PPC Checklist for Launching Your Paid Search Campaigns

Have you ever launched a Paid Search Campaign without a PPC checklist and realized you’re text ads were running on the Display Network and you racked up about a 1,000,000 impressions (at a CTR of .08%, which ruined your Search CTR) in a few hours because you forgot a few settings?

If so, you’re not alone. There are many PPC experts who miss key targeting options before and during a Campaign due to a lack of checks and balance. PPC Managers are always in a rush to A/B test the next call to action, optimize current campaigns, and often times we overlook the importance of a PPC checklist before launching a new campaign.

Campaign Targeting Checklist

  1. Make sure your Campaigns are paused before you triple check all settings before launch
  2. What Campaign type are you running?
    • Search Network with Display Select
    • Search Network only
    • Search & Display Networks
    • Display Network only
  3. Is your search partners enabled for more reach or did you disable them for more control?
  4. Is there an end date to your campaign

Budgets and Bids

  1. Is your daily budget set to be in alignment with your account spend goals?
  2. Are you adjusting bids for mobile at the Campaign or Ad Group level?
  3. If you planned on using Keyword level bids, are they set?
  4. Is your Ad Group level Default Max CPC bid set correctly?

Device, Geo, and Ad Targeting

  1. Are you targeting all devices?
  2. How are you rotating your ads?
    • Optimizing for clicks
    • Optimizing for conversions<l/i>
    • Rotating evenly for 90 days if you are running A/B testing
    • Rotating indefinitely for a test longer than 90 days
  3. Are you only targeting the English language or is this a multi-lingual campaign?
  4. Is your campaign geo-targeted to the US, a specific state, or another country?
  5. Are you targeting:
    • People in, searching for, or viewing pages about your targeted location (google
    • People in your targeted location
    • People searching for or viewing pages about your targeted location

Extensions Checklist

  1. Does your business have a need for location extensions?
  2. Do you have Sitelinks?
  3. Are you running App extensions?
  4. Are you using Call extensions and will you be using Google’s call forwarding number?
  5. Do you have Consumer rating annotations?
  6. How about Review or Social extensions?

Google lists and describes their extension offerings here.

Ads Checklist

  1. Do your ads drive to relevant landing pages?
  2. Are there tracking parameters (used for manual tagging) on all Keyword or Ad Group level ads (depending on your need)

Keywords checklist

  1. Have you done extensive Keyword research to ensure you are targeting the right Keyword sets
    • Here are a few helpful Keyword research tools (AdWords Keyword Planner, Google’s Predictive Search, Ubbersuggest, SEMrush, Amazon Predictive Search, eBay Predictive Search, etc.)

Match types

  1. Does each Ad Group have only one type of Keyword match type (best practice)?
  2. Are you strategically using different Keyword match types for different account objectives?

Negative Keyword

  1. Do you have a Negative Keyword list to limit irrelevant traffic to your site?
  2. Are you taking advantage of multiple Negative Keyword match types to help funnel traffic to your desired Ad Groups?

I hope this PPC checklist makes your next PPC Campaign launch go a little more seamless!

Download the Checklist

paid search PPC