I always find it interesting when you come across big brands that are not making the most of their PPC activity.
Given the budgets they invest in paid search and the large agencies they work with to optimise their PPC, it does always surprise me when this activity has clearly not been optimised.
Below are 3 examples of poor PPC ads.
I was searching on the term ‘secondhand volkswagen polo’ and sure enough Volkswagen did appear in position 1 which you would expect. However, I wouldn’t anticipate being shown an advert that is so clearly targeting the Golf instead of the Polo.
What could they do to improve on this? Utilising the dynamic keyword insertion functionality within their Google Adwords account would mean that the ad could be tailored so that a customer is shown a relevant advert regardless of what Volkswagen model they are searching for. Remember customers are more likely to click on an ad that is relevant to the term that they searched for.
Not So Very!!
Whilst searching for ‘Annual Travel Insurance’ I came across the below PPC ad for an Xbox 360 from www.very.co.uk. As it is a completely unrelated term it is likely that no-one is likely to click on the advert so it won’t be costing Very any money right? Wrong! Having your ads appear for completely irrelevant searches will result in your ads having a low Click Through Rate (CTR) which has a negative impact on your rank meaning that you may have to pay a higher CPC (Cost Per Click) to maintain position.
So what should Very be doing? They should be utilising the search query report in Google Adwords to identify any terms that they are currently appearing against that are irrelevant for their brand and add them as negative keywords.
There I was, searching for the term ‘Session Replay’ and low and behold I get served a PPC ad for a 40% discount on the replay range at House of Fraser. Hardly relevant for my search!
In this example it’s clear that House of Fraser aren’t optimising by keyword type. It is likely that they have the term ‘replay’ in their account on a broad match basis. Given how generic the term ‘replay’ is they would be better to utilise exact match say for the term ‘replay clothing’. This would mean that their ad would only appear against the term ‘replay clothing’.
Alternatively they could have this phrase on a phrase match basis meaning their ad would appear against terms that include the phrase ‘replay clothing’ for example ‘ladies replay clothing’.
An alternative method would be to build out their negative keyword list to include irrelevant terms such as ‘session’ and ‘match’.
In the current climate where budgets are being squeezed it is important to fully optimise your PPC as much as possible.
Have you seen any other cracking examples of what not to do in PPC?