Here are the Google AwWords tips (ie don’t make these mistakes!):
1. Neglecting to Split-Test Your Ads. I’ve gotta say one of the coolest discoveries of my whole life was, in my first week of playing with AdWords 5+ years ago, noticing that “create new ad” link and seeing that I could create a 2nd and 3rd and 4th ad and try different text. Running them simultaneously, then seeing how teeny tiny changes made huge differences. I still get jazzed about this. It’s like practicing psychology without a license.
2. Letting Google Retire Your Ads Without Testing: In Campaign Settings, when you turn “Optimize Ad Serving” OFF, you declare a winner and a loser much faster. Turn that option off if you’re checking in every day.
3. Split Testing for Improved CTR Only: At first, Click Thru Rate is the only thing you can measure. You want it high so you get the most traffic. But eventually what REALLY matters is conversion rate and cost per new customer. Sometimes high CTR ads don’t bring buyers. Conversion is what matters most.
4. Ignoring the Display URL Line in your Ad: If you own http://www.redwagon.com, you should try http://www.RedWagon.com, and http://www.RedWagon.com/RadioFlyer, or http://www.RadioFlyer.RedWagon.com, or RedWagonStore.com. Tiny hinges swing big doors.
5. Creating Ad Groups with Unrelated Keywords: Do not write an ad and dump every keyword under the sun into the ad group. Make tight ad groups based on a narrow set of related keywords matched closely to the ads and the landing page.
6. Muddying Search and Content Results: If you run all three streams of traffic (Google / Search / Content Network) through the same ad group, you lose the ability to distinguish among the very different kinds of traffic. I prefer to separate Google & Search from Content, in different campaigns.
7. Ignoring the 80/20 Principle: The 80/20 Rule says that the vast majority of outputs (impressions, clicks, leads, sales) are caused by a very small minority of inputs (ad groups, ads and keywords.) Spend your time on the vital few instead of the insignificant many.
8. Declaring Split-Test Winners Too Slowly: If you can declare a winner twice as fast, your site improves twice as fast. I recommend combing through your ads as often as you can announce a winner. If you go to http://www.splittester.com you can enter the # of clicks and the CTR of any two ads and it’ll tell you whether the better one is really better, or if it might just be luck.
9. Declaring Split-Test Winners to Quickly: If one ad got 1% and 5 clicks, and the other got 2% and 8 clicks, that’s not enough clicks to know for sure the winner is a sure thing. Again, let http://www.splittester.com decide their fate. Rule of thumb: 20+ clicks on each ad.
10. Ignoring negative keywords: Just about ANY ad group should probably have some negative keywords. It should always be on your checklist. It increases your Click Thru Rate because your ads don’t get shown to people who shouldn’t see them. Less waste.