2022 Google Ads Checklist: Understand PPC and Make Great Ads
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising through Google Ads is one of the best ways to gain immediate exposure for your business in a cost-effective way. This is true now more than ever after the boost that Covid-19 gave to online shopping.
If you’re not working out a way to get your products online and into your customer’s new favorite marketplace, you're missing out on valuable business.
Still, PPC advertising is complex and requires specialized research and experience to do right. So, let's break down what pay-per-click advertising is, why you should consider using PPC, and our recommended 2022 Google Ads checklist for your pay-per-click marketing.
What is Pay-Per-Click Advertising?The basics of pay-per-click advertising are self-explanitory. You pay for every click you receive on advertisements for your business.
There is, of course, more nuance to PPC advertising than that. You control where your ads show up around the web, what they look like, and the amount you would like to spend per month. You can read our full breakdown in March's monthly tip 'SEO vs PPC: How They Work to Increase Qualified Leads.'
The Benefits of PPC Advertising With the Google Ads Platform
Why Google Ads?
Google has invested incredible amounts of money into its paid ad service—it shows. Google Ads is highly capable and ridiculously customizable. It makes sense that Google Ads is the standard that third-party PPC ad platforms strive to meet.
The customizability of Google’s ad service does come at the cost of a steep learning curve, but the raw power of the platform and the extent of integration across Google properties are well worth the expense. Consequently, we’ve worked hard to become experts at Google Ads.
The Benefits of PPC Advertising
JTech recommends using Google’s ad service for your pay-per-click advertisements. Overall, Google Ads is the better option because:
Search Ads Convert Better
Pay-per-click advertisements place your advertisement into the first, second, or third spot on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). Your SERP results positively affect conversions—leading to a 50% higher conversion rate over organic traffic.
PPC Helps You Scale Globally
Google’s PPC advertisement platform allows you to reach a global or local audience with its regional targeting features. You can limit where your ads display by zip code, state, country, and various stages in between.
Google users make nearly 2 trillion searches per year. So, no matter where you’re advertising, you’ll have strong and consistent traffic.
Google Ads Gets Constant Improvements
Google is constantly improving its ad service tools. Google Ads alone made up 85% of their parent company, Alphabet’s, revenue in 2021. That means that Alphabet made upwards of $61.2 billion from their ad service alone.
For this reason, Google’s ad team regularly reinvests in their PPC ad service tools—A.K.A. Google Ads will dramatically improve as time goes on.
Google Ads are a Wealth of Data
More than any other ad service program, Google Ads provides a wealth of user activity data to business owners. Why? Google wants you to succeed and become a returning customer with its ad service program.
Google ad campaigns provide you with information about where your customers go on your site, how many times they take the actions you want them to, and the actions they take once they get there. You still need to tell Google’s tracking code where to look, but tracking your desired result will give you incredibly useful data.
Your Google Ads Checklist
Okay! Now you know why you should run Google Ads for your next PPC campaign. It’s time to learn how.
Creating an effective PPC campaign for your business requires a combination of social science and data analysis. The most important, and time-intensive, part of your PPC campaign is developing who your customers are and what your customers will be looking for. Consequently, most of the items on our Google Ads Checklist revolve around understanding your customers.
To create a successful PPC ad, follow these steps:
1. Define Your PPC Campaign’s Audience
The audience you target with your ad copy is everything. Are you trying to appeal to new retirees? Young professionals? Depending on your answer, you will need to pull different information to set up your Google Ads campaign.
Our team of digital marketers is well versed in the art of understanding audiences by demographics and intention, and that expertise drives our PPC and keyword decisions.
2. Decide on the Goal of your Google Ad Campaign
Now you know who your audience is, it’s time to decide how you want to reach them. Do you want to always be present in your customer’s feeds? Do you want to augment your e-commerce site with posts that show up on Google’s shopping page? Are you selling one product or several products?
Once you’ve answered those questions, you’ll know whether you need a display ad, a search ad, one ad group, or multiple.
A JTech Communications Search Ad
3. Define Keywords for your PPC Campaign
We’re still in the information-gathering phase of our PPC campaign. Now, you’ll want to gather keywords that closely align with your PPC campaign’s goal. There are different kinds of keywords, you can target intentions like:
- Intent to buy
- Intent to learn
- Intent to find a specific item
Depending on your product and your brand, you’ll want to target a series of keywords that closely align with your offerings and goals. The JTech team uses specialized tools to help us find this information faster and more efficiently, but you can research this information yourself—to an extent—by making educated guesses and searching Google.
Now, gather the keywords you would like to target into a list so they’re ready to be input into your Google Ads campaign.
4. Assess Your Website’s Quality Score
Every website is assigned something Google calls a ‘Quality Score’ that indicate the user experience your site offers to customers. Quality scores are influenced by three factors:
- Click-through rates
- Webpage quality
- Your ad’s relevance to the page it links to
The better your quality score, the better your ad rank and the more frequently your ad will be displayed.
JTech's Page Speed Insights Score
If this campaign is your first, you will mainly be in control of the second two aspects—click-through rates are determined by historical ad campaign data. You can up your web page's quality by increasing your on-page and technical SEO optimization. A properly optimized page will naturally be more relevant to your ads than a page that's poorly optimized.
5. Gather Your PPC Ad Assets
If you’ve decided to run a display ad campaign, gather or create the images you would like to use in your advertisements. The more images you can gather for your PPC campaigns, the better.
6. Build Ad Groups for Your PPC Campaign
Now, it’s time to build your campaigns! Create your Google Ads account and start building out your advertisements using the information you’ve gathered. Make sure they stay within Google’s ad policy when creating your ad copy! Google Ads will do a lot to help you create your first ad but keep a notebook handy in case you get lost.
Like images, the more options you can give Google's ad service, the better. That's where hiring a team of professionals comes in handy—good ad copy takes a lot of time to write!
7. Set Your PPC Campaign’s Budget
Google provides you with the budget they believe will serve you best but you can choose any budget amount you would like. Meet or exceed Google’s recommended budget for the best results. The amount you budget for your ad spend directly impacts how effectively you can bid on the keywords your ad campaign targets.
JTech’s marketing team develops an ad spend budget we recommend at the start of your campaign that we base on Google's data and our own experience with PPC advertisements.
8. Set Your Google Ad Extensions
Google ad extensions control where your ads lead to or what they prompt your potential customers to do. This can mean links to product pages, your home page, a phone number, or another conversion goal your team has set.
Choose an ad extension that makes sense for your business.
JTech's Search Ad With Extensions
9. Ongoing Management of Your PPC Campaign
Once your PPC campaign is set up and running, you’ll need to constantly monitor it for:
- Low performing ad descriptions
- Impressions vs. click-through rates
You’ll want to regularly refine the keywords you target and the language you use to maximize the performance of your ads. For this reason, our team offers several pay-per-click management plans to help you create, manage, and optimize your Google ad campaigns.
If you would like to start a PPC campaign of your own, but don’t have the time to follow this checklist, please reach out! We would love to help.