Google Adwords can be a great way to position your brand effectively, capture new and returning clients, and advertise without large up-front costs. John is spending over $500/month on Google Adwords and here is how you can get started.
Establish Goals, Objectives, and Targets
Whether they be cost per click, monthly spend, sales, onsite time, or whatever, goals are important. Goals will help you create a basis of your campaign, because it will be different if you’re trying to position your brand or if you’re trying to capture repeat sales. Most companies set their goals at a budget “I want to be able to receive 10 sales from $100 monthly spend.”
Build out Keyword List
A great tool for building keyword lists is from SEO Book and is located here. I suggest creating a campaign for brand terms (which are almost always more profitable than keyword terms) so you can establish some familiarity with the Adwords platform.
Create the AdWords Campaign
Now you’re ready to log into Google Adwords and actually create the campaign. Go to the login page , click on “Campaign Summary” and then “keyword-targeted”. You’ll then be able to name your campaigns. After that, select your countries. The more countries, the more reach, but the traffic quality is usually less (why pay for a click when the user doesn’t speak English?). Next, write your advertisement. Try to be clear, concise, and have a call to action. I wrote about this on my blog and how you can actually pay less per click, but be ranked higher than competitors.
Next, add the list of keywords you already created (and maybe some of Googles recommended ones as well) and continue. Now comes come number crunching. Set your budgets and default cost-per-click or the cost you’ll pay for each click unless you specify later. Higher CPCs usually lead to higher ad positions, which usually get more clicks. A decent starting CPC is $.50, but that will all depend on the keywords, number of keywords, budget, etc. I recommend setting a content bid of $0.01 (unless it’s brand terms), because the content network generally has lower quality traffic. Once that’s done, you’re done! Well, almost.
While there are solutions out there that cost hundreds of dollars, Google Adwords integrates perfectly with Google Analytics. Link your accounts then sign up for conversion tracking through Google Adwords. You’ll then be able to tell what keyword the person was referred on, which will allow you to start putting a value on keywords to help determine ROI.
Add More Ad Copy
Go back into your campaign and create more ad copies. I suggest having a few (5 or so) running, because Google will find out which ads has the best CTR and start showing that ad more. After a week or so, delete the least performing ad and try an ad with different text. Always try to beat the current winning ad.
Continually Check-in on the Account
Don’t set and forget. Add and delete keywords, optimizes ad copy, and play with your bids and daily budgets. Also, don’t forget that your landing page quality can be a powerful variable in how effective your Google AdWords campaign will be, so be sure you point your ads to the most relevant and conversion friendly page you can.
Hopefully you’re now ready to start using Google Adwords to increase your online sales, brand, or just get a little more traffic. Good luck!
Dave Rigotti is the owner of Freezing Hot, an internet marketing company which specializes in seo and paid search management for small businesses.