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Google Ads for SaaS

Google Ads for SaaS: How To Setup An Effective Campaign

Google Ads is effective for SaaS solutions because it helps to target people and businesses actively searching for a solution and also provides tools for raising awareness.

This inbound marketing strategy is also efficient because you have greater control over spend and only pay for performance in the form of clicks and conversions.

Launching a Google Ads campaign for an SaaS business is straightforward and you can be up and running within a few hours. Google provides keyword research tools to help you assess the potential of the market and then add that to your campaign.

So, you can build your campaign ad groups according to keyword themes and also check with tools like SERanking what keywords competitors are bidding on.

Here are some features to setup in Google Ads for your SaaS campaign.


Campaign objective

Your choice of campaign objective determines the campaign types that are available to you and the features that you have at your disposal. As an SaaS business there are a number of objectives that would be relevant to you, but the best would be to drive “Leads” in the form of signups and bookings.

Campaign Goals


Campaign type

Next, you will select the campaign type that will help you reach potential customers. The best option is the Search campaign because it helps you to reach people who are actively searching on Google for an SaaS solution.

Campaign Type

This will help you get as many signups as possible for your SaaS solution  within your campaign budget limit.



There are a number of factors to consider when setting a Google Ads budget for your SaaS campaign. How much you have to spend each month is a good place to start and that helps to decide on your budget limit. However, it should be sufficient enough to help you achieve the goals of your campaign.

Of course you can start with a low budget like $500 or £300 per month to test the keywords and ads you’ve chosen and see what response you get. And you can then increase it as performance improves.

AdWords Budget Setting

But the average cost per click will also be a factor and if it is high because of a lot of competition, then you may want to start with a higher budget.

Make sure to regularly check your Search terms report to see if you are not getting searches that are not relevant. If you find any that are not relevant, then add them as negative keywords, to prevent them from wasting your budget.



There are automated and manual bidding strategies in your Google Ads campaign that you can use at different stages of your advertising. With a new Google Ads campaign for your SaaS business, you are best served by starting with an automated bid strategy.

A good one to start with is Maximise Clicks, which gets you as many clicks as possible for your budget. Use this strategy for a few weeks or months until you get sufficient traffic and can assess what your conversion rates are and what performance is like.

You can then change to a conversion-based bid strategy like Maximise Conversions with a target cost per acquisition setting. Or a manual bid strategy like Manual CPC with the enhanced cost per click option to have more control over your bids while increasing conversions with the help of the machine learning algorithm.

Bid Strategies


Keyword selection is an important step to running an effective Google Ads campaign for your SaaS business. There are many third party tools you can use for this including SE Ranking, but the Keyword Planner tool in your account is a good place to start.

Keyword Planner Tool

It includes a forecasting tool too and that helps you to assess the potential traffic you can get in the future and the average costs you will pay. However, the best insights you will get is from testing your keywords.

This gives you an accurate picture of the impression and click volume and the average click through rates and conversions.


Text ads

Your text ads should be well targeted to the searches that people perform on Google as they look for an SaaS solution. This means using good copywriting principles in your headlines and descriptions.

Fortunately the Google Ads system is there to give you a hand. First you provide as many headlines and descriptions in your responsive search ads and the system picks the best combination for each search query that your ads appear in.

Some best practice is to include a strong call to action that is irresistible and leads to high signup rates. For example, including ‘free’ is a powerful way for people to signup for a free SaaS trial or solution.

Also, make sure your keywords are included in the ads, preferably in Headline one. People are more likely to click through to your website when they see their keyword in the text ad, and this boosts your click through rates and Quality Scores.

Also, your ads have to pass a minimum Ad Rank threshold to appear on page one or in the top positions. So, ensure that you write highly targeted ads.


Ad schedule

Ad schedule allows you to choose the exact days and hours you would like to run your ads. As an SaaS provider, running your ads 24/7 is best because people are now searching at all times and all on days including evenings and weekends.

Ad Schedule

However, as you run your ads and gain more impressions and clicks you will begin to see which are your best performing days and times. And you can adjust your ad schedule to run only during those periods or you can use bid modifiers to increase bids during those times.


Where your ads appear

As a Search campaign running text ads, your ads will appear on the Google search engine. And if you’ve opted in to Search partners, your ads will appear on those platforms too including Google owned properties like YouTube and Maps.

The segment reports help you to see how your Google traffic is performing for metrics like clicks, click through rate and conversions. And you can compare this to the Search partners performance.

It’s important to note that Google Ads does not break out the Search partner reports for each individual partner and the results you see are for all of them combined. So, you are not able to see how each Search partner is working individually and you cannot eliminate any underperforming ones, which is a slight disadvantage.

Also, it’s important to know that your ads can appear in the top positions of the page or the bottom depending on the competitiveness of your bids.


Case Study

Timeneye, a Software as a Service solution contacted me to review their campaigns with recommendations on how to improve them. The review revealed that the conversion rates were low and that the campaigns were not setup correctly. I recommended setting up a new campaign and doing keyword research, which I did and launched within a few days. The result was a 26% increase in conversions and the interaction rate increased by 196%. Read the case study.

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    I'm a Certified Google Ads Expert and Marketing Author and in this blog I share my latest tips and secrets on how to promote your business successfully on the web and increase customer loyalty, retention and advocacy on Google Ads.

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