The truth is that not every company has the budget and marketing spend of $20,000 or more for a single campaign on Adwords and thats why utilizing Adwords at the best of your abilities becomes the best bet. In order to get the highest return on a small investment, you’ll need to put that small budget into the hands of an Adwords specialist that can give you a feasible indication of what your money will do, how long the budget will last, and a list of several alternatives to help your business reach its short and long term goals. It wouldn’t be the best of ideas to put your investment into the hands of your marketing & sales team – which might not have the slightest idea of Adwords platform – and find out that a number of Adwords mistakes were made when you run through it with a Adwords expert. Tons of money gone to waste when you could have just hired someone that knows the job. If you are working with a budget of under $5k, this article is for you. With the right targeting options and account structure, you can get those impressions and clicks.
Clear Campaign Objective
Know what exactly you’d like to accomplish with your Adwords campaign. It could be that you would like to generate more traffic for a site or product or maybe target specific keywords? Having a clear idea of what you’d like to achieve, helps create a more cost-effective and targeted ad copy. Its always great to have these objectives mapped out when you approach a specialist – everything will go a lot smoother after that. A maximum of 3 campaigns is recommended for the more conscious budgets.
Know the nature of your business. You might receive high numbers of traffic in the mornings, weekends, or holidays – use that for reference in scheduling your ads. For example, a business in the travel industry might do better on advertising in the weekends or during holidays. You can show your ads at specific times and/or days. If your business hours are from 8am-6pm, you might run your ads during these hours. Alternatively, if your business is slow during a particular time during the day – running a special offer ad during this time will help boost business.
Tip: steer clear from Google’s Display Network [insert link to our content] – a defaulted option that displays your ads on sites like The New York Times, About.com, etc – you are less likely to find qualified customers and leads on sites. It is recommended to start with Google Search Results and then move up from there.
For a small business, it might not be the best idea to target generic keywords as they require higher bids. Look for more unique and long keywords that will draw traffic but compete effectively on a small investment. You can find these profitable keywords through WordStream’s Keyword Niche Finder, Google’s Keyword Tool, Google search auto-complete, or even your Analytics account.
Make use of the broad, exact, or phrase match keywords – this will help keep your PPC spending under control leading to more potential customers. If you’re a men’s hat company, an exact match such as [men’s hat] will not show up for “men’s crochet hat”. Targeting your ads with long-tail keywords like “men’s hat halifax nova scotia” will give more relevant impressions and clicks at a lower bid. Long-tail keywords are more specific and targeted to a particular business. These keywords are great for small to medium businesses targeting local to regional customers.
Target Competitors & Industry
It might seem like a low-blow to your creative expertise but its a smart move to ensure that your customers know that you exist with the services & products that you offer. Use your industry leaders and competitors as keywords (after protecting against trademark policies) is a trick to increase impressions. Don’t use their name in ad copies but compose the copy so that it still relates to what the visitor will find on your landing page. This helps utilize a small budget since they have a low cost-per-click (CPC) and high conversion rates.
Tip: always keep a side-eye on your competitors budget, keywords, and ad copies using spy tools like KeywordSpy and Semrush.
As you engage in creating different campaigns, you might forget or ignore the fact that some keywords are duplicating itself. Using similar keywords within different campaigns might trigger two or more ads for a particular search query. This will lead to competing keywords within your own ad campaigns – not so good if one ad campaign is more related to a search query than the other. For example, keywords like “bedroom furniture NS” and “furniture NS” will show up against each other – a one ad, search query will have both of your ads competing for a spot. Google will choose the keyword that is broader.
One of the best ways, in my opinion, to effectively manage your Adwords spend is through negative keywords. You can push to the side searches that don’t relate to your businesses goal, giving way for reduced PPC cost and improve ROI, increase traffic and qualified leads, and raise quality score. If you men’s hat company, you’d have negative keywords like “women”, “girls”, and “female”. With an extensive list of keywords, updated regularly, you’ll draw more prospective customers, searching for YOU. Use negative keyword tools like Wordstream’s Negative Keyword Finder or irrelevant organic search results provided in Google Analytics to help build that list.
Target Device & Location
If you’re a small to medium sized business working locally. It is best that you target by location – the more specific, the better. You can target by zip code, city, or radius by mile/km around your business. Bid higher in locations that get you the most business. You can view the geographical location of your past traffic via the dimensions tab. You’ll know where to put your money, once you know where your money comes from.
Device targeting is a great way to offer different offers or extensions to mobile, tablet, and desktop/laptop users. A mobile user has the ability to instantly call businesses using the call extension or buy straight from businesses when they search.
Tip: you can use geotargeting to target users outside your city for special coupons and offers in order to reward them for their effort and initiative.
Focus on Quality Score
Any small business with a limited budget should put quality score high on their priority list. As a high quality score is related to increased ad rank and decreased cost. You can achieve a good quality score if and when you have relevant ads, high click-through-rates, and quality landing pages.
Manage your ad campaigns carefully. Keep track of how they are doing regularly, take time to see which ones are performing the best and adjust accordingly. Don’t change anything until you have the data (conversions, clicks, impressions) to back it up. If you are a branded company, it might be a good idea to include your name in the ad copy; otherwise, test it out and you might just brand yourself.
Tip: if you are slowly approaching your daily budget, try decreasing your bid so that you are visible longer, without much interference to a campaign’s performance.
If your ads are positioned above search results, you can amplify them by adding additional details such as phone numbers, address, special offers, or ratings. These details can be enable through the ad extensions option. Giving searchers a variety of alternatives when they’d like to contact you.
Which one of these tips & tricks have you used? Has one of them helped you save big on your AdWords budget? Let me know in the comments below.
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