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How much campaign wastage is acceptable?

by mattobrien on January 13, 2012

Well January is well and truly upon us, and all the new years paid search marketing campaigns are underway. Search volume is high and the annual budgets are weighted to take full advantage of the increase in consumer demand. It is likely that January will have the highest paid search budget of any month for the majority of advertisers.

But with an increased budget and increased volume comes the potential for increased campaign wastage, especially if you have got a new campaign up and running where there are still tweaks and fine tuning to be made.

So the question comes, what level of inefficiency or budget wastage is actually acceptable? It would be lovely to say 0%, but in reality we all know that it isn’t possible to run a campaign with zero inefficiency, users will be typing all sorts or new search queries and it is inevitable that you will match to (via your brood match keywords) and get a click from a search term you would rather not.

Beyond clicks on erroneous keywords there are other ways you campaign could be wasting budget. Bids prices might not be set to the optimal level for each keyword or as performance varies, prices might not be updated as regularly as they need to be. This could see you paying too much for a click from a poorer performing keyword and wasting budget or paying too little for a high performing keyword and missing sales.

Ad creative is also key. If you have your creative rotation set to auto optimise (for clicks or conversions) then you need to monitor closely and ensure that the champion challenger approach is in constant use. There would be nothing worse than having one ad at 100% served, while you could be bettering its performance with the simple addition of a variant of it.

All these ways of stopping campaign wastage should be in the armoury of every PPC campaign, but at a time where volume is higher it is more important than ever to micro manage wastage in a campaign down as low as possible. Take your eye of the ball and it will cost you money and sales!

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