Doh! Little PPC Mistakes That Can Cause a Big Mess


Mistakes happen, especially when you’re knee deep in PPC burnout! When this happens, it’s even more important to keep your eyes open and pay attention to what you’re doing in accounts. It’s all too easy to push the wrong button or forget to check on something.

Here are a few common mistakes that you may make if you aren’t careful when managing accounts.

Account History Deletions

Often when taking over accounts that have been through several hands, there’s a bit of a mess and your first instinct is to rebuild. Rebuilding campaigns lets you put things together nice and neat and optimize from there. However, this can be a dangerous move if you don’t account for large disruptions in account history! More often than not, account mangers dive in and start editing existing campaigns in a rebuild, then performance dips and they are left scratching their heads as to what the heck happened. Always make sure to copy old campaigns, pause them, and edit the copies in your efforts to re-organize the account so previous account history is preserved.

Conversion Optimizer & PLA Campaigns

Have you ever activated conversion optimizer in a PLA campaign and a few days later been confused about why your PLA’s have stopped running? Conversion optimizer is actually incompatible with PLA campaigns and even though you receive the alert that the campaign is eligible inside the AdWords UI, the campaign will break if you enable the tool. Most account managers have to make this mistake before they learn this.

Negative Keyword Additions

When making bulk changes, it’s so easy to accidentally forget to change something or add via the wrong tab. It’s not unheard of for account managers to accidentally upload negative keywords as positive keywords, or vice versa. Make sure and double check your work. This mistake can be costly and I’ve seen it more than once.

Neglected Keyword Match Type Changes

I often use desktop editing tools to add keywords in bulk. Usually, I add them in broad then change match types in bulk to save myself time. Just make sure you do go back and change those match types. Bulk uploads of broad match keywords can really be a detriment to your account if you aren’t careful.

Advanced Bid Changes

Advanced bid changes in desktop tools are a lifesaving feature, as long as you don’t accidentally change by percentage when you mean to change by dollar amount. Imagine increasing bids by 50% instead of .50. Ouch! It’s an easy mistake to make when you’re grinding through a task list on autopilot. Always double check!

Bid Management Typos

On the topic of bid management, always go back and double check your manual bid adjustments and bids on any new keyword additions. Typos happen to all of us, like setting a bid of $40 instead of $0.40. Make sure you’re watching!

Automated Rules

When you’re using automated bidding rules to increase and decrease bids, always make sure you also add a counter rule. If you forget, bids could continue to move up into negative ROI or down into negative visibility. It’s so easy to focus on what you want the rule to do, and forget the counter to control the rules. Make sure you double check these.

Automatic Keyword Combination Tools

Don’t forget to double check the outcome of tools used to generate keyword combinations. You may end up with some weird keywords that you don’t want to spend on. How would you answer to wasted budget on a keyword like “www”?

Burnout and lack of bandwidth can be dangerous to PPC health. If you feel like this is you, reach out for additional help or step back and take a day off!

How do you prevent silly mistakes like these in your day to day management?