This is a guest post from Chris Anderson, the head of Recruitment Traffic.
Many people complain about the ads that pop up during their online searches, often claiming that they are a nuisance. However, Google earns billions of dollars every year in ad sales, which can only mean one thing: people click on these ads more often than they would like to admit.
What are Google ads?
Google Ads is a tool you can use to buy advertising space, often located above Google’s search results. When users enter certain keywords, Google will perform a quick live auction for that particular search term. The highest bidders will see their ads positioned in top place. The lower bidders will have to share the remaining spots.
Google Shopping Ads, meanwhile, are product-based advertisements that show up when you look up a specific product on Google or Google Shopping.
The main difference between the two is that Google Ads are text-based, while Google Shopping Ads display photos of products, as well as their price, description, and store name (among many other details).
If you want to use Google ads, you should know:
- What keyword to place in the ads
- How much you are paying for the clicks on the ads
Why to use Google Ads
Based on how you want to use your Google ads, there are a few different scenarios where they will be the most useful.
- Get more business leads: If you want to get more overall leads for your company, perhaps as part of a brand awareness campaign, you can use Google ads and bid on keywords related to your business. Don’t forget to include a bid on your own brand names!
- Get more job candidate leads: If you’re looking to recruit some excellent talent, you can use Google ads to reach job searchers or anyone who may be open to new career opportunities.
- Get more eCommerce leads: If you’re an eCommerce seller, you can use Google ads and Google Shopping Ads to drive conversions by getting the right traffic (ready-to-buy) to click through to your product listings.
Let’s dig a little deeper into how can Google ads help you generate leads.
1) For businesses
Most business owners usually have one ultimate goal: to drive more sales or find leads to potential customers. The most common approach to achieving this goal is launching a direct-response campaign that urges prospects to take a specific action, such as buying a product or joining a mailing list. One way to do this is through Google Ads.
When you advertise on Google, your adverts will show up on the result pages of Google. Users are more likely to click on your ads when they see that the exact words they used in their search queries are in the text of your advertisements. Upon clicking on the ad, they will be taken to your landing page, where prospects can either buy an item you’re selling or subscribe to your newsletter.
2) For recruitment firms
Let’s say you post a job advertisement for ‘accountants,’ which is a search term that produces around 10,000 queries every month. This means your ads will produce at least 10,000 opportunities per month in terms of finding leads or possible candidates.
Based on the industry average, at least 2% of these 10,000 queries will click on your ad. The cost per click is £3, and around 10% of these land on your page and contact you. The end result is 20 new leads at £600 per month.
In contrast to other lead generation methods, Google Ads provides a cheaper way of obtaining potential candidates. According to this guide, the tool can even track down hard-to-reach candidates working in specialized fields.
3) For eCommerce sites
Google Shopping Ads prove to be an invaluable tool for those who are running eCommerce sites. Similar to how the text-based Google Ads work, Shopping Ads show up on the Shopping tab of result pages when a user enter search terms related to a particular product on Google. Clicking on the ad will take them to the website of the advertiser or retailer, where they have the option to complete their purchase.
How to optimize your ads for leads
The basic process of using Google Ads is easy to understand. The tricky part is ensuring that the campaign is cost-effective. Here are some tips that will help boost your ad optimization efforts.
1) Keep your bid costs low with match type
Initially, the keyword you are bidding for is known as a broad match type. At this point, Google is judging your keyword’s intent.
Unfortunately, the ads may enter auctions that are not relevant to your recruitment goals.
For instance, if your ad’s keyword is ‘chartered accountant,’ you may also end up bidding for other positions such as ‘management accountant’ or ‘tax accountant.’
This is an obvious mismatch, especially if the ads are clicked on by people not interested in your chartered accountant position.
One solution is to use a phrase match. This will inform Google that it should only show the ads to people who explicitly used the search term ‘chartered accountant.’
2) Make sure that your ad has a high-quality score
In theory, your ads will appear once you have posted the highest bid in the quick live auction. In reality, the process is much more complicated.
Google wants to ensure that the ads are relevant to the intended audience. Then, it will rate the experience of people who click on these ads. Every keyword in your account will receive a quality score ranging from 1 to 10. The higher your quality score, the better your chances of winning the auctions.
For example, if your keyword has a quality score of 9 and your competitor’s is only 4, your ad is more likely to reach the best position despite a lower bid for that same keyword.
A high-quality score can significantly improve your lead generation, as your ads will appear to people who are probably more qualified for your job offer. Obtain the highest score possible by providing an excellent landing page experience.
3) Customize your landing page experience
When someone clicks on your ads, they should go straight to your landing page. The search engine will then want to know if the visit resulted in an excellent user experience. The challenge is making sure this happens. So, here are several ways to achieve this.
- Your landing page should have a clear purpose. Don’t send people to your business home page. Instead, direct them to a page that is related to your ad. Once there, give them a strong call-to-action (CTA), such as ‘Call to learn more.’
- Your landing page should include text that matches your keywords. Google will check your landing page to see whether it is relevant to both your keywords and ads. For instance, if you are a recruiter bidding on the phrase ‘executive search CFO recruiter,’ your ad and landing page should have that exact wording in at least one place.
- Make sure you include the ad text on the landing page. Once a user clicks on the ad and sees the same words on the landing page, it will assure them that they have come to the right place. It will also encourage them to explore your website even more, improving the user experience.
4) Optimize your expected click-through rate
Every time a user sees your ads and clicks on them, the click-through rate will rise. If they see the ads but take no action, it goes down. As long as it’s up, Google will consider the ads to be relevant and helpful.
There are several ways to increase your click-through rate. However, one effective method you should use is the ‘search query to ad text’ match. When users type the keyword in the search box, your ads will appear as a result. Make sure that the exact text appears in the ads. This will convince people that your ads are useful and as a result they will click on them. Google will also highlight the search query in bold when it appears in your ad text. This will make your ads stand out even more.
Of course, it is not possible to create a single ad that will satisfy all search queries; to do this, you would need to create several customized ads.
5) Monitor your keyword performance
Google Ads has the necessary tools to monitor keyword performance. You can also determine whether the keywords you bid on are generating conversions.
For instance, when a user fills out a landing page form or calls you, Google Ads can provide the exact keyword they used to find your business. You will need some time to build a data set that shows the most effective keywords. This will allow you to adjust your bids.
Google Ads is a powerful and extremely useful tool for finding new clients and candidates. You only need to ensure that a user’s search term appears in your ads and landing pages. In practice, however, mastering lead generation through ads requires time and effort. You also need to conduct exhaustive research on the subject. If such a prospect is of no interest to you, consider contacting SEO professionals who will be able to provide crucial assistance in your recruitment campaigns.