If your business is running campaigns on Google AdWords, you may find yourself wondering what your ads look like, or whether they are even showing for your targeted keywords. Whether you’re concerned about your campaign performance, or just curious, you may be tempted to Google your own ads. Many advertisers assume that as long as they don’t click on their ads, there will be no impact on their campaigns. However, there are many reasons why you should avoid searching for your own ads:
Reason #1 | It won't tell you the whole story.
If you search for one of your keywords, and your ad doesn’t appear, you might assume there is a problem. However, your search results won’t tell you the whole story. There are many reasons why your ads may not show, including:
- Your Location. If you are not located within the geographic radius you are targeting, you will not see your ads in search results.
- Your Timing. In some cases, you may want to run your ads using a set schedule, such as the days and times when your business is open. Any searches outside of that selected time frame will not trigger your ads.
- Your Budget. One of the biggest benefits of AdWords is that you don’t need a huge budget to advertise. However, if you are working with a smaller budget, Google will typically spread your funds throughout the day. As a result, your ads will not show for every search.
Reason #2 | You can lower your quality score.
Relevancy matters to Google, and when you search for your ad but don’t click on it, that lack of action signals to Google that your ad is not relevant. When your ad is not seen as relevant for a specific keyword, your quality score for that keyword will decrease. As a result, your ad will be less likely to appear in top positions for that keyword, leading to fewer clicks. At that point, the only option you will have to appear in a higher placement is to set higher bids.
Reason #3 | Your ads may stop appearing for you.
Not clicking on your ad can do more than lower your quality score. If you repeatedly trigger your ads and then avoid clicking on them, Google will eventually stop showing your ads for your particular IP address. In that situation, other users who fit your targeting criteria will still see your ads even if they aren’t appearing for you.
Reason #4 | It can throw off your performance data.
Your click-through-rate is an important metric to use when monitoring the performance of your ads and keywords. Click-through-rate is the percentage of people who saw your ad and then clicked on it, and indicates whether your ads are relevant and appealing to users. Googling your ad, but then not clicking on it, will lower your click-through-rate for that specific ad and keyword. As a result, you could end up making major changes to your campaigns based on inaccurate data.
While you may want to see what your ads look like in Google’s search results, you (and your campaigns) will be better off if you resist that temptation. If you’re managing your own ad campaigns, you’ll get much more insight by looking at the performance data within your account. If you’re working with an agency, you should reach out to them with any questions or concerns you have about your campaign performance.
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