So I am helping my brother that just recently opened a new orthodontics practice in Woodland, Washington to make sure that he dominates that search result.  Just like I want him to do good orthodontics for my kids, I want to do good ppc management for his business and help him get more patients.

The other day I did a quick Google search and this is what I saw:

Woodland Orthodontist

Of course, I was happy to see that Quinn is ranking so high organically.  I was also happy to see that I was the only advertiser utilizing the Google ad extensions. At first I was a little disappointed to see he wasn’t in the top 3 positions, but over the years of doing PPC I have learned that position 4 isn’t a bad place to be.  I’ll leave that conversation and argument for another day.

Before noticing all of those things, the highlighted portion of the above screenshot jumped out at me.  There was another sad victim of Google’s ads that make it sound like any do-it-yourselfer can run Google ads.  I don’t blame local business owners for starting their own Adwords accounts.  It is so easy get an account setup and Google’s ads make it seem like it is something anyone can do.  Enter your credit card, fill in the fields for the ad and you are off to the races.  Little ad targeting mistakes can really get you though.

Here is what I suggest this Washington DC orthodontist do to clean up his mistake so that he quits paying for irrelevant clicks and hurting his CTR with bogus impressions:

  • Login to your Google Adwords account.
  • Open each campaign and click the settings tab.
  • Scroll down to where it says “location.”
  • Click “edit.”
  • Type in the geographic area you want to target: “Washingt…” WAIT! See what populates?  Washington DC is what you want to target.  In my case I wanted to exclude Washington DC.
  • Every other “Washington” you need to exclude like so:

Adwords Location Targeting

In the end it should look something like this:

Adwords Geotargeting

Just a quick pro tip.  Have other suggestions or tricks?  I also recommend making those cities that you don’t want to target negative keywords, but be careful that you don’t accidentally exclude your target city in the process. This could also very well be a sad case of a poor local business owner who suckered into the Google Adwords Express garbage. Ha! And people think PPC is for do-it-yourselfers. Sheesh!

Any other tips? Leave them in the comments. Let’s help this orthodontist in Washington DC out.


Stuart Draper is the founder of Get Found First, a PPC management company that started in 2008. Stu also taught Web Business at BYU-Idaho as an adjunct faculty member. An internet marketing geek that also likes to hunt, mountain climb, wakeboard, watch college football, and wrestle his 5 year old son and shamelessly brag each time he wins!

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