I see questions from time to time on how Adwords account should be modified or setup so I thought I would provide some insight. If you are relatively new to the platform, this post is for you. If you are experienced, feel free to add your thoughts on how to make this thread better. Setting up your campaign Adwords has a lot of settings for targeting, scheduling and display of your ads. When setting up a new campaign or analyzing an existing one, take note of all the campaign settings and think about how they are going to help you accomplish your goals. Some key areas to focus on are: · Targeting location · Ad scheduling · Bids There are a lot of other options but these are some of the most important. You want to be sure you are targeting an appropriate location for your services. For example if you are targeting local people, you can take advantage of ad extensions with phone numbers for local customers. By researching when your customers are most likely to be online looking for your products or services, you can take advantage of ad scheduling to make sure you aren’t wasting money showing ads during non-peak buying times. Bidding is a little trickier. If you are a complete novice in Adwords, you should allow Google to optimize your bids in order to best use your budget. If you are comfortable setting your max bid yourself, you can do some testing and tweak your max bid to get the most out of your budget. Keywords and Adgroups The one key thing to remember is that ads in your Adwords account are triggered by the keywords you have associated with them. With this being true, your adgroups and keyword lists should be highly targeted. Say you want to target a specific brand name of wireless mouse. Your keyword list should look like this. microsoft wireless mouse microsoft wireless mouse 3500 microsoft wireless mouse 3000 microsoft wireless optical mouse buy microsoft wireless mouse microsoft wireless mouse 5000 microsoft wireless mobile mouse 4000 microsoft 3000 wireless mouse microsoft wireless mouse receiver microsoft wireless mobile mouse 3500 Running with the branded mouse keyword group, your ads would look something like this: Microsoft Wireless Mouse The largest Selection of Microsoft Products Visit us Today! www.example.com and Microsoft Wireless Optical Mouse Over 300 Options to Choose from Check out Our site Today! www.example.com Notice that in the different keyword lists, all the keyword are related to each other. If you were to have one phrase like “HP wireless mouse” trigger one of your ads, no one would click on it because it has nothing to do with their query. Your landing page should also be set up to be highly relevant to your campaign along with a simple conversion funnel. The keywords you have in your keyword list and your ads should be prominent on the page. This should be one of the first things a user sees when the page appears. The value proposition should also be present on the page (this is what was promised in the ad) and the action you want users to perform should be the most obvious thing on the page. Structuring your account in this way will ensure that your quality score and click through rates are very good. When these metrics are performing well, then your average cost per click should go down and you will also experience a high average position in SERP’s. Broad match vs exact match vs phrase match The way you have your keywords configured in your account can drastically affect the performance of your campaign. Google triggers your ads based on broad, exact or phrase match. Broad match: Google displays your ad when a portion of a keyword phrase or something very similar (like a misspelling) is used in a query. The drawback to this is that your traffic less targeted. In our Microsoft mouse example above, if someone were to type “fix Microsoft optical mouse” your ad would be triggered. Your ad has nothing to do with fixing a mouse and everything to do with buying a new one so this would not be good. Exact match: Google only displays an ad when the exact phrase you have in your account is used in a query. This delivers much more highly targeted traffic and can lead to better click through rates and quality scores. Exact match is a great one to use when you have a very specific goal in mind for your ad. In our example above, we are only interested in traffic that is looking to buy a Microsoft mouse. Were we advertising many different brands of mice, the broad match may be more appropriate. Phrase match: Google displays ads only when the keywords in your phrase are matched. This is more the in between option from exact match and broad match. It is more precise than broad match but less than exact match. For example if someone were to type “Mikrosoft mose” into Google, our ads would not show. By contrast, if they were to use “Microsoft wrless mouse”, an ad would be triggered if our keyword was configured as a phrase match. Hopefully these basic tips for setting up your Adwords account will help. Here are some other resources to help you get the most out of adwords. · Google Adwords editor: http://www.google.com/intl/en/adwordseditor/ · Google’s adwords learning center http://support.google.com/adwords/? · Google Adwords: Managing your advertising program http://www.amazon.com/Google-AdWords-Managing-Advertising-Program/dp/1449308384/ref=cm_lmf_tit_4 What strategies do you use to optimize your adwords campaigns?