Co-workers high-fiving each other on a job well done.

Starting anything new can be a nerve-racking experience, and getting started with online advertising is no exception! How do you put your best foot forward, make a great first impression, and secure brand loyalty with your core demographic, all while making sure to take care of your margins? By following these simple steps, you can help boost your company’s presence, ensuring a user experience that is conducive to adding to your bottom line. Whether you’re after sales, lead submissions, website engagement, product consideration, or others, there are tools and methods you can leverage to achieve your marketing goals! In this article, we dive into how to start with google ads.

Start with google ads by Defining Your Metrics of Success

Like anything in life, success in Google Ads is made considerably easier when you can measure your progress towards a goal. In Google Ads, these goals are oftentimes referred to as conversions. If your goal is to drive $5,000 in sales for a new product line, define it! If your goal is to earn 30 newsletter subscribers, it can be tracked and optimized toward! What you define as a conversion will allow you to determine how effectively your advertising campaigns are performing, and where there are opportunities to invest heavier, or areas to improve on. To learn more about paid search performance metrics explained, follow this link.

Take a minute and write out your high-level goal here: __________________

Clearly defining your Key Performance Indicators, (KPI’s for short,) will certainly help you get started with Google Ads the correct way, with scalability in mind. Here are some checklist items to consider while defining your metrics of success:

  • Define your Target Audience
    • Age: __ – __
    • Gender: Male – Female – Other – All?
    • What language(s) do they speak?
    • What geographic areas do your target audiences live in?
    • Are there areas that your company does not provide service to?
  • Define your Product(s) and How Users Might Search for Them
    • Product Category (e.g. Electronics, Housewares, etc): ______________
      • Sub Category (e.g. Cell phones, TV’s, Laptops, etc): ______________
        • 5-10 words and phrases in which your target audience will Search for your product(s):
          • __________________
          • __________________
          • __________________
          • __________________
          • __________________
  • Define your Monthly Budget
    • How much do you wish to spend on advertising in a month?
    • On an average Daily amount?

Creating Your First Google Ads Account

Step 1 – Create Your Free Account

You can start advertising on Google Ads by first creating an account. Follow the steps below to get set up. Simply create or sign in to your Google account, visit the Google Ads Homepage, and select either of the blue “Start now” button outlined in red.

Step 2 – Choose the “Expert” Setup Path

Getting started with the expert mode may seem intimidating, but it will allow you to have greater control over the Google Ads Account’s performance. For this reason alone, we highly recommend following the “Expert Mode” setup. Don’t let the wording fool you, expert mode is surprisingly simple to get started with, and will give you infinitely more options to play around with in the long run! You cannot change your account’s settings beyond this point, so choose carefully!

Step 3 – Tell Google About Your Goals: Get started on creating your first campaign on Google Ads by first choosing your goals from the list provided, and then choose Search as your campaign type. There are many tools to choose from, but generally speaking, Search is the starting building foundation to any type of advertising campaign. Proceed to Step 4 below.

Step 4 – Set up Conversion Tracking

This is where getting the help of a web developer, or a friend who is tech-savvy with website programming jargon, might come in handy – setting up tracking is an important task that will not only show you how well your campaigns are performing, but also allow you to leverage things like bid automation, and fully utilize the Google Ads platform to its fullest potential. Implementing these tracking tools also doesn’t cost you anything, outside of your time. You can try implementing it yourself as well, by following step 1 to get started on Google Tag Manager – a Google integration that will radically simplify and future-proof your tag setups, and step 2 to install the conversion tag, to ensure tracking setup is done properly.

Step 5 – Come Up With a Universal Campaign Naming Convention

Creating a universal naming convention will definitely help to future-proof your campaign deployments. I would recommend following my template below, however, feel free to play around with it to make it suit your business’ goals, conversions, and KPI’s!

 [Target] – [Platform] – [Objective] – [Category]

[Brand / Generic] – [Search / Display / Discovery / Shopping / Video] – [Sales / Leads / Awareness] – [Electronics / Housewares / etc.] 

Step 6 – Choose the Targeting Settings That Make Sense to Your Goals

Selecting Google Search Partners will allow you to show up on Google’s syndicated websites, and increase your overall reach. We sometimes see decent results coming from Search Partners, so we recommend keeping them on and checking on their overall performance. You can always shut them off later down the line if they fail to perform to your expectations. We also highly recommend turning off display network placements for your Search Ads. These generally drive up a lot of low-quality traffic, and can run up your tab when it comes time to pay your advertising fees!

When it comes to Target Locations, you can add in postal/zip codes or whole countries. We also highly recommend switching the Target to: People in, or regularly in your targeted locations, as leaving the target settings as default settings can lead to some interesting results – you may end up targeting users outside of your service area, who have done research towards emigrating to your target country. Any way that we can tune up efficiency is highly important, especially when your hard-earned money is on the line. It is important to get started on the right foot, to help future campaign deployments startup without any delays.

Step 7 – Confirming Your Budget, and Using Bid Strategies

Further down the page, you can input your desired daily budget (this can be calculated by taking your monthly budget, and dividing it by 30.4, the average number of days in a month). As a benchmark, setting an average daily budget of $16.45 will enable your account to spend up to $500 a month. Some days will spend more, others will spend less. Some fluctuation is to be expected, especially when just starting out with Google Ads. When the end of the month comes, you will not be charged more than your average daily budget multiplied by 30.4, (provided that you haven’t messed around with the average daily budget throughout the month!). 

If you’ve followed along with the Conversion Tag set up in Step 4, you can also choose your Bidding Strategy. This is a powerful tool you can leverage in order to ensure your campaigns are driving results at a sustainable rate. Take, for example, If you need to generate sales at an advertising cost of $10 / sale, you can set the parameters here using the Target Cost per action checkbox! Setting the CPA too low will prevent your ads from showing vs competitors, and setting the CPA too high will cut deeply into your profit margins. We recommend calculating your profit margins and utilizing a reasonable CPA to ensure you’re not limiting reach, while still turning a healthy profit.

If you did not follow the steps in Step 4, you can also choose other bid strategy types, such as Maximize Clicks, or Target Search Impression Share, though these bid strategies may not be the best suited for your campaign objectives – in the case of this example, we are looking to generate sales.

Step 8 – Build Out Your Ad Group and Keyword Structure, Using the Template Above

Earlier in this article, you may have filled out a template section under the Define your Product(s) and How Users Might Search for Them section. If not, we recommend you go back and fill out the template to help with building your keyword structure. By segmenting your product offerings into categories, you can control how much budget you want to allocate to each section of your campaigns. 

Product Categories can be translated into the Campaign section below.

Product subcategories can be translated to the Ad Group section below.

Words and Phrases can be translated to the Keywords section below.

Step 9 – Start Creating Your Ad Copy

Final steps here! This is the part of getting started with the Google Ads process that will determine what your users will see when they search for your keywords. This could be users researching your product offerings, or users that are ready to make a purchase from your brand. In either case, it is important to tailor your ad copy to be as relevant to your user as possible.

To learn more about how to increase your google ads results click on this link.

A user that is in the research phase will oftentimes respond well to value-proposition type ads, while a user that is ready to make a purchase may respond more positively to an ad with a promotional offer, or “free shipping” type messaging. Depending on your business offerings, you can even implement Ad Extensions to help improve your ads and show more prominently when users search your keywords.

Tips for Writing Effective Search Ads: 

  • Ad headlines should include your keywords as much as possible. 
  • Try to copy landing page text in your ad descriptions.
  • You can have a maximum of 15 headlines and 4 descriptions in a single RSA.
  • Your ads will show combinations of up to 3 headlines and 2 descriptions.
  • Punctuation is not necessary at the end of each headline and description.
  • Special characters and excessive use of symbols may get your ads disapproved.
  • Using company trademarks in your ads may get your ads disapproved.

Final Thoughts

Setting up and managing a Google Ads campaign can get tricky if you are doing it on your own. NAV43 is a digital marketing company that specializes in setting up and optimizing Paid Search Campaigns. Give us a call today to start working on your future business success.

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