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PPC Competitor Research

How Does Google AdWords Actually Work?

Google AdWords is an advertising platform that works primarily on a Pay Per Click (PPC) model. That basically means Google charges it’s advertisers a fee for every searcher that clicks through – and that fee is determined by their position in the search results among other things.


This is the primary model in Adwords, however over the years it has evolved to include charging for impressions through the Cost Per Thousand (CPM) impressions model.


It also includes charges for ‘calls’ through call only campaigns; ‘downloads’ in the universal app campaigns and ‘views’ for video campaigns in YouTube


However, Search Advertising still remains its primary model and represents over 90% of its income. The following are the steps to follow to setup a Search campaign in Google AdWords


Do keyword research

Keyword research is one of the first actions to start with. With knowledge of your target market and their requirements, you can then make a small list of keywords that you’ll use to do thorough keywords research.


Using the keyword planner tool in AdWords you can research all relevant keywords that you will bid on.


Keyword Planner Tool


Besides using keywords to do your research, your website can be a great resource to find an extensive list. Add it in the Keyword planner and it will Search your page content to find relevant keywords. Your competitors sites are also another great resource to find keywords for campaigns, and you can add it in the keyword planner.


Also use a tool like Spyfu to spy on your competitors keywords or use other similar tools too. I like to use the SE Ranking Competitor research tool.


PPC Competitor Research



Assign a budget

Budget setting is a challenge for many advertisers and that’s understandable. It’s not always easy to determine what to spend per day, week or month especially when first launching campaigns.


However, starting with your keyword research as mentioned above, will help you to decide on what budget to set.


The keyword research will inform you what the average bid is for your keywords and you can use the keyword planner to find out what you are likely to spend for the keyword list you have.


Another way to overcome budget challenges is to begin with a test budget. This will give you an indication of what your traffic levels will be as you increase budgets and what returns to expect.


Write text ads

Having chosen your keyword list and then grouped them into themes, you should now create your ads.


Each ad group you create should have a minimum of 3 text ads. That is mainly for testing purposes and it helps to achieve high Click Through Rates (CTR) and improved Quality Scores.


And aim to include your keywords in the Ads and in Headline 1 were possible. Searchers are more likely to click an ad if they see the keyword they’ve used in the Ad itself.


Create campaign

Now it’s time to create the campaign and upload your ad groups, ads and keywords. Because you are launching a Search campaign, your ads will appear in the Google search results and you can also select Search Partners too.


Search Partners


You will also set other important features at the campaign level like budget, bid strategy, location targeting and ad scheduling.


For bid strategy, I would recommend the ‘Maximise Clicks’ strategy to begin with, to try and get as many clicks as possible for your budget.


If you’ve used Excel for example to map out your ads groups, ads and keywords, you can upload them to the campaign you’ve created and use the Adwords editor tool to do so. It’s a free bulk editing tool provided by Google, that will save you a lot of time.


After uploading your ads, they will go through a review process, and if approved your ads will start running.

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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