10 Google AdWords Hacks for First-Timers

Google Q: I’m just getting started with Google AdWords. What is one tip or trick I should consider?

A: Start with Search Network only. “I would start with Search Network only, not Display Network only ads. Search allows you to show up only when someone is searching for your keywords. The display network will give you a lot of impressions, but not a lot of quality clicks. Use the first six months of your campaign to fine tune keywords, bids, etc., to use your budget wisely. Then you can expand to the display network later.” Angela Harless, AcrobatAnt

Dive into keyword tools. “Your ad performance is dependent on the keywords you select. If you’re just getting started, utilize Google’s Keyword Planner to identify a list of keywords to potentially use in your campaign. You can also get keyword inspiration from tools like SpyFu, WordStream and AdGooroo.” Brett Farmiloe, Markitors

Set budget limits. “Google AdWords is a very powerful and effective tool yet can be intimidating and confusing in the beginning. Be sure to set hard spend limits for your campaign and for your ad groups. This will make sure that you don’t burn through your entire budget on the first day.” Andrew Thomas, SkyBell Doorbell

Optimize your landing page and conversion goals. “Before you start an AdWords campaign, make sure that you’ve properly implemented conversion tracking on your optimized landing page. Often, small businesses drive traffic using AdWords and have no idea if it’s converting at all. Set up proper conversion goals in Google Analytics before you start spending money to drive traffic to your landing page.” Syed Balkhi, OptinMonster

Use AdWords Scripts. “Managing AdWords accounts can be made increasingly effective if you use AdWords Scripts. With these scripts, you can automatically label keywords for bid updates, track performance, monitor quality score and much more. There are a variety of optimizations that you can implement.” Marcela De Vivo, Brilliance

Link them with Google Analytics. “As the AdWords reporting system alone won’t tell you what happens after people click your ads, I recommend linking your AdWords account to your Google Analytics. This will provide you a wealth of information, starting with their initial ad clicks all the way to their exit or checkout. Also, consider linking them to Google Webmaster tools to get the most comprehensive reports, all under one roof.” Nicolas Gremion, Free-eBooks.net

Limit your geographic reach. “Google AdWords can get expensive quickly. One way to limit your costs is to restrict your ads so that they only appear to users searching within specific states, regions, cities or zip codes. Even if you provide products or services nationwide, starting with smaller geo-specific ad campaigns will allow you to test and optimize your campaigns for max ROI before expanding your reach and spend.” Robert De Los Santos, Sky High Party Rentals

Make sure ads direct to content. “We’ve seen that AdWords are a great compliment to content marketing. If you can put ad spend behind an awesome white-paper or e-book, you’ll land a lot more leads than directing the leads to a landing page offering nothing more than a sales call. We used a knowledge management template and it has worked great.” Kelsey Meyer, Influence & Co.

Learn the different keyword match types. “There are three well-known match types on Google AdWords: Exact Match, Phrase Match and Broad Match. But there are also the lesser known Negative Keywords and Phrase Match Modifiers. Sometimes improving the quality score of a keyword is as simple as switching a Broad Match keyword to Phrase Match. Doing this will direct more relevant traffic to your site.” Andrew Namminga, Andesign

Experiment continuously. “This is 100 percent the place to experiment. You have to be diligent and run many campaigns to see what works — and run them often. Many factors play into how your AdWords are doing, so their effectiveness will change over time. I’ve heard of companies designing hundreds of campaigns around multiple sets of keywords and tweaking them based on data. Get ready to dig in to be successful.” Neel Murthy, swapbox

(Source: TCA)