Getting Started With Google Ads
Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising using Google Ads is perhaps the most popular form of advertising among both small and large businesses. This is partly because of Google’s reputation, and partly because it allows the business owner to control costs. There are various ways Google Ads can help you as a business owner, but it takes some basic instruction to get started and ultimately tap into it’s full potential as an advertising tool.
What is Google Ads?
Google Ads is an online advertising service that allows businesses to have their ads run on Google’s search results page, as well as partner websites, and YouTube. The ads look almost identical to the normal search results, with the only difference being the small label, “Ad”. Google Ads will show at the top and bottom of a search results page.
How Advertising on Google Works
When a consumer searches for a term or phrase, Google will show the consumer relevant ads based on the keywords used in the search. Websites that want their ads to show on the results page bid on keywords that they believe people will use when looking for their type of business. For example, a plumber located in Atlanta might bid on the keywords “plumbing Atlanta,” “plumber,” or “broken toilet.”
Depending on how much you bid compared to other plumbers in the area, your ad may show up on the results page when people search for the terms you bid on. In addition to how much you bid, Google also takes into account the relevance and quality of your ad and website. So even if you have the highest bid, the ad for your plumbing company’s may not always show as often if your website and ad copy results in a low quality score.
How Does Google Determine If Your Ad Will Show on the Results Page?
Google uses a combination of three primary factors to determine when an ad shows on the results page:
- Bid – The bid is the price you are willing to pay for a click on your ad. You bid against other websites on keywords that you believe people search for if they are interested in your product. A flower store might bid on the terms “roses”, “cheap bouquet”, or “wedding flowers.”
- Quality and relevance of the ad – Your ad needs to be relevant to the search being made in order to show on the search results page. If someone searches “wedding flowers” it wouldn’t make sense for Google to show an ad for a nail salon. You want to make sure you have a lot of the same keywords that you are bidding on in the ad itself, so Google can tell your ad is relevant to the search.
- Landing page experience – When someone clicks on your ad, the landing page that they are sent to should have similar content as the ad itself and the keywords used in the search. If you own a salon and are advertising manicures, you’ll want to link directly to a page that has more information on manicures, instead of to the homepage which includes all of your services.
Differences between Mobile and Desktop Advertising
Mobile and desktop ads on Google are very similar. They both display ads at the top and bottom of the search results page, and you bid on keywords the same way with both. Mobile device usage will continue to grow, so it is something you definitely want to think about when advertising on Google. More than half of Google’s searches are done from mobile devices, and people searching on their phone often have local intent.
The key differences between desktop and mobile advertising are:
- There is less space on a mobile device, so you need to make sure your message is straight to the point.
- People on their phones are on the go, so you want to tailor your message depending on if it’s for desktop or mobile.
When setting up your account, you can decide whether you want your ad to show on desktop, mobile, or both. We suggest monitoring your account reports to to track how your ads perform across different devices. You may notice that performance will be different, such as conversion rates, depending on ads displaying on mobile or desktop.
How Much Does Advertising on Google Cost?
In pay per click advertising, you usually pay if someone clicks on your ad. The cost per click of an ad depends on how much you bid on certain keywords. The cost ranges greatly depending on if you are in a market where a lot of other businesses are willing to pay a high price to rank on a certain keyword.
For example, if you are a realtor in a small town you might be able to bid less than $1 per click on a keyword, and still have your ad show often in this area. However, if you own a medical malpractice law firm in a big city, the cost per click will be much more expensive.
You can use Google’s keyword planner to see how much the suggested bids are for your ad to show up when someone searches for specific key terms. However, instead of focusing on the cost of advertising, you will want to think about how much you stand to earn from advertising on Google, and whether this will yield a substantial profit for your business.
How can you save on cost per click?
The simple answer is to advertise on Microsoft Ads, formerly Bing. In many ways, Microsoft provides a very similar service to Google Ads. The only big disadvantage of Microsoft is that there are fewer clicks available for purchase. As a result, many advertisers focus on Google Ads, and ignore Microsoft. The lower competition means less fierce bidding, which in turn lowers the cost per click. If you have not tried Microsoft Ads (formerly Bing), you can get started with a free $100 advertising credit, available from Microsoft.
How to Create an Effective Google Ad
Use your keywords in your ad – You need to use the same keywords that you are bidding on are in your ad so that Google will be able to tell that the ad is relevant to the search.
- Use local identifiers – If you are a local business, you want to consider using location terms in your search. If someone is searching for “bbq dallas” then your ad with the headline “Best BBQ in Dallas” will be more likely to show in the results and be highly relevant for the person looking for a restaurant in your area.
- Clearly state who you are and what you offer – The user should know immediately what your business is and how you can help with what they’re looking for. If you own a store that offers many different products, make sure you are matching your ad to the keywords being searched.
- Tell the user what makes your business unique – There are tons of results on the first page of a Google search. You need to tell them why they should choose your business.
- Are you more affordable, dependable, or reliable? Do you have awesome reviews and ratings? Share that information in your ad.
- Have a clear call to action – Users are more likely to click on an ad if they are being instructed on next steps. Examples of this are “Call today for a free quote,” or “Enter zip to find store closest to you.”
- Include a promotion – You may want to include an offer such as “20% off shoes today! or “Free shipping”. It’s understandable if you don’t want to offer a discount on top of the advertising cost, but even a small offer can be the difference between attracting a new customer to your site, and having them click on the website next to yours.
- Enhance your ad with extensions – Extensions show additional information about your business, such as your phone numbers, store rating or address, as links extending from your ad. Including extensions will increase the amount of space you take up on the results page, and they tend to have a high click through rates (both huge benefits.) Plus there is no additional cost for including extensions.
A simple step you can take before writing your ads is to search for your type of business and see what type of ads come up. You don’t want to copy other businesses ads exactly, but you can get an idea of what works and what is out there.
Benefits of using Google Ads for your business
These are the main reasons you should be using Google Ads.
1. Google Ads Increases Leads and Customers
Google Ads is one of the best tools for lead generation. If your campaigns are set up properly, it has the potential to send extremely targeted leads to your website, e-commerce website, opt-in form, or other online property. Google Ads allows you to focus on people who are searching for what you have to offer.
2. It’s a Flexible Marketing Platform
Anyone who uses Google Ads regularly will immediately tell you that it’s an extremely flexible marketing platform. It’s suitable for all kinds and sizes of organizations. You can literally turn Internet traffic on and off using this system. This platform is also compatible with a wide range of other marketing platforms and software systems.
3. Businesses Can Get a High Return on Investment
Unlike other marketing strategies, you can only pay for ads people click on. Once you optimize your Google Ads campaigns, you can get a high return on investment which may not be possible to achieve with other marketing strategies. However, as with all good things worth waiting for, this takes time, and you have to find out what approach suits you and your business.
4. You Can See Fast, Transparent Results
This platform shows you easy-to-understand results and reports of your campaigns quickly after it goes live. It’s easy to analyze the progress of your Ads campaigns because it’s dashboard gives you all the information related to each campaign, such as the ads clicked, keywords entered by website visitors, cost of clicks, and much more.
5. It Taps Into Huge, High Quality Traffic Sources
Google is one of the biggest companies in the world. Millions of people search and click Google ads every day. This means it can send a business a huge amount of traffic every day, if they have the budget to pay for this traffic. Google prides itself on displaying relevant content and ads when people search through its search engine, or view content that features Google ads.
Using Google Ads is virtually in every business marketing plan across the World, and it should be in yours too. It’s a great learning experience, however, you may wish to hire a professional to help you get the most out of this marketing channel. You can learn more about working with me, and how I can help you.