Don’t Write Checks With Your Ads That Your Site Can’t Cash

Landing pages are underestimated in the role they play in paid search. I think the reason is because it’s a lot easier to tweak adtext, bids and keywords than the landing page. For the query “front load stacked washer and dryer” this is the ad and landing page Sears gives me:

Can you imagine walking into a sears and telling the rep that you are looking for a front loading stacked washer and dryer and in response he says, “sure, all washers and dryers are in the back, go ahead and find it yourself.” Yet that is what this landing page is telling me – “here’s everything we sell related to washers and dryers, figure it out.”

You can discover where your ads are writing checks that your landing page can’t cash in Google Analytics. Pull up your keyword report under Advertising > AdWords and add the secondary dimension of Destination URL (or make a custom report like mine below). Sort by bounce rate and here you will see all the keywords that aren’t matching very well with their chosen landing pages.

In my example below, line 2 has spent $335 and has a bounce rate of 90% and -40% ROI – ouch. Time to rethink the quality of this keyword and the quality of this landing page.

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