November 23, 2017

Can a Lower AdWords Daily Budget equal More Traffic?

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It sound crazy but it’s true! I’ve found a way to get MORE traffic and HIGHER conversion rates, by REDUCING your daily budget!


It all comes down to the Conversion Optimizer, or CPA Bidding, that little AdWords bugaboo that seems like a blessing from heaven at first but eventually drives us all to drink as it self-sabotages itself over time.

(Don’t get me wrong, it’s still fantastic, but it requires a lot of babysitting and tweaking – it’s certainly not the “set it and forget it” tool Google claims.)

In trying to fix an AdWords Conversion Optimizer campaign that was losing traffic and conversions over time, from 200/day down to 80/day, which nearly doubling cost-per-conversion,  I increased daily budget several times. After all, it made sense that more budget = more traffic, right?

Not necessarily. Not in the illogical world of the Conversion Optimizer.

You see, more budget means more traffic, but not necessarily good traffic. The optimizer, when given a large budget, will spend it like a drunken sailor, but not on quality. It will begin sending junk traffic from rubbish placements. When this traffic doesn’t convert, the optimizer started a self-sabotaging downward spiral where it continually reduces traffic volume, and before you know it you start cranking up your CPA just to keep traffic coming in.

On a tight budget, however, the optimizer behaves well. It will only send quality traffic from your best keywords and best placements, and conversion rates rise (in this case from about 28% up to near 40%). As those conversion rates rise, it sends more and more traffic that converts, and soon you have a great optimizer campaign once more.

So, if you’ve been trying to fix a broken Conversion Optimizer campaign by increasing budget, try doing the opposite. Set the budget so the impression share is somewhere between 50-100% and watch performance magically recover.

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