When it comes to advertising on Google, things can get out of hand quickly if not managed properly.
You may have opened an account and blown through the gratuitous credit voucher Google gave you and thought that it just wasn’t for you.
It can be slightly overwhelming and intimidating, but if you’re looking to figure out how you can optimise your PPC campaign, read on.
How to Maximise Advertising on Google
Below we’ll go over how you can maximise your advertising spend on Google Ads (formerly known as Google Adwords).
1. What Is Your Offer?
Your offer can make or break your campaign. An irresistible offer can convert potential customers even if everything else isn’t optimised.
So what can you offer to potential customers who are looking for your services? Free setup or installation? Free shipping? First month free? Discounted rates with a coupon code? Heavily discounted first purchase? The list goes on.
2. Keyword Research
If you haven’t already, our basic recommendation is targeting your local area.
You want to try and rank for the same keywords as you would for your SEO strategy. In fact, it’s advised to start with PPC first to test out if the keywords are worth ranking for (i.e. Do they convert to your business goals?).
Only Target Exact Match (At first)
Make sure that you choose “Exact Match” keywords, symbolised by brackets. For example: [Dentist near me].
This only allows your ads to show up when someone enters that search term in that exact order.
3. Writing Your Ad Copy
Here’s how that should look:
Headline – Should include your Keyword
1st Line – Feature of product/service
2nd Line – Benefit and Offer
Display URL – (ideally should be yoururl.com/keyword, for example)
Destination URL – Double check that this is the correct URL that points to your landing page.
It’s essential for your copy to not only include the keywords but also to entice the reader into clicking.
Google doesn’t allow for text such as “Click here!” or anything that blatantly tells someone to click, so be aware of that.
Split Testing Ads
Once you finish writing your first ad, you’ll want to go ahead and write a second version of your ad. It can be as simple as switching the 1st and 2nd lines, but always have at least 2 ads competing against each other.
To best compare ads, make only one modification between them. Maybe one ad performs better during Monday-Friday and another performs better on the weekend.
You can take those insights and further test modifications at different times of the day.
4. Your Landing Page
A landing page is where your audience ends up after clicking on your ad. It’s a mistake to make your landing page your homepage.
Why? A landing page should be tailored to your campaign. If your keywords are based on driving residential customers, the page shouldn’t have business info, and vice versa.
It requires your potential prospect to search for their solution, which is more work for them.
Get them straight to the information that they’re explicitly searching for. Make a page specifically for the keywords you’re targeting.
For example, if they’re looking for a dentist in Macclesfield, have a specific page that talks about your service specifically for Macclesfield. Not only is this good for your users, but Google also rates your ads by relevance.
Google is more likely to show your ads in higher positions (and for less cost) if both your ad and your landing page are relevant to the targeted keyword.
Test Every Single Part of Your Campaign
This guide is merely to help you get started. While there are best practices, it’s important that you go out to your customers and test all of these yourself. You won’t thrive with Google Ads using just your gut feeling.
If you have an idea for a campaign, go out there and test it. To accurately compare, you must only switch one variable at a time. That way you’ll know which variables have an impact and which don’t.
So you’ll want your 4 pieces put in place (Offer, Keywords, Ads, Landing Pages) and you’ll test each section one at a time while keeping the other 3 unchanged.
But what to test first? Here’s a list in order of what you should check first:
- Your Offer
- Line 1
- Line 2
- Display URL
- Landing Page
Another aspect you’ll need to understand is that you want to give an ad enough time and enough budget to ensure that your tests hold weight.
Tracking Your Results
This is the most crucial aspect of your campaign because this directly measures your ROI. Google Ads allows you to track which of your visitors sign up for your service, or buy your products.
You install the provided code on your thank you/confirmation page. Check the Resources section in your account for an excellent tutorial on how to set up conversion tracking.
There are many other actions that you can track on your website, but this is beyond the scope of this beginners guide.
Don’t Reinvent the Wheel
You’ll want to do some competitive research and see who your top competitors are. Google a keyword you’re looking to target and look at some of the offers from your competitors. Can you do better than those offers/ads/landing pages?
Look at common Reddit or Quora threads, find frequently asked questions to find better angles for your ad copy by addressing potential customer problems directly.
Demystifying Google Advertising
Advertising on Google can seem overwhelming at first, but just like any marketing channel, there are foundational principles that you can use to succeed.
With the above steps, you’ll be able to maximise your Google Ads, regardless of your budget. And once you’ve cracked these steps why not up your game and try more advanced tactics as we wrote about here.
If you’re looking for any marketing help, including Google Ads, don’t hesitate to reach out to us or read more from our blog.
Working as a Digital Marketing Consultant since 2004, Lee helps SMEs win more business through developing effective digital marketing strategies. He is a dedicated Liverpool FC fan, dog lover and loves long country walks (and a cheeky pint) with his dog, Banjo.