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Top 5 Google SEM Mistakes and how to avoid them by Best Digital Marketing Agency, Absolute Digital

Updated: Oct 20, 2020

By Absolute Digital

In this article, we will be going through the top 5 Google SEM mistakes, and how you can avoid them. Google SEM is one of the fastest and most effective ways of marketing your business online. Many companies try to optimise their SEM campaigns on Google's SERP, and some companies work with the best digital marketing agencies to strategise the highest conversion and ROI. However, did you know that some of these mistakes are being made by amateurs and professionals alike?

What is Google SEM?

Google Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is the bidding of Cost-Per-Click (CPC) keywords on Google's SERP. Businesses have up to 7 SEM per Google SERP, mainly the top 4 and bottom 3 listings. The aim is to appear as high up on the SERP, preferably page 1 on Google to gain a stronger digital presence. This helps your potential clients easily find your website online, and increase your visibility to new clients who are searching for your products or services.

Compared to Google SEO, Google SEM is fast to set up and an effective way to gain exposure on the highly coveted Google 1st page. Companies who want to rank their website on Google page 1 but cannot wait for months it required for Google SEO, will use Google SEM as an alternative method.

Let's take a look at some of the Top 5 Mistakes on Google SEM, and how you can avoid them!

1. Targeting The Wrong Audience

One of the most common mistakes when running a Google SEM campaign is wasting money on the wrong audience. Digital marketing, unlike traditional marketing, allows you to accurately target your audience based on several factors. Some factors include demographics, location, and personal preferences... Platforms like Facebook Marketing even lets you target look-a-like audience.

Using this tool right, you will be able to effectively reduce your marketing costs to a fraction, and increase your ROI because those who view your ads have a higher chance to convert into your clients.

However, most people do not fully understand their target audience well. This translate into inaccurate targeting and results in higher Cost-Per-Lead (CPL) and lower ROI.

2. Understanding Marketing Trends

What worked before, might not work again. However, it is important to learn from other campaigns and pick up effective converting strategies. Even if your website outbids all your competitors and is the 1st listing on Google page 1, you still need a strong ad creative to convince the viewer to click on your ad.

Having a strong ad creatives means that you need to include your Unique Selling Point (USP), and a strong Call-To-Action (CTA), preferably with a time limit, all within the 180 characters limit for a Google SEM ad.

While market trends shifts frequently, while you have a proven formula of creatives and strategies, you can easily tweak your campaign to include keywords that are trending. To easily find out the search volumes and trends, you can use Google Trends.

3. Wrong Keyword Bidding Strategy

An effective keyword bidding strategy will indirectly affect your ROI. If you overbid on keywords which do not convert well, you will be wasting your ad budget and therefore increase your CPL. For example, if the 1st listing on Google SEM is bidding at $1.20 and you want to be on top, you should bid $1.21 and not $2.

However, keywords bidding prices are always fluctuating and you need to constantly monitor the demand and competition of each keyword you are bidding for to optimise your bidding strategy. If your keyword bidding strategy is not effective, you can analyse your competitor's proven strategy and implement it for your business. Alternatively, you can also work with a professional digital marketing agency to tap onto their wealth of experience to structure your keyword bidding strategy and SEM campaign.

4. Copying a competitor's strategy

This is a controversial topic. Some experts believe that you should copy a competitor's SEM campaign strategy as a way of using a proven methodology so that your campaign will run effectively. However, at Absolute Digital, we believe that:

...a successful campaign has to be original, relevant and updated.

This means that your Google SEM campaign should speak to your target audience, talk about your business's USP, and connect well with new and original content. If you were to copy your competitor's campaign, it will not fully describe your brand well and connect with your target audience in a way a successful online ad should.

You can, however, learn the good points of why your competitor's campaign strategy is effective and try to implement these pointers to your own digital marketing campaign.

5. Always being on top

Having the misconception of always being #1 is wrong when it comes to Google SEM campaign. Firstly, being ranked 1 on your SEM campaign means that you'd need to outbid all other competitors for that keyword, effectively increasing your ad spent tremendously. This indirectly affects your ROI by increasing your CPL.

Being #1 does not guarantee that viewers will only click on your listing. In fact, most viewers will click on the first 2 to 4 listings on Google's SERP. Once they've landed on your website, they will judge your website for credibility and reliability based on the web design and content relevancy.

It is important to learn the common mistakes so when you go about your Google SEM campaign, you can avoid these mistakes and jump in front of the learning curve to a successful digital marketing campaign.

To effectively run your digital marketing campaign with high ROI, do consult a digital marketing expert like Absolute Digital. Tap into the experience and proven strategies of a professional and focus on expanding your business while your digital marketing partner manages your digital marketing platforms. For more information, you can call us at +65 8829 1290 or email us at hello@absolutedigital.sg

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