How to Optimise Your AdWords Campaigns in 35 Minutes or Less a Day

There can be no doubt that Google AdWords can be a great tool for driving targeted site traffic, generating conversions and making sales. If you get your Google AdWords management techniques down properly, you can achieve incredible results without spending a huge chunk of cash.

Oliver Wood

There can be no doubt that Google AdWords can be a great tool for driving targeted site traffic, generating conversions and making sales. If you get your Google AdWords management techniques down properly, you can achieve incredible results without spending a huge chunk of cash. Unfortunately, in order to get the best ROI out of AdWords, you need to spend some time researching, testing and tweaking your ads regularly to make sure you are getting the most out of the advertising budget you spend. And this overhead in the form of Google AdWords management is something of a hidden cost. Put simply, time costs money. If you spend several hours managing your AdWords campaigns every day, then you need to work smarter. So here are a few tips on how to get the time you have to spend managing Google AdWords down to an acceptable level.

Review Your Goals - 5 mins

What do we mean by this? Well, let’s consider the overall goal, the reason we use AdWords. We want to spend our marketing budget in the most cost effective way, whilst bringing in the most revenue.

There is nothing wrong with this goal, but in order to manage AdWords more efficiently, we need to break it down into smaller, simpler goals.

If you fire up your web browser and log into AdWords with the intention of achieving the overall goal above, then you are probably going to sit scratching your head, wondering how on earth to achieve it. Breaking it down into smaller chunks makes it a manageable task. We could split it up into smaller goals like these:

⦁ I want to drive 500 visitors to my website using my main keywords. ⦁ I want to extend the reach of my brand using less popular keywords to gain better value for a non-sales related branding campaign. ⦁ I want to gain as many visitors I can for less than $1 per click. ⦁ I want to lower my AdWords budget by 20% without losing more than 10% clicks.

These are achievable, small step goals that can be done in just a few minutes once you know your way around the Google AdWords management interface.

Review Your Campaigns - 10 mins

This is a real pro tip. If you are running many different Google AdWords campaigns concurrently, or frequently switch different campaigns in and out, then creating a standard shape for your campaigns just makes sense.

Why? It’s all in the planning. If you develop a standardised structure for your campaigns, you never have to spend time remembering what older campaigns were intended to do or spend time deciding how to set up a new campaign. It’s all in the planning. Measure twice, cut once as they say.

How you design your standard AdWords campaign structure is going to be dependent on the kind of site you run, and the products and services you sell. However, a rule of thumb is to link together sets of related keywords into ad groups with at least 3-4 ad groups within a campaign.

Once you have done this, if you want to target a different set of keywords, using a slightly different ad, and a fresh landing page, you already have a building block to use to set up the new campaign. And this is the real trick. Doing something once, that can be duplicated time and again quickly. For more in-depth information on creating a great AdWords account structure, read this article by wordstream. Also, watch the video below for a quick walk-through on how to optimise your Google AdWords ad position.

Experiment With of Your Worst Performing Ads - 15 mins

So, you have organised your Google AdWords management into easy to achieve, simple goals. You have begun to standardize the way you use AdWords, in order to streamline and speed up the creation and management of similar campaigns. Everything is going great, right? Right up until the moment you want to make sure you are getting the best ROI. You need to perform split testing or A/B testing to make sure that ROI is all that it can be.

Split testing sounds like something complicated, and there is a danger that you make it harder for yourself than it really is. So, remember this: Split testing is about discovering which worked best, not discovering what will work better.

What do we mean by this? When you compare the results of an A/B test you really don’t need to be worrying about why A performed better than B or vice versa. You are not interested in the why. Split testing is about evolution, not analysis. If you keep split testing continuously, and always choose the ad with the best results, your campaign is always evolving in a positive way. A/B testing is brainless, you don’t need to spend hours trying to work out why something worked better, just know that it is, and move on. This single concept can save you hours of head scratching.

Kissmetrics has a great beginner's guide on how to do split tests that's worth reading if you need help setting up your first split tests.

Tweak Your Keyword Bids - 5 mins

We are all guilty of this at times, spending far too long plugging in different keywords and trying to find those that could perform really well, at a nice low cost.

There was a time that this was well worth doing, but that was a very long time ago. The days of finding dirt cheap keywords with great traffic are long gone. So, don’t spend a lot of time looking for them. Instead, concentrate on improving conversions, to extract the best value from keywords. Let’s put it this way. 10 clicks of a $0.50 keyword resulting in zero conversions are worse than 1 click of a $5 keyword that results in a conversion. It’s not all about keywords, don’t waste too much time trying to uncover the holy grail. Tweak bids on keywords that are performing well and remove the ones that aren't.

In Conclusion

These are just a few tips on how to cut down on the time you spend working on your Google AdWords management. As you become more familiar with AdWords you will no doubt come up with your ow ideas on how to work more efficiently in the future.