Google AdWords

How to Use AdWords Scripts to Optimize Paid Search Performance

How to Use AdWords Scripts to Optimize Paid Search Performance

See our Top 5 Scripts and Learn How to get Started Today

What Are AdWords Scripts?

AdWords scripts provide the opportunity to automate, customize and control your AdWords account with a simple JavaScript code. Scripts allow account managers to go beyond the provided tools in AdWords by leveraging external factors.

Why Should I Use Them?

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Making Paid Search Marketing Pay Off Part 2 – Setting Goals

In part one of this blog series “Making Paid Search Marketing Pay Off”, I discussed the power of targeting and how Google AdWords can be used as a lead generation tool. In part two, I’m going to take you through the key items to consider when developing your Paid Search Marketing Strategy including setting goals and optimizing the campaign.

Setting goals, as in every aspect of marketing, is critical to creating a successful Google AdWords campaign. Some typical goals used for a Google campaign include:

•You want your ad to increase traffic to your website (Better Offers)
•You want more leads (Better Landing Page)
•You want a low cost per click (Better Segmentation)
•You want your ad to show up at the top of the search results (Better Metrics)

Here are 4 ways that give you the biggest bang for your buck with Paid Search Marketing.

Offer
One of the most important elements of any AdWords campaign strategy is the offer. In my experience, the most effective ads are the ones with a specific call to action. A “20% off” offer or a strong white paper offer is going to deliver a higher click-through-rate than a self-focused ad about your company or the benefits of your products.

If you have multiple offers, segment each of the offers by keyword to make each offer more relevant to the searcher. The more relevant the offer, the higher the click-through rate and the less money you spend.

Landing Page
Once your offer has been developed, the next key step is to create lead generating landing pages. A good landing page will fulfill the goal of the searcher quickly. When someone clicks on an ad, they expect to be led to a page where they can complete a form. Many marketers make the mistake of leading traffic back to their site’s homepage, which may not be relevant to the keyword or offer that got them clicking in the first place. A landing page also prevents distracting navigation options leading away from the goal of a conversion. Of course don’t just take my word for it, see for yourself just how effective landing pages are.

Segmentation
AdWords makes it easy to segment your campaign in order to meet each of these goals, including campaigns, ad groups and keywords. These segments can be changed and optimized as your campaign progresses, giving you the chance to capitalize on what’s working, without wasting time or money on what’s not. You can also use the campaign management tools to target the campaign geographically or by time of day, to make it more likely to attract the segments you are focused on,

Metrics
Once you’ve created a Google AdWords campaign that has well designed offers, landing pages, and keywords, the work is really just beginning. It is imperative that your campaign is monitored closely at all times to ensure optimal results. For example, shutting down ad campaigns that aren’t working will help you save money and increase your ad positioning. While anAdWords campaign will produce a lot of data, it’s important to monitor the most important pieces of this data. Determining Key Performance Indicators (KPI) like number of conversions and cost per conversion will ensure your campaign is in line.

An effective Paid Search marketing campaign can deliver affordable and immediate results only with a good offer, a smart strategy and an effective landing page. A smart marketer will use all of these tips in their AdWords campaign to drive the best results possible. Of course we’re more than happy to do this work for you, it’s what we do best.

To learn more, please download our free white paper How to Make Paid Search Pay Off.

Making Paid Search Marketing Pay Off Part 1 – The Power of Targeting

Paid Search Marketing is one of the most effective marketing tools ever developed. It is more targeted and flexible than any other media option. Google AdWords is the elephant in the room of paid search marketing with an estimated 90% market share. Advertisers currently spend $28 billion a year with Google, up from $66 million ten years ago. AdWords is quite simple: you bid to have your ad shown when a specific keyword is searched for. Google will display your ad based on three things: The price of your keyword bid, the click-through-rate history of your ad, and the quality score that Google assigns your ad. This system is survival of the fittest, ruthlessly striving to improve the quality of the ads for the audience rather than the advertiser.

Clearly Google knows what they’re doing.

The key feature of this advertising system is the incredibly accurate targeting options. You can target your ad on Google’s search pages, partner pages, or countless number of sites that use Google Ads. It doesn’t end there though, you can also target on specific geographic and demographic specifications as well.

targeting

Google AdWords Targeting

Traditional media does not allow for this level of targeting which relies on Interruption Marketing — targeting individuals while they are busy doing something else, such as reading an article or driving a car. This often results in low response rates, and is referred to as “Push Marketing” because your message is being pushed in front of people, even if they’re not listening.

When searching with Google, people are actively seeking something. It is natural for them to click on your ad if you answer a question they’re asking. If a cloud storage company wanted to target 30-40 year old CIOs of large companies, placing an ad in a tech magazine would certainly find the right audience, but probably not at a time when he or she is considering their company’s cloud data storage options. Google AdWords will present your ad when the person types their search query, and are clearly interested in your message.

Targeting ads based on what people are actually searching is extremely effective, and often results in cost-per-lead and cost-per-sale that is lower than other media types. The key to making your program work is considering all of the variables.

  • Keywords
  • Ad Copy
  • Banner Ad Design and Copy
  • Offers
  • Bids
  • Budgets
  • Geographic Testing

This system allows you to run multiple ads featuring multiple offers on thousands of keywords at the same time. There is no other form of media that gives you this kind of capabilities. Google AdWords has changed the entire landscape of marketing. It has changed the way we as marketers deliver and target our messages, and has changed the way we as consumers receive the message, and eventually perceive the brand. Ads are now assisting people instead of agitating, and that has very exciting possibilities.

On our next post we’ll discuss the creation, testing, and measuring of Paid Search Marketing. If you can’t wait, download our free white paper How to Make Paid Search Pay Off now.

Preparing for the Google AdWords Exam

When I was asked to write a blog on how to prepare for the Google AdWords exam my first thought was “that’s simple. Just study”. However, I do realize there are people out there who are just starting out in PPC or have never needed to take the Google AdWords exam. So I’ll start from scratch.

The first thing you want to do when preparing for the exam is visit the Google AdWords Certification Learning Center. 

There you will find everything you need to prepare yourself for the Google AdWords Certification Exam. The nice thing is that if you click on one of the exams on the page Google shows you everything you need to study. For example, if you click on the Google advertising fundamentals exam link, Google makes the things you do not need to study non-clickable.

Now for those of you who learn through action as opposed to reading (like myself). I recommend while you are studying, you go through the steps in your PPC account. For example, one of the sections for the fundamentals exam is Account Management Basics. When you click on the link it takes you to an informational page that talks about the 6 main tabs in your account. While you are reading, I suggest you go through the tabs in your account. This at least lets you see what Google is talking about. I also suggest writing notes. Sometimes it’s a little easier to retain information if you write it out.

The exam itself has two parts. The first part is the Google Advertising Fundamentals Exam. This part of the certification is mandatory for everyone looking to become certified. The second part of the exam lets you pick between three options:

  1. Search Advertising Advanced Exam
  2. Display Advertising Advanced Exam
  3. Reporting & Analysis Advanced Exam

When studying for the second exam you should use the same model as studying for the first. However, pay close attention to any hypothetical situations Google might use. The second exam tends to be a little more detailed than the first exam. This is probably why they call them “advanced” exams.

A very important part to remember is that you do not have to take both exams back-to-back. Google allows you to take the fundamentals exam, and then take your second exam when you’re ready.

All four exams require that the test taker reach a certain mark to be considered as passing. They are as follows:

  1. Google Advertising Fundamentals – 85% or higher
  2. Search Advertising Advanced Exam – 80% or higher
  3. Display Advertising Advanced Exam – 70% or higher
  4. Reporting & Analysis Advanced Exam – 75% or higher

Lastly, remember that it is just a test and that if you don’t pass the first time you can always take it again. 5 years ago it happened to me, but I’m still here both happy and certified.

8 Tips for Optimizing Your PPC Campaign

Google AdWordsThe basis of any good PPC (pay per click) campaign is a good keyword list. Developing one is like a balancing act – you need to make sure the keywords you’re using fit your business, but you also need to take care that you are using keywords that people are searching for. Lean too much towards relevant keywords while ignoring popular ones and you may not get enough traffic while if you take the opposite tack you may waste budget on visitors to your website that aren’t interested at all in your business because your keywords are too broad.

Your website should provide a springboard for generating an initial keyword list. Don’t be afraid to look at your competition’s sites as well for idea. Once you’ve collected a few keywords you can use them Google’s keyword tool to find other related keyword phrases, how often people are searching for those keyword phrases, and how competitive the landscape is for each keyword phrase. While this is good first start, to truly develop a great keyword list, you should think outside of the box for more keyword ideas.

People often search when they need a question answered or a problem solved rather than searching for your product or service by name. Put yourself in the shoes of your potential customer – what pain points does your product or service address?  Focusing on the problem your product solves rather than the solution can lead you to your most valuable pool of keywords.

Another point to consider when building your keyword list is to watch out for keywords with more than one meaning.  For instance the word “crane” is going to have a very different meaning for a construction worker than it does for a bird watcher.  Abbreviations can be the most serious offender when creating a keyword list.  An abbreviation could apply to your offer, but it could also apply to dozens of other things as well.  Always keep in mind what a person may be looking for when they use a particular keyword phrase.  If there’s ever a doubt there’s always the possibility of using negative keywords in your account as well to keep the wrong people from seeing your ads.

To recap, here are the top things to remember for your PPC campaign optimization effort.

  1. You know best about which are the most relevant keywords
  2. Make sure you also mix in less relevant but more popular keywords
  3. Look internally and externally for keyword ideas
  4. Think outside the box
  5. Infuse your campaigns with new keywords periodically
  6. Think about keyword meanings and abbreviation
  7. Focus on the audience problems rather than solutions
  8. Review your keyword metrics and discard keywords which aren’t working

For more information about optimizing your AdWords or other search engine campaigns, download our white paper, Top 10 Cost-Saving Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Pay Per Click Budget.