What is Google Ads?

(Questions I get frequently)

In today's article, I want to answer some of the most frequent questions that I receive from people / companies, who are not used to buying online advertising through Google Ads. There are a few more, but I think these are a good summary of the most common ones.

As always, if you have any kind of question or want me to elaborate on a point more extensively, you just have to leave me your comment at the end of the article and I'll be happy to answer you:

  1. What is Google Ads?
  2. How is it different from other advertising platforms?
  3. When to use Google Ads and how much do you have to invest to start a campaign?
  4. Does Google Ads really work?
  5. For what types of businesses do I recommend its use?
  6. What kind of campaigns can be carried out?
  7. How can the results be measured?
  8. Extras

1.- What is Google Ads?

Google Ads , formerly known as "Google Adwords" , is Google's advertising platform.

  • It is one of the most popular advertising options on the market, thanks to Google's dominant position on the Internet.
  • Through this tool, we can make our company known on the internet, thanks to the fact that Google has the information of the visits to web pages of millions of people in its databases.
  • Google Ads is a very simple tool to start using, however it is not so easy to get results, at least not as fast as one would like.
  • Most of the people who start using this tool do not have a good experience in their first campaigns due to many factors, but mainly due to the lack of results in their first campaigns.

Any business owner, be it a restaurant, an industrial company, a hairdresser, etc., knows that a technique to attract customers is to make offers or promotions to call them attention, so that they can test the product / service offered.

Google Ads, with its aggressive customer acquisition campaigns, also "gives away coupons to invest in their platform, from € 40 to € 80" so that you can test their product. However, getting the expected results with these coupons is really difficult if you don't have previous experience.

As business owners know, traditional advertising (television, radio, ...) has a reputation for being expensive. It is expensive yes, but it works. Therefore, a rule that we must know is that cheap ends up being expensive, or a phrase that may be somewhat outdated is "no one gives 4 pesetas hard money". (Blessed pesetas !!!). Can anyone imagine opening a restaurant or small neighborhood business without making a minimum investment of between € 50,000-300,000? If we want to do business we have to invest amounts commensurate with the volume of business we hope to obtain!

Investing in the internet is also known to be much cheaper and more effective than traditional local businesses or physical businesses.

2.- Are there more advertising platforms to publicize our company?

As we have said, Google Ads is a well-known advertising platform, mainly because it is one of the first platforms to hit the market. However, today there are a multitude of advertising platforms, and what a coincidence, almost all of them come from offering, initially, free services. The best known: Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, Tinder, Tik-Tok, ... And more to come.

What lesson can we learn from such examples? We learn that information has value, and that applications are not free. If we do not pay money to use an application / web page, we will end up paying with information, and in this case personal information: photos, comments, interests, emotional status, etc ...

Having said that, what we have to know is that each social network has a purpose, and as a consequence, we will have to advertise where we know our potential clients are.

  • Is your potential client a B2B business? Then the safest thing is that you have to use Linkedin Ads. Read this article if you want to know more about this platform.
  • Do you sell "cheap" or fashionable products? => You will most likely need to add Facebook Ads, Instagram Ads or Tik-Tok to your omnichannel marketing strategy.
  • Do you have a local business and would you like to be found by potential clients when they are looking for possible alternatives? (hotels, restaurants, campsites ...) then think about using Google Ads and Google My Business as a complement to your strategy.

3.- When should we use Google Ads and how much should we invest in our first advertising campaigns?

Google Ads, like any type of advertising tool, has the purpose of impacting the potential customer at different stages of the purchase process.

If we know our client idela, we know how he behaves, how he uses social networks and how he searches for information on the internet, then we can impact him with the appropriate messages and formats depending on the stage funnel AIDA wherever you are.

Therefore, before using Google Ads, we must carry out an exhaustive study of our potential client to have all that information and thus define with which tools to advertise our product or service and what objective we want to achieve.

On the question of how much should we invest? We must ask ourselves the following questions:

  • What margin of our product / service do we have reserved to invest in advertising to attract new customers?
  • What benefits does each new customer bring us?
  • Do we work with recurring customers or will they only buy from us once?
  • How long will we be able to sell to a client?
  • From what month do we expect to have profits in the company?
  • etc.

Having these numbers worked out well, we must bear in mind that it is not the same to get clients when nobody knows us than when we are a benchmark in the sector, we have a good reputation and the buying process is unbeatable. All this information is very valuable to read in a single sentence, but it is the most important point to understand what to invest. The Conversion Rate is the Marketing KPI key to measure the evolution of our investments.

4.- Does Google Ads really work?

The answer is obviously yes. Google Ads is used by a wide variety of companies and they have large budgets to get as many customers as their business model can absorb.

Hotel reservation companies, cloud hosting services, local businesses, agencies, telephone companies etc. All of them have an advertising strategy in which Google Ads is their only source of customer acquisition, or they use Google Ads to complement both their sales and loyalty processes.

What is important, if you have never used this platform, is to start with campaigns according to your treasury, until you can have enough interesting KPIs to be able to make decisions and get a Positive ROI. Perhaps this channel will not have a positive ROI if analyzed in isolation, but you have to see what percentage of the conversions have been generated thanks to this channel. (What we can find in Google Analitics as "assisted conversions").

As you can see, it is not an easy or fast process. Activating an advertising campaign with this tool does not guarantee 100% short-term results. There may be the case with a specific product / service, but as a general rule it is not the way to make decisions.

5.- For what types of businesses is its use recommended?

The use of the Google Ads platform, if you have reached this point, you can deduce that it is recommended for all those companies that know their potential client. They understand their needs or concerns and therefore, they know what messages and content they must generate to impact them.

If you do not know your potential client, it is better not to invest a single euro, since the probability of achieving satisfactory results is very low ... As always , my opinion, they are only advice based on experiences of more than 10 years using these tools.

6.- What kind of campaigns can be carried out?

You can carry out campaigns both to reach potential customers, who already know us (or know our product) and those who do not know us yet.

The variety of formats that can be used in Google Ads are mainly 2:

  • Ads in text format
  • Ads in banner / display format

There are variations, extensions or news that Google is constantly incorporating to try to improve the conversion rate of the ads, but with these 2 formats you can already get good results. </ p>

Some examples of campaigns or nomenclatures that are used often are:

  • Branding Campaigns
  • Remarketing Campaigns
  • Search Campaigns in text format
  • Display Campaigns
  • Google Shopping campaigns
  • ...

It should be noted that the ads are shown in the Google search engine, as in the web pages that allow advertising Google ads.

7.- How can the results be measured?

The measurement of the results of a campaign depends mainly on the objective for which they were created.

1.- If our objective is to publicize the brand, CPM or CPV are good indicators (KPIs).

  • CPM is the cost per thousand impressions of our ads
  • CPV is the cost per viewing a video

2.- If instead what we want is to get visits to our website, the CPC and the CTR are appropriate indicators.

  • CPC is the cost per click, that is, what we pay for such that a person who has seen our ad clicks on it.
  • CTR comes from English, and means "click through rate", its purpose is to know what percentage of people, who have seen an ad, have clicked on it.

3.- Finally, if for example we want to know how many people have contacted us or made a purchase on our website and it comes from one of our ads, the KPIs that we must measure, they are CPL and CPA.

  • CPL is the cost per lead, that is, what it costs us on average to get a person to fill out a form on our website.
  • CPA is the cost per acquisition, it is calculated as "how many clicks do you need to buy to get a sale". They are actually calculated as the total cost of the campaign, divided by the number of conversions (sales) that have been counted.

As we can see, there are KPIs for almost any information that we want to analyze. Nor should you exceed measuring, but it is good to create good dashboards, personalized for each business, and thus measure the evolution of all the actions carried out over time.

8.- Extras

If you have reached this point, and you are thinking of starting an online advertising campaign, I hope you take into account the advice that I have shared in this article. Many of them are the result of the investment of thousands of euros in advertising campaigns of all kinds over many years.

In any case, if you want to start an advertising campaign and you have the resources to hire a professional to help you in the early stages of growth, I think it would be your best investment. You will save many hours and many months of "trial and error" in your business.

If you have questions or need help in the creation / configuration of your campaigns you can contact me here .