Google Ads enables advertisers to create highly targeted ads by adjusting for many aspects of user behaviour. An advertiser can optimise campaigns by changing bids based on performance and excluding unprofitable segments. Options include:
- Networks. Ads always display on Google search, but the advertiser can also select Google search partners and Google display network.
- Locations. Select the geographical location where the ads will be served at the country level (UK, France or US) or target local areas down to individual postcodes. Advertisers can also make ‘bid adjustments’ to adjust the bids on regions based on relative performance (e.g., +10% for London, -10% for Edinburgh)
- Language. Choose the language preference of your target customers. For example, you could choose to target French speakers in Switzerland.
- Audience. Audiences are groups of users that Google has labelled as having specific interests, intents and demographics. For example, toys, childcare, shopaholics.
- Devices. Advertisers can specify bid adjustments based on the users’ devices. For example, +10% for desktop, -10% for mobile.
- Ad schedule. An advertiser can increase or decrease bidding for specific periods of the week or stop advertising entirely.
- Demographics. Adjust bids based on the demographics of users, e.g., income, age, gender.
Structure a Paid Search campaign carefully, as a good structure allows for easier account management and more targeted campaigns. Google Ads campaigns are built in a hierarchical structure, as shown in the diagram below.
Each advertiser has an account where they specify their payment details and user access levels. To illustrate, let us imagine that the advertiser is a seller of computer equipment based in the UK.
A Paid Search account consists of one or more campaigns. It is at the campaign level that variable such as budget, language and location are set. Our retailer might select to have campaigns related to their primary product lines, desktops, laptops and monitors.
A campaign consists of one or more Ad groups. For search ads, each consists of a list of keywords and one or more adverts that they wish to appear when the keywords are searched. Bids are specified at the ad group or individual keyword level. In our example campaign laptops, the retailer has Ad groups Lenovo, Dell, and Sony
Organise Ad groups into themes with keywords and ad copy on the common theme. Ads will be most successful if ad copy is relevant to the search, and conversions will be highest when searchers are taken to a page that corresponds to the ad text’s content.
Break down your campaigns so that each ad group targets a specific product or service, and the number of keywords is kept small. Using 15-20 keywords per ad group will keep the message targeted and improve ad performance and conversion rates. The more ad groups you have, the more targeted your message can be.
Create separate Search campaigns for brand keywords. Your brand campaigns will perform differently from non-brand campaigns as these users are familiar with your business, products or services. You will want to budget, manage and report on brand campaigns separately from non-brand.
If brand and non-brand campaigns are created separately, be sure to add brand keywords as negatives to your non-brand campaigns to direct all brand traffic through your brand campaign.
Where a choice is available, do not target more than one network in each campaign. Google search and display networks can perform quite differently.
Whatever structure you opt for will need to be watched and maintained. Whist creating a granular structure with separate ad groups for each product will theoretically improve targeting, in practice, it will be too hard to support.