3 AdWords CTR Improvement Tips

Playing with Google can be lots of fun, but some may want a few tips before playing.

There are a few types of AdWords users.

1 – Companies trying to drive people to their websites to sell goods and services.

2 – People who want to drive people to their websites to push more ads or affiliate products.

This post is NOT to pit SEO against PPC (I subscribe to both for very different purposes) but to help those using PPC, regardless of the reason.


No, I have not made a million dollars with search arbitrage, but it more than insures my vehicles (and they’re fast) and funds my dumb habits (Starbucks and Marlboro’s) so I can say that I do know what I’m doing. I’m not GREAT, but I don’t suck.

Ok, I assume you already know what AdWords is. I am also assuming you have set up an account, know what groups are, campaigns and the other lingo used.

Here’s 3 tips (there are so many more, google it) but these 3 will help keep your costs down.

NUMBER 1 – MISTYPES. I’m not talking about misspelled words, but misTYPED words. Many people mistype common words because of the keyboard layout. You’ve seen how many times you do a google search and then see their “did you mean…” message. Take a look at that, you most likely did what we all do.

Take advantage of it. See the picture above? Those are the most (according to years of MY logs and site crunches) the most common misTYPED letters.

Say you want make an ad and target the keywords “ocean photographs” – now consider all the possible mistyped characters. Adds up, doesn’t it? Now you have CHEAP key-phrases to target.

NUMBER 2 – ARROW. This is not mine, honestly I have no idea where I first learned about this and would gladly credit the source if anyone shouts it out. Whoever came up with this they were brilliant. I don’t know if it was the result of an eye-tracking study or just accident, but IT DOES WORK – VERY WELL.

example adwords adWrite your ads in an arrow. The pic to the right is an example I made to illustrate it. The top, middle and lower lines put the keywords in the shape of an arrow to the right.

Again, I don’t know exactly why this works, but on the test groups I used it with it increased my CTR almost 15%.

NUMBER 3 – LONG TAIL. If you’re reading this little hobby blog then you know what the term means. (hey, I can slam myself).

Example – targeting “power tools” will break you if your spending your budget on that key-phrase. Instead target “ACME power saw“, “ACME power drills” and so on. The ads are cheaper and will, if you make your landing page relevant to that key-phrase (don’t throw everything to your home page” increase your quality score, keeping your costs from rising too much and improving your ad placement.

As I mentioned, there are lots of things you can do. The most important thing is TESTING. Test, test again, exploit the great discoveries and drop the others.

Don’t get the wrong impression! This stuff is not as easy as a 1,2,3 manual could explain. It takes work and study.


It takes VOLUME. It takes frustration at first. Playing with a few sites may buy you coffee, but it’s a start. Learn some things, READ more, STUDY the AdWords interface (it can trick you – it’s very easy to pay Google, but you need to find some boxes to check off to keep them from spending more of that money) take it all in and TEST. A year from now that work will pay off.

Oh, if anyone knows where the “arrow” was discovered, please let me know!

4 Responses to “3 AdWords CTR Improvement Tips”

  1. James Boyer June 2, 2007 at 11:20 am #

    Great advice, it is amazing how many people miss type certan things and it is great if you can get on top of that likly miss type.

  2. Knox June 2, 2007 at 3:03 pm #

    Thanks for stopping by, James.

    I should have added this tool, check it out.

    http://tools.seobook.com/spelling/keywords-typos.cgi

  3. James Boyer July 10, 2007 at 12:39 pm #

    Great,
    Any tips for those of us trying to build athority so we can compete on the organic side of things?

  4. Knox July 10, 2007 at 10:04 pm #

    This blog is full of that stuff.

    Just keep doing what you’re doing now and stay with your REW blog. If you have ANY other sites out there, email me the urls and I’ll see if there’s anything “crafty” that would jump you.

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