5 Steps to Maximize Your Google Ads Results
Not all businesses have huge budgets to finance their marketing efforts, but you can still get incredible results through Google Ads - if you know what to do.
The primary things to look at are:
- How to get the best ROI out of your dollar
- And how to properly track where leads and sales come from
I’ll show you how to do both - and more - as I walk you through how to maximize your Google Ads results.
What are Google Ads?
Google Ads (formerly called Adwords) are advertisements that appear at the top and bottom of Google search results. Clicking on an ad takes you to a page on that advertiser’s website.
There are also options for searchers to call or text you directly from search results by clicking on the ad.
Google is a very large company with an even larger network, which means your Google Ads can also be shown on other websites, not just in search results. I’ll talk about this more later, but you could have video ads on YouTube videos, or image ads on websites other than your own.
The company who’s advertising is charged a small fee every time their ad is clicked on, which is why it’s referred to as PPC or pay-per-click advertising.
Why use Google Ads?
Google processes almost 70,000 searches per second. Chances are, people are searching for things related to your business, and these search ads are a great way to get in front of those people while you wait for your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy to bring you to the top of organic results.
In fact, for advertisers like yourself, Google Ads is the easiest way to reach your market today. With only a few minutes’ work, your ad can be shown to anyone searching for relevant keywords. And with a little more effort, you can get your ad on almost any other video or website on the web.
Other PPC tools are available, but you’re going to get the best return with Google ads (especially if you’re new to the game). It’s also easy to stick to your budget, because you get full control of everything you spend.
You can see what keywords you’re spending money on, which bring you the best returns, and what people do after clicking on your ad. As you run your campaigns, you can tweak and optimize your ads to get the best results.
How do you use Google ads?
If you follow these steps and continually refer back to them, you’ll be able to maximize your Google Ads results.
1. Define your goal.
If you’re going to have any success with Google ads - or any other initiative - you have to identify first why you want to advertise and what you hope to gain from it.
Of course, the long-term goal is to make your business more successful. But there are a variety of short-term goals you could aim for to maximize your ad results (sales, traffic, etc.).
2. Determine your audience.
It’s easier to make effective marketing if you know who you’re targeting. And don’t be afraid to get specific - specific is good.
Refer to your custom buying personas, or spend the needed time to create them before you start advertising. Your results will more than make up for the extra effort.
Find out the demographics and psychographics of your target audience. Who are they? What do they want?
Perhaps the best way to do this is to talk to your current customers. Get to know them, and then tailor your ads to resonate with others just like them.
3. Bid on your keywords.
Next up is bidding on your keywords. This is how you get your ad to show up in search results. Before you formally bid for any keyword, though, you need to do some research.
Find out which keywords have low competition.
When you target keywords with low competition, you stand a much higher chance of getting the results you want without paying through the nose.
Basically, low competition means there aren’t as many brands bidding on those same keywords, so you can earn ad space for them without spending as much.
Look for commercial intent.
While looking for low competition, try to research which keywords have commercial intent. These are keywords that strongly suggest the searcher is looking to buy, which means they're more likely to convert and give you that ROI you're looking for.
Invest in keywords with high conversion rates.
Your budget should focus on words that are specifically relevant to your ad. This will earn you high click-through rates, which will help you get a high quality score, which will limit the number of clicks you need to get the results you want.
Save a part of your budget for experiments.
It’s good to regularly test new keywords and new ads. One ad might be working OK for you, but another might perform far better.
Try not to allocate your entire budget to just one keyword, so you have a better chance of finding new opportunities and being listed on more searches.
4. Optimize your website.
To maximize your opportunity, your ads have to stand out. That means two things:
- You have to make sure searchers click on your ads
- And that they have a good experience after they click on your ad (i.e. they get what they want from your website)
Your headline should be captivating and attract them to click on your ad instead of the others. One way to do this is to have a call to action that makes them want to know more. Appeal to the users’ emotion. It’s sure to generate more clicks.
Related: 17 Mobile Engagement Tips Essential for Small Business Success
Once they’ve clicked on your ad, you need to keep them on your site with a compelling landing page. This will help your quality score (see point 3), which help you drive traffic through your ads and convert more sales.
Make sure your page is easy to navigate and easy to read. Use simple graphics and direct copy. Don’t forget to provide a mobile-friendly layout of your page too (especially since Google switched to mobile-first indexing).
5. Track your results and adjust.
Among your metrics is click-through rates. As the name suggests, this tracks what percentage of users click on your ads and enter your landing page.
But it shouldn’t stop there. You can track how many of those that click through convert to sales, click a specific button, or even submit a lead capture form.
Go through your data, look where you can improve your Google Ads results, and make adjustments. The beauty of using Google Ads is that nothing is set in stone. If something’s not working, you can remove it or change it to something that might.
Now repeat these five steps regularly to maximize your results.
What are the types of Google ads?
Google Ads gives you a lot of options for how to advertise. Most people choose standard text ads (the ones shown during search), but here are others that can help you broaden your advertising strategy.
Text ads are limited to words only and are the most common. This is the quickest way to reach your audience because text ads are the first thing that pops up when they do a Google search.
Image ads can be either still pictures or interactive graphics, such as gifs or flash files. This is the more visual approach to advertising, where your ads are displayed on websites that have partnerships with Google.
Video ads are more engaging than text and images. They can either be standalone ads, or inserted into streaming videos (typically at the start or in the middle of the video). These are good if you know your audience is watching certain types of videos.
A responsive ad transforms depending on the availability of space. It can be text or image, and can be good if you’re advertising on lots of different websites that have different ad sizes available.
App download ads encourage users to download your app from app stores such as Google or Apple’s App Store. These work on mobile devices only.
Product ads feature your product and show relevant details such as price, name, photo, reviews, and other specifics. Good for retailers.
Similar to a product shopping, showcase shopping ads expand when the user clicks, showing related products and information about a specific store.
Call-only ads list a hotline that users can call your business to inquire directly. Mobile viewers click on these ads to call your business.
Which ad type is right for me?
If you’re offering services, then maybe text or video ads are a better fit for you. If you’re selling products or have a creative graphics team, then maybe image or product shopping is your best bet.
This should be part of your research as mentioned earlier prior to bidding on any keyword (see points 1 and 2).
Be patient with your ads. Even though you can start advertising instantly, they don’t work like magic and instantly puts sales into your books.
There’s still a sales cycle you have to play with. If you’re a new business, then it might take more time since you’re also building the brand.
Give it some time before deciding that a certain keyword is effective or not. Especially if it’s your first time using Google ads.
Once you’ve established your process and a few effective keywords, then it’s time to expand. Add more keywords to your marketing and allot more of your budget. In time, you’ll have a healthy portfolio of keywords and ads driving sales from Google searches.