Generic Adcopy – Why your Adwords sucks.. Reason #13

Why reason 13? Where did 1 to 12 go? How many reasons are there? These answers are for another time but today we are going to talk about generic adcopy and how it is screwing up your ad campaign.

If you think that its simply because people might not find your ad appealing and won’t click it, then you only have part of the story. It’s much much worse than that. Let me try and explain.

I see this time and time again from advertisers whether it be a lack of time or whether they have specific branding and copy guidelines to stick to. But here is the truth: generic adcopy is a killer for campaigns.

Generic adcopy does several things to your campaign. If you are running the same adcopy for all adgroups across all your individual themes then you are not providing a relevant ad for every theme right? And relevancy is at the forefront of great user experience. The generic ads lead to two main problems which feed off each other.

1. The first being your CTR would be lower than it ideally should be since your ads are not very relevant to your user. For example if you are a beauty salon and your ad has a generic headline that says “Local Beauty Salon’, that might be fine if someone searches for ‘local beauty salon’. However what happens when someone searches for ‘pedicure in Camberwell’? They will of course, see the same headline. Is that Relevant? Well kind of. If you were that user, would you not prefer to see the headline ‘Pedicures from $39′ headline has both relevancy as well as pricing which is a great way to get people to click on your ad. Throw in a Geo reference and you are all set.

2. Google understands that your ad is generic and in turn, as seen in the example above, is less relevant to your user. Since Google rewards relevancy, such generic adcopy will lead to a low quality score. A low quality score will mean Google will push your Adrank lower, meaning an even lower CTR and much higher CPCs. CTR is an element of quality score so down it goes again, and again, and again.

Lets look at this example:

Generic Adcopy Adwords
Generic Adcopy vs Targeted Adcopy

Using this ad report generated using Jimmy’s tool, you can see the Adgroup (swim squad) and the associated ads. One thing to note is that at no point did we change the bids.

The bottom two examples are generic adcopy, so when people search for a swim squad, they see ‘Swim Stroke Correction’ or Swim Stroke Clinic’.. kind of relevant, but not 100% direct relevancy.

Compare these ads with that of the top 2 super relevant ads which refer to ‘swim squads’. The thing to note is the CTR as well as the avg position. The best generic ad had an avg position of 3.4, compared to 1.1 for both 100% relevant ads. remember, there is NO increase in bids here.. this is purely up to quality score.

As you can see, better ads led to a higher CTR and better Adrank without even adjusting the bid. Stick with the generic ads and you suffer with low CTR, bad Adrank and most likely no traffic. Believe me, this snowballs.

When does this snowball end? When you have 0 impressions and 0 traffic. Put some effort into your adcopy, it will transform your campaign.

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