How to use Google Adwords pdf

how does google adwords keyword tool work and how does the google adwords program work
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Published Date:03-08-2017
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Using AdWords Google’s AdWords program is a marvelous way for big and small advertisers to reach precisely the people they would like to reach. Ads placed via AdWords are almost always relevant to people viewing the ads; they are targeted using keywords selected by the advertiser and placed either on Google search results pages where users have searched for these keywords (AdWords search network) or on web pages that publish content including the targeted keywords (AdWords content network). In addition, it’s estimated that ads placed using AdWords reach more than 80 percent of all Internet users. Unlike old-fashioned advertising, the AdWords delivery mechanism is managed com- pletely via the Web and can be used by anyone who has a credit card. There’s not even a minimum budget. You can design effective AdWords campaigns that drive traffic to your site for just pennies a day; of course, it always helps to have a bigger budget This chapter explains how to open an AdWords account and how to create ad cam- paigns, ad groups, and text or display keyword-targeted ads. Although the mechanics of the AdWords program can appear a little daunting at first, after reading this chapter you’ll be armed with the information you need to create sophisticated and cost-effective targeted web ads. Signing Up for an Account To create an AdWords account, start by opening the Google AdWords home page at http://adwords.google.com. Open an account using the Click to Begin button under the Sign Up Now headline (Figure 10-1). Creating Your Account The new interface starts with you selecting the username and password that you would like to use with AdWords. If you already have a Google account (for example, with 277Figure 10-1. Google makes it very easy to sign up for AdWords AdSense or Gmail), you can use that account to create your AdWords account and log in to AdWords. Some people prefer to use a new login and password just for AdWords and Google (Figure 10-2). Figure 10-2. To begin creating your AdWords account, choose a username and password 278 Chapter 10: Using AdWords The next step is to set up the economics of your new ad. As shown in Figure 10-3, you’ll need to: • Select time zone country or territory • Select time zone • Choose a currency to pay for your new account You need to ensure the time zone is relevant for your reporting in Ad- Words, as this time zone data is also imported into the Google Analytics reports. The currency or time zone settings cannot be changed after you set up your account. Figure 10-3. Set time zone and currency preferences Working Backward As you’ll see, although Google makes it pretty easy to sign up for an AdWords account, the whole process can seem a little backward: you go through the steps to select your budget, create an initial ad, select keywords to match your ads to potential customers, and finally—at the end of the process—before your ad is run, you provide your credit card information. If you are like me, it would probably feel more natural to do this in reverse order: first establish an account with your credit card so you are able to understand the various account options, and then set up your first ad. Alas, that’s not an option, so to open an AdWords account you must work backward. Signing Up for an Account 279 The final step in the signup process is verifying your account via an activation email. After that, you will be able to sign in to your AdWords account using the email address and password you specified. When you sign in, you will be asked to create your first campaign (Figure 10-4) and enter your billing information to start running your ads. Figure 10-4. First steps in creating your first campaign Creating Your First Campaign First, in the “Locations, languages, and demographics” window (Figure 10-5), choose where you want your ads shown. Google tries to present you with good choices based on what it knows about where you are located (e.g., where the computer you are work- ing on is located). You can always override Google’s suggestions, but it does make sense to carefully select only the area your business serves. Figure 10-5. You can target customers in areas that Google hasn’t preselected 280 Chapter 10: Using AdWords For quite a few businesses, there are no geographic borders—in which case it makes sense to pick a wide geographic swath. The initial choices Google offers include: • Country • Specific region, such as a state • Localities, such as a city You can change the country Google has preselected for you using the “Select a different country or territory” link. You can also choose different areas within a country by clicking the appropriate link and entering a city, region, or postal code, as shown in Figure 10-6. Figure 10-6. Select a location or multiple locations for targeting Signing Up for an Account 281 You can choose a language for your ad from the long list of available languages that opens when you select Another Language in the “Loca- tions, languages, and demographics” window. You target multiple lan- guages by selecting the relevant boxes from the list, but AdWords does not translate your ads to these languages. The new interface allows some advanced settings as part of the standard campaign setup, which includes demographic bidding preferences on eligible content network sites. The next setting requires you to decide whether you want your ads for the initial campaign to show up on both the search and content network (Figure 10-7). AdWords recommends new advertisers select all available sites and devices, including iPhones and mobile devices, to reach the greatest potential audience. Figure 10-7. Select what networks and devices to target Bidding and Budget The new interface requires initial bidding and budget decisions to be made before the selection of keywords or creation of the ads. There are two options for bidding: basic and advanced. Most users will find that the basic option with both optional automatic bidding and a focus on clicks will be suitable for their campaigns (see Figure 10-8). If you select the automatic bidding option, you are unable to use posi- tion preference or accelerated delivery of ads. The Advanced option is more suitable once the campaign has been set up, because you need to set up conversion tracking before you can use the Conversion Optimizer to 282 Chapter 10: Using AdWordsFigure 10-8. The new interface allows for basic or advanced options focus on conversions. If you want to focus on impressions, conversion optimization is available only for content placement campaigns, not for those that are also running on the search network. The most important step in the setup of your campaign is setting your daily budget. You can increase or decrease this budget at any time by editing campaign settings. AdWords does not give any guidance at this stage as to a suitable budget based on the keywords targeted in your campaign, but it does offer some help in the next step. The campaign daily budget is averaged over the month, so actual daily spending may vary. Advanced Settings One AdWords feature that most people should consider is Schedule, as it allows you to set up multiple campaigns. If you select to use the automatic bidding option, you cannot use said scheduling. Signing Up for an Account 283 Frequency capping is useful for controlling budgets for CPM campaigns, so it is avail- able only for campaigns running on the content placement network. This option allows for basic “per day” or “per ad group” settings. See Figure 10-9. Figure 10-9. Ad scheduling allows for more flexibility when targeting specific customer markets Creating an Ad The next step is to create an actual ad using the window shown in Figure 10-10. First, specify the ad that will direct traffic to the website; you can create more ads later. As you can see in Figure 10-10, an ad consists of the following elements: The Headline A Headline appears at the top of your ad and is a hyperlink. When the user clicks the link, she is redirected to the address you specify in the destination URL (speci- fied in “What site will your ad link to?”). With the Headline, you have 25 characters to capture the eye of a prospect. Two Description lines Each Description line is limited to 35 characters. The Descriptions are the heart of your ad. Once an ad’s Headline has captured the attention of a prospect, it is up to the Description to provide enough specific information to motivate the prospect to click the hyperlink provided by the ad. It’s therefore important to think through how best to achieve this goal using the 70 characters available (which is not much) in the two Description lines. 284 Chapter 10: Using AdWordsThe Display URL The Display URL is the address that shows in the displayed ad, not necessarily the one the ad links to. The Destination URL This is the actual address that the hyperlink associated with the Headline element of the ad sends traffic to. Figure 10-10. Google AdWords are terse, so make sure that every word counts When a user clicks the hyperlinked Headline on your ad, an address on one of the Google ad servers is opened. The Google ad server then automatically redirects the user to the address you specified in the Destination URL field when you created the ad. This allows Google to meter the click throughs on your ad, so Google can assign you, the advertiser, a CPC-based charge and pay an AdSense CPC-based fee to the website on which your clicked ad appeared, as applicable. Providing the ability for you to use distinct display and actual (destination) URLs also gives you some flexibility when you create your ads, particularly when you graduate to the Standard Edition and can run multiple ads. For example, you can use this capability to display a single, simple URL for your site while directing click throughs on different versions of your ad to different internal portions of your site. Bear in mind that as soon as you enter your billing information, your account is activated, your ad will start running, and you will be charged for it. Of course, the mechanics of creating an ad are not nearly as important as understanding how to craft an ad that will get people’s attention and make them want to click your link and buy your goods or services, and, at the same time, not violate Google’s editorial policies. (For more on Google’s policies, see the sidebar “Google’s Editorial and Con- tent Guidelines” on page 287.) Signing Up for an Account 285 Generally, you should realize that AdWords ads are very short. As noted, when you create an AdWords ad, you have 130 characters, including spaces and the display URL. These characters are divided as shown in Table 10-1. This terseness leads to a style that is possibly unique to AdWords CPC advertising, and may account for some of the success of the medium: there’s little room for hype, and you must get to the point. Table 10-1. Keep the character limitations in mind when you create your ads Line Purpose Maximum characters 1 Headline 25 2 Text of ad 35 3 Text of ad 35 4 Display URL 35 Crafting an Ad If you stop to think about it, these four lines, with their rigid maximum number of characters, present a writing challenge a bit like that involved in writing a formal haiku (a Japanese poetic form with three lines and a specific, limited syllable count for each line). For example: Fancy headline leads Describe, interest, compel My hyperlink: yes Since the fourth line is used for the display URL, your ad really has only the 25-character headline and the 70 characters of text. This compares with the Japanese haiku convention of 5-7-5 syllables in three lines You’ll want to abbreviate and be as succinct as possible, while still being intelligible and inviting. The best AdWords ads don’t bang surfers on the head; rather, they appear to provide a solid and calm way to get information or services needed by the reader of the ad (who, after all, has already been prequalified by ad targeting). Good AdWords ads are pared down to the essentials. The following guidelines are also basic to crafting good AdWords copy: • Try to include the keywords you targeted with the text of the ad. • Short, clear, nonrepetitive phrases work best. • Make sure the words in your ad are all spelled correctly. • Identify your unique selling proposition (what makes your site special?). Refer to Chapter 2 for ideas about creating short pitches that identify your value proposition. 286 Chapter 10: Using AdWords • Provide a call to action using words such as “Buy,” “Shop,” or “Join” (e.g., “Join our photo club”). For example, the ad: Shop Wi-Fi Antennas Large selection, good prices Immediate shipping will probably generate a respectable CTR if properly targeted. The ad is clear, simple, and informative and contains a call to action. In contrast, the following ad for the same merchandise is poorly written and contains too much jargon (although perfectly acceptable under Google’s editorial guidelines). Most prospects will probably be unclear about what the ad is selling and what benefits clicking the link will provide: Wireless Boosters Blog IEEE 802 standard devices Rectify and amplify Google’s Editorial and Content Guidelines AdWords Editorial Guidelines are essentially in your interest as an advertiser. For the most part, these rules make sense. But working with Google’s Editorial Guidelines can sometimes feel like working with a particularly rigid and unimaginative high school English teacher—yes, spelling and punctuation do count. You’ll find the complete ed- itorial, content, and linking guidelines at https://adwords.google.com/select/guidelines .html. Google enforces its rules with an automated check of your ad before it is accepted. In fairness, Google’s rules are generally intended to make everybody’s web experience better on the (probably true) premise that respect for web visitors on the part of ad- vertisers yields better ad results. The good news is that in some cases—for example, if Google believes you have mis- spelled a word when in fact you are spelling the word differently as part of your branding—you can request a waiver as part of the approval process. This waiver is automatically granted pending Google’s manual review of the matter. Here are some of the highlights of Google’s editorial strictures: • Use proper spelling and grammar. • Ad content and keywords must directly relate to the destination web page. • Local services must indicate their location in their ads. • No exclamation points in the ad headline and only one in the ad text. • No unnecessary capitalization or repetition. • No use of superlatives such as “best price” without third-party verification on your site. This means real verification, and customer testimonials do not count. Signing Up for an Account 287 Google’s example: “If an ad claims to be the ‘Best of the Web,’ the site must display third-party verification of the claim. A Forbes magazine seal indicating a site received a ‘best of the web’ award would be acceptable, and the ad would then comply with this policy.” • No universal call-to-action phrases (such as “click here”) that could apply to any site (but site-specific calls to action are generally encouraged). • The third line of text cannot reference the display URL immediately below it. Google also enforces an extensive list of content prohibitions, such as no ads promoting prostitution. Note that some of these “sin” prohibitions depend on where your ad will run; Google makes every effort to comply with applicable laws, and the legality of ads for products such as alcohol do vary depending upon jurisdiction. Choosing Keywords The next step is to choose an initial 10 to 20 keywords or phrases that you will be running your ad against, using the window shown in Figure 10-11. The keywords or phrases you select will determine which search results pages your ad appears on. Users will see the ad when they search for the keyword or phrase in Google. If you’ve elected to display your ad on the Google AdSense network as well, your keywords are used by Google to determine relevancy for placement purposes. (See “Ad Groups” on page 308 for information about targeting Google search, content, or both with an ad.) The easiest way to add keywords is to expand one of the categories that Google suggests based on a scan of your site (as shown in Figure 10-11), and add some of the specific keywords suggested. The keywords or phrases you choose will also partially determine the cost of your ad (if the keywords cost more than your budget, then your ad won’t run), as well as its quality score. To make the process easier, the new interface offers a simplified estimated traffic summary to help you understand more about approximate campaign costs. If you already have a list of specific websites on which you wish to place your ads, the new interface saves you time by allowing you to add managed placements through a simple text box. Later in this chapter we examine in more detail the new layout for managed placements, which are now supported by an enhanced placement tool. Generally, the best advice about keywords is to be targeted and specific (don’t go after the kitchen sink), don’t use too many keywords (Google suggests no more than 20, but less than 6 would probably be a good starting place), and experiment. See “Keyword Tool” on page 331 for some nifty assistance with keyword selection. 288 Chapter 10: Using AdWordsFigure 10-11. Google suggests categories of keywords to make your selection easier Providing Payment Information and Activating Your Account Your ad isn’t served until you provide payment information to activate your account. To activate your account, open the My Account tab and click the Billing Preferences link. In the Account Setup window, select the country in which your business is located, set your local time zone, and click Continue. The choice in country or territory will affect the payment options available, and might include region-specific options such as Bank Transfer or BPAY. The “Choose form of payment” window, shown in Figure 10-12, will open. You can choose to directly debit from a bank account or use a credit or debit card. With credit card or debit card payments, you can choose to establish a prepaid balance (as a way to control potential costs), or you can “postpay” as you go—meaning as you receive clicks, your card is automatically charged. Signing Up for an Account 289Figure 10-12. You can choose from a number of campaign options Once you select postpay or prepaid, you cannot change this. If you change your mind, you will have to close down the account and open a completely new account. Be careful and think about how you will be managing your campaign over time, not just today, before you make this choice. Next, the Terms window will open. Review the AdWords terms and conditions, agree to them, and click Continue. Finally, enter your billing and credit card (or bank) information to complete the process. Graduating Previously, AdWords offered a separate Standard and Starter Edition for advertisers, but with the development of the new interface, Google is updating all AdWords Starter Edition accounts to the new interface. This means one interface can be used by all advertisers. You no longer need to graduate to Standard Edition to expand your account, and you now have access to all the advanced AdWords features available if you want to use them. The following are some of the key differences Starter Edition users will notice after the update: 290 Chapter 10: Using AdWords • Just one edition for everyone • Able to advertise many more products (the old Starter Edition limited the account size) • Multiple ad formats • Multiple geographic targeting • Daily, not monthly, budget • Advanced cost control with “automatic bidding” • New settings tab • New content networks tab • Single Health Meter for your entire account • Ability to create advanced reports • Advanced campaign planning tools Ad Campaigns and Ad Groups Ads are grouped within ad groups, and ad groups are contained within ad campaigns. Each AdWords account can have many campaigns, and each campaign can contain multiple ads. Google AdWords allows up to 25 campaigns in each AdWords account, with up to 2,000 ad groups in each campaign, but many accounts are set up with a single campaign and several ad groups. The relationship of an AdWords account to campaigns and groups is shown in Figure 10-13. Figure 10-13. An AdWords account can contain multiple campaigns, each of which can hold more than one ad group Ad Campaigns and Ad Groups 291 An ad group can have the same name as the ad campaign that contains it. You can use ad campaigns to contain the AdWords activity of a business unit or loca- tion, or you can establish separate ad campaigns for projects with individual budgets or unique settings. Creating and Editing Ad Campaigns When you create and activate an AdWords account, you must create an ad campaign and an ad group as part of the account creation process. However you get there, you will have at least one ad group within one ad campaign as you get started with AdWords. Once your account is in use, it is likely that it will contain multiple ad campaigns. Many of these ad campaigns will contain multiple ad groups. For example, if you are a webmaster attempting to generate traffic to multiple sites, it makes sense to create an ad campaign for each of your sites. Within each ad campaign for one of your particular web properties, create an ad group containing a specific ad, along with the keywords it targets. Ad campaigns allow you to organize your AdWords account along functional lines, by creating a separate ad campaign for each website, for instance. Within each ad cam- paign, multiple ad groups—one per ad—allow you to experiment with how ads are written and which keywords they target. For example, a webmaster might have campaigns defined for a photography site and a wireless networking site. Each campaign would probably contain several different ad groups, with each ad group containing a different ad and targeted at somewhat different keywords. When you log on to AdWords, the first thing you will see is either the Account Snap- shot, which provides an account overview, or the Campaign Summary window, which will probably have multiple ad campaigns defined in the interface, as shown in Fig- ure 10-14. The new interface uses a feature called “account tree” located on the left side at all times. This feature makes it easier to navigate between your campaigns and ad groups. Some AdWords users prefer to set the Campaign Summary page as the first page that opens, rather than the Account Snapshot page. You can make this change by clicking the link on the bottom of either the Campaign Summary or Account Snapshot pages. 292 Chapter 10: Using AdWordsFigure 10-14. It’s common to define multiple ad campaigns within your AdWords account If you created a new AdWords account, the campaign you created as part of the account creation process was named Campaign 1. If you “graduated” from a Starter Edition account, your campaign was named Starter by default. Once your AdWords account is activated, you’ll want to change this name to something recognizable by checking the box next to the campaign name and clicking Edit Settings. Ad campaign names should let you know at a glance what the campaign is about. Creating a New Campaign To create a new AdWords campaign, from the Campaign Summary window, click “+ New campaign” (shown in the left of Figure 10-14 below the graph box). You shouldn’t have any trouble locating the Campaign Summary win- dow; if it is not set to open first in your AdWords account, simply click the Campaign Summary link from the Campaign Management tab. Campaigns can be targeted either to specific ad placements on sites you designate or to keywords. If you choose to create a keyword-targeted site, you’ll find that things work almost identically to the campaign creation process you followed when you cre- ated your first account, except that you can name your new ad campaign (and the initial group within it) anything you like, as shown in Figure 10-15. Ad Campaigns and Ad Groups 293 Figure 10-15. It’s good to name new campaigns so that you can identify the purpose of the campaign at a glance Since I’ve already shown you how to create a keyword-targeted cam- paign, this walk-through will feature a placement campaign. Keyword targeting works as explained earlier in “Crafting an Ad” on page 286. What Does Placement Targeting Mean? Placement targeting, or site targeting, means specifying sites by domain for your ads, rather than using keyword targeting. Each ad campaign can implement either keyword targeting or site targeting. In other words, once you’ve turned on site targeting globally, you can then elect to use site targeting in a specific campaign (but not keyword targeting for the same campaign). Site targeting often means using Google as an agent for CPM, rather than CPC, adver- tising. As explained in Chapter 6, with CPM you pay for impressions, not for click throughs. Note that site-targeted ads appear only on Google’s content network and not on Google search results pages. 294 Chapter 10: Using AdWords By site targeting your ads, typically you are saying that you don’t really care about click throughs and the primary purpose of your ad is to promote brand awareness rather than a specific action on the part of those seeing your ads. The new interface allows you to load campaign settings from an existing campaign, which can speed up the process of creating similar campaigns by importing all previous selections. Just as when you signed up for an account, you must create an ad group as part of the process of creating an ad campaign. Whether you are placement targeting or keyword targeting, the next step is to write your ad, as shown in Figure 10-16. (See “Crafting an Ad” on page 286 for tips about how to write great AdWords ads.) Figure 10-16. Before you target an ad, you need to write the ad copy Review your ad, and add other ads to this ad group if you’d like. When you are satisfied with your ad, click Continue to save. See Figure 10-17. The new interface offers only limited support for content placement when creating a new ad group because the settings for content placement have moved to the Networks tab, where you can find the Placement Tool. (More detailed settings are available after you’ve created the campaign.) As you can see in Figure 10-18, Google provides a num- ber of ways you can find sites you want to target for placement. These methods include: • A taxonomy of categories through which you can drill down Ad Campaigns and Ad Groups 295Figure 10-17. You can quickly enter placements and set default ad group bids • A keyword search through site topics • A straight list of available URLs • A demographic search using the characteristics of the audience you are attempting to target Figure 10-18. The current Placement Tool offers a number of ways to identify the sites you want to target for placement The new beta “Find placements” tool (Figure 10-19) allows you to search based on keywords or by website, with further refinements available, such as locations and lan- guages. These refinements offer far more specific placement than the current Placement Tool does. The “Filter placements” function offers some very specific refinements, similar to Google Ad Planner, that try to ensure you reach the best possible audience for your ads. The “Sorted by” options for the placement ideas, while advanced, still 296 Chapter 10: Using AdWords