Cost per click marketing is a lucrative option for many businesses. It offers a way to advertise online while paying only for browsers clicking through to your website. However, many marketers make mistakes with their campaigns that results in less than ideal results. Here are a few of the most common mistakes and the best practices to correct them.

Not Using Targeted Landing Pages

Many small businesses that are new to advertising online tend to send visitors from cost per click ads to their home page or landing page. This is not a good strategy. Instead, it is vastly superior to direct click through traffic to targeted landing pages. These can even be tweaked to precisely match the keywords that caused the ad to appear. For example, if you have a flower business, you could have a different landing page for people who search for roses then the one shown to those who searched for orchids. The more targeted the content of the landing page, the more likely it is to result in sales.

Failing to A/B Test Ads and Pages

Another mistake particularly common amongst small business advertisers to neglecting to A/B test, also called split-testing. When advertising on traditional media, A/B testing requires a fairly substantial budget, so many small business marketers are not accustomed to this. However, online, this process is extremely easy. Testing different variations of ads and landing pages will help you to hone in on the best mix for your needs. When testing between variations, try to keep each test down to a single variable such as the title of the ad; otherwise you will not know what change made the difference.

Not Researching Keyword Selection

Much like testing ad and landing page variations, thoroughly researching and testing keywords is also essential. Keyword selection is essential to any CPC campaign because they are the principle method of determining whether an ad will be served or not. Using the example of the flower shop, a big mistake may be to only buy ads on the keyword ‘flower shop’. By researching what people are searching for, you may find that more people search for specific flowers than for just the shop. Therefore, splitting your budget between ‘roses’, ‘lilies’, and ‘flower shop’ may be more effective. Try using Google Adwords Keyword Planner to find and research possible keywords.

Not Including Keywords in Ad Copy

Many marketers also make the mistake of not including their targeted keywords in the copy of their ad. This may seem painfully obvious to do, but it’s all too common. The people have already shown that they are interested in whatever they are searching for, so they will naturally be interested in ads that include that keyword. If your flower shop has an ad about free delivery of potted plants when the user is searching for rose bouquets, they most likely will not click through. Be sure that you match your ad content to the search keywords you are targeting.

Lacking Calls To Action

Finally, a common mistake amongst advertisements in general: lacking any useful call to action. If you have grabbed a browser’s attention, make sure you ask them to do something. For example, if your ad for rose bouquets just says that you sell them, it is less likely to generate a sale that one which also tells them to click the ad to buy now.

By simply avoiding these mistakes, you will be well on your way to ensuring that you CPC campaign is more successful. Remember that in digital marketing, it is all about finding what works through metrics and capitalizing on that.