So many businesses owners have no idea what Google Ads are. Since it can make a huge impact on your lead generation and sales, I think it is essential knowledge for every business owner and marketer.

Ads is Google’s advertising platform, and it accounts for the vast majority of the the technology behemoth’s revenue. In 2018, 85% of Google’s $136 billion turnover came from advertising. What many people don’t think about is that since it is where the money comes from, Google is constantly working to make the platform deliver more value for advertisers. That means that if you are a business advertising on Google, then you have Google on your side (which is pretty cool).

There are three major branches of Ads:

  1. Search text ads. These are the ads you see when you do a search on Google.co.za (or any Google domain for that matter). The ads appear as the top three search results on the page, and the search results down the right hand side.

    An example of a Google Search Engine Results Page (SERP) with the Search Ads framed in blue
  2. Display text and image ads. These ads appear on Google’s Adsense network. Other websites such as News24.com, Gumtree and hundreds of thousands of others have agreed to place ads on their site in exchange for a cut of the revenue generated by the ads. The ads can either be text ads, or images.

    This is an example of a Google Display ad. The Momentum ad on the right is placed by Google on the webmd website.
    This is an example of a Google Display ad. The Momentum ad on the right is placed by Google on the webmd website.
  3. Video ads.  You can run video ads on selected sites but mainly on Youtube. You know those annoying ads that run before the clip you want to watch on Youtube? That’s a good example of video advertising.

Why Should A Small Business Run Ads On Google?

There are a lot of benefits to using Ads, but here are the ones that I feel are the most beneficial for small businesses.

  • You only pay when someone clicks your ad and gets taken through to your website. Think about it – that is like taking an ad out in a newspaper and only paying when someone reads it!
  • You can set the terms that people must be searching for that triggers your ad. So if you are a florist in Nottingham, you can set your ads to only show up when someone types “nottingham florist” or “flower delivery” into Google. Or if you are doing Display ads, you can set it that your ads only show up for people reading about Nottingham on the web. This means that you can get your ads to only show to people that are looking for your products and services! This is called inbound marketing and you can read a bit more about it in our infographics section.
  • You can set your ads to only show up where you want them to. You can set up a geographic limitation so that your ads only show up in the area you want to target, or to people searching for that location. You can make it as broad as you want. You can set your ads to only show in Wallington, or Lornon, or Surrey, or Britain, or everywhere.
  • You can specify your budget. If you want to spend £100 a month or £500 000, you can set up your account to only spend that amount of money. By making sure that you have selected your target search terms carefully, and limited the geographic area where the ads show, you can make the most out of a small budget.
  • You can track leads and ROI. This is – in my opinion – the best feature of Ads. You can set it up so that you can record a conversion. Normally a conversion is either someone filling in a form (a lead) or making a purchase (a sale) on an ecommerce site. So this allows us to make very clear data-driven decisions as to whether the campaign is working and making money. Here is an actual example – but the name of the client has been changed. ABC College tracks course applications on their website as conversions. The average course value is R17 000. In August, ABC College spent R8370.79 on Search Ads and this generated 9 completed applications. If you do the math, this equals R153 000 in revenue generated. That means the ROI (return on investment) is 1727%!

    example-of-adwords-conversions
    An actual example of costs and conversions from an active Adwords account.

Being able to track ROI so clearly is what sets Internet Marketing apart from conventional marketing avenues. How exactly would you track the ROI from handing out 10 000 pamphlets?

Google Ads is a key weapon in the search marketing arsenal and the question is not if your business should be using – the question is how should your business be using it. You can always get in touch with us to discuss the possibilities Adwords holds for your sales figures.