These days, one of the best ways that small businesses can increase their discoverability, popularise their brand, and gain more customers is through Google Ads. Google Ads are pay-per-click (PPC) ads that help you get more exposure on Google’s search engine results pages. And one thing we always remind our new clients whenever we set up their ads for them is to: “Never Google your own ads.”
There’s a right way and a wrong way to test and see whether your PPC ads are showing up on Google’s search results. Unfortunately, typing in your search terms and keywords isn’t the best way to do so. And here’s why…
One of the key metrics that Google considers in deciding whether to show your ads, is the click-through rate (CTR). What is click-through rate? Simply put, your CTR refers to the number of impressions your ad receives versus the number of clicks it’s able to gather. If only 10 out of 1000 people who’ve seen your ad click through to your website, for example, that puts your CTR at 10%, which is actually pretty high considering the thousands of blog posts and websites strewn across the internet.
When you Google your own ads but don’t click on it, what you’re doing is adding to the number of impressions and decreasing your overall CTR. Keeping this metric as high as possible is important if you want to keep serving your ad to potential customers. So don’t Google your own ad.
Another key metric that affects your Google ad distribution is the Quality Score. But how, exactly, does Google calculate the Quality Score? Quality Score is a combination of 3 metrics: (1) your expected click-through rate, (2) how relevant your ad is against your target audience, and (3) your overall landing page experience. The Quality Score is a diagnostic tool that helps you give you some clues as to well your ad quality compares to other advertisers.
Keeping your Quality Scores high can have a direct impact on your PPC campaign’s overall efficiency, both in terms of your return on investment and your results. That’s why it’s important to always be working towards keeping your Quality Score as high as possible.
Perhaps the biggest reason you should never try to Google your ads lies in the very nature of PPC. Whenever you run a PPC campaign, you’re charged every time a user clicks on one of your ads. You, the owner of the campaign, are not an exception! You detract points from your CTR and your Quality Score every time you try to Google your ad and don’t click it. On the other hand, if you do click on your own ad, you end up wasting a part of your budget that could have otherwise been spent to capture actual clicks.
Clicking on your ad, and then leaving your website right after a click, also isn’t good, because this then affects your bounce rate. Bounce Rate refers to the times a user has clicked through a link to your website, and then immediately left (or in this case, bounced). It signals to search engines that the user could not find content relevant to their search. Bounce rates can affect your overall rankings and ad distribution.
Add all these factors up, and eventually, your ad will stop showing up in front of you. This can lead you to believe that your ads have stopped showing up altogether. Of course, that’s not necessarily the case. But because you’ve repeatedly tried searching your ads, and have either not clicked on them, or bounced from your website, this translates to Google’s algorithm that your website isn’t relevant for you, and so will stop serving you the same ad.
Knowing that this is a concern amongst advertisers and digital marketers, Google actually has an existing tool that can help you preview your ads. Google’s Ad Preview and Diagnostics Tool provides a completely safe environment for you to view what ads are begin distributed for each keyword. Using this tool allows you to see more data on which ads are eligible to show up, and which ones might need some adjustments.
Understanding and analysing all that data, however, can be a monumental task, one that requires a lot of time and effort. Thankfully, that’s exactly the service that we offer our clients. If you’re interested in either starting or optimising your PPC campaigns, getting more traffic, and driving more leads and sales, schedule a call with one of our agents! We’re more than happy to help you set up your business for online success!