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The Utah DMC Blog

5 AdWords Mistakes and How to Avoid Them with Michelle Roberts [DMC Recap]


At the 2017 SLC|SEM Digital Marketing Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah, Michelle Roberts offered 5 AdWords mistakes, and how to avoid them. Michelle started with 3 startup questions to get everyone thinking:

  1. Question: What new feature did AdWords recently rollout for search retargeting? Answer: Expanded Text Ads
  2. Question: What percent of customers bounce if a site takes more than 3 seconds to load? Answer: 40%
  3. Question: How many attribution models does AdWords support? Answer: Six attribution models

AdWords Mistake #1: Poor Metric Measurement

The first mistake Michelle pointed out was poor metric measurement. She explained the need to make goal metrics align with business objectives. One business may benefit from the cost per acquisition model, while another might find more insight in the cost per value model. For ecommerce businesses, Michelle recommends optimizing for profit. This is more advanced because it is based on individual products.

AdWords Mistake #2: Improper Attribution

The second common mistake was not having proper attribution. Michelle advocated that marketers avoid guessing, and select an attribution model that makes sense.

  • Last click (traditional model)
  • First click (can be good for just focusing on loading the funnel)
  • Linear (even attribution to all channels)
  • Time Decay (can be useful for long sales cycles)
  • Position Based (preferred model in most situations)

While CPA can be helpful, Google recommends focusing on lifetime value. A perfect customer might cost double to acquire, but have a much higher lifetime value.

 AdWords Mistake #3: Letting Google Completely Take Over

Third, Michelle warned against letting google completely take over. She recommended a proper campaign structure, and suggested the use of single keyword ad groups based on historical keywords that have converted.  This will help to improve click-through-rates, and achieve a better quality score resulting in a cheaper cost-per-click.

AdWords Mistake #4: Mishandling Remarketing

Fourth, we were advised against mishandling remarketing. Michelle urged the audience to use the 3 pillars of success from Google:

  1. Identify using the audience insights report.
  2. Re-engage visitors who may have abandoned their shopping cart, or something similar.
  3. Remarket to visitors who have already demonstrated an interest in your product or service.

AdWords Mistake #5: Dismissing Mobile

Fifth, attendees were cautioned to not dismiss mobile search and mobile devices. Michelle enlightened us on a study that shows 66% of the population suffers from a condition called Nomophobia (a fear of being out of cellular phone contact). She also educated the audience that 91% of smartphone owners make a decision to purchase something after seeing it first on their phone. It was also added that 40% of people research on their phone, and purchase later using a desktop/laptop. Data suggests that the average person checks their phone 150 times per day, and spends 170 minutes on their phone.

What do we learn from this? You need a mobile specific strategy. To view or download Michelle's slides, head to the SLC | SEM SlideShare account!

Topics: Event Recaps ppc paid search AdWords