If you’ve ever done a Google search — and who hasn’t? — you’ve inevitably noticed the paid ad placements similar to the one above.
These uniquely powerful ads — dubbed “Google AdWords” — represent one of the easiest and most effective ways to get your brand noticed. In fact, using AdWords, small businesses can compete against national brands and actually win.
However, there is both a science and an art to AdWords. To most cost-efficiently use this digital tactic, you need to thoroughly understand how it works.
At Davis Advertising, our Digital Strategy department knows the ins and outs of AdWords. Several members of our team are Google-certified in AdWords, so we constantly help clients maximize the program’s value by optimizing their ROI.
To appreciate some of the challenges (and complexities) inherent in leveraging AdWords, consider the whole concept of relevance.
Imagine using Google to look for a pizza place and being served up an ad with the headline “Fresh Pizza.” Then, when you click it, you’re brought to a website that says, “Free Fresh Pizza … with every vacuum purchase.” Chances are, you’d feel extremely misled — and more than a tad annoyed. And for good reason, because, after all, the website has no relevance in your quest to satisfy your hunger. Essentially, you’ve been duped.
The geniuses at Google know full well that your frustration may spill over to them — so much so that the next time you need to search you may use an alternate search engine. And that’s certainly not good business for Google.
That’s why Google’s primary mission is to ensure that the words and ads displayed on a search results page are legitimately applicable to the term(s) people are searching. As an AdWords sponsor, the onus is on you to know the keywords people use when searching Google for products and services.
All of which brings us to the subject of landing pages.
A landing page, the website that appears when someone clicks an ad, represents the “keys to the Google AdWords kingdom.” Landing pages are intensely scrutinized by Google; they are scanned for readability, content, structure and other factors, so that Google can determine if the outcome of the initial search is in line with what the landing page is all about.
In human terms, Google analyzes the search terms and the landing page and asks, “Is this a page that I would find useful if I typed in these search terms?”
Simply put: At Google, relevance is king.
We’ve only scratched the surface of Google AdWords here, but you probably get the concept. Google AdWords can do wonders for your business, Web traffic and your bottom line, but only when used correctly.
Davis Advertising thoroughly understands this process: A process that involves knowing the content; writing the content; determining what customers consider the relevant keywords when searching for the content; and creating customized, well-written landing pages that use those specific keywords an appropriate number of times — and (very important!) use them as part of proper English sentences, rather than as part of nonsensical itemized laundry lists. Google considers that to be a big no-no, and will severely penalize your AdWords ranking accordingly.
In short, a Google AdWords program requires what Davis Advertising delivers: Landing pages that are relevant, well-built (code-wise), and represent a positive experience for visitors. Doing so means we provide our clients with low costs-per-ad. High ad rankings. And, ultimately, increased ROI.
SAMPLE CASE STUDY #1
By developing the appropriate landing pages and leveraging the right keywords, Davis can typically swing ad rank up — which brings cost-per-click down.
Client: A Massachusetts-based furniture store
Prior to working with Davis, this company’s Google AdWords listings were sent to its website’s home page, instead of a customized landing page. As such, the analytic results were discouraging:
• Click-through-rate: .34%
• Average cost-per-click: $1.61
• Average position/ranking: 3.5
After implementing an AdWords program and customized landing page that were developed by Davis, the results changed dramatically:
• Click-through-rate: .59%
• Average cost-per-click: $1.25
• Average position/ranking: 2.9
SAMPLE CASE STUDY #2
Client: Southwick’s Zoo
In one month, Davis spent $5,333 of Southwick’s marketing budget on AdWords. Our efforts generated 1,685,918 impressions and 13,963 clicks.
To interpret and appreciate the meaning of these results, Davis performed an analysis of these statistics, essentially focusing on answering the question: What’s the value of each click? More specifically, how do we quantify that value?
Davis’ Digital Strategy department performed the following analysis.
Of the approximately 14,000 clicks, 2,747 reflected people who clicked on the “Buy Tickets Now” landing page button to purchase tickets. These were clicks on a button, that said clearly, “Buy Tickets Online”, so you would expect these people to have an actual interest in purchasing tickets immediately. This equates to a cost-per-conversion of $1.94.
Tickets for Southwick’s Zoo sell for $24. Assuming that JUST ONE QUARTER of the people who clicked on the “Buy Tickets Now” bought JUST ONE ticket, we’re talking about $16,482 in sales. These numbers are all based on projected gross figures, and do not accurately portray the number of tickets sold online. However, you can start to see the powerful effect that AdWords can bring.
Point being: If every time you put a dollar in a change machine you got back $1.25, would you limit the number of times you fed it dollars? Hardly.
Likewise, a properly run AdWords campaign can do wonders for your ROI.