Google launched Adwords in 2000 and had just 350 advertisers using the platform. Today, nearly two decades later, it’s rare for a company not to use Adwords as part of its marketing plan.
With so many businesses using the tool, the competition for ad space is intense. Creating a successful Google Adwords campaign can mean the difference between pulling ahead and falling behind. But it can be a challenge to make sure your Adwords campaigns are built to perform optimally.
Do you want to improve your campaign strategy? Not sure where to start? We can help.
We’ve put together a list of 10 tips for making the most of your Google Adwords campaign. Read on to learn how you can enhance your Adwords performance and beat your competitors.
1. Define Success Before You Start
Google Adwords offers endless metrics for measuring campaign performance. Which are most important to you?
If you’re looking to drive awareness of your brand, you may care more about impressions. Paying attention to click-through-rate may be better if you’re trying to drive to people to your website.
It can also be helpful to set benchmarks for your performance. As your campaigns grow, you can compare their performance to your initial benchmarks to help define successes.
2. Set Your Google Adwords Campaign to Target by Location
Whether your business serves five neighboring cities or the entire East Coast, your campaign settings should include location targeting. Google allows you to target by zip code, city, state, or country. You can even choose to target customers within a set radius.
If you serve different areas, you may want to create different campaigns for each. This works well for international companies that may be faced with cultural differences among its audiences, or even smaller business that offer products unique to each area they serve.
3. Use Ad Scheduling
Is your store only open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday? You can set your ads to only show during these times, so you don’t have a potential customer calling to ask about your products or services on a Sunday morning.
Even if you don’t mind your ads showing up outside of regular business hours, you can still use ad scheduling to your advantage. Adwords can provide insight into when your ads are getting the most impressions and clicks. If you see that there isn’t much activity between midnight and 5 a.m. each day, you can choose not to show your ads during this time.
Ad scheduling can help your budget go further and help you better target customers at the exact moment they’re searching for you.
4. Enhance Performance with Relevant Text in Ads and on Landing Pages
Google wants to please its advertising customers and its search audience, so the platform pays close attention to relevancy. You know that your ads will be triggered based on search queries. But Google also monitors how relevant your landing page content is to your ad text and keywords.
Be sure to send users to a landing page relevant to the keywords you’re targeting and the ad text you’re serving. You should never mislead your audience by leading them to content that they won’t find valuable.
5. Build a Negative Keyword List
Negative keywords are search terms for which you do not want your ads to show. By building a list of negative keywords, you can avoid paying for clicks that aren’t likely to convert or produce sales for you. If your lawn care company doesn’t offer landscape design service, for example, it may be helpful to add “landscape” to your negative keyword list.
You can use your search terms list to see if there are negative keywords you want to add to your list. Routinely skim through the search queries that have triggered your ads to spot keywords that should be added to your negative keyword list.
6. Look at Your Competitors
You may think you know exactly who your competitors are, but are you sure these are your top competitors online? Use the Auction Insights tool to see the businesses you’re competing against for specific keyword queries. This tool will show you how your website compares to others in terms of impression share, average ad position, and more.
Keep your eye out for competitors’ ads as you browse the internet or use the Ad Preview and Diagnosis tool to run experimental searches and see the ads that come up. Are your competitors beating you with better promotions or more creative ad text? Don’t be afraid to make changes to your own strategy if you see your competitors are doing something that seems to be working better.
7. Use Conversion Tracking
Are you driving users to a page with a form or a specific call-to-action that leads them to another page? Use conversion tracking to see how well your ads are performing in terms of encouraging users to follow through on a set goal.
Adwords will provide you with a special tracking code that you can place on a thank you page or confirmation page. The code will send data back to your Adwords account, so you can track conversions along with your other performance metrics.
8. Experiment with Remarketing
If you have Google analytics set up properly on your website, you can take advantage of remarketing campaigns in Adwords. Remarketing works by displaying ads to people who have already visited one of your web pages. These ads will show up as users browse the internet, whether they’re reading a blog, shopping online, or skimming their local news website.
Remarketing is ideal for reminding customers of who you are and what you offer, and the clicks on these types of ads are typically lower in cost than traditional pay-per-click search ads.
9. Don’t Forget About Mobile Users
As more people are using their mobile devices for all their online activity, mobile optimization is becoming a must-have for all internet advertising.
To keep up with mobile demand, Adwords offers mobile-enhanced ad options to provide the ideal mobile experience. Take advantage of this feature by creating unique messaging and calls to action for your mobile audience. To experience the full benefits of mobile-enhanced ads, send your users to a landing page designed and optimized for mobile use.
10. Know When to Turn to Professionals
Though Google first launched Adwords as a “Self-Service Advertising Platform,” the platform itself has become so complex that many business owners have turned to professionals to handle their Google Adwords management.
A digital advertising agency can manage your Adwords campaigns, track performance, and make the right changes for optimal performance. If you go this route, be sure to hire a company with the right experience and certifications for managing Adwords campaigns.
The Ideal Adwords Campaign Works Best with a Reliable Website – Make Sure Yours is Always Online
Can you imagine spending thousands of dollars on ad clicks, only to send your audience to an inactive website? Take advantage of a website monitoring service to make sure this never happens to you.