How to Set up a Google Ads Campaign
Owning a website is the first step toward getting your brand out to the world. With search engine optimization, you can move up in Google’s rankings so people can find your business. However, when you’re first starting out, you may need a little boost in generating leads.
Getting a website into the top Google results for your niche can take months, possibly even a year or more. Until then, you will need to get your content in front of the eyes of interested consumers.
Furthermore, even if your website has been up and running for a while, lead generation is still a concern. Augmenting your online marketing efforts with Google Ads is important regardless of how your website is performing.
FACT: 35% of Google users buy a product within five days of searching for it, your business cannot overlook this powerful tool.
What Are the Benefits of Google Ads?
Small business owners are always looking to leverage free digital marketing methods to keep their expenditures low. However, its man benefits make Google Ads a resource to consider for promoting your brand and gaining clients. Some of the many benefits of choosing Google Ads are as follows.
Faster Than SEO
Search engine optimization is what most website owners focus on. A content-rich site with quality backlinks pointing to it can move your posts up the rankings. However, depending on how competitive your niche is, this can take a while.
Even if you focus on long-tail keywords that your competition is overlooking, you’ll eventually need to focus on competitive terms. Your website needs visitors in the short term for you to achieve your goals. This is where Google Ads excels. As soon as you set up your campaign, assign a budget and activate it, your ads will be served to Google users.
FACT: By using Google Ads for its mobile advertising, Williams Sonoma has seen a 70% increase in mobile sales. (Hubspot)
Builds Brand Awareness
Your primary goal may be to attract paying customers but Google also offers you the ability to build your brand. The Display Network is a vast group of websites that show Google Ads on their web property. This means that you can create an ad that appears on authority websites in your niche.
This is especially helpful for new websites or those that haven’t managed to build a critical mass of traffic. Keep your ads consistent with your website’s design and make sure your landing pages are those of an authority website. If your display ads inspire users to click through to your website and you address their needs, you’ll gain followers.
FACT: By using Google Ads, Schmidt Naturals saw a 48% uptick in brand awareness for its vegan products on YouTube. (Hubspot)
Reach Prospects Through Gmail
Google’s ownership of Gmail makes targeting qualified prospects through their inbox possible. When combined with an overarching marketing strategy, using Gmail can increase conversions by orders of magnitude.
FACT: Roughly 80% of marketers have reported an increase in email engagement over the past 12 months. (Hubspot)
Measurability and Tracking
Everything you do regarding your website’s marketing should be measurable. The metrics you can obtain from conventional advertising like television, print and periodicals are highly speculative. With Google Ads, your ability to monitor every interaction with users is reliable and consistent.
With Google Ads you know things like:
- how many user clicked on your ad
- conversion rates
- which keywords generated clicks
- how much it costs you per click
- how much it costs you per conversion
(Image credit: PIWIK)
Target Users Through Remarketing
Remarketing is the ability to communicate your message to people that click away from your website on their initial visit. You can serve ads to these users at a later time that present your content in a slightly different light. You may choose to make an offer or call on them to read a post that is relevant to their needs.
In a case study presented by Google, conversion metrics rose across the board. The 22% increase in sales is indicative of the kinds of economies of scale you can achieve with Google remarketing.
FACT: 58% of smartphone users feel more favorable towards companies whose mobile sites or apps remember who they are and their past behavior. (Hubspot)
Deal With Competition Better
If a user searches for something related to your niche and you aren’t running ads, your competitors may have the upper hand. Depending on where your website ranks in the search results, you may have the ability to encircle your competition.
For example, consider the case where you appear at the fifth organic position. Let’s also assume a major competitor of yours has the top spot. By running an ad that achieves the top ad spot, you are vying for the viewer’s attention in two locations.
How to Use Google Ads
To benefit from Google Ads, you need to create a Google Ads account. You can create a Google Ads account by signing up for one. Follow the Google Adwords campaign tutorial below to get started.
How Google Ads Works
Now that you have a Google Ads account, let’s look at how the ad platform works. Having a good understanding of the mechanics will allow you to get more for your money.
The Google Ads system is a type of auction platform. You submit your ads and they start appearing upon approval. Depending on the quality of your ads and the amount you are willing to bid, a position in the results is assigned to you. Here is the pricing:
This scoring system functions based on what Google calls the Quality Score. This is a metric that uses certain criteria to judge how good your ad is compared to others. While Google doesn’t openly share what criteria it uses, you can assume a few things about Quality Score.
Before moving forward, it’s important to know that Google assigns Quality Scores to your keywords and your ads. It looks for how relevant your keywords are to the landing page you are directing traffic to. This guarantees that users don’t misuse the system by merely bidding more to show low-quality ads.
For example, let’s assume you have a website that sells tennis apparel. If one of your keywords is ‘Australian Open,’ it probably won’t achieve a good Quality Score. On the other hand, ‘tennis wristbands’ will perform better if it leads to a landing page about tennis-related products. This is what Google calls relevancy.
Setting up a Google Ads Campaign
An eight-step Google Adwords campaign tutorial will set you on the path to increasing traffic to your website. Following a proven strategy will ensure you maximize your return on investment and avoid wasting your marketing budget.
1. Coming up With a Budget
Determining your Google Ads budget is a process of reverse engineering. It requires some trial and error to get the numbers to work. Start by looking at your profit per item you will be advertising.
Let’s assume that you sell widgets that give you a $100 profit. How much of that profit are you willing to spend on ads to make a sale? If it takes $100 worth of ads to make a sale, then there is no profit to be made. A $20 expenditure to make a sale may be sustainable for your business. These amounts are for you to determine based on your specifications.
The conversion rate is the number of viewers of the ad that it will take to lead to a sale. Your conversion rate ties into your click-through rate which is the number of clicks that you get on your ad per amount of times it is displayed. Here is the conversion rate formula:
You will need to come up with a conversion rate that makes your ad campaign viable. This means that you should be spending just enough money per conversion to make the campaign profitable. After you arrive at a cost per conversion that you are willing to pay, you can scale up as sales come in. The more sales you make, the more you can afford to advertise.
2. Conducting Keyword Research
Now that you have an idea as to what your budget will be, it’s time to start building your campaign. The basic unit of your ad campaign is the keyword. Composing a list of keywords is a combination of your own input and the effective use of the Google Keyword Planner.
Start by creating a list of general keywords that describe your brand. Add product keywords as well as terms with geographical location, buyer intent, demographics and other topics of interest. So, if we were to use our tennis apparel example, our initial keyword list would look something like this:
- tennis apparel
- tennis shorts
- tennis wristbands
- tennis shirts free shipping
- adidas tennis shirts
- women’s tennis shorts
- buy 2020 adidas tennis shirt
- green tennis shorts
- tennis wristband reviews
Using the Google Keyword Planner
Keyword Planner is a tool within the Google Ads platform that helps you research keywords to use for your campaign. The tool is free and draws on the vast amount of data that Google has to provide suggestions you can adopt. You get estimates of cost per click as well as the level of competition for each keyword. For example:
The more competitive a keyword, the higher the cost per click that you will be charged. Competitive keywords are more costly because they yield higher conversions. That’s why you should try and achieve a balance between competitive keywords that convert and less popular keywords that offer value.
Negative keywords are terms and phrases that you can blacklist so they do not trigger your ads to appear. Using negative keywords can save you money by keeping your ad from showing up when a user searches for these words. Your negative keywords should include any words that are loosely related to your niche but do not achieve your goals.
For example, if you have a website that sells products, you may consider the word ‘free’ for your negative keywords. However, if you offer free shipping, you should not include it in your list. Here’s another example:
Other keywords to consider for your list include those used by job seekers or those looking for do-it-yourself solutions. Again, if your website deals with human resources or DIY tutorials, you can adapt your negative keywords accordingly.
3. Doing Competitive Research
The first thing you can do is to search for your keywords on Google. Look at the ads that appear and see if you can identify some of your competitors. Take note of what kind of text they use and what their call to action is like. Diib® offers a competitor research tool that allows you a sneak peak into the campaigns of your top 6 competitors.
Competitive research with Google Ads involves knowing what it takes for your ads to reach the top. You can use a competition analysis tool to get a better picture. SpyFu is a subscription service that also offers users free analysis.
By running a search on your main keyword, you will get data on what you can expect from your ad campaign. The tool will give you other useful keywords as well as an advertiser history. This last option lets you see actual ads used by your competition.
4. Optimizing Your Landing Page
Landing pages are the places on your site that users will be directed to upon clicking your ads. The quality of the landing page is just as important to the effectiveness of your ads. Without an engaging landing page, visitors will click away and your ad campaign will suffer. Take a look at this landing page:
It’s essential that upon arriving on your website that people know exactly what they are going to get. Use headers that grab attention and focus on the content the users are promised in the ad. Furthermore, break up your text into paragraphs so that it’s easy to read. Users that see a big wall of text will likely click away to another site.
Images and videos capture a visitor’s attention. A simple infographic or a product image may be enough to keep users on your page. To determine what the best content for your landing page is, try A/B testing.
A/B testing is when you create two different versions of your landing page and monitor which one works best. Drive traffic to both versions and use your analytics to determine which is more effective. After you run your test long enough, you should be able to choose which one to keep.
5. Setting up a Google Ads Campaign
After doing all the necessary preparation, it’s time to create your campaign. Start by entering your estimated daily budget that you calculated earlier. You will then need to enter the geographical location your ads will target. Enter as specific or as wide a geographical area as your website targets.
If your website concerns people in the United States, go ahead and select the country as a whole. On the other hand, if you have a brick and mortar website and you aim to get customers through your door, make your location more specific.
You then have the option of choosing between Search Network and Display Network. Search Network displays ads in Google’s search engine results. Display Network, as we mentioned earlier, places your ads on other sites around the web.
Your account may contain several campaigns. Each campaign branches out into ad groups and ad groups contain keywords. For starters, let’s consider a single campaign.
In the tennis apparel example, you would create one campaign for your website. Let’s call this campaign ‘Tennis Apparel Site’ for simplicity. You will then want to create subcategories for which to create different ads. An ad for Adidas tennis shoes will be different than one for Nike shirts.
You may want to create ad groups for different brands or different product types. This is where you have to think about which breakdown is best for your campaign. Make a list of your potential ad groups and see if they make sense for your targeting.
Finally, each ad group will have its own list of keywords. These keywords trigger ads to appear when Google users conduct their searches. You should be able to draw from your keyword and competitive research for this task.
6. Write Your First Ad
Your ads allow you to convey your message with a limited number of characters. Ad copy needs to focus on benefits and contain a strong call to action. The whole point of the ad is to get the viewer to click through to your website.
One of the biggest mistakes website owners make is to focus on features rather than what their websites offer users. Including percentages and numbers will greatly increase the chance of a user clicking on your ad.
Writing Ad Copy
Use powerful words that capture people’s attention. “5 Proven Method for Increasing Sales” is a potent, eye-catching title for an ad. It contains a number and strong language. ‘Secret’ or ‘easy’ are other great words to cause interest in your website.
Depending on your website, you may want to stir curiosity rather than give away what your content is all about. An ad with the title: “Secret Method to Boost Your Training Endurance” can do just that.
Creating a Compelling Call to Action
A call to action is the part of the ad that will drive the user to click. Don’t be timid in writing this part of the ad. You need to be precise in what you want the user to do and you need to ask for it assertively. For example:
You may want to tell your user to order now while supplies last or to click on the link to get their free ebook. Let them know that they will benefit by investing their time in your website. And notice the search term on the left, it’s always good to include that term in your Ad Copy and CTA.
7. Setting up Conversion Tracking
Nothing that you do until now will have any meaning unless you set up conversion tracking. Conversion tracking will help you stay on course with your budget and make sure that you are meeting your targets. It will also guide you in making any changes to your ads to improve their performance.
In the menu at the top of your Google Ads interface, you will find Conversions under Tools. By adding a new conversion, an easy to follow wizard will appear. Follow the steps until a snippet of code is produced. For example:
You will need to take this snippet of code and place it on your website. This will activate your website’s ability to pass data to the Google Ads interface. You will then have the ability to access all conversion data associated with your ads.
8. Conducting Account Maintenance
Google Ads isn’t a set it and forget it process. Regular maintenance is required to keep your costs low and your conversion rates high. You will need to monitor your average cost per click and ad positions to make sure your campaign is operating optimally. Part of the maintenance will be adding and removing keywords and checking up on your competition.
Having a thorough look at your account once a month should be supplemented by weekly checks. If you’re the type of business owner that strives for success, you may even log in daily to have a quick look under the hood.
Diib®: Google Ads Campaign Custom Metrics
Running Google Ads doesn’t have to be a costly endeavor. Try starting with a small budget and monitor your results. Try tweaking your ads to optimize them until you get the metrics that suit your goals. Diib® User Dashboard integrates with your Google Ads campaigns; giving you professional grade analysis in one location with specific alerts and objectives for improvement. Here are some of the features you’ll love:
- Customized Objectives give you simple tasks designed to optimize your Google Ads campaigns and overall website performance
- Alerts that tell you about your Domain Authority other technical SEO issues including Google Ads
- Bounce rate monitoring and CTR on Ads
- Ad performance
- Broken pages where you have backlinks (404 checker)
- Keyword, backlink, and indexing monitoring and tracking tools
- User experience and mobile speed optimization
Click here for your free scan or simply call 800-303-3510 to speak to one of our growth experts.
The short answer, at least among our Growth Experts, is yes! Google Ads allows businesses of all sizes to advertise to millions of potential customers for a good price. You can start, stop and adjust your bids at any time which gives you the utmost flexibility.
While being mostly straightforward with language that is easy to understand, it can be difficult to learn all the ins and outs of the Google Ads platform. You need to be patient with yourself and willing to learn from your mistakes. The biggest mistake we see is that companies quit before giving it a fair chance.
They appear on the Google Display Network, which is a collection of websites. This includes Google specific websites such as: Google Finance, Gmail, Blogger and YouTube. They will also appear on mobile websites and apps.
When advertising with Google Ads, you link your online ads with your website which will increase your traffic. If you don’t have a website, you can build one for free. Without a website, you can claim your Google My Business profile and advertise with Smart Campaigns within your Google Ads. Some of these services are free to use, the actual Ads you choose to display to cost you per click. This depends on the keywords you use.
Google will review your ad within one business day, on average. It has been known to take longer, depending on the influx of ads.