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Why your PPC ads aren't showing

Why you can't see your PPC adverts

If you have an ongoing PPC (pay per click) marketing campaign you will want to see your adverts in action. You will want to know that they are actually showing up and what they will look like. Some may click them to see where they lead to, firstly don't click on them! that click just cost you money!

Sorry for shouting, but it's for your own good.

There are several reasons your adverts may not be visible to you, let's try and find out why yours aren't.

If you have any of the following problems click on your problem to find out more... they aren't links to external pages :)


1. My ad doesn't show in my searches anymore. Expand

Cause for problem #1 (My ad doesn't show in my searches anymore.)

You need to know two things before I tell you what is happening in your case.

1. Google is pretty smart, so pretty smart that the creators themselves don't fully understand it.

2. Google's main goal is to make sure customer experience is top notch.

If you search for your advert, Google is watching and knows that you have searched once, twice, three times, no matter how many times you have searched, Google knows the number.

After a certain point Google thinks that the person at your computer is not interested in the advert. You have had lots of chances to click and you haven't so it's time for a new advert. After all, that will increase customer experience and Google wants more clicks too.

Basically there is no longer much value for the customer in your advert.

Solution for problem #1 (My ad doesn't show in my searches anymore.)

The solution to this is simple, instead of searching on Google for your advert use the Google Ad preview tool.

By using the Ad preview tool instead you will also stop increasing impressions on your Ad. Increasing impressions also lowers the click through rate (CTR). You don't need to know how it works if you aren't running the PPC campaign, but understand that a low CTR is not good overall.

2. My ad doesn't show in my searches anymore. Expand

Cause for problem #2(I clicked on my ad and it doesn't show anymore)

You could be experiencing this problem for one of two reasons. The first is the same as the problem #1. The second is if you have clicked on your advert a lot of times.

As I mentioned in problem #1, Google is pretty smart and customer experience is key to their success.

If you not only searched for your advert multiple times, but clicked on it every time you have triggered a filter for click fraud. Luckily this means that your clicks didn't cost you any money. But it means you won't be shown your advert again.

Note: The cause could also be the same as problem #1.

Solution for problem #2 (I clicked on my ad and it doesn't show anymore)

Unfortunately the Ad preview tool I mentioned in solution #1 doesn't include active links. You will have to log into the Adwords account and look at the Ads there to view where they link to. Or ask your PPC expert to show you themselves.

Just remember to avoid clicking on your own advert. You won't always be refunded because Google doesn't always trigger a fraud filter.

3. My ad isn't showing for my keyword and this is the first time I'm looking. Expand

Cause for problem #3 (My ad isn't showing for my keyword and this is the first time I'm looking.)

Problem # 3 is if you can't see your advert and you haven't seen it before.

The reason your Ad isn't showing is because of various settings chosen during set up. These could be because the advert:

1. is targeting a different area to where you are searching from.

2. is targeting a different device to the one you are using.

3. is targeting a different time to when you are searching.

4. has negative keywords you searched for.

5. is pending review from Google.

6. has ran out of budget.

7. has exact match keywords.

8. uses the standard delivery method.

Solution for problem #3 (My ad isn't showing for my keyword and this is the first time I'm looking.)

You should avoid changing any targeting settings just because you can't see your Ad. Instead use the Google Ad preview tool.

The Ad preview tool allows you to change the area you are searching from and the device. But for some reason it doesn't let you change the time you are searching at.

If you are using the Ad preview tool at the right time and still can't see your Ad you should check two things.

1. Your Ad is active via your adwords account.

2. Your Ad still has budget left to spend.

In both cases you will just have to wait. When Google approves your Ad and you have budget for your Ad, check again.

The exact keywords you use in your search could be the reason your Ad isn't showing too.

You could be:

-- Including keywords in your search which your Ad is set to not show for.

-- Using words which aren't included in the exact match keywords your Ad is set to show for.

If you think your Ad should be showing for your search you can look under Keywords if you only use exact match or Negative keywords in your adwords account. You could also ask your PPC expert to help out if you don't know how.

If you still can't see your Ad there is one more thing I can suggest is the problem.

The default setting for delivery method shows your Ads in a way which will spread them through the day. This means that your Ad won't show to everyone to ensure the budget lasts until the end of the day. Pretty smart Google.

Hopefully I have helped you find your PPC Ads without costing you money or messing with the analytics data. I'd also like to note that other search engines are available, Google is just the biggest.

If you still aren't seeing your Ads or would like any help with PPC services we have a PPC expert here at iD30 who would like to hear from you.


1. My ad doesn't show in my searches any more.


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