We live in a fast paced business world where markets are competitive, competitors are smart and advertising is innovative. Digital marketers, today, are challenged to drive instantaneous results while maintaining a stipulated budget. Whether we are advertising your own business, working on a client project or busy making someone else a rich man, our association with this digital framework has led us to invest in Paid Search and PPC advertising. In this article I am going to discuss the use of Google AdWords for paid search advertising, considering the fact that there are various other platforms like Facebook, Yahoo and Bing. Each of these platforms offer distinctive numbers of features, but Google bids an array of ad options in terms of reach which makes this particular platform stand out from the rest.
Some Must-Haves for Google AdWords Campaigns
Before you launch a Google AdWords campaign it is essential that your website must have a relevant landing page. A landing page is simply a webpage where users will land when they click on your ad. In order to make your landing page relevant make sure it has the exact same offer, information, promotion or whatever you’ve stated or promised in your ad. Secondly, a thank you or an acknowledgement page is equally important. Your users will land on a thank you page once they have completed a desired action, which may range from form submission, subscription sign up or a product purchase depending on your set goal for conversions.
The first step to launch a campaign is to sign up for Gmail account if you don’t have it already and then login to Google AdWords. Click on the campaign tab to start your first Google AdWords campaign.
Creating an AdWords Campaign
To launch a campaign you’ll have to give your AdWords campaign a name and select a campaign type. Campaign type will depend on your needs/requirements and you’ll be given a few options to choose from. For instance, if you want your ad to display on Google search results then you’ll have to select the Search Network Only campaign. Alternatively, pick Search Network with Display Select is you want to reach your customers through search as well as display.
Tip: If you are launching your very first campaign I’d recommend opting for Search Network Only because it’s less complicated and fairly effective.
Also select the geographical location where you wish to target your campaign, you may also select a different language if you are targeting a country where English is not the primary communicating language.
When creating your campaign you’ll be asked to set a maximum bid you are willing to pay for your ad in the ad group as well as the daily budget, which is the average amount of money you are comfortable spending for the campaign every day. Selecting CPC or CPM will again depend on your needs and requirements.
For instance, if you are new to the industry niche then establishing your brand image digitally is crucial rather than having people clicking on your ads, in this scenario CPM (cost-per-1000-impressions) is a viable option because you are paying per 1000 impressions of your ad. Alternatively, if you want to shoot a Black Friday campaign, for instance, then CPC (cost-per-click) would be a viable option, because in this particular case user hits is all that matters. You can manually manage your daily bids or allow AdWords to automatically set bids get maximum clicks with the stipulated budget.
You can add sitelink extensions like call or location based on your ad objective. This will help you add a few other landing pages with the current destination URL. You can add location of your store with the contact address or add phone number with your ad. If you’ve selected all features for your ad campaign you are provided with few advanced features like ad delivery, scheduling, campaign URL options and dynamic search ads and campaigns in order to provide flexibility while running a campaign. Hit save and continue button to proceed to creating your ad group.
Creating an Ad Group
Once you have created your campaign you will be asked to create an Ad Group. In this section you will have to add your ad heading (the ad heading has a character limit so make sure you express your message impressively and effectively within the given limit), add two limes of ad description, plus the URL displayed on your ad and the final URL which lead your users to a landing page. In the second step you will be asked to add keywords against which you want your ad to be displayed to the users. Once completed Google will review and approve your ad if it meets all their rules and policies. You may add numerous ads in a particular ad group and Google with display the best performing ad accordingly.
Selecting Keywords & Understanding Quality Score
Always select keywords that are relevant to your business, products, offer and most importantly your ad and landing page. This will indirectly improve your quality score and increase your chances that Google with display your ad higher in search results. While selecting keywords you’ll have the option to select keywords as phrase match, exact match and broad match that make you ad appear on all possible variations and synonyms of the keyword. You can also set negative keywords for your ad which will restrict search results on certain keywords you don’t want your ad to appear. For instance, if you are selling menswear you can add negative keywords like women fashion, women shoes etc. so your keywords does not trigger irrelevant results.
Quality score will largely depend on your ad relevancy, user experience of your landing page and expected click-through rate every time your keyword matches a search query. In addition to this there are some other factors like campaign historical performance, ad group performance and similar other relevant factors will decide your final quality score.
Conversion Tracking & Analysis
The final and perhaps the most important step in your Google AdWords campaign is tracking your conversions by means of a Thank You page that I have discussed in the beginning. This data is important to measure the performance of your ad campaign and determine clicks or landing page visitors to number of conversions ratio. This is set by placing Google conversion tracking code and adding adwords conversion tracking code in the Thank You page.
You can also check whether the adwords conversion data matches with your analytics data by setting Thank You page goal in Google Analytics. Analytics data can also be used for future adwords campaign.