Getting started with a Google or Yahoo ad campaign

Getting started with a Google or Yahoo ad campaign

Google and Yahoo are examples of Pay-per-click advertising (PPC). What does this mean and how easy is it to set up?

Pay per click advertising (PPC) is a system of displaying online advertisements which you only pay for if someone clicks on them. You pay for clicks as these are visitors to your site who have expressed interest in your advertisement – there is a chance to convert them into sales.

If you are only paying per click, how are your advertisements are displayed? And who gets the best web page positions? Pay per click advertisements are displayed based on what people are searching for, so as an advertiser you ‘bid’ on the words that people might search for. The search engine displays a certain number per page.

Google and Yahoo are the two biggest examples of PPC advertising.

How do you go about setting up a Google campaign?

Here are the steps to follow when setting up a campaign:

1. Find keywords

To get the best value for money as you can, you need to research your market well. Put yourself in the shoes of your customers and think about what will they search for? You’ll also need to get an idea of what your competitors are doing. What prices are being paid for the keywords getting the most traffic? Which keywords are competitive and which ones aren’t?

Both Google and Yahoo offer keyword selector tools that can help you choose which keywords are getting the most searches, how much it will cost you to bid on those words and the level of competitiveness for that keyword.

2. Set up a Google account – with Google Adwords. If you are selling only in Australia or ship only to Australian locations, make sure you tell Google that or else your ad will be displayed to a lot wider audience – potentially making you pay for wasted clicks.

3. Write your advertisement

Use your main keyword as the heading or a major part of the heading. In the first line of the ad, tell people the benefit of buying from you. In the second line, write about the feature of your product that delivers that benefit. Make it sound as unique as possible so it stands out when in a list with your competitor’s ads. Then put in your URL. This must match the domain name of your site (Google has recently introduced rules preventing you from having a different domain name from where the click actually goes)

4. Select your bid keywords

Enter your keywords into Google’s ‘Who will see your ad?’ keywords page. Start entering your keywords. As you enter multi-word phrases e.g. “teddy bears”, try entering them a second time in the list putting square brackets around them ‘[teddy bears]’ as well. Square brackets tell Google to only show the ad when the search term matches your keywords exactly. So if someone entered “fluffy teddy bears” into Google your ad would not be matched for [teddy bears] with square brackets but would be matched for “teddy bears” (with quotes).

If you enter search terms without quotes or brackets, Google will return search results for those words if they are all included in a search, even if the order is wrong.

5. Select your bid amounts

For each of the keywords you’ll now need to select bid amounts (also called ‘Cost Per Click’ or CPC). The higher your bid per click, the higher you’ll get on search results. But if you bid too much, you’ll pay more than you have to.

You can set a daily budget for your advertising, so that if you reach your maximum spend your ad will not be shown any more. The easiest way to set this is to take your monthly budget and divide it by 30.

6. Admin

Enter your payment details, preview your campaign and click ‘Start’. Provided your bid amounts are high enough you should start seeing your ads online almost immediately.

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