Imagine you’ve meticulously set up your Google Ads campaigns, carefully selecting budgets, targeting your ideal audience, and crafting compelling ad copies. You sit back, excited to watch the clicks and conversions roll in, only to find that… it’s quiet. Your ads seem to be lost in the vast ocean of the internet, leaving you to wonder, “Why are my Google Ads not working?"
It’s a frustrating scenario, and one that many advertisers face. Fear not, for in this blog, we’re not only going to uncover the reasons behind your Google Ads woes, but we’re also going to provide you with actionable solutions.
It’s time to transform your underperforming ads into marketing powerhouses. So, if you’ve struggling to find out why your Google Ads are falling flat, keep reading, and we’ll help you turn the tide.
What is PPC Advertising in Google Ads?
Before we dive into the topic, let’s first brush up on what PPC means. PPC stands for pay-per-click advertising, a system that enables you to advertise on Google, reaching an extensive audience of people actively searching for products, services, or information that you can offer. Google PPC is a powerful and cost-effective way to increase brand awareness, drive qualified traffic to your website, boost conversions, and, ultimately, increase your profits.
PPC works particularly well for commercial searches, where people are ready to make a purchase. It’s a win-win situation, as Google benefits when you make a sale, driving a profit over and above the cost of the ad. In PPC advertising, advertisers bid on keywords to trigger their sponsored ads. Google uses factors like Quality Score and bid amount to determine ad placement.
Now, let’s delve into the nitty-gritty of why your Google Ads campaigns might not be working as expected and how to fix these issues.
How to investigate if your Google Ads is actually working
Before we jump into the solutions, it’s essential to know how to diagnose the problem. Keep an eye on the impressions and clicks your ads are receiving, which you can find in your Google Ads and Google Analytics dashboards. If these numbers are consistently low, it’s a clear sign that something is amiss.
Check your ad status in Google Ads to determine whether your ad is active and why it might not be. You can do this by signing in to your Google Ads account, clicking on “Ads & assets,” and checking the “Status” column. This column provides insights into the status of your ads, reflecting any changes you’ve made or any policy-related reviews.
Now, let’s explore the common issues that can affect the performance of your Google Ads campaigns.
Why are my Google Ad campaigns not working and how to fix issues?
Issues with the preliminary account setup
1. Your ad has been paused, removed, or disapproved
It may seem obvious, but ads, ad groups, and campaigns can get paused, removed, or disapproved quite often. Sometimes, these issues are overlooked, especially if multiple team members manage the account.
- Check “Change History”: Review this feature in your Google Ads account to track changes and discover any accidental pauses or removals in your campaigns. You can also use Optmyzr’s automated Change History reports to streamline this monitoring process further.
- Understand Disapprovals: Consult Google Ads policies to identify and resolve disapproval reasons.
2. Your account is still under review
Google reviews ads to ensure they comply with their policies, but the system reviews most ads within one business day. However, more complex reviews may take longer.
- If your ad remains under review for over 2 business days, keep an eye on your ad’s status and if the issue continues, contact the Support team.
- To avoid time constraints, submit your ad a few days ahead of any specific review deadlines. This prevents delay in launching your PPC campaigns.
3. There’s a billing issue
Addressing billing issues is vital as they can result in account suspension once Google’s grace period expires. Common billing challenges include:
- Insufficient funds on your credit card for payment
- Exceeding the maximum allowable charge for a single payment
- Cards that don’t accept online charges
- Regularly verify that the credit card linked to your account is active and functioning correctly.
- When switching to a new card, ensure there are no issues to prevent payment problems and potential account suspension.
4. Your IP address could be blocked
Some advertisers block their own IP addresses to study their competitors, inadvertently preventing their ads from displaying.
In your campaign settings, check if your IP address is listed in the IP exclusions section. If found, remove it to ensure your ads show up as intended.
Issues arising from managing the account
1. Your keyword search volume is too low
If you’re targeting extremely low-volume keywords with minimal traffic, Google might temporarily deactivate them. Google will automatically reactivate them once they start receiving more traffic, but waiting for this may not be the most ideal strategy.
Check the “Keywords” section in your account and review the “Status” column to identify low-search-volume keywords. Consider using broader terms or match types and targeting more relevant locations. Utilize Google’s Keyword Planner or Optmyzr’s high-performing search terms report for keyword ideas.
2. There’s an issue with ad scheduling
Overly narrow ad schedules can limit your ad’s exposure and traffic, causing them to not show to potential audiences.
Conduct hourly analyses of your campaign’s performance and adjust ad schedules to maximize reach during the most relevant hours and days without exhausting your budget.
3. Landing pages are irrelevant or faulty
Poorly performing landing pages due to irrelevance, URL errors, or even hacking can negatively impact your ad ranking and cause your ads not to show on SERPs.
- Ensure your landing pages are relevant to the ad’s intent and triggered keywords.
- Regularly check for URL issues like 404 errors or “Product not found."
- Run an audit on your account’s landing pages to ensure that all of them use secure (https) URLs.
4. Bid and budgeting issues
In Google Ads, how much you bid and budget can make or break your success:
- To prevent underperformance, strike a balance in your bids by efficiently optimizing your bids across ad groups. Avoid bidding too low, which could jeopardize your ad’s visibility, or bidding too high, which may deplete your budget prematurely.
- Distribute and fine-tune your budget across campaigns. Ensure unspent budget flows into campaigns facing budget restrictions, helping maintain a steady impression share.
5. Low keyword quality scores and CTR
Ad relevance to the search query and low CTR can harm the quality scores of your keywords, leading to decreased visibility on SERPs.
- Create ad groups with closely related keywords, improve ad relevance, and boost quality scores.
- Regularly A/B test ad copies to maintain high quality and relevance.
- Utilize sitelinks to lead users to specific landing pages and enhance CTR.
6. Negative keywords are canceling out positive keywords
Overlapping positive and negative keywords can prevent your ad from showing for specific searches.
Regularly audit your positive and negative keyword lists to avoid overlaps and keep them updated. Optmyzr’s Rule Engine can help automate the process of finding trending search terms and keep your keyword lists optimized.
Bonus - Why are my Google Ads campaigns not showing on the top of the page?
If your ads aren’t showing on the first page or the top of the search results, it’s likely because you’re not bidding high enough compared to your competitors to gain that position.
Check the “Est. first page bid” and “Est. top of page bid” attributes for your keywords in Google Ads and adjust their bids accordingly to ensure your ads appear prominently.
Pro tip - Avoid searching for your own ads on SERPs
While it may seem counterintuitive, manually checking if your ads are appearing on SERPs can have unintended consequences. When multiple team members search for the same ads, it can cause a sudden spike in ad impressions. Since your team won’t be clicking on these ads, the CTR can drop significantly. This decline in CTR can negatively impact your quality scores, causing Google to rank your ad lower. In some cases, your ad may even stop appearing.
Instead, use Google’s “Ad Preview and Diagnosis” tool to check if your ad is displaying for specific keywords. This tool identifies any issues that might prevent your ads from appearing. It provides the same search results as a regular Google search but without accumulating ad impressions, preserving your performance statistics.
To access the “Ad Preview and Diagnosis” tool, go to your Google Ads account, click the “Tools” icon in the left-side navigation, open the “Troubleshooting” tab, and select “Ad Preview and Diagnosis.” This way, you can ensure your ads are performing optimally without affecting their rankings.
While Google Ads can be a powerful tool for your marketing campaigns, various issues can hinder their performance. However, with regular monitoring and troubleshooting, you can address these problems and get your ads back on track, driving the results you desire. Don’t let the frustration of underperforming Google Ads campaigns discourage you; instead, take action to optimize your campaigns and achieve your advertising goals.
If you’re looking for an efficient way to monitor and troubleshoot your Google Ads campaigns, consider scheduling a demo with Optmyzr. Their tools can help you quickly identify and optimize for these issues. You can also explore their solutions by signing up for a 14-day free trial. Take control of your advertising and watch your campaigns flourish!
Why is Google Ads not loading in Chrome?
- One of the most common reasons Google Ads might not load in Chrome is due to ad blockers. Disable your ad blocker or add an exception for Google Ads to resolve this issue.
What are some common mistakes made in Google Ads setup?
- Failed conversion tracking
- Using the wrong keyword match types
- Irrelevant or faulty landing pages
- Not trademarking branded keywords
- Not setting alerts for anomalies in campaign performance
How long does it take for Google to start showing ads?
- After activating your Google Ads account, it typically takes 24-48 hours for Google to review and approve it.
- Following approval, Google gathers essential data about your business, learns about your target audience, and examines your desired topic. This process can take longer for larger or more complex businesses.