PPC Mistakes: Are You Wasting Clicks on Non-Buyers?

Setting up a properly optimized PPC Campaign that actually generates results is completely dependent upon displaying your ads in front of the right people at the right time. Too many people see PPC ads as their ticket to fame and fortune, without realizing the nuances that go into creating a campaign that drives customers to a website and converts them into buyers.

Without going into too much detail, here are 2 mistakes that you could be making when setting up and monitoring your Google Adwords campaign.

Are Your Ads Being Displayed at the Right Time?

What is the Right Time?
Time refers to a 24 hour day, which is important. You need to get your ads in front of people at the right time, which basically means when they’re awake! If they’re awake, in front of their computer or using their smartphone, you have a change to connect with your target market.

Beyond being awake, getting inside the head of your potential customer, there are certain times that might be better than others for displaying ads. Some industries might do well with morning ads, while others do well with evening ads. Knowing your target market, how and why they buy is the key to understanding the best times of day to run PPC ads.

What is the REAL Right Time?
The “right time” actually goes beyond the 24 hour clock and into the right time, meaning the best time within the customer’s buying cycle.

Let’s face it – Most of us have given part of our brain over to the search engines because we know “they” will always be there for us.  We just don’t need to remember much anymore because it’s just a few clicks away.

Can’t remember when the neighbourhood grocery store opens or closes? Google it.
Need to know who won the game last night, that you fell asleep watching? Google it.
Forgot when soccer registration starts? Google it.
Can’t remember that hotel that you stayed at 5 years ago with the beautiful view of the beach? Google it.

ppc mistakes

Customers today are using mobile devices in whole new ways. Think of a smartphone like a genie in a bottle. Anything you ever wanted to know is at your fingertips at any time.

When a customer is standing in your store with their smartphone in their hand, guess what they’re doing. They’re looking for information and reviews about your company and your products. What they find that that moment will often determine if you get the sale.

Are Your Ads Being Displayed to the Right People @ the Right Time?

Just because someone is Googling something (ie. cute puppies), doesn’t mean they’re looking to buy – and you could be wasting hundreds or thousands of dollars presenting Pay Per Click ads to people who have no intention of paying for anything.

They just want FREE information.

Back in the day before the internet (early to mid 1990’s), for those that remember way back then, we made a trip to our local library. They had books and subscriptions to almost any magazine you can imagine.  If you live in London, Ontario and wanted to read the Wall Street Journal, you could take a trip to your local library and they had a copy of the WSJ waiting for you there.

In 1993, if I needed to find a plumber, an electrician or a top master locksmith, I consulted the Yellow Pages or the phone book.

Fast forward to 2015 and 90% of us Google it on our smartphone, tablet or computer. The problem with the way that so many PPC campaigns are setup is that they waste a good portion of your budget on information gatherers, not on buyers.

If your business makes money disseminating free information, this is not a concern, but if your business is like mine, you NEED paying customers and clients.

While free information gathering may lead to a sale, you’ve got a lot more work to do to convert an information gatherer into a customer versus converting an active buyer into your customer.


Below are terms searched in Google and Buyers vs. Free Information Gatherers

Information Gatherer Search – “fuel efficient cars”

Buyer Search – “2012 Honda Fit in London, Ontario”

See the difference here?

The first search is pretty generic. We really have no way of knowing if the person searching for fuel efficient cars is looking for a Honda, a Smart Car or a Hyundai.

Now – That’s not to say that you couldn’t educate and CONVERT this person on the spot – from casual info gatherer to buyer, BUT your job is going to be much more difficult and could take some time.

The second search is much more targeted. This person has likely burned through lots of car dealers PPC budgets, click on ads for all kinds of “fuel efficient cars” and finally after some research, reading online reviews and based on their budget, they know they want a 2012 Honda Fit.

This is your buyer! This is the click that could turn into money in your pocket if you’re a car dealership. Do you really want to waste a good portion of your PPC budget educating potential customers who are more likely going to end up purchasing somewhere else?

I didn’t think so!

What’s the difference when setting up a properly optimized PPC campaign like this?

It takes a LOT of time. It takes research. It takes understanding of the industry that you are in and how/why people buy.

A bad campaign can be setup by hitting next > next > next and you’re up and running in 10-20 minutes.

A good PPC Campaign might take several hours if not more to setup. That’s the difference.

Do you want to connect with BUYERS? Take the time to setup a Pay Per Click campaign properly and seek out advice before burning through clicks and making the false conclusion that PPC doesn’t work.


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