With the recent lockdowns and restrictions, more business owners are seeking ways to optimise their Google ads campaigns to generate more leads, conversions and sales online. 

Optimising Google Ads campaigns is no easy feat, especially when there are so many variables to consider. But at Integral Media, we strive to make even the most complex of processes in our digital marketing services simple yet efficient, to help drive great results no matter what type of campaign you’re dealing with. 

To help business owners and marketing managers get started in optimising Google Ad campaigns, we’ve pulled together a checklist that outlines a few of the most important things to consider when optimising your Google Ads campaigns.

All of the tasks outlined below should be carried at least once a week.

Checking Performance

1) Check the number of clicks in each campaign

Monitor the number of clicks of each campaign, paying attention to which are performing better than others and finding any patterns. For display campaigns, you may not need to focus on monitoring clicks (instead, focus on impressions).

2) Check the Click Through Rate (CTR)

CTR is the percentage of the number of times a user has clicked on your ad out of all the times the user has seen your ad. The average benchmark for CTR for Search Campaigns is 2.5%. Note that you should be looking at Search Campaigns only and not Display as this could significantly reduce the CTR for the account.

3) Check Average Cost Per Click (Avg. CPC)

CPC is the total cost divided by the number of clicks the campaign has received. Your ideal CPC will depend on your business industry, so it’s important not to be overspending or underspending when trying to attract more clicks. A helpful question to ask when acquiring an ideal CPC is how much a conversion is worth for your specific business – and how well a click can lead to a conversion.

4) Check Conversions

It’s important to check conversions especially to see whether your conversion tracking is firing properly. If you haven’t seen conversions in the past few weeks then you may be dealing with a tracking issue or need to look into why your ads and keywords aren’t converting. Once you’re sure that your conversions are being tracked properly, you should also monitor the Cost per Conversion (cost/conversion) to check you’re getting the best ROI and not overpaying for your conversions.

5) View Search Impression Share & Search Absolute Top Impression Share

Search Impression Share is the number of times your ad has shown divided by the number of times the ad had been eligible to show. Low search impression share could be due to a number of factors including low budget (Search Impr. share lost due to budget), ad position (search impr share lost due to rank), or even the quality of the ad.Search Absolute Top Impression Share is the number of times your ad appeared in the most prominent (top) area of the search results, out of all the times your ad was eligible to appear in that area. If your goal is to rank your ad within the top positions of search results, then we highly recommend focusing more on Search abs. Top impression share rather than Search Impression Share.

6) View Ad performance

Look at which ads are performing the best/worst and analyse relevant ad copy (in Ads & Extensions > Ads). View from highest to lowest the number of clicks, interactions, conversions, cost per conversions etc. For underperforming ads, you may need to consider whether there are better CTAs you can use or phrases to attract your audience better.

Making Improvements To Google Ad Campaigns

7) Check keyword match type

under Keywords > Search Keywords, you’ll find the targeted phrases and terms for each campaign. Make sure that each keyword is set to a suitable match type: broad, broad match modified, phrase or exact match. Generally speaking, the less budget and/or the tighter focus you have in your campaign you should opt for exact, phrase, then broad match modified keywords respectively. Broad match keywords tend to attract irrelevant searches and should only be used for very general campaigns with big budgets.

8) Check Search Terms Report

Not to be confused with Search Keywords report, Search Terms report outlines other phrases that users typed that triggered your ad. You can add these Search Term keywords or exclude them as negative keywords to further refine your campaigns.

9) Check Negative Keywords

If you come across irrelevant keywords that are triggering your ad, you should exclude these keywords either by ad group, campaign or account level depending on how refined your campaigns are. Also, note the match types needed for negative keywords.

10) Check Location Targeting Settings

Under each individual campaign, go to Settings > Locations > Location Options. For most campaigns, it’s best to click the option to target ‘People in or regularly in your targeted locations’ and exclude ‘People in, or show interest in, your excluded locations’ for a more refined focus.

11) Make Ad Schedules (optional)

You can monitor what times your ads are best performing (after attaining data of more than 3 months ideally) and then create ad schedules to make better use of your budget in specific time frames.

12) Create Audiences (optional)

If you know certain topics and demographics of your target audience, input them in your campaigns.

13) Review Recommendations

Lastly, you can review the Recommendations tab which contains various suggestions from Google to improve your ad. However, we’ve found that some of these suggestions are counterproductive and may end up costing you more money than needed.


This is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to optimising your Google Ads campaigns, however, we hope that it provides a helpful overview of what you should look at when starting out. 

If you’re seeking ways to get the best ROI out of your Google Ads campaigns, we recommend getting in touch with our digital marketing specialist team at Integral Media. Whatever your end goals are, we’re here to help.