How to kick off your first Google search campaign?
In one point of your digital marketing career, your client or supervisor will ask you the question.
Why don’t we try Google Search Ads?
If you start setting up a search ads camapaign after this call, you will face a lot of consequences if you have never done it before. the platform is bit heavy and complex for first time users. But if you can go through the basics and make some efforts to understand the 101 theories, you will not face any difficulties when creating the first campaign. further, if you understand the methodology in advance, you can pitch the Google search ads solution to your client or supervisor.
See how awesome that would be!!
Ok. Let’s dive deep right in from the basics and understand this amazing portal.
What is the strategy?
Launching Google Ads campaign is not a difficult task. You only need a Gmail and a working credit card to set-up the account. And, with responsive search ads, anyone can set-up an ad easily by adding the keywords to the ad text.
Yes, you are almost done.
Wait. What is your strategy? What is your approach towards capturing the search impression share or generating ROI?
You need a strategy first. It should basically provide campaign structure, geo markets, keywords to be used, audiences, ad texts, sitelinks, and other extensions’ details. All the details can be included inside one Excel document. Forming the campaign structure is bit tricky because you have to be concerned about geo markets, keyword types (brand/ generic/ competitor), content types (topics, placements, keywords) and remarketing campaigns. Keyword research / placement research has to be performed on next step to identify the correct set of keywords to target.
Another critical part is the ad texts. Here, you should focus heavily on character limit and ad texts. Always try to add keywords inside your ad texts. It will help to optimize the algorithm and give you a good quality score. After setting up everything, you can easily create the campaign from Google Ads portal or Google ads editor.
Campaign settings — networks, location, conversion actions, devices
When the campaign is set up it will start running after the ad approval. However, there are some hidden features which we can leverage effectively to target the audience. Network, location exclusion, bid settings, specifying conversion actions are some of them.
In campaign settings section, you will find a tab called devices. It allows to target more specifically by opt in most appropriate types and areas that is relevant to the campaigns. Most importantly, if you need to run a mobile only campaign, it can easily start from here. Further, targeting options available based on the Telco network as well.
In goals section, it automatically set up for account level conversion tracking which display and optimize for all the conversion actions. Making conversion actions and specifying them on Goals sections will optimize and provide you the correct data and ratios of campaigns.
Writing ad texts (Responsive and expanded)
Google Ads recently removed expanded text ads and kept responsive text ads only available. For me, responsive ad texts didn’t work in a better way because it jumbles the lines as Google thinks. So, control over the ad texts will lose from advertisers’ end. However, Google Ads also introduced this pin feature, which allows to fix a line in one particular spot, without jumbling and changing it across the ad text.
Correct Bid Strategy to use?
Google Ads provide number of bidding strategies. I recommend to go with manual CPC because it gives a lot more control to handle the campaigns. But if you start a fresh campaign, it is better to go ahead with Maximize conversions objective first. Because Google collects necessary information about your audience very effectively through Maximize conversions campaign. After the learning period is completed you can switch to the Manual CPC method.
Why manual CPC?
· It gives you more control for the Avg. CPC.
· You can analyze individual keyword performance and allocate more bid amount for best performing/ competitive keywords.
· By keeping the lowest CPC, higher ROAS can be achieved.
Broad match. Should or Shouldn’t?
Match type plays a major part on our campaigns. It decides the cost and the quality of the traffic. There are mixed feelings on choosing broad match and phrase match. According to my experience, broad match is needed on first stages of the campaign to identify the search terms. After some time you can select the correct set of keywords and keep them on phrase match or exact match. Broad match is costly and generate some unrelated traffic which result in higher CPC.
Using of extensions (sitelinks, image, price)
Google ads give us few opportunities to scale up the ad experience for users by providing more information in different aspects.
Sitelinks — you can add several links for multiple landing pages
Callouts/ structured snippets — let you add more concise data about the product/ service under limited character set
Image — Give more attractive look and feel for your ads with the images
Price — Price will be displayed on your ad