When setting up your Google Ad campaigns, do you target based on geography? If so, be sure to keep reading!
Many advertisers are fooled into thinking that the way to target their audience by geography is the most obvious way: clicking Settings -> Locations
The problem is that by default, Google will set your radius to target "People in, searching for, or who show interest in my targeted location". Meaning that even though your radius is set to a 10 mile radius around New York City, your ad could be appearing to someone in Indiana, who has recently been Googl-ing hotels in New York City. You can see if this has been the case for your campaign by using the Dimensions tab inside your dasnhoard. Simply click on the View dropdown menu and click Geographic. If you sort by cost, you'll be able to see how much money you've spent exposing ads to people outside your geography settings.
What's the solution? The often overlooked "Location Options (advanced)" link. This is the only place in the Adwords dashboard where you can change your settings to show ads only to people within your geographic selections.