Why Am I not Seeing My Ads?

Common question. Most common answer; You need a bigger budget. But there are many factors that determine when your ads run and do not run. Lets go over them:

The way Google Ads works is complex and we cannot game-out every type of campaign you may use. For all campaign types, Google uses a number of variables that determine when your ads run. Its only a matter of how much your chosen campaign type defers control to Google. A Maximum Conversions campaign type will give you the greatest exposure, but you will also pay for that. We will address a simple PPC type here, in which you have control of the bid/keyword. However, all the following play a role in all ads campaign types.

Most important variables are your location and your online activity (more precisely; your personality). Google knows more about you than your mother does

First, are you sitting in your target market area? If not, you wont see your ads.

Second. Time of day and budget. Your budget is likely limited and may run out by end of day. Therefore you likely limit the price you are willing to bid (pay) for a click so that you get an even distribution of clicks throughout the day. Google may even intervene (on your behalf) to try to achieve an even distribution of clicks for your budget. All of which means your ads won’t show every time you search for a keyword that you bid on.

Find your “Search Lost IS” per keyword (impression share). That indicates how often your ads DID NOT run because you are not paying enough in that location. Others are willing to outbid you in that place & time. Each entity running ads in your market can change their bids at any time. Which simply means you cannot (even mathematically) predict when your ad will run.

For any keyword, if your ads only run 60% of the time, maximum, that is normal. A “Search Lost IS” of less than 40% is good.

About your personality: if you never click on one of your ads (which you should not) even though you searched using a known keyword you bid on, Google will stop showing you ads that are “ineffective” on you regardless what you are bidding on that keyword. Google may have determined you are not a serious shopper of your own product. (especially if you are logged into Google in that browser)

Google may even know your annual salary and age. Depending on your audience targets, you may not be bidding high enough on your own demographic.

Importantly, you do click on ads for other products, you will therefore see more ads for other products.

Here is one way to check on your ads: call a friend who (1) is located in your target area and (2) around 9am (3) who fits the demographics you target. Ask them to do a Google search (4) using a keyword that has the lowest “Search Lost IS” in your list of keywords (0% means your ad runs every time someone uses that search term in your target area). If you don’t have a few 0% “Search Lost IS” keywords, there is something wrong with how you are running your Googel Ads.

That should be the best way to judge the effectiveness of your ad campaigns. If you still don’t get confirmation that your ads are running, you have something seriously mis-configured in your Google Ads.

Improving your ad performance often comes down to a Bigger Budget.

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