Managing Google Ads: Is it Okay to Set and Forget?

Google Ads are one of the easiest ways to get your message in front of the right people based on what they’re already searching for online. Once a campaign is set up, it has the functionality to just keep rolling along in the background, so you might be tempted to simply set and forget.

Thinking that your Google Ads can be left unsupervised is a common misconception, and showing yours some love is going to hugely optimise your efforts online. There’s real value in maintaining your Google Ads, and regularly investing some of your time into your campaigns will amplify your results, and improve your return on ad spend.

If you find yourself wondering “so, what will happen if I do set and forget my Google Ads?”

Well, nothing. But when you’re paying for every single click on one of your ads, you want to make sure every click you're paying for is a potential lead. Leaving your Google Ads to go stale is just going to end up costing you in the long run. You want your Google Ads to be working for you as much as possible, and constantly refining them will bring you the best results.

Why you need to pay attention to your Google Ads

Google Ads is constantly evolving

Google is always adding new features that you can take advantage of to improve your campaigns. Don’t fall behind - if you aren’t up to date with the latest changes, your Ads might not look so snazzy compared to those of your competitors.

The way people search changes

Over time, the audience you’re trying to target might change the way they use Google to find whatever it is they’re looking for. New words or phrases might become more popular and you need to make sure you aren’t missing out on any relevant keywords.

Keep up with the competition

Your competitors are probably not sitting still, so you don’t want to get left behind with outdated ad campaigns. And don’t forget - new competitors are constantly entering the scene. Improving your Google Ads is going to help you keep your competitive edge.

How often should you check your Google Ads?

How often you decide to check in on your Google Ads will depend on your industry, budget and number of keywords, so ultimately it’ll be up to you to figure out what time frame works best for you. If it’s a newer campaign, we recommend checking it at least twice a week to make sure things are on the right track.

Ads do take a while to collect data, and in general they are quite stable and predictable, so don’t panic if you can’t update your campaigns as much as you’d like. Checking on your Google Ads is one thing, but making changes and edits is another. You actually don’t want to make changes too regularly, because you need to give the ads time to generate new results when changes have been made. You won’t be able to tell which strategies work well if you make too many changes in a short space of time.

When it comes to intentionally setting aside time to focus on your Google Ads, try to block out regular time in your calendar that is sustainable and achievable - this should prevent you from abandoning your ads completely. No matter how successful your campaigns are, you still need to be active in your account and build on that success.

Tips for managing your Google Ads

With so many different ways you can make adjustments to your Google Ads, here are a few tips for practical ways you can maintain your account.

Review Keywords

Keeping an eye on the keywords you are paying for is important, because even though you might get a few clicks on keywords that are adjacent to your core keywords, those might be poor quality leads. Refining your keywords is going to get your ads in front of the right people more efficiently, and removing keywords that are under-performing or not getting conversions is going to prevent wasted spend, also known as ‘keyword drain.’ You don’t want to be losing money on wasted clicks!

Test New Ads

You might be surprised at how some variations of your Google Ads can speak to your audience more than others. By constantly adding new versions and testing out different combinations of text and images, you’ll get valuable insights into which ones generate the most activity. Ensure you have at least 3 variations active and test different elements of the ad such as price and messaging.

Adjust Bidding

Testing out different bidding strategies will give you rich insights into what works best for your ads and your audience. You might find your ad in a top position, and then one week later it has dropped in position even though you haven’t changed anything. This could mean a new competitor is in the market or a competitor has raised their bids.

Watch Your Monthly Spend

It’s important to keep a close eye on what you’re spending and ensuring your budgets are set correctly. Your actual spend on a specific day can exceed your average daily budget by up to 2 times, this is called overdelivery. Try adjusting your budgets week on week to see how your results change - you might find you can get almost as many conversions from your Google Ads at half the budget your campaign initially started with, especially if you are refining your ads by improving your keywords and your ad content.

View Recommendations from Google

Google does provide some automated recommendations to your campaigns, however you need to review these carefully and understand whether they’ll actually bring benefits you want. Google might suggest new keywords, but these keywords aren’t actually aligned with what you’re advertising. Some recommendations can even contradict one another, so you’ll want to take them with a grain of salt.

The benefit of being proactive with your Google Ads

Taking a more proactive approach to your Google Ads campaigns is going to ensure your campaign is doing the most to generate new revenue for your business. To be successful, your Google Ads campaign has to evolve alongside your business, and letting it run on autopilot might let it run away in the wrong direction and eat up a big chunk of your marketing budget.

Google may seem like it knows everything - but Google can only go so far when it comes to making supporting for your digital marketing. It might have some fantastic recommendations to help you get more clicks or views for your ad spend, but what if those clicks and views are coming from an audience that isn’t ultimately converting?

Nobody knows your business like you do, so it’s important to inject your own wisdom into the decisions you make for your Google Ads spend. To keep learning about maximising your digital marketing efforts, download your Demystifying Digital Marketing toolkit.DOWNLOAD