Google is an online advertising platform businesses use to promote their products and services on the Google Search engine, YouTube, and other associated websites. It allows you to customise your budget and target audiences and start or stop your ads whenever you wish.
Google AdWords and Google Ads (as well as AdWords Express) are all the same thing. They are just different names Google used to use. Google now prefers to use the more straightforward term “Google Ads.”
What Google AdWords do?
You can start by setting your goal – like increasing website visits or getting phone calls. Then choose the geographic region where you’d like the ads displayed – from specific areas near your business to broader regions such as cities, states, or even countries.
Finally, you then create your ad and set a monthly budget cap. Once approved, it can show up whenever people in that area search for related terms related to what you offer – but you only pay when users interact with the ad (e.g., click it or call). That sounds easy, but I can assure you it is not.
Sadly Google Ads is not free. The confusion here comes with Google organic traffic from searches that can be free. For example, this is when you create some excellent content on your website that Google decides to serve up to searchers to answer their questions.
Google Ads does come at a price, but you’re in control of how much you spend. You’ll only be charged when someone engages with your ad (e.g., clicks through or calls). The cost per click/call can vary depending on location, demand and other details. But it can be a quick way to access millions of people in minutes.
SEO is quite different from AdWords. SEO is about improving the technical aspects of your website and its content (along with other elements) and is a long-term option to obtain free Google organic traffic. At the same time, Google Ads can instantly drive traffic to your website or get potential customers to call you from the advertising you pay Google to do.
To get started with Google Ads, you must create an account. The setup process is reasonably straightforward and will guide you through creating & launching your first ad. Google even offers you $600 in free ad credit when you spend your first $600. But this must be done in a certain amount of time, so please be careful to keep your $600 offer.
However, that is just the start of running a successful AdWords campaign. Knowing how to use Adwords campaign management is relatively simple, but selecting keywords and negative keywords for your business is hugely important. Google Ads keyword planner is a valuable tool. Choosing specific keywords, not broad terms, is the better option, or you will pay to attract the wrong customers.
You are unlikely to get your keywords right the first time, so when it comes to keywords and their results, you need to monitor them continually, tweak them, and test different options and prices you are prepared to pay.
I once had a client who didn’t think I was doing a good job, so he hired a “Google AdWords expert” (actually, they were just a website designer, in truth) to improve his Google Ads results. The expert produced far more clicks than I ever could but quickly wasted my former clients’ budget because none of these people purchased his services. Many of the keywords this expert chose were often irrelevant to my client’s business. Caveat emptor – buyer beware. Especially with local SEO.
Your ads also need to match the searcher’s intent. The website page people are sent to needs to be optimised and specific to the advert. In other words, the particular landing page must solve their problem or show them what they are looking for. But even then, there are far more considerations, and Google knows every trick in the book to unnecessarily part you with your hard-earned money.
What is a campaign in Google Ads?
A campaign is a set of ad groups (ads, keywords, and bids) that share the same budget, location targeting, and other settings. Campaigns are often used to organise categories of products or services you offer. Your Google Ads account can have one or many ad campaigns running. It depends on what you are trying to achieve with your Google Ads.
Grow your business with Google Ads
AdWords help is always there to guide you, and Google Ads are an excellent way to grow your business. If done correctly, it can also link with Google Analytics to hone your results. Anyone can create an Adwords ad, but it is a minefield and not for the faint of heart. And when you think you have it sussed, Google will change, hide, or replace an option!
Save yourself a lot of trouble and let a specialist help unless you have a lot of time to learn and possibly waste your money. And remember, there can be even better options than Google for your business. Contact us now for more information.
About the Author
Steve Baron is the Founder & CEO of Webprecision. He founded Baron Marketing Ltd, an advertising company he ran for over 20 years, as well as several online startups.
He is a past mentor for Business Mentors NZ and holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Waikato, Majoring in Economics & Political Science. He also holds an Honours Degree in Political Science from the Victoria University of Wellington.
He is a published author of three books and a prominent guest editorialist for newspapers throughout New Zealand. In his spare time, Steve is the Clerk of the Scales for New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing, is a Bridge Grandmaster and enjoys walking, running and cafes.