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How To Conduct a SaaS PPC Audit To Improve Your Results

When creating a PPC marketing strategy, you need to perform audits to make sure everything about your campaign is on track. Whether or not you invest in a SaaS PPC agency to help you, or do it yourself, is totally up to you.

If you’re opting for the latter option, you will need to become knowledgeable on the subject of audits; what they are, why we need them, and how to conduct one.

Luckily for you, we’ve put together a simple, easy-to-follow guide on how to perform a SaaS PPC audit to optimize your campaign and drive better results.

What is a PPC audit?

A PPC audit is the assessment of a paid pay-per-click advertising strategy. It is designed to gauge the performance and return of a PPC marketing strategy by auditing various aspects, including the strategy’s ad groups, personalized ads, and the overall campaign – and they should be a regular part of your marketing plan.

The benefits of doing a PPC audit

Let’s look at how a PPC audit can benefit your strategy.

1 – It helps you to understand your audience better by drawing an idea on how they interact with your campaign, as well as what about it they find appealing, and how your brand can improve its overall user experience.

2 – It conducts a thorough and overall evaluation of your strategy, highlighting what aspects work well and what needs improving, enabling you to optimize as and when required.

3 – It helps draw a comparison between you and your competitors by underlining your strategy’s strengths and weaknesses, which then allows you to compare and contrast against the marketing efforts of your business rivals.

4 – It brings to light any flaws within your strategy by pinpointing any areas where there are issues that need fixing.

How To Conduct A SaaS PPC Audit in 10 Easy Steps

So, now that you know why audits are important, here’s how to go about conducting yours.

First things first, you will need at least a day (possibly more), so plan ahead accordingly. Rushing your audit by trying to complete it in the space of a few hours may be detrimental and ineffective.

Step 1: Check Your Conversion Tracking Settings

A big part of any campaign measuring is tracking your conversions, so it’s likely you’ll have a conversion tracking system set up already. This is where to look first when conducting your audit.

If there are any errors within your settings, it will not be tracking conversions accurately, which won’t provide a precise forecast of how your campaign is performing. Things to look out for when checking your settings include:

  • If your instincts are telling you that your conversion rates seem alarmingly high in conjunction with your CTR and budget. Anything that seems too good to be true usually is, and in this instance could mean there is a legacy tag/s that hasn’t been removed and is causing double counts/duplicates.
  • Anything that is labeled as ‘unverified’ or ‘inactive’. This could indicate there is something malicious within the system, so you’re advised to look into Google’s Tag Assistant for guidance here.
  • Conversions are abnormally low (or non-existent). This doesn’t mean your campaign hasn’t hit the mark; it could just be a simple case of the account missing a tracking code, and that everything within the settings can be linked back to Google Analytics, to be sure all data and conversions are being accurately recorded.

Step 2: Analyze PPC Account Structure

The purpose of your account structure is to organize all aspects of your PPC strategy (ads, campaigns, and keywords). This should be coherent and you should be able to identify each element, which you will have named when you set up the account.

This means providing easy-to-identify areas including:

  • Labels (to filter).
  • Campaigns – you should be able to recognize each campaign by naming them accordingly.
  • Campaign themes. Names for these can be decided via the campaign’s characteristics (such as location, purpose, etc.).
  • Ad groups. Again, the names for these should be given in an easily-identifiable way so that you can immediately recognize each one. Opt for a relevant keyword, perhaps.

Step 3: Double-Check Keywords & Search Terms

It’s likely you’ll already be very aware of how important keywords and search terms are for PPC advertising, and an audit is a great excuse to check your positive and negative words and terms.

As well as checking these, you’ll also need to assess:

  • Varied match types. You should be combining phrases and exact match types for good consistency.
  • Keyword quality scores. Your score should be 6-10 (or higher). Anything lower means your keyword list needs revising.
  • Longtail keywords. These hold much value, so be sure to include them.
  • Primary keywords. These need to be put into the descriptions, display URL, ad copy, etc.
  • Negative keywords. Run a search term report to ensure your negative keywords are relevant and aren’t drawing up undesirable results.
  • Keyword numbers. You should aim for a minimum of 5 and a maximum of 10.

As well as this, your audit should also focus on examining your search terms to decipher where they are leading your traffic. Once you’ve analyzed all of this, you can then revamp your keyword and search term list.

Step 4: Examine Your Ad Copy

Next up is reviewing your ad content. Here’s what to assess when you breakdown the content part of your audit:

  • Google Ad guidelines. Any ad content that isn’t in keeping with Google’s ad policies will not be performing to its optimal ability, so be sure to compare yours against the rules and guidelines.
  • Spelling, grammar, & syntax. The words we use can make or break an ad, so make sure they’re correct, grammatically accurate, well-structured, and in keeping with the ad’s tone. Make sure all dates are up-to-date too.
  • CTA (call-to-action). Arguably the most important part of any marketing campaign is the call-to-action. Is yours obvious and persuasive enough to entice your audience to want to click on it?
  • Imagery. Visuals are another important element, as they’re often what snatches the lead’s attention. SaaS brands in particular may rely on the power of imagery over text to entice a reader. Make sure they are clear, appropriate, high-quality, and in keeping with Google’s guidelines.

Step 5: Quality Score Assessment

When working with Google Ads, you have a useful tool at your fingertips in the form of Quality Score metrics. This is data that is measured via the click-through rate (CR) and other aspects, such as ad relevance.

If you note that the score is high, you can be assured that your ad quality is good, which in turn lowers the CR and ensures better ad placement. Part of this area of the audit includes assessing:

  • Keyword relevance
  • Landing page optimization
  • Ad copy in-keeping with tone, landing page/s, etc.
  • Overall ad alignment with Google Ads

Step 6: Ad Extensions

Increasing the value of your ads can and often does involve including different ad extensions, as it provides more flexibility for the lead to reach out. These extensions can include:

  • Review
  • Price
  • Message
  • Phone call

When reviewing this area, look at:

  • Whether or not any ad extensions need removing, adding, or updating.
  • Whether or not they are relevant and up-to-date.
  • Whether or not you are using your ad extensions correctly.
  • Whether or not you’re using the right ad extension type for your campaign.

Step 7: Bid Reviewing

Your bid amount needs continual monitoring, and you can stand to improve your bidding by:

  • Take immediate action when you see a conversion spike.
  • Being attentive to your analytics.
  • Setting a daily budget.

Oftentimes, PPC campaign bidding and budgeting needs tweaking to keep your costs down and your ROI up.

Step 8: Monitor the Best Metrics

Metrics provide data-proven performance results and should be regularly evaluated. Some of the best ones include:

  • Average CPC (cost-per-click). Because you’re being charged every time a lead clicks on your ad it’s wise to know how much you’re paying here. Generally, irrespective of industry, the average CPC is $2.69, as of 2023.
  • Impression share. This provides one of the most accurate ideas of how many leads viewed your ad, as well as providing an observation of that factor in comparison with your competitors and further insight on how to boost those numbers.
  • Total conversion value. This helps you compare your ads groups, campaigns, and keywords, giving you an idea of what promotes your services/products.
  • CPC (cost-per-conversion) or CPA (cost-per-action). This looks at how much you’re paying per lead via your campaign and whether or not the lead is profitable.
  • CR (conversion rate). This lets you know whether your clicks are turning into tangible customers. If your CR is low this could mean your content needs revising (consider A/B testing new areas), your tracking code is faulty, your keywords are strong/relevant, the URL is correct, etc.

Step 9: Evaluate Your CR & CTR

Keeping an eye on your click-through rate (CTR) will shed light on whether or not your audience is paying attention to your ad. With this, the higher the score, the better. If the score is low this can mean your audience isn’t quite right or your ad copy needs optimizing.

Along with this, you should be making sure your conversion rate (CR) is matching the figures you’re getting with your CTR. If your CTR is high, so should your CR be.

Step 10: Location

You need to be sure you’re targeting the right audience and that means targeting the right location.

PPC advertisers often find that their ads are being displayed in search results within locations not desired/deliberately targeted, so just check this by using location analysis on Google Ads.

If you’d like to learn more about how we help B2B SaaS and Tech companies grow their MRR through LinkedIn ads, contact us online or send us an email today at info@getuplead.com to speak with someone on our team.

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