Creating a paid campaign with Google Ads

What is Google Ads?

 

It is an online advertising service created by Google, serving clickable ads on Google search results page. Google Ads serve businesses.

 

 

 

 

Types of accounts in Google Ads:

  • manager account
  • child account
  • campaign account

Critical components of the Google Ads structure

 

There are 3 levels in the Google Ads structure:

  • campaigns
  • ad groups and ads
  • keywords

 

Factors determining how the campaign work

  • match type: it is a parameter which is set on keywords. It controls which searches will be triggering ads
  • negative keywords: means excluding certain keywords from a campaign to not trigger ads
  • maximum CPC bid: the maximum amount the advertiser is willing to pay for the click
  • ad copy: the content of an ad which is seen by the searcher
  • ad extensions: this are enhanced features to increase attractiveness of an ad and drive it to higher click-through rates (CTRs)

 

How to structure an account?

By similar keywords: they should be grouped by theme into ad groups or keyword lists. Keywords need to be related to the product, its benefits and match consumer needs.

  • ad groups, ad copy relevancy
  • campaigns – by daily budget
  • search volumes might be taken into consideration as well

Ad groups should contain keywords grouped by theme. Ad groups should be organized into campaigns.

 

Keyword match types

Keyword match types are the way of control ads triggering.

Positive keywords:

  • broad match
  • phrase match
  • exact match
  • modified broad match

Negative keywords:

Including negative keywords to the list of keywords allows to reduce costs, increase CTR and conversion rates and make the search more effective.

 

Bids

 

A bid is the amount of money the advertiser is willing to pay for a click. There are two types of bids: ad group bids and keyword bids.

 

Types of ads

 

Text ads

 

There is a limitation of characters creating a text ad: headline should have no more than 30 characters and the description not more than 90 characters.

Ads are always linked to ad groups – that means that a number of keywords can show in the same ad. This is the reason why ads should be organized thematically.

The ad copy should be well written – that improves searcher experience and drive more clicks. Ads containing CTAs usually have higher conversions (Sale ends this Sunday!)

 

Ads extensions

 

Ad extensions enhance the ads. They provide context on the variety and nature of products and services, before the visitors click the link. Ad extensions create more reasons to click an ad and lead to improved visibility and click through rates. There are several types of ad extension available and everyone should choose the most appropriate for the business, client or business objective.

 

How to set up a Google Ads account?

 

Focus on keywords and keyword research. Keyword research is a process when are created lists of keywords related to a product or service. To create such a list the most common in use is Google Keyword Planner.

Differences between PPC and SEO: the organic search is usually on the top of the funnel, meanwhile PPC engages people who are closer to make a purchase.

 

Steps to use Google Keyword Planner:

 

1. Enter some keywords (Discover new keywords)

2. Use a keyword list (Get search volume and forecasts)

3. Select your product category

4. Set targeting

5. Get ideas

6. Enter more keywords

7. Select relevant keywords

8. Add the keywords to the plan

9. Set targeting

10. Review the plan (filter keywords by similarity, create new ad groups, add to plan).

 

The keyword research allows estimation of results, cost of the top keyword, search volume by location and device.

Elements of a search campaign

 

1. The campaign should be carefully named

2. Locations of operations need to be chosen.

3. It has to be defined a language of users

4. Budget should be clearly established.

5. Goals should be established (what should be achieved).

 

How to set up a campaign?

 

On the left side bar there is a bar. Click the + campaign button, then choose the campaign type and name your campaign.

Goals to be set: sales, leads, product and brand awareness, brand awareness and reach, app promotion, website traffic).

For the search campaign the Google Display Network should be unchecked.

For the language and location: the choice of language is straight forward, for specific locations advanced options should be used.

For a bidding strategy 3 elements need to be taken into consideration: bidding, budget and delivery method.

 

Ad group elements

 

  • keywords: ad groups enable to organize keywords into keywords lists and groups
  • ads get created to match the type of keywords in an ad group
  • bids should be set for every single keyword in an ad group (for easy management)

To create an ad group, simply follow instructions after creating a campaign (you will be prompted to create a first ad group). Name the ad group and enter a keyword list.

 

Ad copy

 

The following step will be writing an ad related to a keyword list. Several variations of an ad copy should be created. Save. The following step is to set an ad group level bid – each keyword in the ad group will have the same bid. Pay attention that differentiation of bids might be required to make the keywords work effectively.

The following step will be to create ad extensions. There are some options among ad extensions:

  • sitelinks: this are clickable links which will appear below the ad and take searchers to a precise destination, like product catalog, blog, contact pages.
  • message extensions
  • call extensions
  • callout extensions
  • structured snippet extensions
  • location extensions
  • affiliate location extension
  • app extension
  • promotion extension
  • place extension

Benefits of ad extensions are:

  • structured snippets add details
  • deep links drive quicker action

Managing a paid search campaign

The first element of efficient campaign management is setting up of a budget, where the daily budget shouldn’t  limit the daily display. To control the cost, a maximum daily budget for each campaign needs to be set, and tracking a total spend to ensure that the advertisement didn’t go over the budget.

The budget should be forecasted in a way that will estimate a performance:

If there will be 10 000 impressions and the CTR is 10%, it will lead to 1000 clicks. If the price of one click is is 1.5 USD; the required budget will be 1500  USD (# of clicks x CPC = budget).

 

How the clicks are paid?

The clicks participate in a bid auction. A bid auction takes place when all advertisers who are bidding and competing for clicks enter in the pile of the Google’s black box system.

 

Ad rank and quality score

 

Google Ad metrics affect the final cost per click.

Ad rank is where your ad appears on the page. The ad rank is decided when the quality score is multiplied by the maximum CPC bid.

Quality score measures how relevant and how good the ad and the keyword combination is towards what Google thinks the audience is looking for. Determining key factors here are the bid, the perceived CTR of the ad and the relevance of the landing page.

 

Paying per click

 

The maximum amount of money which the advertiser is willing to pay per click is called a bid. The payment can be a bit higher or lower, depending of:

  • the maximum CPC of all competitors bidding for a keyword
  • quality score for a keyword towards the competition
  • estimated CTR (which is determined by Google)
  • relevance of the landing page to the search term and ad (it is determined by google as well)

 

Bid strategies

 

Different bid strategies will have different bid costs, as well as performance levels. If the target is to drive traffic, the CPC bidding will be the best choice.

Target CPA bidding: one of the bidding types where Google uses historical data to drive the conversions, at predefined cost par acquisition. It is necessary to have at least 15 conversions in the previous 30 days to use this type of bidding. If there is a lot of sales per month, the test of the Target CPA strategy can bring lower cost per conversion or more conversions at lower cost each month.

 

Bid simulator tool

 

There is a small graph icon close to the keyword, just below the keyword bid, which shows how bid change could impact the search network traffic. It gives very useful insights and can dramatically improve the keyword performance. If the bid simulator is used at the campaign level, it has a bid scaling feature. You can see what might happen if all bids would be decreased or increased simultaneously by a certain percentage.

 

How to decide the bid level?

 

There are some best practices to do so:

  • you can add metrics of first page and top of page estimates to the Google Ads columns
  • if you set up bids between those two estimates, you can actually predict where your ad will feature on the SERP
  • never spend more than 20% above your daily budget

 

It is important to adjust bids, as this action is a part of the campaign optimization process. Automatic adjustment can be set for devices, demographics, locations and remarketing lists.

In the case of remarketing, higher bids should be set up, as past visitors can be more valuable.

Optimization for devices

 

Ads should be optimized for devices. This set up is on the left hand menu. Just add a percentage bid for a device. The percentage will provoke an increase or decrease on price depending of the type of the device (mobile or desktop).

 

Why bid on devices?

 

Knowing your customers you can predict where the most conversions happen. If the majority of conversions happen on a desktop, it would be valuable to increase the desktop bids for at least 10%. If most of searches happen on a mobile device, it would be good to reduce bids by 15% for mobile searches. It is crucial to find a balance between the desktop and mobile traffic or conversion/research traffic. Both are valuable and work together to drive results.

 

Effectiveness of a quality core

The good way to test the quality score is to hover over a keyword. Soon there will be a pop up displaying the quality score for a keyword.

 

How to reduce CPC?

 

Just by increasing a quality score:

  • writing better ads
  • improve landing page
  • add negative keywords to increase relevance and make the search more precise
  • test different bid thresholds

 

Landing page

 

There are several parameters which need to be taken into consideration for a landing page:

  • relevance to ads and keywords
  • language
  • optimization for a device
  • speed

 

Location targeting

 

It allows to set up ads in a selected geographic location. Why it is important to perform location targeting:

  • selective targeting: only allows to target territories where customers are located or where the business wants to expand to
  • customized campaigns: when choosing locations, bids can be automatically increased for high value locations, or exclude certain locations from the campaigns
  • performance enhancement: location targeting enhances ROI and performance showing ads only to people in areas where the business is conducted

 

Scheduling ads

 

It is possible to set times when the ads are active through the week and pause activity when not needed. To use this function simply go to Ad Schedule.

Scheduling ads synchronizes for conversion with some searches which convert at peak times. By observing patterns, you can spot trends n conversions and adjust ad displays to those patterns. In such way you can focus the activity around conversions hot spots and test it on overall conversions. It is also known that researches often search, then they convert during the next retour, that’s why ad scheduling has importance.

 

Google Ads Editor

 

Google Ads Editor allows bulk changes to the Google Ads account.

Its benefits are:

  • enables to make changes quickly
  • provides a concise view of all campaigns
  • enables making thousands of changes in a very short time
  • allows to edit campaigns in bulk
  • allows to make changes offline and publish when online again

 

Measuring Paid Search Campaings

 

KPIs:

  • conversions: measurement of success. Can be measured by a number of sales, conversions, leads attributed to a campaign, but also by the number of phone calls or downloads
  • awareness: can be achieved by the total number of impressions from generic searches, so more people can see it meanwhile searching
  • brand searches: tend to be lower than generic, but if increases, it is a good indicator of an increased awareness and brand value among searches

Different actions need to be tracked: sales and other actions on the website, installs and in-app actions for an application, calls from the ads or coming from the website, import (conversions from another system).

To track conversions it is necessary to add a conversion tracker.

 

Paid Search Metrics

 

  • click / impression: the number of conversions in a particular campaign, ad group or keyword
  • cost per conversion
  • cost per click
  • quality score
  • cost per impression
  • cost per acquisition
  • impression share
  • conversion
  • conversion rate
  • click
  • average position
  • impression
  • click-through rate

How to select the metrics? Just select the campaign or ad group, select a column and click “Modify”, add the column with desired metrics. To understand metrics filters can be applied. Metrics reports can be run on multiple levels, including campaigns, ad groups and keywords.Data also can be segmented by a conversion type or name, and time, for additional insights. It can be done by a command “Add segment”. Segments provide additional granularity to generated reports. Segmented reports can be downloaded  and analyzed as pivot tables to offer better understanding of presented data.

 

Why to link Google Ads to Google Analytics?

 

Simply to measure the success of paid campaigns.

  • it enhances reporting including detailed engagement on the website
  • shows how paid channel performs against other channels
  • measures ROAS (return on ad spent) for e-commerce customers
  • gives a better understanding what happens after click

To link both, it is necessary to log in to both, then go to Admin in GA and choose Google Ads linking from the property level option list, selecting the appropriate account. Once a connection between GA and Google Ads is established, GA can be accessed from the Google Ads panel.

To see Google Ads in GA, simply select acquisition tab and there Google Ads menu. This menu shows linked accounts and allows segmentation by adding secondary dimensions.

As an advanced measurement GA data can be imported to Google Ads. It is recommended to link Search Console to Google Ads as well.