What is Google Adwords and how does it work?
Google Adwords is an online marketing tool. It enables you to place short, text adverts that link to your website, at the top of a search engine results page when a potential customer searches for something relevant. Google is the world’s most used search engine, so any advertisement could reach a huge audience.
Andrew Bradbury, Head of New Ventures marketing at Which? said: ‘Advertising using AdWords has several advantages compared to traditional media (print, newspapers and so on). Most importantly, you can measure how effective the advertising is and you can control who sees it, targeting people who are specifically searching for your service. This tight focus gives you a much better return on investment.’
For example, someone might search for ‘How do I remove a tree stump?’ When they open the search results, they will see an advertisement at the top of the page listing a local tree surgeon who has set up Adwords advertising using the words ‘remove a tree stump’. These advertisements have a small ‘Ad’ label attached below them - as you can see.
With Adwords, you only pay when someone clicks on your advertisement. This type of marketing is called ‘PPC’ (pay-per-click) or ‘paid search’. One click on the tree surgeon’s advert might cost that business £1. If the advert gets no clicks, the tree surgeon will pay nothing. The cost of each click will depend on how much competition there is for the combination of words included. These words and phrase combinations are known as search terms.
Find out how to set up a Google My Business account to improve your online presence, or read on to find out more about Google Adwords.
Why is Google Adwords good for businesses?
Many people use Google to search for services in their local area. By placing an advert using words and phrases relevant to their search, you can be sure you will be marketing your business to customers who are likely to be interested in your service.
You can target your advertising to cover a certain region, city, or a set distance from your business or home.
Andrew Bradbury explains: ‘You set the amount you want to spend, and pick the combination of words you want to target. For example ‘plumber in St Albans’. The advertising will specifically target people who are searching for this service. It gives you a far better return on investment than say, delivering leaflets in an area, where many people will not be looking for this specific service.’
You can see the results below that come up on a Google search using these terms. They are at the top of the page - where people will see them first and they all have the AD square by them, indicating that this is PPC advertising.
Another huge advantage of this sort of advertising is that you can tell how well the advertising is working too. Andrew Bradbury again: ‘Google records how much business you gain as a result of the advertising, versus how much you spend – so you can see whether it works or not. You can even tell what combination of words people are using – the search keywords - that result in your advert being shown, clicked on and bringing enquiries to you.’
How to get set up on Google Adwords
Sign up for a Google Adwords account and follow the simple step-by-step instructions. The Google Adwords website provides lots of useful guides and tips on how to get started with advertising campaigns, and how to make them successful. There are tips on how to best reach a target audience and guidelines for setting budgets that are appropriate for companies of different sizes.
A significant benefit of Google Adwords is that businesses can choose to edit, add new adverts, or switch off their advertising at any time. This means it’s possible to carry out small scale testing and easily tweak the details based on an advert’s performance, while keeping costs low. An additional way to improve performance on Google Adwords is to set up your Google My Business profile which helps improve a company’s online presence.