Five Red Flags Your PPC Company Is Doing A Bad Job
While most businesses are looking for ways to optimize their Pay-Per-Click (PPC) campaigns, many do not realize that the PPC Company they are partnered with may not even be running successful campaigns. Some PPC agencies will make lofty promises or keep their techniques under wraps; while these aren’t necessarily deal-breakers, they should raise red flags that should cause you real concern.
The search for a PPC agency can be stressful and a bit of a lottery. It’s difficult to assess their credibility if you haven’t met them or if they haven’t been endorsed by someone you trust. Unfortunately, there isn’t a single question you can ask to ensure that the agency you’re speaking with is the proper fit, but there are a few factors that should draw your attention during the sales process.
When speaking with a potential agency, there are five factors that should raise a red flag for you:
Red Flag #1: They Have A Track Record Of Negative AdWords Activity.
If an account has received repeated warnings for policy infractions or has previously been totally suspended, it is most certainly on the verge of being permanently suspended. A minor blunder—a disapproved ad, omitted disclaimers on the landing page, etc.—could result in account termination, which is nearly impossible to reverse. Encourage potential clients to be open and honest about their account history so you know where they are with Google. If you’re thinking about hiring someone whose account has a shady history, take extra measures when working on their campaigns.
Also, avoid partnering with agencies whose clients provide illegal or borderline products and services such as gambling, political campaigns, explosives, and so on. While their advertising may have gotten by Google bots in the past, the instant you start making major changes to their accounts, the Google Policy police are sure to come after you.
Red Flag #2: They Are Making Promises About How Well They Will Perform.
Past success does not guarantee future results, which is true in both the financial and PPC industries. There are simply too many factors at play for performance to be guaranteed in the future. Instead, a government body should say something like, “If we make these three adjustments, we would ordinarily expect the following effects.” Citing expected outcomes from best practices isn’t unusual, but making claims like “Yes, we can surely reduce your CPA by X percent” is problematic. Any agency worth its salt knows how to set appropriate client expectations, and promising too much too soon should be a red signal.
Red Flag #3: They Have A Bad Online Reputation.
If your clients have a spate of unfavorable reviews online, your sponsored search advertising efforts will be greatly hampered.
Sure, you might be able to build interest in the company and traffic to their website, but given their reputation, users may be unwilling to convert. Before signing with a company, perform a quick background check to make sure they have a good BBB rating and positive Yelp ratings. If they have a bad reputation, they will be a difficult account to work with. In some circumstances, this may also assist you in determining whether the company is financially sound. Some failing businesses have used PPC as a last-ditch effort to generate new revenue. Nine times out of ten, these are only temporary customers.
Red Flag #4: Specific Tactics Are Kept Under Wraps.
Sure, throughout the sales process, a potential agency might not reveal everything they’ll accomplish in the account. That’s understandable; at that point in the game, it’s difficult to think of all the techniques that must be implemented in order to succeed. However, if they refuse to tell you how they plan to improve your performance, you should start asking questions.
Red Flag #5: They Are Against Experimenting With New Methods On The Account.
If your ads are underperforming suggestions to experiment with new tactics should be welcomed (provided that your experiments are within reason). It may be difficult to persuade the agency to be more open to testing in the future if they are extremely rigid from the start. This would not only stifle your stylebut may also prohibit you from achieving success in the account and gaining new customers in the long run. A good agency is open to exploring different PPC methods.