As the shift from traditional media advertising to the web accelerates more and more small to medium businesses are migrating some or, in some cases, all of their advertising spend to Search Engine Marketing or SEM for short.
Not to be confused with SEO which is more focussed on optimising your website to improve its visibility in organic (non-paid) search results, Search Engine Marketing involves paying to advertise your business via search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo.
The undisputable king of course is Google AdWords which as at December 2012 comprised 93% of the paid search market. Some of the main features and benefits of Google AdWords include:
- Providing relevant advertisements
- Being able to target your audience
- There is no minimum spend
- You only pay when someone responds to one of your ads
- You can make changes at any time
- You can choose the timing of your ads
and last but not least, you can measure your results.
The ease with which businesses can enter into paid search is unfortunately for most one of the biggest problems as advertisers rarely understand how the system or how to set their accounts up for success.
Whilst optimising AdWords campaigns can literally be a full-time job there are a few basic tips that will help you obtain better results more quickly in addition to making the most of your ad spend.
Structure Your Campaigns
Within AdWords, advertisers can have multiple campaigns within which they can have virtually unlimited ad-groups. All too often however advertisers will lump all of their advertising into one campaign and one ad-group. This leads to un-specific keyword searches and scattered results. Breaking your services down into separate ad groups allows you to target those services more effectively and also to craft several ad variations. You can then test these ads against each other and optimise them for improved results.
Add Negative Keywords
In just the same way as adding the right keywords helps to target your ads and spend more effectively, adding negative keywords can help greatly in preventing your ads showing for irrelevant keyword searches – and you being charged when someone clicks throughâ¦
Hook up Google Analytics and Set Goals
Once your campaign is running smoothly you really need to assess how your site traffic is benefiting. The easiest way to monitor site traffic is with Google Analytics. If you have a Propeller website, you already have Google Analytics integration so go see how your site is performing. In addition to checking the general performance of your site however, Google Analytics and Google Adwords allow you to track specific actions such as a sale, submission of your contact form or subscribing to your e-newsletter.
Optimise, Optimise, Optimise
One of the main mistakes people make with AdWords is thinking that once they are set up and their credit card is being charged, they’re all done. Whilst you could certainly take this approach, Google recommends that you constantly monitor your results and optimise your ad campaigns accordingly.
Let the Professionals handle it
Whilst Google AdWords is relatively straightforward to get up and running, it is not necessarily straightforward to get and maintain good results and improve your ROI. Setting up AdWords correctly and optimising both your website and AdWords campaigns on an ongoing basis demands a degree of skill, experience and some time on an ongoing basis. With both the Google Search Advertising Fundamentals and Search Advertising Advanced qualifications under our belts, Propeller can help you set up and run your AdWords campaigns effectively. For further information please email or call us on 07 3245 7776 today.