Google AdWords

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Google Adwords Strategy

As part of our free website promotion guide, we continue with Google AdWords. This section is for beginners, and includes how AdWords works, how to develop a useful strategy, and how to best utilize the many options that Google AdWords offers.


The key to an effective campaign is to use your best keywords in the most effective way. You will pay less, and receive quality hits. Google will actually reward you for running a valid and compelling ad. The reason is simple....not only will a good ad bring relevant visitors to your site, but it will also bring relevant ads to Google users.

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Help with understanding Google AdWords. How to begin your first campaign with Google AdWords. Website Promotion Logo

What is Google AdWords?

These are the ads that appear at the very top, and to the side of the search results in Google under 'Sponsored Links'. Click on an ad, and it takes you to a website. The placement of an ad is derived through a variety of measures (as you will see), and their cost is based on CPC (cost per click).
Your ad will only show up when people are searching for your related keywords, so your audience is already built in for you.
Your ad can be text, image, video, or rich media.


These very same ads can also be shown on other websites, as part of the Google Network. You may have noticed these ads while surfing the web.
So, you will find Google AdWords not just on Google, but on websites, blogs, emails, and mobile phones and devices.
You will only pay when your ad is clicked on. Google will never let you go over your own budget, so you don't need to worry about exceeding your budget because of excess clicks.


Since you are paying for each click, it is wise to make sure you are using your ad verbage and keywords effectively and efficiently.


So lets begin at the beginning.
Go to Google AdWords » and begin the signup process.
If you don't have a Google account, you will need to create one (click on 'sign up now').
Then, set your time zone and currency preferences.


Creating Your First AdWords Campaign


Campaign Type:
Select where your ad(s) will appear.


Default
With this setting, your ad will appear on both the Search Network and the Display Network.


Search Network only
Only on Google search results and other search engines partnered with Google, such as AOL Search.


Display Network only
The display network includes other websites that show Google ads.
(text ads)
You create your own text ad.
(display ad builder)
This helps you build a rich media ad, using templates.
These ads can include text, logos, images, flash, or your own video (including a click-to-play video).


Mobile Devices
These are mobile text ads, image ads or click-to-call ads for mobile devices which include iPhones, android, or cell phones that have full internet browsers.
These ads can be targeted to specific carriers as well.


Online Video (in-stream)
Video ads that run on YouTube (such as in TV shows, movies, or various video clips), or on other video sites on the Google Display Network including TMZ, About.com etc.


TV Campaign
Run your video ad on TV networks and channels.
You can choose your own times and locales for the ad to run.


Locations and Languages:
Select the geographical location(s) your ad will appear, as well as the language(s).


Locations
Choose the location you want your ad to appear in.
You can target your ad to a specific audience using your keywords (more on that later), as well as a targeted location.
You can go global, national, state-wide, a certain area, or a certain city.


Advanced Location Options
If you have chosen 'Search Network only' (your ad will appear only on the Google search engine and other search engines, but not the 'Display Network'), you can use these advanced options to target even further.
Google has a help section on this subject Google Advanced Location Targeting Help »


Languages
Target the language of your audience.


Networks and Devices:


Networks
Choose what network(s) you want your ad to appear on:
All available sites (Recommended for new advertisers)
This includes both the Search Network and Display Network
Let me choose...
Under 'Search' you can choose Google Search or Google Search Partners (such as AOL), or both.
Under 'Display Network' you can choose relevant pages across the entire network (shown throughout the entire network for your target audience) or relevant pages only on the placements, audiences, and topics you manage (you pick specific websites to show your ad, based on your target audience).
Devices
Choose what devices you want your ad to appear on:
All available devices (Recommended for new advertisers)
This includes desktop computers, laptop computers, iPhones and mobile devices with internet browsers.
Let me choose...
You can choose between either desktop and laptop computers, or mobile devices such as iPhones etc.


Bidding and Budget:
Bidding Option
Basic Option
Choose what bidding method you want to use:
Manual Bidding
Set your own maximum CPC bid.
Automatic Bidding
Your bid is automatically managed, but you can also set a maximum bid limit.
Advanced Option
Focus on impressions - CPM
Instead of paying for clicks, you can choose to pay for impressions, so you pay for every thousand times your ad appears, but not necessarily when clicked.
Focus on conversions - CPA
You choose a maximum cost-per-acquisition bid. An acquisition is a conversion to your services (such as a purchase or a signup).


Budget
Set the daily amount you want to spend (the maximum you are willing to pay for each day).


Position Preference
For the Search network only, if you want your ad only to appear in a certain position, such as slot 5 or whatever.


Delivery Method
If you have a low budget, choose Standard, so your ad will show throughout the day, evenly spaced.
Standard Delivery - your ad will show evenly over time
Accelerated Delivery - your ad will show as quickly as possible


Ad Extensions:
This is optional, but good to have if Google deems your ad as high quality. These will then show up in your ad.
You can choose:
Location - Shows your address to Google Maps and mobile device users.
Sitelinks - Lets you include up to 4 links to other pages on your site.
Phone - Your phone number will appear in your ad with people using a mobile device.


Advanced Settings:
Schedule: Here you can specify your ad start date and end date. With the 'ad scheduling option' you can specify the hours or days your ad will run.


Ad Delivery: If you have multiple ads within a group, the Ad Rotation feature allows the best ad to show via an optimization method. This feature will pick the best ad out of your group of ads, that will be most efficient for either conversion or clicks.
In other words, Google will filter the best ads to use for a given situation.
You can also choose to rotate all your ads, which will include all ads evenly, even the underperforming ones.


Frequency Capping: For the Display Network only, this will limit the number of times a unique user will see your ad. You can even specify the number of times (impressions).


Demographic Bidding: For the Display Network only, specify age and gender to reach a specific audience.


Remember, you can always change your settings at anytime.


Create Your Ad

Now the fun part, creating your ad!


These are the main components of your ad:
Headline - the title of your ad
Description line 1 - describe your services/products
Description line 2 - describe your services/products
Display URL - the web address that will be displayed in your ad
Destination URL - the actual web address users will land on when they click on your ad


Creating an AdWords Headline:
The headline can contain a maximum of 25 characters.
The headline (the title of your ad) is used to grab the users attention. It is a good idea to use a keyword here. The keywords in your ad will show up in bold when searched for in Google.
Engage your audience - you want your headline to appeal to your target audience, not just anyone.
This allows you to pull in quality hits, and you won't pay for any unnecessary clicks.
Dynamic Headline - you can use the {keyword:alternative term} function for your headline, so your headline will change in accordance to the keyword being searched for. This allows your Google ad to display a different headline more in tune with the users query.


Creating an AdWords Description:
The description lines can contain a maximum of 35 characters each.
You don't have enough room for a full sentence, so the idea is to have a phrase that captures attention or has a call to action. Write a description that compels people to click on your ad.
Use buzz words like discover, ensure, improve, effective, join, learn more, view demo, buy, etc.
You can always get ideas for a description from your competitors ads too.


The headline and description for your ad can have anything you want to say - its not necessary to have your keywords here.
However, it is a good idea to include at least your best performing keyword.


AdWords Display URL:
The display url can contain a maximum of 35 characters.
When a user clicks on the display url, it will take them to the page that is specified in the destination url.


AdWords Destination URL:
The destination url can contain a maximum of 1024 characters.
Make sure your destination url matches your audience expectations when they come to your site - otherwise, you have wasted your ad.


You can write multiple ads for the same cost. Google doesn't require a separate payment for each ad in an ad group.
This allows you to have multiple ads, which allows you to test different ads, and see which ads perform the best.


Google has a help file to assist in creating your ad Help me write a great ad »


Choosing AdWords Keywords


Your ad will show when users search Google for the keywords you choose.
Your ad also will show in the Display Network on websites related to your keywords.
There is really no set limit for the number of keywords you can choose (Google max. is 50,000!).
These are the limits for a Google AdWords account:
100 campaigns
2000 ad groups per campaign
2000 keywords per ad group
300 display ads per ad group (including image ads)
50 text ads per ad group
About 50,000 keywords per account


In our experience, its best to try around 100-200 keywords at the most, and whittle down the under-performing ones.
If you are a beginner, start with around 10-30 keywords....this keeps things less complicated until you learn the ropes.


The key is to use your most relevant keywords for what you are trying to achieve with your ad.


Selecting Keywords
Keyword Tools:
Google Keyword Tool »
Trellian Keyword Tool »


Use the above tools to choose your keywords.
The Google Keyword Tool is effective in helping to decide your best keywords, and giving you suggestions on other keywords to use.


Learn more on choosing the Best Google Keywords »


You can use the following keyword match types option to better target your audience:
keyword = broad match (default)
"keyword" = match exact phrase (your ad will show for queries with this exact phrase included with other words)
[keyword] = match exact term only (query matches your keywords exclusively)
-keyword = don't match this term (use negative keywords to exclude certain keywords from triggering your ad)


Managed Placements:
This option allows you to run your ad on specific sites in the Display Network. You can basically pick and choose what sites you want (and don't want) your ad to appear on.


Google Adwords Help:
Google AdWords Services »


Google has a help section for Adwords:
How Much Does Adwords Cost? »
Google Adwords Beginners Guide »


We also offer help with Google AdSense » - the process of generating revenue with your website, by listing Google ads on your site.


Read more:
Website Promotion Guide »
Keywords »
Meta Tags »
Titles »
Web Page Content »
Effective Link Building »
Free Website Promotion Tools »
How to Design a Website for the Search Engines »

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