22 Jun 2014

Is Google AdWords Worth the Money?

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WHAT IS GOOGLE ADWORDS? AND WHAT DO THEY DO?

So you want to know if Google Adwords is a good option for your online website or business. First, you have to know what Google Adwords is. Google Adwords is a product for advertisers on the web. The ads are written by you and only you choose how much you are willing to pay per click on your ad. You can even control other factors such as the duration of your ad, keywords and the location and times your ads run. These ads will appear on Google’s search results of course but also on various websites that Google deems comparable or related.

For example, let’s say you have an online website selling pickles and other condiments. Your website can show up on Google Search for the keyword “Sour Pickles” you paid for but can also show up on a website that features a forum devoted to pickles. Adwords is helping you attract not only those specifically searching for pickles, but also those who are interested in pickles, and who happen to be on the web.

Your cost-per-click is determined by two main factors: your quality score and the keyword. Your quality score determines how much you will have to pay per bid on a certain keyword. The more popular the keyword, the more you will have to pay. It is difficult to pinpoint how exactly Google calculates the quality score, but it is in part, determined by where you website stands with the keyword. So, the better the SERP of the website, the cheaper the minimum bid will be.

COST OF GOOGLE ADWORDS

The cost of Google Adwords Advertising is completely in your hands. You choose your per click bid and set a daily budget of the maximum amount you want to spend. You can run one, two or a hundred ads at once or separate them into different campaigns and run them accordingly. Perhaps you want one ad mentioning a Christmas Sale around December, but remember, you want to monitor your ad campaigns to make sure this campaign isn’t running in March! You can pause certain keywords, change keywords and even cancel entire ad campaigns at any time! The beauty of Google Adwords is in the flexibility. Google will generally bill you at the start of each month.

For putting together a budget, it’s important to think of what your business can handle on a monthly basis. Come up with a reasonable sum, divide it by 30 and you have your daily allotment for advertising through Google.

Source: NY Times

IDEAS AND ADVICE!

When tackling the use of Google Adwords for your business, it is important to think about what you are selling, and to whom. Here are some tips and tricks that you can keep in mind before learning the hard way and losing your business’ hard-earned cash.

Location: Consider your market and product. Are you selling an item pertaining to a certain area? Are you only targeting people who live in your country? Maybe your product is only for people who live in urban areas. This information comes in handy when choosing the locations. You can eliminate specific countries and even states from your target search. If you are a car dealership in Michigan, you might want to limit your search ads to Michigan and a few other Midwest states. If you are a clothing store, it’s best to stay general, since you don’t know who exactly is in the market for the styles you are selling.

Time: Choosing the time during which you run your ads is also essential. If you are promoting a night club or a dating service, perhaps the most efficient time to run your ads is at night. However, keep in mind that because it is the “World Wide Web,” maybe people are online at MANY different times.

Ad Variety: There’s no set in stone way to run your ads, but I recommend a frequent change. It’s ok to have an ad with the same basic idea, but make sure you change your “messaging” around once in a while (maybe monthly) to at least appear fresh. Also keep track of what ads generate more clicks, because it’ll eventually lead you to your most successful ad campaigns and words.

Consider Quantity Vs. Quality: What I mean by this is, consider how your marketing money can be used most effectively. Would your business benefit from more ads for a variety of different search terms that are cheaper and less popular? Or is it necessary for your business to have that top-searched keyword? The pricier the keyword, the less keywords you’ll be able to “purchase”.

For example: Let’s say you have a vintage shop selling vintage style clothing. Is it beneficial to be at the top of the search for unique vintage clothing items, cool vintage dresses, rare vintage clothes or to only be on the search list for vintage clothing? That is for you to decide!

Keep in mind also, that the pricier the keyword, the less you’ll appear on the search (because you’re not winning every bid), so the less clicks you may get.

Monitor and Move On: Let’s say your lingerie business needed help with getting more traffic to the website. So, you put up an ad for the keyword “hot lingerie styles”. Let’s say that 4 months later, through organic SEO your website is number one on the first page of Google for “hot lingerie styles”. At this point, *I* believe it is time to move on. Use you dollars wisely to attack a different keyword. If you’re already number one for a certain search, it’s not really necessary to be on the page again at the side. Use your money to move onto a more difficult keyword you’ve been wanting to tackle!

Keep Enemies Close!: Type in your desired keywords on Google and list the top 5 competitors of your site. Then, go find their Google Adwords Ads to see what words and phrases they use for their marketing. Many times, this is a fabulous starting point for new businesses and websites. Many of these “bigger businesses” hire folks to write their ad campaigns so you’re really utilizing “pro-work” for free!

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