Search Engine Ads are better targeted because users are in the purchasing stage & not in the awareness & consideration stage.
Content is the central thing. Marketing revolves around content. Users search content in search engines which can help them, so you have to attract users through content, & then show ads or capture them in sales funnel or take leads or approach for sales or whatever. But the foundation of anything is content.
What keywords we provide for our ads to trigger & what people will be searching may be different, so the user searches for which our ads were shown can be seen in the Search Term Report. Likewise you can optimize the running ads according to the report by including keywords people are searching for & excluding the irrelevant keywords on which your ads are shown by putting them on negative keyword list. How to go –> Google Adwords Account -> Campaigns > Keywords > Search Terms.
These are the keywords users are actually searching for & a source of new keyword ideas.
Google Adwords Structure –> Google Adwords Account -> Campaigns > Ad groups > Ads.
3 Types of Search Queries
- Browser – Here the user is just casually searching & is likely in the awareness stage.
- Research – Here the user is looking for more information & is likely in the consideration stage.
- Transactional – Here the user is ready to purchase & is likely in the buying stage.
Usually advertisers compete for keywords with buying intent as the users had already done their research about that topic & is ready to transact.
However, if you have a small business & don’t have the initial traction, its recommend to optimize for browser & research keywords as well by writing informative & educative blogs that will help the visitors & is relevant to what they is searching for, take their leads & put them into funnel. As you further nurture them & provide value, they may transact with you when it comes to the transactional stage instead of the big players who are mostly competiting for the transactional keywords & trying to capture their potential buyers right in the transaction stage.
Keyword Research in Google Ads
Based on search intent, there are 3 types of keywords
- Short Tail – High competition, high cost, low conversion, customer not specific & intention not clear
- Long Tail – Low competition, low cost, high conversion, customer specific & intention is clear
- Keyword Research Tools – Adwords Keyword Planner, Adwords Search Terms, keywordtool.io, ubersuggest, answerthepublic.com, Moz keyword Explorer, hittail.com,
- Benefits – know what people are looking for, create content using those keywords to attract more organic traffic, etc.
Make a spreadsheet of all keywords nicely segmented in categories with details next to it like CPC, competition, etc.
5 Types of Ad Keywords
- Broad Match keywords – Normal keywords that we give for our campaigns; also shows ads to similar(close variants & synonyms) keywords which Google thinks is relevant; Close variants means – misspellings, singular, plural, accronyms, stemmings(ings), abbreviations, accents.; broad target, more traffic, less targeted.
- Phrase Match Keywords – Ad will not show until the exact phrase in “quotes” is not present in the user’s search keywords. ; narrow target, less traffic, more targeted.
- Exact Match keyword – Ad will not show until the exact keyword in [bracket] doesn’t match exactly with the user’s keywords. ; very narrow target, very less traffic, laser targeted.
- Broad Match Modifiers – Ad will not show until the keyword with the “+” sign is present in the user’s search keywords. between broad match & phrase match.
- Negative Keywords – Ad will not show if the negative keyword is present in the user’s search keywords. Negative keywords can be listed on campaign level & ad group level. ; How to go > Google Adwords > Campaigns > Keywords > Negative keyword.
Its advisable to put keywords that have high CTR but low conversion rates in negative keywords list. Also see the search term report where the list of keywords appears that people are searching, to which your ads are shown upon. If you find there any keyword irrelevant, then put it in the negative keyword list. Overtime, this list keeps on increasing as you go through the search term report & ad performance gets better.
Brand Search Ad – These are normal campaigns just with the brand related keywords added so that whenever anyone searches something related to the brand, the ad shows up. For brand keywords CPC is going to be very less.
Audience Targeting is mainly used in Display & Video Campaigns. Main types of audiences are –
- Detailed Demographics – Based on parental status, parenting stage, homeownership status, marital status, and education status.
- In-Market Audience – Based on recent searches or purchase intent shown. For example, if you sell shoes & want to attract users who are searching with the intent to buy shoes, run a display campaign with in-market audiences & objective as influence consideration, so that whenever any users search with the intent to buy shoes, your ad will start showing in the browser.
- Custom Intent Audience – Create your own audience based on user’s intent to purchase.
- Affinity Audience – Based on habits & interests.
- Custom Affinity Audience – Create your own audience based on certain habits & interests.
- Remarketing Audience – Audiences who have previously engaged with your business in past. For example, you can create an audience of users who visited your site & not purchased or have abandoned cart.
- Similar Audience – Audience similar to your chosen audience. For example, you create an audience of “Similar to Cart Abandoners” remarketing list that will fetch data from the cart abandoners remarketing list & show it to users who are similar to users that have abandoned the cart.
- Customer Match – Upload your own customer data & let Google recognize them in their platform & build a list.
How to create: Tools & Settings > Audience Manager
6 Types of Ad Goals
- Website Traffic
- Product & Brand Consideration
- Brand Awareness & Reach
- App Promotion
- Custom Campaigns
Under these goals, comes 6 types of Ad Campaigns
- Search Ads
- Display Ads
- Shopping Ads
- Video Ads – Skipsble Instream video Ad, Non-skipable Instream Ad, Video Discovery Ad, Bumper Ad, Outstream Ad, Ad sequence.
- Smart Ads
- App Promotion Ads
Google’s job is to bring its users to your landing page while your landing page’s job is to convert those users. So, if you don’t have a great landing page i.e. users leave your landing page without converting, Google will deduct its share of money when users click on the ad but you won’t be getting sales out of them. So, having a great landing page is important than start running ads.
If possible, if you’re having different set of target customers, run separate ad for each set of customers & design separate landing pages for targeting that specific set of customers so that they find it relevant & authentic.
For long term business goals, concentrate on cost per aquisition(CPA) than cost per click. To put conversion tracking codes into your landing page, follow the below structure –
Google Adwords Account > Tools > Measurement > Conversions > + Conversions > Fill up the details > Save & Continue > Install the tag yourself.
You’ll get 2 conversion codes. The first one is Global Site Tag & this code has to be put in every page of the website.
The second one is the Event Snippets & has to be put in the page on whose loading or clicking you want to count as conversion.
Optimize Ads for conversion – Particular Campaign > Settings > Bidding > Change Bid strategy to Conversions.
Other Important Features
To use these features, firstly ‘All features” should be enabled. For enable this, go to the particular campaigns dashboard > Settings > All Settings > Choose All Features.
- Location Targeting – For adding or excluding locations, go to particular campaign dashboard > Locations > + Locations
- Ad scheduling – For schedulind ads, go to particular campaign dashboard > Ad Schedule > + Ad Schedule > Create Custom Schedule.
- Device Targeting – For excluding ads by device, go to particular campaign dashboard > Devices > Click on Bid Adjustment(Numbers) for that device > Decrease the bid by 100 %.
Ad Extensions appears below ads as an extended version of your ad with more details. Ad Extension is optional.
How to set Ad Extensions – Google Adwords Account -> Campaigns > Ad Extensions -> View > Particular Extension you want -> + Extensions.
11 types of Ad Extensions are as follows –
- Sitelink Extension – For paid ads, you can add them manually unlike in organic searches where Google fetches them on its own & you don’t have any control over those extensions.
- Location Extension – Useful for offline stores where the location of the nearest establishment of the business will be shown. Have to link to Google My Business & Google Maps to show location.
- Call Extension – Displays a number with your ad in desktop ; in case of mobiles, displays a call button that directly dials the number when anyone clicks on it.
- App Extention – Automatically shows Play Store link to Android users & ios link to Iphone users.
- Callout Extension – Extra line to the ad to mention any offer, USP, exclusive feature, etc. to make the ad more attractive & lucrative.
- Structured Snippets Extention – If you have multiple product category, mention them here.
- Price Extension – Shows the products with its prices next to it below the ad.
- Lead Form Extension – Shows up a prefilled lead form to submit.
- Message Extension – Sends a message to the advertiser.
- Affiliate Location Extension –
- Promotion Extention – If you are running any promotions, discounts, offers, cashbacks on any occasion.
How PPC Biding works ? The highest bidder for a particular keyword has more probability of showing his ad on top for that keyword.
The more you bid for a keyword, the more the cost per click. So, it recommended not to run one campaign at a high daily budget, run several campaigns at a low daily budget.
Not that who bids higher for a keyword, their ad is shown on top. Google wants to give its users good user experience, so it gives quality score to each advertiser ; Lower the quality score, higher the bid, higher the quality score, lower the bid.
For low CPC > high quality score > content rich relevant landing page
If you bid higher doesn’t mean your ad will show on top, it depends on Quality Score, factors influencing Quality Score are –
- Ad Relevancy – If your landing page is poor, difficult to navigate, misleading & contains no original & irrelevant content, no transparency in business, Google penalises you by de-ranking your ad & showing your ad to less users & instead rank your competitor’s ads higher whose bid is maybe lower than yours.
- CTR of your ads, i.e. clicks/impression
- Landing Page Relevancy
- Account History
Based on Quality Score & bid, Google ranks your Ads.
Auction Insights – This section shows insights on how you & your competitors are performing in the auctions for a particular set of keywords.
How Google Ad Auction Works
This table clearly shows an example of how the ad auctions are performed after an user searches for a term & how the ads competing for that keywords are positioned & charged by Google in its first page.
|Advertiser||Max. Bid||Quality Score||Ad Rank (Bid*QS)||Position||Cost (Ad rank of nearest competitors/Your QS)|
However, advertiser A & L’s ad rank is same, so how does Google decide whom to give first position? Account History. Here L’s account history is better than A’s, so Google offered L the first position.
How to get more conversions
- Maintain consistency between your keywords, ad copy & landing page copy.
- Repeat the same exact keywords in all 3 places, this will increase CTR, & increase chances of conversion.
- Put similar keywords in an ad group & run ads which contain the exact keywords in the ad copy & landing page.
Data Driven Marketing
When you’re advertising for the first time & you don’t have much data, its ok to go with default settings like automated bids & not setting a maximum CPC, etc. But as you run your ads & collect enough data, observe what’s working for you & optimize the ads & budgets to get better results.
How CPC is decided?
The ad which shows up in the search page is charged just $0.01 more than the next highest bid.
Suppose, A, B, C, D are 4 advertisers bidding for a keyword & their bids are as follows-
- A – $4
- B – $3
- C – $2
- D – $1
So, A will show on top of the page & will be charged $3.01, which is just $0.01 more than the next highest bidder B. Likewise B, C & D will be charged $2.01, $1.01, $0.01 respectively.
The more your bid & quality score, the more Google shows your ads to your target customers, & the lesser they charge for the ads. Because if its users are finding it relevant & you’re getting good business from Google Ads, Google charges less from you because they want your business to grow. As you grow your business & earn more profit, you’ll actually spend more on Google Ads & Google would earn more, than if it had initially charged you more for your ads.
Blogs to follow to stay updated
Online Free Resources
My Client Centre(MCC) Account
This is required if you want to access multiple Adwords account using a single log in. Usually used by digital marketing agencies or consultants that access accounts of multiple clients.