Quality Check Before Sending A PPC Campaign Live
We’ve probably all been there – you’ve hit the button to send your campaign live, then later found out you’ve got a typo in your ad copy headline! Or, maybe you’ve spotted it on someone else’s work. Sometimes mistakes slip through, like grapes falling to the floor of a supermarket (as well as the next person to step on it). We’re here to do what we can to prevent that – a quality check!
We tend to build our campaigns in the Google Ads Editor desktop platform. It allows us to edit and build campaigns locally and make changes without affecting the live account until we hit that “Post” button!
If we know that there are further changes we need to make once the campaign is live, then we’ll post it with the status set to PAUSED first, make any online changes as required, and then enable/activate it when ready.
First off is your campaign. Be aware of the default settings that are applied to new campaigns, and make sure that it’s suitable for what you want. Do you want Enhanced CPC, or manual bidding? Are your location settings correct? Methodically go through every setting, even if it’s one you don’t normally change. Better safe than sorry.
Ad Groups & Keywords
Check that each ad group has its own theme, and that its keywords fit that theme. Sometimes we see campaigns that have basically everything stuffed into one ad group. This is not the way you want to roll!
Depending on how you’ve got your campaign set up, you may need to prevent conflicts between your different ad groups and their keywords. Utilise negative keywords to ensure that one ad group won’t interfere with another. Just be careful that you’re putting the correct negative keywords in the appropriate group! You don’t want to accidentally block your positive keywords. Be aware of which ad groups you’re applying the negative keywords to, and if it’s something you need to apply to the whole campaign, then you may want to use a Negative Keyword List.
Try not to break any of Google’s policies. Check out their policy pages on their support website. For example, they have some strict rules regarding pharmaceuticals.
Another tip we have for you is: give your ad copy “Title Case”. Title case is where you capitalise the first letter of every word (or in some examples, ‘major’ words of four letters or more). It can make your ad copy easier to read. Also, be aware of using uppercase (putting entire words in ALL CAPS) unless it is a well-known acronym. Google does not approve of such behaviour!
Sometimes you might stick a keyword in a group where it doesn’t really belong. Make sure that each of your ad groups have keywords that are relevant and specific to that group. Plus, to get even better results with your campaigns, try to get your ad copy to match your keywords as closely as possible.
And don’t forget the all-important landing page – are you sending your ads to the most relevant page possible? Do your campaign keywords match any keywords on the landing page? Google looks at all of these things, so get as much on top of it as you can.
Also, check that you have the right extensions applied to the right campaigns. One wrong click and you could have a Structured Snippet Extension stuck with the wrong set of products.
Punctuation, Capitalisation, and Spelling
This is possibly the most important quality check that you can do in advertising! Whether it’s an accidental typo or a word that you’re not sure about, a mistake can be costly, so just check everything. I tend to go methodically through every single campaign, ad group, keyword, ad, and ad extension that I’ve got.
Make yourself a checklist and go through them one-by-one:
- Campaign Names
- Ad Group Names
- Ad Copy
- Ad Extension Copy
Punctuation is also one to watch out for – remember that Google doesn’t allow exclamation marks in headlines for ad copy, and just one in the description.
Also, if you can, review and edit the landing page to make sure that there are no errors there. It’s also a good idea to get the landing page as optimised as possible with the keywords you’ll be using for the campaign.
With this quality check procedure in hand or on-screen, you can feel well prepared for sending your campaigns live with no mistakes! Even if you have to double-check and triple-check your campaigns, the time and effort spent on that can be well worth it.
Written by Chelsea Zanki