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When I work with clients to run effective Google Ads campaigns, I see a lot of them wanting to jump in and just start spending.
I get it. The idea of only paying for when someone clicks to visit your website can sound great. However, the reality is that it’s a slippery slope to eating up a huge chunk of your ad budget.
In today’s post I want to walk you through how the Google Ads system works. This way you can better understand what to be doing, to run cost-efficient and effective campaigns.
Let’s start off with a breakdown of what the Google Ads platform is and how it can help your business.
As you probably know, Google is the largest search engine in the world. With 40,000 searches taking place every second, Google has worked out a way to turn each of those searches into revenue.
If you’ve searched something on Google, you’ve probably seen those top handful of results at the top with the [Ad] Icon.
Each of these is a company or website that’s paying money to be displayed, for the particular keywords you’ve typed into the search bar.
In the same sense, you can jump onto Google Ads and be found in the search results for particular keywords that people search.
Google Ad platform is just that. It’s the platform that allows you to buy ads not only in peoples search results, but across display ads on websites, video pre-rolls and more.
Now you’d think that any smart company would sell their advertising space to the highest bidder? … Right?
Especially if they have multiple people competing, for those top spots on search results? Who gets the very top spot?
Although this is partially true with Google, they instead focus on something known as the Ad Rank. The Ad Rank is just that. It’s the rank of an ad, and whoever has the highest ad rank gets the top spot in search results.
The Ad Rank is actually determined by two separate parts of the equation, each of which can be optimised to run more effective Google Ads campaigns.
Now that we understand what a Bid Amount is – how much you’re willing to pay for someone to click on your ad, let’s move onto the Quality Score.
As a small business owner, you likely don’t have the budget to out-bid all your competitors, and that’s okay!
Instead, your focus needs to be on improving your Quality Scores.
The Quality Score is Google trying to determine how relevant your ad is, for a particular search term or result.
They’re renowned for serving up the right things people are searching for, so you can understand why they take pride in making sure the ad you’re running is relevant.
Now the Quality Score is broken up into 3 parts, each of which you can focus on to really make your ad better.
How likely is it that someone will click on your ad to visit your website? Google aims to work this out by comparing your ad to the previous click-through-rates of other ads.
You may think that’s a bit unfair, or wonder how they can even do that, if no one is clicking through on your ad yet.
Think about every single ad that’s been run on their platform. From all those ads that have been run over time, their system has noticed patterns in the wording and behaviour of users that can determine the Click-Through-Rate (CTR).
How To Improve Your Click-Through-Rate:
Your job when improving your CTR, and ultimately your Quality Score, is to focus on your copy-writing. Make sure you’re writing compelling ads, that prompt people to take action or peak their interest to click.
Ad Relevance is Google aiming to see how similar or relevant your ad is, to the specific keywords people are searching for.
As I mentioned before, Google prides itself on showing people what they’re after and solving their problems. Their whole identity relies on making sure search results are relevant for people.
Google’s system is going to be looking through your ad message, and comparing the keywords you’ve placed in the ad to the ones you’re bidding for.
How To Improve Your Ad Relevance:
Make sure the ad messages you create are relevant to what people would be searching for on the keywords you’re bidding for. If it makes sense to Google that, then your ad should appear in that search result and will be more relevant than your competitors.
Google doesn’t just look at the ad you’re creating on their platform. They’re also looking at what people are landing on, when they click through to your website.
The experience for users doesn’t just end at the ad. In fact it really begins when people see what they’ve searched for on your website. If it isn’t what they were after, they’re most likely going to leave.
The landing page experience is all about whether what people see on your website is what they wanted, and whether it’s good enough for them to stick around.
Effective Google Ads campaigns must involve a wholesome landing page experience. You want to ensure people are sticking around on your website, consuming your content longer, and exploring other areas of your website as well.
How To Improve The Landing Page Experience:
Make sure the page that people are landing on is relevant to what you promised in the ad. Don’t make it hard for people to find what they were looking for. It won’t mean they spend more time on your website if you hide stuff, it’ll just mean they end up leaving.