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Is Your AdWords Account Making this One Critical Mistake?

At WebSavvy, we’ve only ever been focused on optimising one thing: profit.

From day one (in 2006!) we’ve worked to ensure that all client accounts are continually improving the profit they make for the business.  This is the only thing an account should be ‘optimised’ for – yet most of the time we see the opposite.

Optimising for impressions is well past its use by date.  Is there really a need to have an ad that is shown hundreds of thousands of times without getting the click?  Brand advertisers do this – they just focus on ‘being seen’, which in this age of measurable results is just daft!

Optimising for clicks might be the next thing to consider.  Clicks are clearly worth more than impressions, after all you’re getting traffic to your site, feet in the door.  But is the money showing up in the till?  Not if you’re optimising for clicks.

Many agencies will aim to keep CPC (Cost Per Click) low.  This is better as you’re getting traffic and not paying as much for it.  The problem with keeping bids low (and therefore click cost) is you’re not only leaving lots of traffic out there, you’re letting your competition get it.  If you let your competition grow, you’re letting them push you out of the market, click by click.

The current AdWords strategy employed by most agencies is to optimise an account for CPA (Cost Per Acquisition).  AdWords Conversion Optimiser lets you bid for a target or a maximum CPA.  This is a great way of controlling how much your leads or sales are costing you.  Yet… setting a cap on CPA is like willingly setting a constraint on your business, limiting how many leads you get a month.

So what’s best way to a big return?

Optimise your account for profit.

Ponder this: a CPA of $25 gets you 50 leads. But there is still more traffic out there. If you raise your CPA to $35 you could double the leads to 100.

Surely those extra leads will pull in more profit. If you’re aware of your break even point you’ll know exactly what CPA is too much, which one is letting too much traffic slip by and which one is ideal. This lets you optimise your account based on profit. And isn’t that the point? Profit?

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