When you think about PPC, you probably instantly think of Google. That makes sense, because the tech giant dominates global search with over 90% of the market share. ? It’s important not to forget competitors like Yahoo and Bing, but the reality is that most users, and thus most potential customers, are on Google. That’s why I am sharing the Google Adwords fundamentals you need to know, whether you’ve had paid search ads a long time or you’re just getting started.
If you are engaging in any type of PPC, you will probably need Google Ads. Google’s ad platform (formerly known as AdWords) will be your conduit to reaching an audience of users searching for keywords related to your business’s goods or services. Here are the Google Ads fundamentals you need to know to be successful with your PPC marketing!
1. Think Big Picture
It’s easy when setting up an ad to get caught up in one ad or even a particular feature. But while you’re debating that headline, think about how it fits in with the overall campaign and your brand. Looking at the entire picture holistically, meaning your ad and all its components in the context of your larger campaign and brand, is one of the best Google Adwords fundamentals I can share.
Every part of your ad should fit into the overall campaign and with your brand. I know it’s tempting to subversive copy, but does that fit with your overall messaging? It’s common to use a more casual tone on social media and online for your business than in print and person, but it’s jarring to customers if you have a completely different voice on your paid search ads. Remember, the goal isn’t just to catch people’s eyes, but get them to click through and ultimately convert as well. ?
Take a look at each piece of your ad — the landing pages, any ad extensions, website links, copy, headline, etc — and ensure they fit together as a whole. You want to have a strong and consistent brand message across Google Ads, so your search and display ads should be part of a cohesive campaign. This doesn’t mean they have to be exactly the same, but they should work together.
It helps to look at your ads individually and examine small details, and also look at ad sets as a whole. This gives you a variety of perspectives and an in-depth understanding of your ads.
2. Establish Goals
In general, setting goals is an important business practice! Without setting goals, you don’t know where you are headed, so it’s easier to remain directionless or unsure how to track your progress. If your goal is to increase clicks by a certain percentage point, then you can clearly use your data from Google to track that goal.
Don’t limit yourself to one goal and one data point. On the internet there are so many different options for performance indicators! You can track how many calls your landing pages generate, how many click throughs to your main website you receive, how many purchases online come from paid search, and the list goes on. ?
So I guess this is two Google Ads fundamentals in one! Set goals and track your KPIs. The difference will be evident in your small and big goals.
3. Consider Brand Awareness
PPC isn’t just about sales. The first step is introducing people to your brand. I recommend to my clients that they consider a brand awareness campaign before moving onto other types of campaigns. You cannot sell to people who don’t know you. ?
As time goes on, many companies invest less in brand awareness. While the tendency for some is to decrease the budget for brand awareness to focus on branded terms or performance-based activities, unfortunately that can have a negative effect on your KPIs and overall businesses.
I encourage you to dedicate a specific portion of your PPC budget to brand awareness, and to keep that portion steady. Brand awareness isn’t just for new businesses or businesses who are new to the online market. It’s for every business.
As with all marketing strategies, it’s important to check in with what’s happening with your campaign. Schedule a monthly check-in with your campaign. Are you holding your brand awareness budget steady? Do you need to reassign marketing dollars? Remember that this is the foundation to your future sales.
4. Optimization is One Of The Most Important Google Adwords Fundamentals!
As I’ve said before, if monitoring your campaigns is an important piece of Google Ads fundamentals. If you don’t track your successes and missteps, how can you maximize positive factors and fix negative ones? ??♀️
Personally, I prefer to launch Google Ads with all relevant audiences in “Observation” mode. Watching your audiences and tracking performance from the very beginning allows you to adjust campaigns as needed and find ways to improve.
Setting audiences in “Observation” mode is easy in Google Ads. For example, let’s say you are an online vintage clothes retailer. You can select the in-market audience “Vintage Clothing” along with remarketing and other lists you find relevant. You’ll collect data, which you can then use to optimize campaigns.
The only hang-up is actually analyzing the data and implementing adjustments. It’s easy to set up the audiences in “Observation” mode, but following through with changes is another story.
For this reason, I again recommend a monthly review of your campaigns to determine if anything needs tweaking. This helps keep your campaigns efficient and successful by not letting a lemon of an ad keep running, and by picking out what is doing well in ads and using it to adjust current ad sets or make note for future ads.
The more data you have, the better your business decisions will be. Instead of making decisions based on your beliefs that certain messages resonate with customers, you will be able to look at hard facts that detail what users do and do not resonate with.
Related: How to Analyze Your Google Adwords Performance
After reading about Google Ads fundamentals, you can see how the tips I have to share are, well, fundamental. Thinking holistically, setting goals, focusing on brand awareness, and optimizing ads are all basics in marketing, which is why I brought them up here.
Google Ads have a number of things that are specialized, such as the ability to observe set audiences, but it also has a lot of things that are similar to other types of advertising. With all types of advertising, you should be looking to include your ads within the overall campaign and framework of your brand, establish milestones and track progress, dedicate resources towards brand awareness, and adjust advertising as needed. All of these steps can help you spend less and earn more. ?
These tips will form the basis of a solid Google Ads campaign that can minimize cost while leading to success. If you have questions about anything I mentioned in this article, let me know! I am the Google Ads expert and I’m happy to answer any questions about Google, paid search, other online advertising, and the meaning of the universe. The last one’s easy. 42.