I have to agree. Few years ago I blew a hefty sum of money on nootropics (becouse this shit is expensive just like any other drugs or medicines!), tried a bunch of them, and my conclusion is the same as yours: they are not that effective. Some of them are completely ineffective, some others may give a mild boost in clarity of thinking. But nothing like I see in some reviews, such as making you "enlighted".
To sum it up, they are more effective at draining your money than at anything else.
The only good thing I can say about them is that they are generally safe. I didn't see any side effects reported about them, nor did I experience any.
OP, if you are drowsy, racetams won't help. Modafinil maybe, but when I tried adrafinil (I couldn't get modafinil), while I couldn't sleep, I was like a zombie.
If you feel unmotivated, racetams won't help. Some dopaminergic agent migh help (a little), like bupropion.
If you have brain fog, racetams might help a little, but still don't expect too much!