Most Commonly Asked Questions About Google AdWords
Do you use Google Adwords to bring more traffic to your website?
If so, you’ve been swimming in a pool of data, and it can be hard to know how to navigate the waters successfully. The downside is that you can toss a ton of cash, but the upside is that you can make a lot of money putting your site on page one of Google search results.
As you plan for your next Google AdWords campaign, you probably have a lot of questions. No matter your experience with the use of Google AdWords, it is very important to understand how it works and why it works. If you are trying to manage your advertising on your own before turning to a digital marketing agency, or you need help understanding the campaign that is recommended for you, here are some of the most helpful answers to common questions.
What Is Google AdWords?
Let’s start with the basics. It is one of the most commonly used types of advertising for websites and other digital marketing. That is because roughly 84% of the U.S. population uses Google to find answers to their questions and products to solve their needs. That means, since most people use Google, you want to ensure your website or product is on the search engine results page (SERP) for SEO, but also that you are getting ads on the SERPs.
Google AdWords provides a wide range of networking advertising locations, not just SERPs or search advertising. And, because it is one of the most trackable methods of advertising, it is very difficult to find anything else that’s this effective.
It’s certainly true that running an Adwords campaign will give you access to more data than any other form of advertising. That’s why it’s important to set up appropriate metrics for your campaign.
Where Will Google AdWords Ads Show Up?
The most common belief is that Google AdWords is just designed for search pages. That’s not the case. They can be on search ads, which are ads on the SERPs. They can also be display ads, which occur as a banner on a website. They can be placed in Gmail ads, YouTube, including in banners and videos there, and many other areas.
The ads can be in different forms, too. That includes text display ads, which are most common, but also static banners, videos, lightboxes, and animated banners. See that flexibility? That’s another reason to consider this form of marketing for your business.
What Is a Good Google Ads Conversion Rate?
The term conversion rate refers to the number of times the ad is shown compared to the number of times people take action, click on it and get to your website. The average conversation rate across all industries is around 2.35%. However, that’s going to be different from one industry to the next.
What’s most important is not what the average is, though. What is important is seeing improvement in your numbers over time by adopting better and more effective strategies that improve your Google Ads performance.
How Do I Get My Ads to Rank #1 on Google?
Everyone wants that cherished #1 ranking position, but there is no way to guarantee this (If any digital marketing firm tells you they guarantee this, they are not being accurate or honest!) That’s because there are many uncontrollable factors that play a role in this process. That includes:
- The competition and changes in competition for the use of AdWords
- The season and how often people are looking for your product or service
- The quality score of your ads
- The changes to Google’s algorithm that impact the overall success you’ll have
It is best to change strategies on a frequent basis to improve your results. To do that, you don’t simply want to make changes, but rather make educated decisions based on changes to Google or how well previous ad campaigns are working. The ad environment is always changing, and that means ongoing updates to stay competitive are necessary.
Should You Invest in SEO or AdWords?
The bottom line is that both search engine optimization (SEO) and Google AdWords campaigns can be vital components to your overall web marketing success. Both strategies can get your business on the first page of the search results.
SEO is a long game, which means it will take much longer to work to improve your SEO outcomes, such as ranking better on the SERPs and getting more targeted customers and visitors to your website through keyword usage.
If you need fast results right now, create a highly effective Google AdWords campaign first, but even that could take some time. Here’s a closer look at these two approaches:
SEO focuses on the following:
- A core component of long-term success for ranking in Google, you’ll need SEO components to create long-term results.
- Technical, on-page SEO makes it possible, meaning you’ll need to create high-quality, relevant content for your readers and visually appealing assets.
- Google learns how valuable your website is through a wide range of strategies, including keywords, site functionality, links, and more. It’s then ranked against competitors.
AdWords focuses on the following:
- Immediately increases website traffic because you are paying to have your ad placed on Google search engines.
- It is ideal for targeting very specific people or groups who are most likely to buy your product or service.
- Excellent supportive tool for reaching new customers and building your brand if it is new.
Remember, most websites will do well when they incorporate both healthy SEO and AdWords strategies, as one is not necessarily better than the other, nor do they provide the same type of level of support to users.
What we suggest is that you look at the average revenue a client can and will bring you for each service you provide. Once you have a general number in mind, look at the costs involved with doing SEO and Adwords separately to see the potential ROI for each strategy.
For a simple way to think about it, if your average client brings you $1000 in revenue (or profit), you can do the math from there. The average cost for SEO in the U.S. is around $1000/month for SEO which means that SEO needs to bring you one client a month to break even and two to turn a profit. For an Adwords campaign, you’ll need to factor in the management fee of the agency plus the ad spend which depends on the competitiveness of the industry. It’s nothing to think of an AdWords campaign to start at $1000/month plus the management fee which can add another $1000. This means your Adwords campaign needs to bring in two clients a month to break even and three to make money.
When Can I See Results When Using AdWords?
If you are investing in Google AdWords, you probably do not want to wait long to start seeing more people clicking on your ads and getting to your website, and you should not.
Once you have your Google AdWords account live and your campaign set up, you can start seeing results of people clicking through within a few hours whereas SEO takes longer than that. Before you get too excited, there are many other factors that will play a role here. The best results – including achieving most business goals using AdWords campaigns will take anywhere from a few months to up to a year to fully reach.
What Factors Should I Look at to Determine How Well My Google AdWords Campaign Is Doing?
If you are working with a digital marketing agency, you’ll get help with this entire process. Still, there are several things you can do yourself to see what’s happening. Some of the most important factors to focus on include the following:
- Your ad rank
- The searches that are triggering ads – are they relevant?
- Your budget spending patterns
- The number of clicks your ads get
- The day and time you are seeing conversions
- The number of conversions you have
Here’s the good news. You do not have to do all of that calculating and monitoring yourself. Google AdWords, as well as other tools like Google Analytics, will help you to measure the success you are having with each of your campaigns. You can also use this to compare performance over time and with competitors to see just how well you are really doing.
Can I Setup Google Ads to Run Just on the Weekends?
You can create Google AdWords campaigns that fit just about any parameters you want to have to help maximize your ad spend. That includes just setting up campaigns to run on weekends. The key is not choosing what time you think is best but really understanding when people are looking for answers or solutions to their problems that you can answer.
Also, remember that there is competition. You’ll want to be sure you know when your competition is highest and how that will impact your costs.
I Don’t See My Google Ads Showing Up.
It can be a bit frustrating when you think you should see your Google Ads showing up, but they do not seem to be doing so. There are various reasons why this can happen. If your ads are not showing in the display network or search network, there could be one of the following things happening:
- Your ad is not optimized for your campaign well enough, and therefore just is not triggering results
- Could your ad be disapproved, meaning that there is some reason why it is not being shown?
- Do you have your budget set up, and has payment gone through? This is a more common problem than many people realize.
- Do you have the right bidding budget set up for the amount of competition you have?
- Did you launch your campaign after doing significant research to know how customers are looking for what you offer?
Google AdWords Never Worked for Me – Why?
Some people believe Google AdWords is a waste of money because it “didn’t work for me.” The problem here is that there are many factors that are likely contributing to that lack of success.
- Are you running campaigns that are not using the right knowledge of the industry or the target customer?
- Did you go through your ad budget too quickly and not get any results?
- Perhaps you did not have an optimized campaign that incorporated some A/B testing and research to ensure it was set up to run well.
- Did you set up negative keywords to help avoid wasting money on clicks that don’t matter?
These are just a few of the many reasons why you may not have success. What is most important here is to know that it takes time – and some investment – to get Google AdWords to produce the success you want and need.
Should My Ads Go To My Home Page On My Site?
This is far and away one of the biggest mistakes we see business owners who run their own campaigns make. The short answer is NO!
Google wants a one-to-one match between your ads and the page you send visitors to. For example, if you’re a plumber, and you created ads for water heater replacement, running the ad to your home page where you have content about water heater replacement, toilet repair, and all the other plumbing services you offer, because you’ve got so much diverse content on the page, it lowers your quality score.
Anything that negatively impacts the quality score of your campaign will put you in a position to pay more for your ads and get lower ad placement in the search results.
The key takeaway here is always run ads back to a page on your site that only deals with the subject matter for the ad. In other words, run a water heater replacement ad back to a page on your site that only has content for water heater replacement with an appropriate call to action for that service.
What Keywords Should I Use for Google AdWords?
Keywords are a big part of your Google AdWords campaign, and you’ll need to do some research to know which are the best options for you. They are critical to any pay-per-click (PPC) campaign. Your digital marketing company will work closely with you to understand your business, customers, and products or services. Then, with some research, we can determine what people are typing into the search engines – based on the amount of competition you have – and which keywords you should be including.
Often, we want to use very highly targeted keywords – those that include local terms as well as incorporate a wide range of strings of words that people commonly type into the search engines. It is also important to consider nouns and verbs as well as singular and plural uses of words and how that can alter your outcome.
Many people who run the campaign without the help of an expert forget to add negative keywords. Negative keywords are terms and phrases that you don’t want your ads displaying for. Going back to the plumber example, some plumbers install gas lines while others don’t, so if you don’t do that work, you wouldn’t want your plumber ads showing up when someone searches for terms like “gas line installation”, etc. That would eat up your ad budget with clicks that won’t matter. This is why negative keywords are an important part of your entire campaign.
What Type of Reports Will I Get from Google Ads to See If It’s Working?
You’ll get a wide range of types of data that can be used to help you determine how well your Google AdWords campaigns are running. Look at both daily and weekly reports provided to help you gauge what’s occurring. Some of the most important include:
- The number of clicks your ads get
- The Average Cost per Click
- Average Ad Position
- Number of Impressions (the number of times the ad is displayed)
- The total Cost per Campaign
- Cost per Conversion
- Number of Conversions
- Click through Rate (CTR)
All of this data can help you to better understand how well any of your Google AdWords campaigns are doing.
How Can I Get More Qualified Leads Through Google Ads?
Google AdWords campaigns should always have a strong focus on research and testing, like A/B testing, to help determine what’s the best format for your needs. That includes learning more about the landing pages, bidding strategies, and keywords that are most likely to bring in your most qualified and desirable leads.
It is also important to consider a balance between highly targeted leads and costs. We want to find the right level based on competition as well as what works for your website, customers, and clients. This takes some testing and trying out to get right, but understanding your audience and creating a strong sales message will also help you.
Don’t Go It Alone – Let Us Help You
Whether you are looking for help with Google Ads, Facebook ads, or just getting started with digital marketing, the expert staff at Make It Loud can help you. Reach out to us today to learn more about Google AdWords campaigns and how they can help you build your brand successfully online.
Cliff Tillery, MBA is the Chief Operating Officer at Make It Loud which is a digital marketing firm located outside of Atlanta Georgia. He is also the Director of SEO. More than 14 years ago, he started search engine optimization at this agency and has taught digital marketing skills to business owners at the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce, the Gwinnett Entrepreneur Center and other groups.