What is Google AdWords?

Fair warning: this is an extreme beginner’s guide to AdWords! You can skip this one if you know what it is.

If you’re running a business, or if you’re following my blog, you’re getting into Internet marketing, you need to use AdWords! It certainly isn’t the only way to market your products, services and/or offers online, but it does allow you to compete for ad placement within Google and we all know how large Google is.

The operative word is “compete”. Another form of marketing is to place an ad on a well-known site that has large amounts of traffic coming to them, but they may charge upwards of $1000 for the monthly placement of your ad at the top of their page. There’s no competition and your ad shows everyday all day for the duration of your time slot. No competition for placement=large sum up front.

Another problem with this form of marketing is there’s no guarantee that those click-throughs are going to convert to sales on your site unless the site you chose has very targeted traffic that can relate to your site.

Who pays for these ads?

You do. Inside your account, you bid on keywords that people search for. As an example, your business is selling car parts. You bid $0.25 on the keyword “cheap car parts”. If your bid is the highest amount, your ad will appear at the very top search results page. So rather than battle it out with the thousands of other sites out there ranked high in search results, you can pay to get placed above them (and to the right side). These are the links you find under the Sponsored Results section.

Why bid for placement?

Ideally, you want your ads to be right in the face of web users searching for items that you’re promoting. There are two ways to do this on Google. First, build a high-quality site that has tons of links to it from other related sites and you’ll be ranked very high in the standard search results. Second, bid on keywords to put your ad right up top. The bidding process ensures that the thousands of businesses bidding for the keywords are ranked according to how much they’re willing to pay rather than at random.

Will my business revenue increase?

It should, but it may not. At this point, the toughest part of running a business is locking in sales. It’s easy to get people to call your number or visit your site, but what you do with them at this point is entirely up to you! When it comes to sending people to your website (or landing page), you have to “sell them” fast because if they don’t like what they see, they’ll move on faster than you can imagine.

How much should I spend?

Consider this answer to be part of your advertising budget. Once you have decided how much you’re willing to spend on advertising, this answer becomes clearer. AdWords allows you to set maximums on your account for things such as daily spending limit and bid amounts. Going back to our previous example, you can set up a $0.25 bid on “cheap car parts” and then add a maximum spendeture of $25 per day, so Google will keep showing your ads again and again until 100 clicks have been sent through ($25.00/0.25=100). This way, you can leverage your funds across many different keywords and be able to control your spending. I’ve known some local businesses to spend thousands per month on keywords.

My ad is at the top, but nobody is clicking…

Marketing can be tough and the market is tougher. You have to create stand-out ads so people will notice you and see a unique quality about your business. Think about if you were shopping for car parts. What kind of ads would you click on and what kind would you not click on? Utilize those thoughts and partner them with being concise and direct to create the best ad.

How do I get started?

Go over to Google and sign up! It’s free to join, but once you start adding money and running campaigns, you’ll be charged a $5 activation fee. Obviously, after that, you’ll be paying for the ads that you buy. Before you sign up, take a look around the Internet. A lot of times you’ll find promotional deals where you can get free money to put into your AdWords account.

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