When you think ‘internet search’, you really think Google. So when it comes to effectively advertising your business on the internet, it makes sense to consider Google’s own advertising platform – Google AdWords.
Basically, it works like this: when you search for something, Google provides you with a list that begins with ‘sponsored’ results – in other words, ads. The more you pay Google, the more your ad appears in those listings.
Otherwise known as pay-per-click, it is possible to spend an awful lot on Google AdWords but it’s not always necessary. Even with a small daily budget, there are things you can do to ensure your ad is reaching the search results of your target audience.
1. Plan your keywords
Ensure your ad features well thought-out keywords, so that based on what your target audience types into Google, you stand the best possible chance of connecting with them. So put yourself in their shoes: if you wanted a product or service exactly like the one you’re offering, what would you search for? Google can actually help you with this through its free Keyword Planner (https://adwords.google.com/KeywordPlanner), which gives you keyword ideas, statistics and even generates keyword lists.
2. Plan your campaign
It might be tempting to think that a big daily budget will mean big clicks. But the most important thing is actually not splashing the cash but ensuring that your campaign has a clear goal. What are you trying to achieve? Brand awareness? Product awareness? Shop or online sales? Be specific, because it matters.
3. Plan your ad
Again, much more important than the size of the budget is getting a good grasp of who your target audience is – and how to get your ad to them. Your ad needs not just to attract attention, but to attract the RIGHT attention – the attention of the people who are most likely to buy your product or need your service. There is no point designing a brilliant, broad ad that appeals to a huge number of people if a significant number of those people arrive at your site and realise they don’t want your product.
4. Get targeting
Google AdWords helps you to target your audience, so don’t pass up the opportunity or get it wrong. For instance, if you’re a cafe, you will want Google’s geo-targeting features to ensure that potential customers who are local are prioritised – because there’s little point making someone’s mouth water if they’re 1,000 kilometres away. You can also target your audience based on the sorts of websites they already visit – for instance, your luxury car detailing business will want to target people who read about luxury cars. You could even choose to advertise on a particular luxury car website.