At Profit Rocket we’ve been auditing Adwords accounts for 6+ years. In that time, we’ve seen so many costly mistakes made by inexperienced Adwords agencies, often resulting in hundreds of thousands of rands in wasted ad spend.
The great thing is you can avoid costly mistakes by carefully vetting Adwords agencies. Read the rest of the article to find out what questions you have to ask to find the right Adwords partner.
Question #1 – Who Owns Your Adwords Account?
Irrespective of how well-known an agency is, even if they have all the credentials, you have to ensure that you own the account.
However, most advertisers don’t even realise they don’t have access to their Adwords data. Since they’re getting monthly click and cost reports from their agency they just assume they have access.
It’s only when they, for example, request an audit of their campaigns that they find out their agency won’t grant them access.
It is one of the shady tactics some agencies use to lock you into a long-term contract. They create an Adwords campaign on your behalf, but they are the owners of the account. So you won’t be able to leave them, even you’re not satisfied with their performance.
The only way to get out of this trap is to start a brand new Adwords campaign. However, setting up a new Adwords campaigns is a time-consuming process. You’ll have to spend months gathering data to see which combinations of keywords, ads, extensions, landing pages, USPs, etc. works best.
In the process, you’re (technically) wasting a lot of time and money because you have already invested in this previously.
Question #2 – How Do You Measure Success?
Inexperience PPC agencies focus on things such as impressions, clicks, bid prices, CTRs and the ranking of your ads. They are task-orientated and just want to get paid for their work.
Professional agencies, on the other hand, are results-orientated. They focus on ROI, increasing profits and delivering results that support your business goals.
Question #3 – What Would You Do If You Don’t Reach My Goals Within a Reasonable Timeline?
If your agency doesn’t reach your goals in a reasonable timeframe, they should be able to offer you a refund or a compensation of some kind for failing to deliver. If they are 100% confident in their abilities, this won’t be an issue.
Question #4 – Do You Specialise in Adwords or Do You Offer Other Services As Well?
Some multi-service agencies say that they specialise in Adwords when in reality it’s only a sideline business. If they also offer Facebook, website design, search engine optimisation and lots more, this is a bad sign.
Hiring a company that specialises in Adwords, and little else increases your chances that the one thing you hired them for will be done correctly.
If you need heart surgery, you’re not going to ask a general practitioner to do the operation. You want to work with a specialist. Same goes for hiring an Adwords agency. You want a real expert on your site and not jack-of-all-trades online marketing company
Question #5 – Who Exactly Is Going To Work On My Account?
Some larger multi-service agencies outsource the Adwords side of their business to other PPC agencies. If you hire an agency that outsources you’ll end up paying 2-3 times more than what you should be paying.
The easiest way to find out if your agency is using their own staff or outsourcing is to ask to speak to the person who is physically going to work on your account.
Question #6 – How Much Time Are You Prepared To Spend Learning About My Company?
Your PPC agency may know Adwords better than you do, but you know your industry better than anyone. A lot of time is needed for your agency to understand your market, your company, and your product and services.
So, will your agency spend their time asking questions that will help them to build their understanding of your industry? Most won’t.
Question #7 – What Proof Do You Have?
If a PPC agency is as good as they say they are, ask for proof. Don’t just take their word for it. Ask for testimonials and case studies. It’s a red flag if they have nothing to show.
Keep in mind, Adwords requires technical skill, but Adwords isn’t just a technical skill. Having a high level of technical skill is not sufficient. A well-optimised Adwords account cannot make up for a bad website or a product that lacks strategic differentiation.
Seek out a strategic direct marketing partner who is focused on increasing your overall profits. Follow the advice in this article to avoid the pitfalls of choosing the wrong Adwords agency.