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There are common mistakes in advertising that can lead to a waste of your Google Ads budget. Let’s look at the 11 main lessons that have been learned by thousands of brand owners.

Even by constantly checking metrics and data, many PPC managers can inadvertently waste the Google Ads budget. Sometimes this waste becomes obvious if you view the Google Ad account. But it is often difficult to notice the budget waste in Google Ad until you check the paid search program in more detail.

In this publication, we will look at the most common problems that arise with PPC programs and can lead to wasting your advertising budget.

All these errors in Google Ads are divided into categories:

  • fundamental,
  • with a simple solution.

Fundamental Errors in Google Ads

These are problems and errors that are not easy to identify with a simple audit of the Google Ads account, but they still lead to large budget expenditures. To solve them, it will take more effort than turning the parameter on or off.

This is the area of Google Ads in which many PPC audits do not achieve results. This is because these fundamental problems of Google Ads are not so obvious and are easily solved.

Such problems may even require the support of your managers or clients, making significant changes to your approach, or postponing the instructions of the client or company.

Each of these fundamental problems of Google Ads is not easy. So because of these mistakes, you can really waste your Google Ads budget.

Consider 5 fundamental errors

Going down the wrong path

Conversion tracking is often a problem, regardless of whether your company is big or small. These include not being tracked, tracking the wrong things, or tracking too many.

The problem with the lack of tracking is obvious. You can’t learn, improve, or optimize if you don’t know what works and what doesn’t. And process tracking is a way to put that part in place.
Similarly, tracking the wrong things also doesn’t do any good.
Excessive tracking can skew your numbers and distort your attention, which can mess up your decision-making.

The confusion occurred because tracking in Google Ads was configured for each micro-conversion. They track several actions, from the expression of initial interest to the actual sale (“transactions”).

There is nothing wrong with tracking micro-conversions, this data can also be useful. But if you include all these details in your report, you risk messing up the results. So instead of focusing on actual sales, you will pay attention to the number of people going to certain pages, or how many pages they visited, and so on.

You should not stop tracking these micro-conversions, but you should know that there are ways to find this data in Google Analytics.

There may still be a big problem with tracking every little thing: your automation can quickly fail due to irrelevant conversion signals if you are not very careful.

Mindset: “How can we save the budget?”

Too much attention to budget savings rather than profit optimization can also be wrong. Budget savings due to lower cost per click (CPC) and cost per action (CPA) are commendable. But there is still a limit.

When you focus on budget savings rather than revenue, your paid Google Ads search account becomes smaller, denser, and may eventually disappear.

On the contrary, a healthy paid search program requires a good, workable budget for growth and scaling. This does not mean throwing money around. You can still firmly control the overall return on investment while increasing costs.

The irony is that sometimes clients want to spend more, but their agency is focused on reducing costs. Good communication is necessary to avoid this kind of misunderstanding.

Post-Click Blindness

The inability to take into account the Post-Click Experience of users is another huge reason for the wasted Google Ads budget.

Your company can think through everything perfectly in the Pre-Click experience: precisely select Keywords, text messaging, and allocate a sufficient budget for efforts. But it may not bring results if your Post-Click Experience is bad.

What are the options for a bad Post-Click Experience:

This could be a landing page, which is actually a home page.
A landing page that loads forever.
Landing page messages that conflict with the ad itself.
Any of these issues can sabotage your conversions. Therefore, it is necessary to invest as much attention and effort in the Post-Click Experience as in the Pre-Click.

In practice, fixing the Post-Click Experience is not as easy as it seems. It’s not enough to just create a few good landing pages.

The main problem is that Post-Click elements are often the subject of internal disagreements between departments:

PPC marketer wants one thing;
SEO specialist wants something else;
and the Developer is still too busy to do anything.
And once you’ve sorted it all out, you’ll have to go through a confusing approval process. And in the fast-changing world of PPC, Post-Click elements can become a real stumbling block.

Lack of durability

The inability or unwillingness to reject requests and instructions can also lead to large budget costs for advertising in Google Ads.

Sometimes PPC marketers can receive a lot of useless requests from managers or clients:

  • use a specific keyword;
  • target a specific audience;
  • or include a specific geographical area.

Sometimes such requests make sense, but often they contradict broader goals. In such cases, specialists need to have the courage to challenge these instructions.

Such requests may be fair enough, but still, the agency and the client need to discuss this issue in more detail, talk about the potential impact of such instructions. Thus, you will come to those actions in which the budget in Google Ads will not be wasted.

In solving this problem with Google Ads, communication will be the key solution.

Wasting energy on trifles

Spending most of your time fiddling with your Google Ads account is another problem. This is also a potential signal of a wasted Google Ads budget.

Often, when specialists constantly make small changes to the Google Ads account, they can ignore more serious problems. That is, when you understand the big picture correctly, all these corrections mean nothing. But when large and complex PPC problems are present, they are easy to ignore in favor of small settings.

For example, you can reduce spending on Mondays from 16:00 to 19:00, increase spending by 5% on Saturdays, or exclude an area or two from your targeting. But if you have terrible landing pages at this time, then the Google Ads budget is shrinking every year. And “mastery” only serves as a busy job to distract you from the big picture.

Easy-Fix paid search errors

After correcting more complex fundamental errors, let’s look at simple problems that also affect budgets in Google Ads.

These are 6 common mistakes that will be pretty obvious when you search for them in your Google Ads account:

Search terms

Betting on incorrect search terms is the most obvious but common problem when working with Google Ads.

For example, a Google Ads account spends $200 a day advertising a bakery, but their search query report mostly contains the term “confectionery”. This bakery doesn’t sell candy, only pastry, but the terms were not canceled in Google Ads, almost their entire budget was wasted.

This became a problem, as the company could usefully use this advertising budget elsewhere.

Optimization evaluation

Following all of Google’s recommendations in an attempt to get a 100% optimization score is another sure way to squander the Google Ads budget.

As mentioned earlier, the implementation of Google’s optimization recommendations will bring mixed results (at best) and can turn into a complete disaster (at worst).

It is always wise to question and test every recommendation. And you should implement only those that make sense for your Google Ads account and strategy. With this approach, your optimization score can stay at about 80%, and this is normal for you and your budget.

Enhanced CPC

Enabling the Enhanced CPC option is another common source of waste of the Google Ads advertising budget.

ECPC is a type of automatic bid assignment that “automatically adjusts your manual bids for clicks that are more or less likely to result in a sale or conversion on your site.”

Although each account is unique, ECPC (as well as manual and automatic betting) is not suitable for everyone. This may work very well for some companies, but worse for others.

The price-per-conversion optimizer is enabled by default in Google Ads. Therefore, if you do not know about it and do not disable it manually, then it will remain in place. If ECPC is enabled everywhere, then it is worth asking whether it has been tested and whether other betting strategies have been tested.

Finding the right bidding strategy can be a turning point in working with Google Ads. Therefore, detection in this area of the default setting may be an alarm signal.

Ad Extensions

This is a common problem that affects the spending of your Google Ads budget, and lies in the fact that you do not use all relevant Ad Extensions. And each extension is an opportunity to reach your audience.

It’s also important that you need a comprehensive strategy for ad extensions. Since Ad Extensions can produce results in almost any combination, you need to make sure that every possible combination is effective.

New types of advertising and campaigns

Google Ads often has new features and updates, including new ads and campaign types.

If you haven’t tested some of the new types yet, such as Responsive Search Ads or dynamic search ads, you may be missing something.


Additional missed opportunities of Google Ads are often found in the audience.

Every time you create a new campaign in Google Ads, you should review your selected audiences to see if they are still suitable or if there are unused opportunities. Put all likely candidates into surveillance mode to see how they work.

Stop wasting your Google Ads budget

As you can see, there are big and small ways to squander your Google Ads budget.

And when you get acquainted with all possible problems, then you have much more opportunities to fix or avoid them.

After eliminating all these errors, your company will stop wasting the Google Ads budget and will manage to advertise more efficiently.

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