How to Lower CPC That Will Make You Save Money (AdWords)
Over the last thirty days we have been able to reduce our cost per click (CPC) by 60% on both Google and Bing Adwords Campaigns by making a single change to our adgroup structure which ultimately increased our ads quality score while decreasing our ad spend.
You will find in Wordstream's The 20 Most Expensive Keywords in Google AdWords, that maximizing your campaign for the lowest possible cost per click is imperative. If you are new to Google or Bing adwords you'll want to start with this well illustrated guide 15 Steps to Setup a Google Adwords Campaign by Andrew Fortune, the founder of Great Colorado Homes. His step 14 is where you may want to pause and consider a different way to structure keywords and adgroups.
How to Lower Your Cost Per Click (CPC)
The single best way to lower your cost per click is to improve your adwords quality score. Google says: "Quality Score is an estimate of how relevant your ads, keywords, and landing page are to a person who sees your ad. Higher Quality Scores typically lead to lower costs and better ad positions." So how do you improve your Quality score to a 10/10? I found one way is with Single Keyword Adword Grops (SKAGs).
Single Keyword Ad Groups
A Single Keyword Ad Group is defined as one keyword per adgroup! Google and Bing do not help the user by suggesting an abundance of keywords are crammed into one adgroup. It is recommended to include multiple match types of each keyword in the Single Keyword Ad Group. An example for real estate would be:
As a personal preference I only want to pay for intent searches and exact matches. By changing all of our adgroups to SKAGs the first of November, we've been able to decrease our cost per click from north of $10-$20 down to under $6.
You now want to make your ad copy - headlines, description, and masked landing page url keyword specific. You can see on the example below our exact match keyword is [Rancho Santa Fe Homes For Sale]
My Experience With PPC
Over the last 9 months I hired and fired three PPC management solutions. Two were freelancers on upwork with good reviews. If you don't sit and actually read the ad copy in every single adgroup you may miss poor grammatical English, or spelling errors. One was outsourcing to India and presenting as his own work on Upwork. Below is an excerpt of an email addressed to the third company that I sent to get out of my contract:
I’ve spent 8 hours today on this 68 page report and have grave concerns as to the expertise with your company regarding US real estate related PPC. I’m contracted to pay you $1300 and 8 hours later truly felt that I’ve been working on what I paid you guys to do. Looking at this work I have 0 confidence in paying monthly to analyze when little analysis went into the setup! Attached is all the work I did today where you can see I’ve spent the time to be able to address these concerns. At this time I do not feel that we are a good fit to work together:
1. The ad copy was terrible. I signed up for the subscription to ispionage today and was able to see instantly what the top advertisers are spending on adwords and their top performing ad copy. Zillow, Trulia, Redfin, and Realtor.com that takes seconds to figure out who the top US advertisers are for real estate.
2. Negative keywords. I’ve seen various tools online Wordstream, ect. Rent to own definitely is missing as are others.
3. Keywords were entered in such as beach house, oceanfront, waterfront, beachfront for Poway, Rancho Bernardo, Carmel Valley, Rancho Santa Fe, ect that are no where near the water. This truly tells me no keyword tool was run for these neighborhoods.
4. Keywords neighborhoods are missing that attach to all groups. What type of keyword tool for communities was ran? The following are La Jolla neighborhood keywords that should have picked up with some research:
La Jolla Shores
La Jolla Muirlands
La Jolla Village
La Jolla Cove
La Jolla Farms
La Jolla Bird Rock
La Jolla Windansea Beach
This experience with multiple vendors led me to spend significant time mastering PPC myself. Unless you have very deep pockets, contracting out PPC campagin setup will cut into your SEM budget because of the exhaustive hours required doing keyword research and tediously setting up each adgroup.
Finally on a daily basis you'll want to monitor the Average Position from the day prior. Google says,
"Average position helps describe how your Ad Rank compares with other ads. For more information on how your Ad Rank compares with other advertisers, check the Auction insights report." Once you switch your adgroups over to SKAGs, you can drastically cut your bid amount and keep watching it day by day. Some clicks you may be able to get by with under $2 for a bid whereas before you had to bid $5-$7 to get in the first or second position.