If you’re trying to run a campaign without spending too much, you know how tough it can be.  When you have a budget cap, you need to squeeze as much performance as possible out of every single dollar you spend.  And when you know you can’t spend money on everything, it’s essential to know what to spend it on, which can be tough.

Below we’ll share with you some of our favorite ways to create a valuable campaign even on a shoestring budget.

Find What’s Working

Before you can decide where to shuttle your dollars, you need to know what drives value.  This is easy if you’re an e-commerce site: you can simply track your ROA back to specific campaigns and keywords to see which are the most valuable overall.  For lead generation, you can use a tracking system to see what your close rates are over the long term.

For starters, try to determine what strategies result in the best ROA and long-term results.  Then, make it a point to spend more in these areas.  If there are areas where you’re doing well but that seem stifled because of your budget cap, places where you could use more money to increase sales volume, or you notice other high-performing areas, put them within their own campaigns.  This will allow you to more clearly see where your money goes and to spend more money on what is actually effective.

Know What to Cut

In addition to knowing what’s working with your campaigns, you have to look at what isn’t working and cut it.  As a rule, anywhere you’re spending money without adding value is a place where you should cut back!

A good place to start getting a sense of what you can cut is with AdWords’ Predefined Reports.  Here, you can look at time frames where you can reduce your bid, time frames you can completely exclude, or see locations where you’re spending money but not seeing results.

In addition, don’t forget to evaluate long-term performance and see if there are any keywords you’re using in ad groups or elsewhere that are inexpensive but are not adding value over time.  Even if the individual elements you’re cutting seem small, when taken together they can truly add up, so you’ll want to leave no stone unturned.

Separate Your Campaigns

The idea behind separating campaigns is that shared budgets make it hard to prioritize your spending, which makes it easy for a poor performer to use up too much of your budget.  If you can separate campaigns, you’ll prevent your high-performing areas from being hindered by low-performers within the same campaign. Keeping your display campaigns separate from search campaigns is also essential.

Any time you notice that performance varies wildly within a campaign, avoid using a shared budget. If, on the other hand, the max cost per click in a campaign is near or above the budget for that campaign, a shared budget can be useful.

Bid Wisely

When your budget is tight, there are some bidding strategies you can use to improve your impact.  Start by reviewing average positions and decreasing them to see if you can increase clicks without losing conversions.  You can also try out a variety of bidding strategies to see how they impact performance.  Try maximizing conversions or optimizing for CPA and take the initiative if a new strategy has a strong impact on performance.

Try for More Conversions

Improving conversion rates is a surefire way to ensure that you increase sales. If there is no way for you to create a larger budget, focus on converting, as it can impact a wide range of channels beyond search!

With these tips, you’re sure to extend your budget and get more bang for your buck.  For help with making smarter decisions on a budget, contact Blueprint Internet Marketing at 1.888.533.4886 or [email protected].