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Small businesses tend to dive straight into Google AdWords without fully educating themselves on this digital advertising service. You need to tread carefully as this is a waste of your marketing budget. Even though it’s easy to set up an AdWords account, generating a return on investment without educating yourself on how to use the service is a big challenge. Poor management of ad campaigns can waste your small businesses money and also lowers the conversion potential.

Here are the top 6 Google AdWords mistakes made by small businesses (and how to avoid them)

  1. Broad Keywords

Businesses bid on broad keywords which top players in your industry are also bidding on. It is a major Google AdWords mistake for small businesses to compete for these AdWords. The more popular a keyword, the more expensive it is and it won’t be long before your ad budget is gone with little or no conversions to show for it.

The trick is to select keywords that are not too competitive and yet have a healthy search volume. That process takes time and there is no quick fix or shortcut. Invest the time, reap the reward.

  1. Negative Keywords

Every click on your ad costs your small business money and so it is important to have the ads be as relevant to the search query as possible. This is where negative keywords come in. These ensure that your ad will not show if people search for these negative keywords so you will only be paying to show your ads in relevant searches.

  1. Performance Monitoring

Another Google AdWords mistake made by small businesses is not monitoring the performance of ad groups or keywords. If certain ad groups or keywords are underperforming they should be dropped immediately so that you’re not wasting money which could be used for better performing or new ad groups or keywords.

  1. Landing Pages

If you are advertising a specific product or service then the person clicking on your ad should be directed to a page relevant to that which is advertised. By directing them to your home page potential customers are being forced to find the information themselves. This can result in missing out on conversion opportunities, higher bounce rates and you have also just wasted money on an ad for a non-converting click.

  1. Keyword Grouping

AdWords allows you to create and manage different campaigns. Not grouping keywords correctly into different ad groups within a campaign is another Google AdWords mistake. The error many people make is grouping all of their keywords into one ad group which shows everyone the exact same ad.

People are more likely to click on your ad if it matches the keyword that they searched for. By breaking up your keywords into different ad groups you can customise ads to be a better fit for the term that is being searched for.

  1. Ad Extensions

Ad extensions are very often overlooked but can provide even more information for users which can potentially help your small business in getting more conversions. There are numerous extensions available for your ads such as seller ratings, consumer ratings, location extension, call extension, sitelinks, and your businesses Google+ account.

Seeing as every click on an ad costs you money it is more beneficial for you to have as much information in your ad as possible so that those that are genuinely interested in your ad click on it. Ad extensions also help your ads to show up higher in the SERP.

By avoiding these Google AdWords mistakes made by small businesses you will have a better chance at ranking higher in the SERP and generating more awareness about your brand.

Marc O'Dwyer

After completing a Graduate program in Marketing, Marc’s impressive sales career began at Allied Irish Banks, Pitney Bowes and Panasonic where he received numerous Irish and European sales performance awards and consistently exceeded targets and expectations. In 1992, Marc’s entrepreneurial spirit led him to set up his own business, Irish International Sales (IIS). Initially, this company was a reseller for Take 5 Accounts and Payroll software. Within four years, IIS became the largest reseller of Take 5 in Ireland, acquiring four other Take 5 resellers. He also found time to set up two mobile phone shops under the Cellular World brand and a web design company offering website design services for small businesses. In 2001, he bought the majority share in a small Irish software business, Big Red Book. At that time, the company was losing money. The company became profitable within two months, and Marc then acquired a payroll company to compliment Big Red Books Accounting products. In 2003, IIS were appointed as Channel Partners with SAP for their new SME product, SAP Business One. Marc sold his Take 5 business and concentrated on developing this new market for SAP As a result, by 2007, IIS was recognised as the largest Channel Partner for SAP in EMEA (Europe Middle East and Africa). In 2008, the IIS Sales Manager bought the Company from Marc in an MBO. He launched Big red cloud in June 2012, the online version of big red book, to date the company successfully converts 59% of trials into sales and the number of customers is growing rapidly. Marc continues to run both Big Red Book and Big Red Cloud which now support 75,000 businesses. He is a very keen sportsman, having played rugby for 20 years, represented Leinster at under 16 and under 20 levels, and league squash with Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club for 10 years. Marc has competed in 11 Marathons, including the London and Boston Marathons, and has completed several Triathlons and Half Ironman races. He has also completed six Ironman Races in Austria(x2), Frankfurt (Germany), Nice (France) , Mallorca (Spain) and Copenhagen (Denmark)

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