How to increase your PPC enquiries without increasing your ad spend

6 min read
Watb Team
A laptop on a desk

It’s simple, effective and the best part is – without throwing silly money at it, you can increase your PPC enquiries.

There’s more to improving the number of PPC enquiries you get than just increasing your daily budgets and cost-per-clicks. We’ve have sectioned out each of the key areas to look at in order to optimise your PPC campaigns without needing to increase your current PPC budget.

As always, please leave a message in the comments section for any questions you may have. Feel free to comment on your favourite PPC optimisation tips too.

Keywords: Use your search terms report

The Search Terms report shows the exact keyword someone has typed in – ending up as a click. You can find it in the “Keywords” tab, just underneath the tab itself.

Google AdWords Search Term Report
The Search Terms report

How can you avoid wasted clicks?

Add negative keywords to your campaigns and ad groups for keywords which are costing you money but not resulting in any clicks. This can dramatically reduce the wasted clicks on an account and means your budget will be spent on the keywords that really matter.

Next, create dedicated ad groups for high performing keywords so you can keep a close eye on them and control CPC, ad text and landing page destination. You’ll have more opportunity to optimise top performing keywords and increase their Quality Score.

A company mentions in this article that they were spending $147,000 on keywords that didn’t produce a single lead!

Relevancy: Increase Quality Score

A Quality Score is how Google AdWords assesses how relevant your ads and landing pages are to each keyword you’re bidding on. Simply put, the higher your quality score for a keyword (out of 10), the cheaper your CPCs will be, and the cheaper your conversions will cost.

What are your Keyword Quality Scores?

To find out your scores, head to the “Keywords” tab. Click the “Columns” drop down, “Modify Columns” and add “Qual. Score” under the Attributes metrics. If you’re on an 8 or 9 out of 10 then give yourself a pat on the back!

Keyword Quality Score
Keyword Quality Scores

The best part?

Improving click-through-rate is a fairly simple, if slightly time consuming process.

First, create and test different ad texts, Start with the best performing keywords in your search terms report and write ads with relevant offers that’ll draw in your customers and make them click through to your website. You could offer “free trials” and other benefits to stand out from the other competitors’ ads. Set up multiple ad text for each ad group so you can A/B test and discover which type of language is best to use to attract customers.

Next up, landing pages.

Produce dedicated landing pages which link to the ad group and keywords and you can increase your Quality Score (reducing your cost per conversion). Match your keywords to your landing pages. Ie, if you’re a clothes retailer selling red shoes, be sure to send the users who click on your ads for red shoes to your red shoes products.

If your landing page answers a users’ queries, questions and needs effectively, your quality score will improve. Boom. Cheaper sales and budget saved to use elsewhere.

Graphically designed Landing Page
Good use of a clear call to action

User Experience: Increase the conversion rate of your landing page

We’ve posted a lot about conversion rates recently. They’re a powerful way of increasing your business’ sales and enquiries, through your website. Basically, it’s about building on the website visits you already receive and encouraging users to convert.

Relevant landing pages are likely to increase how much visitors fill in your forms or make a purchase.

Landing page experiences are important – Google agrees.

Businesses that are improving their conversion rates are testing their websites 50% more than those who don’t see improvement – testing works, so how can you test?

Look at the entire journey your user goes on – from when they land on your site to every piece of info they see in between. Setup split tests, perform user testing and analyse your analytics data to find out where and why users may be leaving your website.

Timing, Location and Technology: Assess Timing of Ads and Devices Used

Desktop and Mobile Users Act Differently

Particularly in B2B marketing there’s trend for desktop users to convert better than mobile users.

Here’s the deal:

Business owners might not feel 100% comfortable about signing up to anything, but will happily browse. Desktop can convert better, but there’s slightly higher CPC. Or, is it that mobile users will see the ads and then sign up later on their desktop? Smartphones can be more of a research platform.

Test this theory for yourself.

You can find your device settings under the “Setting” tab. Click on “Devices” and create bid adjustments for them. Ie, -100% bid means you won’t be bidding on them at all.

 aperson on a station using Mobile v's a person in an office using a Desktop
Consider behaviour depending on the device.

Hone in on your best performing locations

Locations allow you to hone in on very specific areas and see what’s performing best. A particular area might have a high conversion rate and you can increase your spend there. Or your CPC might inflated with no real return in other areas, so you can reduce it.

You can find out your top locations by going to “Reports” (very top of the page), clicking on “pre-defined reports” drop down and selecting “Geographic”. Bid adjustments are made in the campaigns tab, under Settings.

66% of marketers agree that location based advertising is especially exciting for mobile.

Timing is everything.

With AdWords, you have the power to choose when your ads are seen by your users. Cool, right? Your audience might convert better on Thursday and Friday, but hardly ever convert on a Sunday. Why not reduce the budget or CPC on the Sunday and increase budget or CPC on the Thursday/Friday.

You can find your Ad Schedule (aka, timing) report under Settings, “Ad Schedule”.

Assess your bottom line

Making these improvements can be time-intensive and fiddly, so if you need a hand then we’re more than happy to help. PPC AdWords is something which can be effective for almost any business, so stick to the tips above and you should see your costs reducing and return on investment improvement.

If you are not receiving the return you need, it might be that PPC AdWords isn’t the right choice for your business and your ad spend. If you’re not sure then let’s have a chat. It could be the case that investing in other media is more cost effective and you’ll receive better quality enquiries and more sales.

Click-through-rate is a massive part of a Quality Score, around 60% according to Google’s Chief Economist.

Social Media Management Software

In order to promote your business and reach consumers that spend an entire 24 hours a week online, you need to make sure that you have a viable social media strategy in place.

By posting unique and interesting content on your social media platforms, and by actively engaging with followers, you can start to turn this into a funnel for generating leads.

In order to stay on top of your social media strategy, it’s important to have some form of social media management software to do some of the heavy lifting. Software such as this is imperative for scheduling, tracking and monitoring social media content.

At its best, social media management software can help you not only plan your content months in advance, but also remain reactive by letting you tune into ongoing news stories or trending topics.

Screenshot of Hootsuite's homepage

We recommend: Hootsuite

There are a whole bunch of social media management companies out there and all of them offer roughly the same sort of package but Hootsuite is the only one that offers an actually free service (as opposed to just a free trial period).

They do try to hide it on their website though so make sure you follow this link in order to get to the right page.

The free version of this software lets you:

  • Manage up to three social media profiles from a choice of channels including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn
  • Schedule up to 30 posts in advance at any point in time
  • Track follower growth, likes and comments
  • Integrate two RSS feeds in order to find and share compelling content
  • Access Hootsuite’s online help center and community forum

Of course, there’s also a number of paid-for packages that you can buy from Hootsuite that give you access to a great number of services including higher ad spend budgets, automated post scheduling and custom analytics.

But if you’re a small business looking to get started, the free version of the software should be comprehensive enough to allow you to get your social media strategy in motion.

Website Tracking Software

We’ve said before that the secret to a successful lead generation strategy is to keep analysing and refining your methods. Well, website tracking software is the best way to conduct this analysis.

By digging into the analytics of your visitors’ actions, you can start to gain a better picture of why people come to your site, what they want from it, what they dislike about it and how you can improve upon their experience next time.

There are a wide variety of services that can fall into the category of website tracking software, including heatmaps, funnels, user polls, surveys, visitor recordings and more.

Basically, any kind of software that collects data about the ways in which your visitors interact with your site can be considered website tracking software.

Screenshot of Hotjar's homepage

We recommend: Hotjar

Whereas there are a multitude of smaller software companies that focus in on just one website tracking service, Hotjar offers an array of useful tools.

Hotjar tools include:

  • Click, move, scroll, download and share heatmaps that can also be split by device type
  • Visitor recordings that allow you to replay sessions of real site visitors
  • Conversion funnels that identify on which page and at which step the most visitors are leaving your site
  • Form analysis that can help you to discover which fields take too long to fill, which are left blank and why your visitors abandon your form and page
  • A customizable widget that allows you to create pop-up feedback polls
  • Responsive surveys that can be distributed through web links and emails, or featured your site just before your visitors abandon the page in order to discover what their concerns are
  • The ability to recruit test users in order to get instant feedback on your site

Hotjar’s free service is able to collect data from 2000 page views a day and will give you access to up to 300 visitor recordings and 3 heatmaps, forms, funnels, polls and surveys. Unlimited users can be added to your account and Hotjar will also store your data for a full year.

While we’d normally recommend free services when possible, it’s probably worth paying for Hotjar’s Plus plan to begin with.

For just under £25 a month you can collect data from 10,000 page views a day and have unlimited services and reports. Plus there’s even a 15-day free trial for you to test out whether you like their software or not.

Remember

Lead generation doesn’t have to be an expensive endeavour.

What’s important is that you put real effort into all of your interactions with potential leads - whether that’s through educational and informative blog posts, social media interactions or even just a chat on the phone.

If you believe in your business’ ability to help its customers then all you have to do is let that shine through.

Ultimately, these tools are just there to help you meet potential leads on their level. The rest is up to you.

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