rates, which in turn increases the cost per click and diminishes ROI.

The impact of ad copy goes beyond immediate campaign metrics; it can also negatively affect how your brand is perceived and result in missed opportunities to engage and convert potential customers. That’s why it’s crucial to invest time and creativity into crafting ad copy that will contribute to the vitality and success of your Google Ad campaign.

If you need help with improving ad copy, try hiring a freelance copywriter, or turn to generative AI for help. Use ChatGPT, Writer, Bard or another program to write succinct and attractive copy for all your Google Ads. 


Tracking Conversions

Conversion tracking enables advertisers to evaluate the effectiveness of their Google Ad campaigns by monitoring user activities after they click on each ad. Doing this helps you analyze the success and ROI of each Google Ad. Without conversion monitoring, you will be left in the dark on how your ad spend translates into customer actions. This in turn can also lead to poor decision-making and the potential misallocation of resources and ad budget.

Overall, if you lack an understanding of how your Google Ads drive conversions, you won’t be able to further optimize your campaigns for performance and ROI.


Scheduling Ads

Ad scheduling gives business leaders control over when and where their Google Ads are displayed so that they align with the habits of their target audience. Those who overlook ad scheduling and fail to adjust bids for specific times of the day may end up wasting their budget. This is because not all hours are equally profitable for every business and user engagement levels can vary significantly throughout the day and night.

For example, if a business sells casual work attire geared toward those who work an office job, it would be best to ensure their Google Ads show up when this customer target market is more likely to be working on their computer (so not in the middle of the night on a Monday). Or, if your business sells products for overnight nurses, you wouldn’t want your Google Ads to show up between 7 a.m. and 2 p.m. (when your target audience is asleep after a long night shift).

Scheduling ads for opportune hours increases conversions and maximizes advertising dollars. Timing ads effectively is crucial for optimizing each ad’s performance, ensuring that ads reach the audience at the best time and maximizing campaign ROI.


Targeting Long-Tail Keywords

Focusing on long-tail keywords can really boost your Google Ads’ success and sales, as it allows you to market directly to people who have specific needs for your product or service category. 

For example, if you own a graphic design business, you can target long-tail keywords like “e-commerce business website layout company” and “online advertising design help” to target people with those specific niche needs. There will be a lot less competition for those targeted keywords than a general keyword phrase like “graphic designer.” 

Also, the rise of voice search has made long-tail keywords paramount for Google Ads. People who conduct voice searches will usually ask longer, more specific questions to Siri or Google Assistant. Because long-tail keywords are more specific, they align with these searches perfectly. On top of this, a lot of voice searches are location-specific, so long-tail keywords that include a location will help ensure a business shows up in those voice search results.

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Optimizing Ads for Mobile Users 

With the world becoming increasingly reliant on smartphones, failing to ensure your Google Ads are mobile-friendly can really negatively impact each ad campaign’s success. If your ads are not tailored for mobile devices’ smaller screens, you run the risk of alienating a huge portion of your intended audience.

Ads that are not optimized for mobile devices often have longer loading times and a frustrating user experience, which in turn can lead to users abandoning your website and potential conversions slipping away. Optimizing Google ads for mobile devices should be an essential requirement in today’s advertising landscape.

Next time you launch a Google Ad campaign, pay attention to the details, including adding negative keywords, budgeting sufficiently, using ad extensions and A/B testing each ad. Make sure your ad copy is crisp and exciting. Track conversions and target long-tail keywords. Adopting a knowledgeable and strategic approach will significantly enhance the effectiveness of your Google Ad campaigns and bring your company to new heights.

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