How small business owners can get the most out of Google Ads

Google PPC advertising is often thought of primarily as a way for larger businesses to promote themselves to a massive audience, but that wasn't always the case. At one time, it was possible for nearly anyone managing a startup to open their own PPC campaign account and start marketing to an ever-growing clientele.


 

Current market conditions have made this possible once again. When firms begin to grow, they have a tendency to get involved with other markets. That means even established small business owners might want to use paid advertising as a means of driving instant traffic.

Getting the most out of every pound spent

Considering the fact that many independent business owners might be dealing with tighter budgets, it's important to optimise one's campaign to ensure that every last penny is being spent wisely. 

Therefore, a great deal of thought should be given about the kind of audience they want to reach and where that audience resides before you start advertising. 

Showing ads to the wrong kind of customer, for a poorly designed website or in the wrong geographic location could be the equivalent of throwing money away. That being said, getting caught up in marketing profiles and trying to mine every last bit of information about your potential buyers is every bit as much of a recipe for disaster (paralysis by analysis).

We asked John Cammidge, a Google ads professional for his insights and what he considers to be the most important factor - “When starting with a low budget it’s imperative to start at the end of the buying funnel (intent keywords). Always look for the more long tail keywords that are cheaper and more likely to result in a lead or sale, rather than generic keywords at the top of the funnel (awareness) as these cost too much for someone starting out.”

In general, the best way to manage these campaigns is to focus as much as possible on the kind of problems that your product or service can solve. 

While this is a good idea when managing almost any kind of advertising programme, it's especially vital when dealing with PPC campaigns. You're going to want to think of as many potential relevant keyword phrases as you can. Each of these should deal with those sorts of problems.

Once you have a list of them, you'll want to use a keyword tool to figure out which one of these are actually viable. Those that aren't can be disposed of right away. As soon as you've narrowed down your selections, you should know what phrases will rank the best so you can develop a more focused search engine strategy

Narrowing down a PPC campaign's focus

On average, it can cost upwards of £725 a month for a professional to regularly optimise a Google ads campaign. To recoup these costs by converting leads, you'll need to be as focused on the right kind of consumer as possible. 

Both Google and Bing allow marketing specialists to ensure better ad placement by only displaying them when people search for certain keywords. Unfortunately, this is normally done through something called a relevancy score rather than a simple manual control.

In order to improve the relevancy score of any keywords you try to market to, you'll want to target them based on geographical location as well as market segment. If your firm does business online across the pond, then it might be a good idea to check the relevance of some keywords in Canada and the United States. 

Otherwise, you'll want to make sure that everything is limited exclusively to the UK, Ireland and possibly Oz if your firm is expanding into southern markets. This is to prevent your firm from spending money on areas of the world you never do any business in.

Structuring your AdWords campaign is every bit as important as narrowing down the list, so set aside some extra time for this chore as well. A typical account can take one full day to setup, even for a small business. 

Structuring a list of relevant keywords

Google ads marketing is very different from SEO ranking, so check any preconceived notions you have about keyword performance at the door. Take another look at your keyword target list and see if you can't organise them based on branded terminology, that which relates to your competitors and more general ones. A company selling high-end shoes online would want to divvy up the brands they sell from those they don't while also paying attention to people who just type "nice shoes for sale" into Google.

Broad searches tend to have much less purchase intent than those that are focused, so chances are that you'll want to rank for these instead. In general, you can try to rank for nearly any focused search term, though there are special legal considerations for those who are hiring out the services of a barrister or solicitor. Most other businesses should find there's no restriction on the type of keywords they can rank for, so purchase intent should be the main limiting factor.

Starting a PPC campaign from scratch can take upwards of a week to get going, but it's more than worth it if you can begin converting leads into sales as soon as you have a list of keywords in place.

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