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5 reasons why your PPC leads might not be converting

Running a PPC campaign is an effective way to drive traffic on Google, Bing, social media, sites and apps. You’re able to target specific users based on their online behaviour, search habits, demographics and interests.

Like any other marketing channel, you might face some potential hurdles when running a campaign. One problem that PPC marketers might face is driving leads that are not qualifying for the next stage and converting.

Without the insight into what happens once somebody becomes a lead – it can be difficult to pinpoint the reason behind low conversion rates. The best thing to do is to understand how to drive more valuable leads when optimising a campaign.

Below are some of the key reasons as to why your PPC leads are not converting:

1. Unqualified traffic from high-volume keywords

One of the most common reasons for a low conversion rate is having low-quality traffic. Your paid search ads might be driving the wrong users if you are targeting high-volume keywords and keyword phrases that are too broad. 

Quantity doesn’t always mean quality in PPC – so it’s essential to take a deeper look at why a campaign isn’t performing as expected. 

So, if your campaigns are achieving lead volume goals but not conversions – then you could start to consider:

  • Are you bidding on high-traffic, generic keywords?
  • Who is the target audience?
  • What is the search intent? 

Narrowing down your target audience in search campaigns is an effective way to drive more accurate results. For example – if you’re targeting another business, you should make sure you’re bidding on B2B specific terms. A broad keyword may drive consumer impressions and clicks which won’t lead to conversions.

Google will match your ad to a query despite the search intent – so considering this before you bid on a keyword is essential. When you narrow down who will see your ad – the quantity might drop, but you’ll likely drive more valuable leads. Find our top PPC keyword research tools here.

2. Unclear messaging

Does your PPC campaign have the same messaging throughout the entire marketing funnel? Let’s take the ad copy and landing page as an example. A landing page is a web page we use in paid campaigns – it’s where visitors land once they click through from a PPC ad. 

A fine-tuned PPC landing page is an essential part of any successful campaign. Even with high-quality and compelling ad copy – without the landing match to match, users are likely to head straight back to SERP once they’ve clicked.

There should be a sense of synchronisation throughout a campaign. If not, you will likely get fewer leads or a high amount of low-quality leads which don’t result in conversions.

If you’re noticing that your conversion rates are dropping – try revisiting your marketing funnel and check your messaging from start to end.

3. Issues with budget 

How does the price of your product or service compare to online competitors in the same industry? Budget issues are a common reason why leads might not progress to the next stage. If a user is interested in your product but doesn’t make a purchase, it could be as simple as them not having budget. 

There is a strategic approach to this. Instead of unqualifying these leads – you could place them as leads in a ‘budget issue’ category. Budget issues can depend on the existing economic conditions – meaning these leads may become valuable customers at a later date.

If budget is the only issue preventing your leads from moving forward, then you could look at your pricing model. This might be an indicator of market perceived value. 

4. A long sales cycle 

Do you know your average sales cycle timeline? A sales cycle is typically defined as the time between the first touch point and closing the deal.

These are often based mainly on assumptions rather than data – which can be problematic for PPC marketers. A sales cycle can be weeks or months for some companies.

sales cycle mckinsey's customer decision model
PPC sales cycle

It’s best to have a data-driven model and be fully aware of your sales cycle timeline. That way, you’re able to set realistic and achievable expectations for your conversions. There are also some steps you can take to speed up the sales cycle going forward. You can read more on how to do this here.

5. The lead just wasn’t a good fit

Sometimes, it could simply be that a lead was not a good fit for your brand. Even with advanced targeting through PPC, there may be some leads that are not right for a company.

Again, this comes down to re-evaluating an underperforming campaign in terms of the keywords you are bidding on. Reviewing keywords is the first step to improving the efficiency of a PPC account. Consider the following:

  • Are your keywords still relevant or has the industry changed?
  • Could lower-volume keywords with high-intent searches help to drive more quality leads?
  • Are you missing out on a group of users that are actively searching for your product or service?

What next?

Converting clicks into qualified leads can often be the trickier area of PPC. It’s essential to understand a business and its objectives fully before diving into a campaign.

If you have an existing campaign and are seeing low conversion rates – try reviewing the points we’ve highlighted today. If you need help with an account or want to speak with one of our PPC experts – get in touch.

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