Display Advertising – Top 9 ways how Advertisers waste money on Adwords

display advertising google

$100+ million a DAY. – That is how much Google makes from AdWords in a day.

And if it wasn’t for mistakes small and medium businesses make, Google wouldn’t be raking in so much money. This post highlights top 6 ways how Dubai Advertisers waste money on Display Advertising ( Display advertising means showing your image, banner ads on different websites )

“Default Setting is your enemy”

Display Advertising – Top 9 ways how Advertisers waste money on Adwords

#1 Mobile Display Advertising – The evil

Display advertising needs to used carefully on mobile devices. Give some money to charity, but do not waste your hard earned money on mobile display advertising unless you know what you are doing. Google owns Android operating system and many apps use adsense. Hence, when you opt-in for display advertising campaign, by default your ads show up in apps and  sites you didnt intend to show up. These apps can be of games, jobs and more. You will be surprised that close to 75% of your clicks from mobile devices and over 50% of them are from apps!. If your running display advertising, pause right now ( ill wait for you to come back ). Go to your adwords campaign –> click the display advertising campaign –> on the menu bar, click display advertising tab –> click placement sub tab  –> you will see all placements, sort by impressions high to low and there you will see where your ads are showing! You keep deleting them and they keep coming back. Imagine how much money you wasted on these wrong clicks and what kind of traffic you have been receiving. Talk to us about a special tip which will help you get rid of these wrong placements.


#2 Wrong Campaign Structure:

Somewhere i read the saying, ” If you start well, half the job is done”. This is true for adwords campaign structure too. There are many default settings, like enhanced cpc ( cost per click ) bid ( with this setting you give adwords algorithm a free pass to bid high to get conversions ) Initially this is a bad strategy unless you have enough conversions. There are some other default settings which you need to look at like, device bid adjustment, targeting settings, exclusions and more. Talk to us if you think your loosing money on display advertising and not getting returns.


#3 Not setting up Conversion Tracking:

“Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half”. – John Wanamaker (1838-1922)


We want to tell John and other businesses that there is something called conversion tracking which solves the measurement problem. Many advertisers havent set up their basic conversion tracking. Due to this mistake, people keep sending paid display or search traffic to their website without knowing which clicks are converting. Imagine throwing coins on the wall without knowing which one sticks. Google adwords gives you a conversion tracking code ( from tools menu ) – which you can insert on a thank you page of the website form. If you dont have a thank you page, ask your developers to create one after the form submit. Then on the thankyou page insert the tracking code. With this setup, you can easily know, which keywords, ads, or campaign is giving you results. This is one of the best way to optimize the campaign.


#4 Site Category Exclusions

With display advertising, you need to exclude certain website placements which will otherwise blow your budget. Many times your ads show up next to insensitive content which can be damaging to your brand. It is important to remove them and get quality clicks

display adwords campaign


#5 Frequency Capping 

Nowadays, we see so many ads and sometimes same ads many times. Its annoying isnt it. Blame it on the ignorance. This problem can easily be solved by Frequency capping.  Let me take a step back and explain what it is first. Frequency Capping means, how many times you want a user to see your ad. Studies have shown that around 5 – 7 times if you show your ads to user they buy. If not, they are not interested and you can stop showing ads to the same user multiple times. This is achieved through frequency capping and you dont have to waste money showing the same ad to the same person multiple times.


#6 Ad Scheduling

So your running your ads 24/7. As we know, the new day starts at 12am, and by the time you wake up in the morning, half the display advertising budget is already finished. It is advisable, that if you want to show your ads to people in the right time, you can put ad scheduling to show your ads to lets say, all weekdays between 8 am – 10 pm and not on fridays or midnights. This way you can use your advertising budgets at the right time when it matters. We have seen many advertisers running ads all the time and wasting advertising budget at non fruitful hours.

ad scheduling adwords


#7 Not using negative keywords

Negative keywords are those on which you dont want to show your ads. It does not work as effectively as on search campaign. But still, we have noticed many advertiser ads show up on job sites, or irrelevant sites where they didn’t want to show up and end up burning budgets with irrelevant clicks. If you count the amount on wrong clicks over the months and years it is sizable. We have seen advertisers who could have owned a villa in Dubai with the amount spent on wrong clicks!


#8 Common Ad creative mistakes:

Display advertising benefits are that you can have text and image ad formats. Earlier, many advertisers used only one text or image ad. As a result the campaigns were not effective and you were not getting enough clicks. Poor quality ads and color combinations are also a result of high cost per click. This are campaigns without starategy. Increasing the budget is the easiest thing to do but it costs and hurts. A little bit of optimization of the campaign could make all the difference. Many advertisers run the same ads through the year. It is important to test which ads are working and optimize them accordingly. There are many poorly written ads. which doesnt benefit anyone in the society.


#9 Targeting settings:

There are many display advertising targeting options like – Keyword targeting, Topics targeting, interest targeting, Affinity and in market audience, similar audience and much more. The theme and structure of some accounts we have seen can leverage this targeting options to get low cost conversions.

Bonus Adwords tip:

Ok, so you are doing display campaign well. More and more people are seeing and reacting to your ads. Well my friend, now is a time to capitalize the wave. Are you bidding on your own brand terms on search ads. The last thing you want is someone else or your competitor bidding on your company name and showing their ads on search results first position, while your busy focusing other keywords or lost in the sea of display advertising.


If you like what you read, check out our other blogs

Top 5 ways how Dubai Advertisers waste money on google adwords

Cost per click rate on Adwords is the highest in UAE


Leads dubai is a Google Adwords Certified Company, we deal with the above scenarios everyday and might have a solution for you. Contact us to learn more.

Article Name
Display Advertising - 9 ways how Dubai Advertisers waste money on Ads
"Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don't know which half”. - John Wanamaker (1838-1922) - Read Display Advertising mistakes

Mukesh Pandey is a Digital Marketing Strategist. He is Google Adwords Certified and strongly believes that Internet will enable us to speed up innovation and make life easier for everyone. He also founded Leads Dubai which is a Lead Generation Company in Dubai. Know more about Mukesh on Google+

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