First we need to select the right keywords and keyword terms that you will want to bid on. Selecting keywords is the most important part of any Adwords campaign, as well as other internet marketing campaigns. This is what will bring people to your site who are searching for what you sell.
There are some internet gurus who will tell you to grab thousands and thousands of keywords. They believe in quantity over quality, but that method will only part people with their hard earned money. These programs teach you failure.
You want to start with a broad match of keyword terms. For an example, we will start with chocolate candy bars and use targeted terms like candy bar, candy bars, chocolate candy, and chocolate candy bars. Now we want to narrow the terms to even more targeted keyword phrases, so we will look at specific of this business: the different candy bar brands our online store carries and what people will likely use as a search query. This leads us to terms like Hershey’s candy bar, Nestles chocolate bar, Hershey’s chocolate candy, etc.
Finally we want to really narrow things down to improve Click Through Rate (CTR) and Conversion To Sales/Leads (CTS / CTL). We do this by being even more specific in our selection of keyword terms. Let’s try using Hershey’s Mr Goodbar, Hershey’s special dark, Hershey’s kiss, Reese’s cup, Reese’s pieces, and Nestles crunch. By using the exact phrase the user is looking for, you will often present a very targeted ad for them to follow to your site and make a purchase.
When doing keyword research, there are several free sources you can use to do your research. Since this is not a keyword tutorial, you may want to refer to these other sources for help in this regard. On SEO Chat, there is an entire section of articles devoted to picking and refining keywords, as well as a keyword optimizer tool.
Do not forget to add negative match terms so that you do not drive tire kickers to your website. If you do not have a free offer then you should use the negative keyword –free (free with a hyphen in front). This will prevent searches for free chocolate candy bars from bringing up your ads.
You Need Ad Groups
Now that we have our keywords selected, we want to set up our campaigns and ad groups. By categorizing your campaigns it is easier to keep track of your keyword terms, improve performance, and weed out non-performers.
Ad groups are the files of keywords under each campaign. In our example of chocolate candy bars, we would start two campaigns: one for Nestles and one for Hershey’s. Under each campaign, we will have the brand’s specific ad groups, such as Hershey’s Special Dark, and Hersey’s Kisses. Our Nestles campaign would have adgroups for Nestle Crunch, Nestles Mr. Goodbar, Nestles Nutrageous and more.
Titles are Vital
Having organized our campaigns, we now need to write out the ads that will draw users to our website. First, we will write a title. The title line is the very first line of your ad and needs to stand out in order to capture the viewers’ eyes and attention. This can be done in many ways, Hershey’s “Candy bar” isn’t very appealing, so we need something more captivating. We could try “Love Hershey’s?” Now that is pretty good, but we can better: “Who Loves Chocolates?”
That will stand out and capture most of our target audience. It speaks the language of those who are searching for chocolate, and even addresses them personally. It could always be tweaked a bit more, so that the user feels they might missing out on something if we use “Who Else Loves Chocolates?”
A Strong Description
Now that the title is done well, we want to drop down to the body of the ad and make the best use of our two lines of description text. Here we want to use problem solving, strong call to action and incentives. Here, too, we need to capture the user as best we can. These are particular good choices for our candy store:
Find Hershey’s Kisses Online, Shop Today Free Shipping!
Find Nestles Crunch You Love, Shop Today For 20% Off!
These will drive the visitor to the website, and onto a purchase if indeed what you have is what they were looking for.
Remember, you are writing extremely short ad copy, so there you need to stay focused. Adwords does not give us enough web space to sell the customer within our ad copy. It is specifically designed to tease or pique the users interest. Using the limited ad web space you have to headlight the biggest benefits or the goals your customers are looking to meet, and you’ll see bigger rewards on your AdWords return on investment.
Next we want to move to measurement of results. Measurement is the one area where I find webmasters lacking in helping themselves to earning nice profits in Adwords. The Google Adwords campaign allows you to place tracking code on the page following a successful sale or lead capture, and this code will track your conversion costs. By using the free tracking code, you can track all the important financial data you need in order to generate even higher profits from the sales you receive.
Some have failed to do this because of the initial success webmasters see when starting Adwords campaigns, then not feeling as though they have time to go back and get the tracking code for their campaign. Make sure that you do get the code. Being able to measure the results is the first step to tweaking and optimizing your listings. Once you have these campaigns up and running as you want, you will then want to experiment to see if you can have even greater impact on sales and return on investment.
How do you experiment? You can do split testing of ads, write body text with each word capitalized, and another ad exactly the same but with all lower case words. You can even try to write the ads correctly from the start to see where that lands. Another way to experiment is to look at the URL you display to the users. While it seems just a small issue, it can have a positive approach to making the conversion to a sale or lead. Try Capping Each Word in your URL and try all small caps. With the Adwords program, you can also measure each ad’s performance within each ad group, and adjust ads once you see a pattern appear.
Using each type of ad above, along with variations of URLS, will allow you to see which ads users like and which they do not like. Having this data then allows you to refine each of your adgoups within the campaign for the best CTR, as well as increased conversion to sales/lead.
If you want to target your ads even more, there are several ways to do this. The first step in narrowing your target is to use the ‘Phrase Match’ feature in Google AdWords. This will limit your ad to be displayed to those searches which include your search keywords or keyword terms in order. To make use of ‘Phrase Match’ feature, you would need to wrap your keyword terms in quotation marks. For example: “Hershey’s Kiss”. Then only those terms that include both Hershey’s and Kiss in that order will display your ad.
Another method used to refine the ad distribution is done using the ‘Exact Match’ option. This is very useful for increasing click through rates of ads performing poorly. The ‘Exact Match’ option will only show your ads when the exact search phrase is entered. The ‘Exact Match’ feature is activated by placing brackets around your search term. In our example, we would use [Hershey's Kiss]. Now only the exact term ‘Hershey’s Kiss’ will display your AdWords ad.
Take a look at Geo Targeting for further specificity. With AdWords, you can target where your ads are to appear in specific geographic locations. This can be defined by country, region, state, and even local cities only.
The local pizza restaurant in your town would use Adwords to target new local pizza lovers, but for them to advertise somewhere that they do not deliver their famous pizza would be a complete waste of their money. However if that local pizza shop has stores or customers spanning a few different states, then it would be a good idea to run ads in the different states with low bids on keywords which will build the brand name.
Get Creative with Adwords
As mentioned above, Adwords is a good way to build brand name by bidding on keyword terms involving your brand or are directly related. Adwords can also be useful in market research. Have a new product idea or perhaps a new domain name you want to run a website on? Place ads for the new product idea or split test the domain name with others, and let the users’ clicks tell you which they like best.
As you can clearly see, Google’s Adwords program is designed to be able to give you a plethora of marketing information and data which is free for anyone to use.