Table of Contents

The Business Owner’s
Guide to Google Ads

So, you’re thinking of running online advertisements with Google Ads?
Hold on to your seat; we’re about to take you on a journey.

The Importance of Advertising

Advertising is a crucial element of any business’s marketing strategy. It helps to create awareness of the company’s products or services and can reach a broad audience with minimal effort. 

There are many different types of advertising, from traditional methods like print and television ads to newer methods like online advertising. But of all the options out there, Google Ads is one of the most powerful. In fact, when it comes to online advertising, Google Ads is pretty much king.

They can be targeted to specific demographics, making them more likely to reach potential customers. You can also customize your campaigns to target specific keywords, which can help ensure that people actively searching for what is being advertised see it.

Google Ads can be a powerful tool for businesses of all sizes. But it can be challenging to navigate if you’re unfamiliar with the platform. In this guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know to get started, from setting up your account to creating effective ads and tracking your results.

Why Invest In Google Ads?

Google Ads can be an incredibly effective way to reach new customers and grow your business once you get the basics down. Here are some reasons to invest in Google Ads:

Paid Search Vs. Paid Social Advertising

So, how does paid search compare to social advertising? Or better yet, Google Ads vs. Facebook Ads. Let’s take a look:

 Google AdsFacebook Ads
Audience sizeAround 5.6 billion searches per day3.59 billion core product users per month
Keyword Vs. Audience targetingBest for keywords and intentBest for targeting audiences and demographics
Ideal useBest for driving traffic to your websiteBest for raising brand awareness with ultra-precise audience targeting
Average CPC$1.9$0.35

Let’s move on to setting up your account.

Getting Started

Now that you've decided to run a Google Ads campaign, there are a few things you need to do before you start spending money.
1

Define Your Business Goals

First off, define your business goals. For example, are you looking to drive more website traffic? Get more leads? Sell more products? You can’t skip this step, or you might run unprofitable ads.

2

Set Up A Google Ads Account

Once you’ve jotted down your business goals it’s the best time to create your new Google Ads account.  You can’t run ads without one, can you? 

3

Set Up Google Analytics

If you don’t have an Analytics account, now is an excellent time to set it up. Add your goals in there and set up Google Ads Conversion Tracking, so you can monitor your progress from the get-go. 

Watch this quick 3min video to learn more about conversion tracking. 👇

Who Are You Targeting?

The first step in creating your Google Ads campaign is to define your audience.

Who are you targeting? Once you know this, you can do keyword and competitor research to find out what terms and phrases they’re using to find your type of product or service.

Do Keyword & Competitor Research

Once you’ve narrowed down your keywords and competitors, you can create targeted ads to reach your desired customers.

Be as specific as possible when targeting your audience and doing keyword research, ensuring that your ads reach the right people and not just everyone on the internet!

Define Your Audience

You can (and should) use Google Ads to build customized audiences based on your prospects’ lifestyles, purchasing habits, long-term interests, buying intent, and demographics. 

Since various methods exist, it may be difficult to grasp how to set up audiences for your Google Ads account. 

This easy step-by-step guide will help you easily create ad audiences:

Now, To Start Building Your Campaign

The goal of pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is simple: you only pay for each click on your ad. When you advertise with PPC, as with Google Ads, you have complete control over how much money you wish to spend and where. 

You don’t have to try and guess which keywords your prospects are going to use when they search for information. If you do your keyword research properly and structure your campaigns according to Google’s best practices, your customers will find you. Then you only pay as and when people click on your ad to go to your website or call you.

You’ll need to get out your calculator for the next step as we’ll be talking money. Answer these questions before moving on: 

How do you work out what your ad budget should be? We get this question often, and the short answer is that it ultimately depends on you. Various factors impact your end budget, but you also have to decide how much your company can afford to spend.

If you want a quick estimate of what your budget might look like, you can use this calculation:

Google Ads Budget = Desired Number of Clicks x Average CPC (Cost-Per-Click)

Take a look at the following example:

Number of clicks desired = 2000
Cost per click = $2
5% conversion rate = 5%
Product price = $200

2000 clicks * $2 cost per click = 4.000 ad cost
2000 clicks * 0.05 conversion rate = 100 sales
100 sales * $200 product price = $20.000 revenue
20.000 revenue / 4.000 ad cost = 500% Return on Investment

So this means every 1$ in ads makes $5 in revenue.

 

As we mentioned before, the cost of your ads will vary based on your location and industry. If you sell skincare products in New York, the cost will be much different from someone selling electronics in Idaho.

You need to consider these factors to determine whether or not Google Ads makes sense for you. But it’s important to remember that your budget also affects how many people see your ads. So the more you’re willing to spend, the more exposure your ads get.

Remember that you don’t need to spend a lot of money to see results with Google Analytics. Many businesses see a remarkable return on investment (ROI) from their ads campaigns, even when spending just a few hundred dollars a month.

Learn more about determining your budget in this video by Mike Zima. 

What Campaign Are You Going To Run?

Next, it's time to decide which campaign type is right for you.

Search Campaign

Search campaigns are the most widely used type of campaign and involve targeting people actively looking for your product or service.

Pros

You can target people based on what they’ve searched for on Google, where they are, and what type of device they’re using.

Cons

Basic format (text only). Basic audience and demo targeting. It can be expensive.

When to use it

Best for attracting traffic that’s actively searching for your products/service. Get to the top of the search results.

Display Campaign

Display campaigns are a great option if you want to reach a larger audience with your ads.

You can target people based on what they’ve searched for on Google, where they are, and what type of device they’re using.

Pros

With display campaigns, you can target people based on interests, demographics, and websites they’ve visited. Some accounts are available to pay per conversion.

Cons

You have limited control on where your ads appear (Google Display Network).

When to use it

Great for generating brand awareness. You can remarket to people who previously visited your site.

Shopping Campaign

Google Shopping campaigns are designed specifically for businesses that sell products online.

Pros

With these campaigns, you can target people who are already interested in buying your product or service.

Cons

These ads are only available for Ecommerce sites selling products.

When to use it

Best for showing your products to people that are ready to buy them.

Local Campaign

These ads target people who search for nearby businesses on Google.com or Google Maps.

Pros

With these campaigns, you target nearby people to increase your foot traffic.

Cons

Limited placements are available (Google Maps).

When to use it

Best for bringing online traffic to your local store.

Youtube (Video) Campaign

These are video ads on YouTube or in search results that help you maximize your user reach.

Pros

Great way to show what you are selling.

Cons

Limited placements available (app and YouTube). It can be annoying.

When to use it

Best for showing your products or services to a narrow group of users (mix of keywords and audiences).

App Campaign

These are the ads that are displayed on apps.

Pros

Automatic ads. Easy management.

Cons

Has limited campaign features.

When to use it

Great for increasing your app installs.

Call Only Ads

These ads only display a number as the headline.

Pros

Automatic ads. Easy management.

Cons

Has limited campaign features.

When to use it

Best for getting your phone ringing.

Performance Max Campaign

Newest type of campaign. Mix of search/shopping/display/video. Automatic campaign and ads powered by AI.

Pros

Automatic ads. Easy management.

Cons

Difficult to build the ads. Need a lot of assets and configuration. Loss of control on where ads appear.

When to use it

Best for complementing search ads to find more customers across all Google channels (Shopping, Display, Maps, Youtube).

 What is it?ProsConsWhen to use it
Search CampaignSearch campaigns are the most widely used type of campaign and involve targeting people actively looking for your product or service.You can target people based on what they've searched for on Google, where they are, and what type of device they're using.Basic format (text only). Basic audience and demo targeting. It can be expensive.Best for attracting traffic that’s actively searching for your products/service. Get to the top of the search results.
Display CampaignDisplay campaigns are a great option if you want to reach a larger audience with your ads.With display campaigns, you can target people based on interests, demographics, and websites they've visited. Some accounts are available to pay per conversion.You have limited control on where your ads appear (Google display network).Great for generating brand awareness. You can remarket to people who previously visited your site.
Shopping CampaignGoogle Shopping campaigns are designed specifically for businesses that sell products online.With these campaigns, you can target people who are already interested in buying your product or service.These ads are only available for Ecommerce sites selling products. Best for showing your products to people that are ready to buy them.
Local CampaignThese ads target people who search for nearby businesses on Google.com or Google Maps.With these campaigns, you target nearby people to increase your foot traffic.Limited placements are available (Google Maps).Best for bringing online traffic to your local store.
Youtube (video) CampaignThese are video ads on YouTube or in search results that help you maximize your user reach.Great way to show what you are selling. Limited placements available (app and YouTube). It can be annoying.Best for showing your products or services to a narrow group of users (mix of keywords and audiences).
App CampaignThese are the ads that are displayed on apps. Automatic ads. Easy management.Has limited campaign features.Great for increasing your app installs.
Call Only AdsThese ads only display a number as the headline.Automatic ads. Easy management.Has limited campaign features.Best for getting your phone ringing.
Performance Max CampaignNewest type of campaign. Mix of search/shopping/display/video. Automatic campaign and ads powered by AI.Automatic ads. Easy management.Difficult to build the ads. Need a lot of assets and configuration. Loss of control on where ads appear.Best for complementing search ads to find more customers across all Google channels (Shopping, Display, Maps, Youtube).

Can Your Site Handle The Heat?

Before you start planning your Google Ads campaign, you should be honest with yourself about whether or not your business and website are ready for it. Or perhaps a better question is, is your site already bringing in sales and leads from other sources?

Before investing in more traffic, you should have a good website with landing pages ready for it.

If you’re unsure, we recommend doing a quick site audit. This handy checklist 👉 will give you a good idea of whether or not your site is ready for ads.

For a more in-depth guide, check out our blog about getting better ads results.

If everything looks good, then you’re ready to start running some ads! But be prepared for things to get a little bit hectic – especially in the beginning. 

Just remember to stay calm and focused, and you’ll be able to take your business to the next level.

Is Your Site Ready For Ads?

It’s Time To Structure Your Campaign

It’s important to understand that Google is constantly updating its algorithm and the best practice in 2022 looks wildly different compared to a few years ago. With the new features and the introduction of machine learning, all best practices from the past are now obsolete.

Single keyword ad group structure and manual bidding is a thing of the past. These days the goal is to keep your account structure as simple as possible with the least amount of campaigns and as many ad creatives as possible. This allows the Google algorithm to test and learn what works best for your business.

New accounts or ‘Smart Bidding’ uses signals combined per auction. All the signals are measured and optimized per auction and query. This includes thousands of signals that are exclusive to Smart Bidding.

Attributes that are identified during an auction and characterize a person or their circumstances at the time of the auction are known as signals. Attributes like device and location, which can also be manually adjusted, are included in Smart Bidding.

Think of the structure as a pyramid. You’ve got your account at the top of the pyramid and your ad extensions at the bottom. In-between those two you have all the makings of a great ad account.

Let’s take a look at the do’s and don’ts on the various levels of our campaign structure (don’t forget to hover or click the cards if you’re on mobile):

Account Level

Do's
  • Focus on data driven attribution

  • Set up business goals like sales and contact form

Don'ts
  • Use the first click or last click attribution model

  • Use manual bidding

  • Run campaigns without goals

Campaign Level

Do's
  • Set 1 campaign for each business objective/ goal (1 display for awareness, 1 search for sales)

  • Keep the structure “as simple as possible”

  • Use automatic bidding (budget optimized for results, not clicks).

  • Focus on smart bidding as it creates unique bids based on the following:
    Goals, conversion likeness, conversion history in all campaigns, historical search, device, and thousands of other factors.
    There’s no limitation, it’s much more flexible, and more likely to convert than manual bidding.

Don'ts
  • Organize campaigns by geo, devices, audiences, or hours.

    You can make an exception if you have very precise business needs like capacity or opening times.

Ad Group Level

Do's
  • Add as many ad groups or audiences as needed in each campaign.

  • Organize keyword ad groups by theme, relevance, landing page, services, or categories.

  • Use DSA (Dynamic/automatic Search Ad groups) alongside keyword ad groups to capture even more relevant traffic.

Don'ts
  • Use Single Ad Group Keywords (SKAG).

Keyword Level

Do's
  • Use various keywords types and search intent.

  • Use negative keywords to prevent unwanted paid clicks/traffic.

Don'ts
  • Use plural, misspellings, or very similar keywords.

  • Use 1 match type specific keyword ad group (combine various types).

  • Duplicate keywords with different match types.

  • Add exact match keywords with low volume.

  • Use manual bidding at the keyword level.

Ad Level

Do's
  • Add as many ads as possible with all available options (15 headlines, 4 descriptions, better text, images, and recommendations).

  • Test, test, test!

Don'ts
  • Allow typos to slip through.

  • Make misguided or false claims.

Ad Extension Level

Do's
  • Use as many ad extensions as possible.
    Example: Callout, Rich Snippet, Prices, etc.

Don'ts

It’s Time To Put Pen To Paper & Start Writing

Your ad copy plays a huge role in the success of your ad campaign. Don’t get us wrong, it’s just a small piece of the puzzle. 

Great Google Ads copy alone won’t take your campaign to the moon if you’re missing proper settings, conversion tracking, and have a poor landing page.

Check out our guide on writing Google Ads that convert 👇

How to Write Effective Google Ads Copy | Zima Media

The Secret to Great Google Ads Copy

1
It's super relevant to your target audience and clearly describes your product or service
2
It includes your target keywords and has a clear Call-to-Action (CTA)
3
It highlights the benefits your offer to your potential clients and addresses their search queries
4
It's free of grammatical errors and follows the same capitalization style throughout
5
It's not deceiving and blends naturally with the organic search results

Keep An Eye On Things & Update

It’s critical to keep track of and monitor all of your marketing campaigns. Because most businesses spend a large amount of money on PPC advertising and Google Ads is such a data-rich platform, you should be reviewing your progress often to identify possibilities and prevent wasted expenditure.

Your Google Ads will go through a learning period of one to three weeks (based on your budget) after which you can start tracking the key metrics. Here are some examples of Key Performance Indicators you’ll want to track:

  • Spend vs Results (conversions, conversion rate, cost per conversions and evolution) vs Real Business Goals
  • Optimization Score (account level)
  • Search Lost Impressions (search lost IS rank + search lost IS budget) – Campaign level
  • Quality Score (ad relevance + expected CTR + landing page experience) – Ad group level

Google Ads For Shopify

More and more brands are turning to Shopify, and it’s easy to understand why. Compared to other platforms, building your site is effortless, the integration with other apps and tools is simple, and there’s a great community ready to help. That’s why we decided to give Shopify it’s own section.

As with all other platforms, one challenge remains—how do you put your business in front of as many customers as possible?

That’s where Google Ads come in. Shopping campaigns can give you a massive boost in traffic and, hopefully, sales. You can easily synchronize all your products from Shopify’s Google channel. This means all your products will be pushed to Google’s Merchant Center automatically, allowing you to create your campaign easily.

Read more about Google Ads for Shopify here:

Google Ads Conversion Tracking (Shopify)
How to Create Google Ads Audiences
Google Ads Search Campaign Setup

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, absolutely. Because Google Ads are cost-effective for companies of all sizes to reach a virtually limitless targeted audience, they’re worth it. They’re quite adaptable and may be started, stopped, paused, or even revised at any moment.

These are text ads that you find at the top of Google’s Search Results Pages (SERPs) that let you reach people while they’re searching on Google for the products and services you offer.

It’s fantastic for driving sales, leads, and traffic to your website since you can target individuals actively looking for your items and services.

Various forms of Google Ads exist, and they all look different. Search Ads can be seen at the top of your SERP (Search Engine Results Page) with the word ‘Ad’ next to the URL, as seen in the example below.

Google Ads is the quickest way to draw customers to your brand and grow sales online. Whether your business is new or established, the benefits far outweigh the cost.

Don’t touch your campaign for the first few weeks as it’s in learning mode. It needs about a month to get clicks and conversions after which it optimizes based on the data that’s been collected. After the initial period you can use the data that’s been collected to optimize based on what works and what doesn’t.

You should check in on your campaign about twice a week and apply recommendations. Be careful, though, as over-optimization can be just as bad as no management, which is why many businesses opt to leave it to the professionals instead of wasting money.

Neither is better than the other because they work towards different ends, and both can bring unbelievable results combined! The main difference is that ads are paid, whereas SEO is free, which often means that you’ll see faster results with ads.

See How The Pros Do It

So you’ve read through the guide, you know your business needs ads, but you’re not entirely sure you can take it on. Sign up to our portal to see what we offer and how we can help your business!