Adwords Campaign – A waste of money

With the conclusion of the Terian Adwords campaign on April 1st, I can confidently say: it was a waste of money.


Terian Adwords Campaign Infographic


Yes, that’s right, not a single copy of either ID Creator, or Image Capture Pro was purchased during the time-frame of 1st Dec 2014 til 1st April 2015. In fact not a single sales enquiry was received via the website (and I have checked multiple times to ensure it is working correctly).

Whilst it would have been nice to have a single copy purchased, I feel it would be more important to receive any form of enquiry regarding the product, as that would at least help validate that web based marketing could potentially work.

While web traffic certainly increased, this is merely a vanity metric, especially when taking into account not a single enquiry was received.

Future marketing will be done via different channels, and while I can see how Adwords can benefit some people, continuing to utilise it in its current form would be a waste of money.  So that is my Adwords experiment for ID Creator, and Image Capture Pro is finished (for now).




About Anthony Dowling

Founder Sjones Limited, focusing on developing ID and Security Card Solutions. Long time Delphi Developer. @AntDowling
This entry was posted in ID Creator, Image Capture, Terian and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Adwords Campaign – A waste of money

  1. PaulM says:

    Hmm, but didn’t it do what it said on the can? I.e. It got 5000 semi-qualified leads to your website.

    The question has to now be, why were these leads not converted? It could be that they weren’t as qualified as you wanted/needed (ie the keywords needed refinement), or that something(s) on your website put them off.

    5000 click throughs of which 400 downloaded isn’t too bad. I’m not sure you can blame Adwords for the lack of conversions?

  2. Anthony Dowling says:

    With 5000 clicks, and 400 downloads I question how many of those were actually people clicking and downloading versus automated bots. Especially given from that many downloads there has not been a single enquiry via email.

    As for keyword refinement, this was a second attempt at adwords, based on a refinement of keywords from an earlier 2 month test. Granted there could be additional refinement, interestingly enough I believe if I removed the single keyword ‘idcard’ from the campaign it would stop a significant number of false positive impressions, but I’m unsure how much of an affect that would have on the CTR, given the context of the adverts themselves.

  3. Melissa Fuller says:

    I think your expectations may be a little higher than the expected expectations of the campaign. You can not lead a horse to water and expect it to drink, if it does not want to drink. But I do think it may have been a necessary evil for learning, I myself would not gone down this track of marketing for the product. You looking at mass marketing to a bunch of people that the search “hopes” they might like it. But in fact I believe (and please do tell me if I am wrong Ants) that this has a very specific market. Adwords are a hard one and I do not believe after selling them for some time that they suit everyone and every business or the purpose that the person hopes they will serve. I do wish that there were more Business owners out there that took this approach to understanding their marketing.

    • Anthony Dowling says:

      Hi Melissa,

      Yes it is definitely a specific market (niche even) that the products are geared towards. Adwords have their place, however due to the cost of some keywords and ensuring a high ranking on them their appeal can be somewhat questionable for smaller businesses (and markets). No doubt there is a turning point when the size of the business combined with other marketing techniques provide a better return for adwords.

      For these products I have had far more success with in-person marketing. However the real issue is, like many small businesses, there are limited resources and there would be benefits to having a skilled dedicated person for marketing, and then in turn someone for sales.

  4. Anthony Dowling says:

    Came across an interesting bloomberg article regarding fake traffic. –

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