Free Google Adwords

FREE GOOGLE ADWORDS

TO SET UP A GREAT GOOGLE ADWORDS CAMPAIGN

For those of you who may be unfamiliar with Google AdWords, these are the small ads that you see lined up along the edges of your screen while reviewing your search results at Google. These are not search results, but paid advertisements. They are shown on Google along with search results, and on myriad partner sites such as AOL, Netscape, Earthlink, Ask.com, IWon and many others. Paying for placement in the top five(see below) also opens up the door for many, many other sites to start showing your ads. Google AdWords also displays ads on specific kinds of devices such as smart phones, has ads that show on YouTube, and can provide ads to publishers all over the web. Many of the ads you see online, in many places, are Google AdWords ads.

GETTING STARTED

The first thing is to do your homework and make sure you know exactly which keywords you are going to bid on. Do your research. This is CRUCIAL.

Another option is to use this form that Google allows you to use before you log in or create an account. It’s good because you can see right there whether a keyword will pull any traffic when you add it to your Google AdWords account.

Type in a keyword phrase that people might use to find your site. You’ll be given a number of times someone searched for that phrase and similar phrases at Overture and Wordtracker on an average day last month, ranked by number. So you can see at a glance which search phrases are the most popular. Sometimes the results are surprising and you’ll get new phrases you hadn’t thought would be popular.

Now set up a campaign or go to one of your existing campaigns. It doesn’t matter if the ad in this campaign has been disapproved before–if you apply what you will learn on this page, you should get your ad approved and displayed at Google. (Unless, of course, it is bogus!)

Go to your Ad Group, then to the link for “Edit Keywords and CPC”.

If you’ve tried to do this before, you probably already know that the biggest problem with Google Adwords is getting them to accept and display your ads based on the ad box you create and the keywords you select.

I’ve had several clients give up because they were unable to get Google to display their ads for more than a day or two before they are “slowed” or taken down. They got tired of constantly messing with it and wasting their time; eventually they quit trying.

Contrary to popular belief, the top Google Adwords boxes being displayed do not always cost the most per click. It’s not like elsewhere where the top bidder is always the number one top ad being displayed. Google does it differently.

There are THREE factors that Google cares about, so they can maximize their revenue from the clickthroughs.

THREE THINGS MATTER AT GOOGLE ADWORDS:

1. Cost per click. How much are you bidding to display on that keyword? We recommend setting your initial bid at or near the minimum. If your ads don’t then display on the first page or two, consider raising your bid to an amount that will cause them to display on the first page or two of results. Google will let you know what position that keyword reachs.

2. Clickthrough Rate. Remember, when you’ve chosen a cost per click model, Google doesn’t get paid for displaying an AdWords box. They only get paid when someone actually clicks on an ad, so they care about the relevance of the ad to the keyword. That’s the main reason ads get disapproved–the keyword doesn’t relate to the website or the ad box. And they care about your click-through rate. For that keyword, Google will select and display those ads which are getting clicked the most, regardless of the amount of the cost per click (your bid amount). You could be offering to pay twenty bucks per clickthrough but if no one clicks on your ad, then Google makes nothing. An ad that is paying only twenty cents per clickthrough, but is a dynamite ad that people really respond to (by clicking on it!) may be given higher placement at Google for that keyword. So, if an ad is working leave it up and don’t change it no matter what. If an ad isn’t working, check that the keyword lines up with the ad text, which agrees with the landing page. Working on your quality score in this way will improve your cost per click, how effective the ad is, and how much traffic those ads even see.

3. Your daily budget. How much have you told Google you are willing to spend on a daily basis? All other things being equal, if you have said that you are willing to spend $1000 a day, while others have limited their budgets to $3 per day, your ad may display above theirs. Once you know the campaign basically works, then make your daily budget an outrageously high one, as long as you’re underbidding on clicks. You are basically bluffing about this–you can’t be charged for more than the ad is actually clicked on, no matter how high you set your daily budget. If you’re worried about that, set the daily budget as high as you can stand if it were all used (it won’t be), and monitor it every day (every hour if need be) until you are sure it isn’t actually costing you a fortune just because you set a high budget. It won’t, unless a zillion people click through on it. The worst thing that could happen is you might actually spend it all one day getting traffic to your site.

THE LITTLE SECRET – RUN MORE THAN ONE AD!

Set up more than one ad for every group of keywords. We suggest you run 2 or 3 ads instead of one – and have all of them aimed at the same batch of keywords. Unless you tell it not to, Google’s system will display only one of your ads at a time — the one with the highest click through rate for each keyword match.

THE BIG SECRET IS THE GOOGLE {KEYWORD} SYSTEM

This is the key to getting your ad to display: Let the Google {KeyWord} system work for you! Google advises that you put your keyword in every ad you write, so that people click through your ad and get to your site. If the key word is in the ad, it is many times more likely to be clicked. If your key word is NOT in your ad text or your landing page anywhere, Google is likely to penalize that combination with a very low quality score, which affects your expenditure. But you don’t want to spend the time it takes to write a separate ad for each keyword, especially if you have a long list of them, as you probably will if you’ve done your homework right.

So don’t write your ad this way: Don’t use your company name or some known key word phrase (like “Trouble Sleeping?” in our example) as your title. See example below. It’s too specific and won’t match most of the key words for the ad. Google won’t let you use many forms of punctuation such as question marks in the titles either! Also, don’t use odd punctuation (two question marks, for instance) or bad spelling, or all capital letters. Google checks all that and is picky! You can submit for an exception if you feel your exception has merit.

Want to get a GOOD night’s sleep??
Safe effective herbal sleep formula
www.sleeprelease.com

When you are writing the ad, write it like this, using the Google {KeyWord} variable so that whatever the keyword searched for as long as it is a match with your list of key words – that keyword will display in the title of the ad. Make the bad ad above look more like this:

Want to get a GOOD night’s sleep??
Safe effective herbal sleep formula
www.sleeprelease.com

Whenever someone searches for one of your keyword phrases, like “Insomnia Remedy”, the ad will actually display that exact keyword phrase in the title, in bold text like THIS:

Want to get a GOOD night’s sleep??
Safe effective herbal sleep formula
www.sleeprelease.com

An ad that is set up to always display the keyword being searched for is much more likely to be clicked on, so your clickthrough rate should go way up.

Here is how it works exactly. Let’s say your keywords are:
• Cat Collar
• Dog Collar
• Puppy Collar
• Kitten Collar
• Weimaraner Collar
• etc…

You must now choose a default keyword for Google to fall back on should someone search for the keyword that won’t fit within the ad text character limitations (in this example, it is “Weimaraner Collar”).

To do this, you must follow your “{keyword}” entry with a colon and replacement text, before the final “}”.

{Keyword:replacement text}

In our example, we arbitrarily choose “puppy collar” to be the default keyword (naturally, you want to choose the keyword you get the most business from). You can also enter any other arbitrary text, but keywords are usually used.

The way to enter that into your text is (important bits in italics):

Get a {keyword:puppy collar} at great
rates with no shipping cost.
http://www.mysite.com/etc.htm

If the search was for “weimaraner collar”, the text will not fit within Google’s character limitations, so the default text would pop in and it would read:
Get a puppy collar at
great rates with no shipping cost.
http://www.mysite.com/etc.htm

Note that you can use it in the title in addition to the body text.

If someone searches for “cat collar”, the ad would say:
Cat Collar
Get a Cat Collar at great
rates with no shipping cost.

If your replacement text is too long for the entry it will show up in red, and Google will not let you finish creating the ad.

Advice: Note that Google will duplicate the case that you enter your keywords in. If you want the replacement keyword text to display in title case, sentence case or lower case, you will have to enter your keywords into your ad set in the desired case. All the standard reasons for disapproval or penalty also apply to this function, such as when your keywords contain text that Google will not allow in ad text. If the use of this function could result in redundancy in your ad, Google will disapproveit. But, they will also tell you why they are disapproving it, so that you can fix it. For instance, Google does not like all caps and will usually disallow it unless you can show that you’re using a valid, recognized acronym.

Note: You want to use a few capital letters in the URL that you put in the display ad box – it makes the words stand out. Like this: www.SleepRelease.comSee the examples above in the display boxes.

Also note: If you want to show the keyword with some additional text, you need to enter it like this, partially outside the curley braces:

{KeyWord: Great Sleep} For You
Want to get a good night’s sleep?
Safe effective herbal sleep formula
www.SleepRelease.com

In a search for “insomnia remedy” that ad will display this way:

Insomnia Remedy For You
Want to get a good night’s sleep?
Safe effective herbal sleep formula
www.SleepRelease.com

When the keyword being searched for is too long to fit in the display ad box with all your text, (for example, if they are searching for “natural herbal insomnia relief”) it will display this way:

Great Sleep For You
Want to get a good night’s sleep?
Safe effective herbal sleep formula
www.SleepRelease.com

USE GOOGLE’S “KEYWORD MATCHING” TO FULL ADVANTAGE

When entering in keywords for your ad, you have several options concerning how Google treats these when figuring out whether to display them or not on a given page:

keyword = broad match
[keyword] = exact match
“keyword” = phrase match

If you put your keyword into your Adwords account without quotes around it: keyword then Google will try to match it broadly to everything it can.

If you put your keyword in with square brackets around it [keyword], then Google will only match that exact phrase or word. It won’t look for “stems”, which would be keywording or keywords or key-word or key word. 

If you put your keywords in with quote marks around it “keywords blah blah” then google will do a phrase match, meaning that it will look for those words in that sequence. This can be important in match-ups -there’s a big difference between a “hunting blind” and “blind hunting”.

Learn these options really well–they are the key to getting your ad to display correctly. Also, instead of entering only one of these, use ALL THREE of these options on each keyword phrase, and of them will stick! 

When you enter in your keywords in the Google ADD KEYWORDS or EDIT KEYWORDS box, put them in this format. The URL that you use here is the page where you want to send the person who clicks your ad. It’s okay if it is different than the URL that displays in the ad box itself – the URL that displays in your AdWords box is basically useless. Here’s a real world example from one of my clients.

“insomnia article”**0.05**http://www.healthalternatives2000.com/tiredness_report.html insomnia article**0.05**http://www.healthalternatives2000.com/tiredness_report.html [insomnia article]**0.05**http://www.healthalternatives2000.com/tiredness_report.html “insomnia remedy”**0.05**http://www.sleeprelease.com?ad insomnia remedy**0.05**http://www.sleeprelease.com?ad [insomnia remedy]**0.05**http://www.sleeprelease.com?ad

Some of these keywords will reach a message saying the minimum bid is too high for that, but some of them will make it through or “stick”. The amount that you put in as your bid is up to you, but I recommend starting with the minimum allowed for that term. Another technique you are about to learn will help your ad display above others that are bidding more than you for these click throughs.

THE GOOGLE BUDGET OPTIMIZER

Google offers a system of account management that allows you to have Google take over the reins on the finances; the new Google Budget Optimizer. When the Google Budget Optimizer is turned on, you will no longer set or see your bids at all — Google completely takes over that function for you and does not show you what the “bid” is anymore. You only tell them your budget and they choose a bid for each keyword with the purpose of maximizing the amount of clicks you will receive for that budget without letting you in on it at all. Google then uses algorithms (of course) to decided the placement of your ad and may lower your placement in the ranks or raise it — you will no longer have control over this.

If you do decide to use the Google Budget Optimizer, make sure that you set a daily budget that you wouldn’t mind spending. If you do want to set a budget that is higher than your limit (as mentioned above), start at your actual budget and increase it in small increments. Keep a really good eye on what happens. You want to be very careful when changing your budget in any way, as that is the trigger to Google changing all of your bids (which you can’t see).

If you have been managing your own bids, and are now switching to the budget optimizer, be prepared for a change to your spend here. Keep careful watch on your budget for as long as it takes to ensure that it actually is doing better for you than your old bids did. The Google Budget Optimizer does not save your old bids anywhere (to aid in turning it off later if you don’t like it), so keep record of what your bids were set to before you switch. We recommend printing out a screen shot picture of each page of keyword bids and saving it for later use before beginning.

PROS: Some people find that the Google Budget Optimizer simplifies the process and keeps them from having to guess at what they should be bidding. In this way, it can be like having a Google insider there helping you change your bids as needed at any time of day.

CONS: Some have reported that the Budget Optimizer increased their spend without increasing their return. You lose control over your bids completely and you may end up spending way too much (by your own estimation) per click.

Setting your budget properly here is the only difference between these two scenarios as that is how your “bids” change when you are using the Budget Optimizer. Words in a Row withholds opinion on whether the new Google Budget Optimizer is a good or bad thing. It depends on your business model, your specific case, and your advertising budget.

CONVERSION TRACKING

Google will provide any AdWords advertiser who wants it with conversion tracking code. Many other PPCs do this also. Conversion tracking is the placement on your site of code that helps you keep track of how many of your click-throughs turn into the end product desired. Therefore, in order for it to work, you have to place the code into your target page. Carefully consider your target page before placing the code. Where do you want your prospects to end up going? Put it directly afterthat point.

The majority of our clients only want to count orders and they place their conversion code on their order confirmation page. But that is not always the right place for it. If you want to count all the people who finished viewing a particular article, place the code at the point just after the successful download of the article. If you’re aiming at new names on your mailing list, place it on your mailing list subscription thank-you page. Figure out what you’re aiming for carefully before you place the conversion code and you’ll get more accurate tracking out of Google. Your conversion code is of no use to you if it isn’t measuring something important to you.

working properly, it proves immensely helpful in working out what parts of your campaign to keep and what to throw out. You can save yourself more than you think by getting rid of unsuccessful parts of your campaign.

WHEN IS CONVERSION CODE NOT WORKING?

• When you have changed the code in some way accidentally from the exact code that Google gave you.
• When you have the code buried too far (too many clicks) into your site. If the visitor has to load too many pages (ten is usually the max, sometimes twelve) to reach the point where the conversion code is, then your conversion code will probably not work. Google and other PPCs seem to only keep checking for conversion code for so long after the prospect clicks on the ad, even if they never leave your site. Your site shouldn’t be making people have to work that hard anyway.
• When the visitor did something unplanned for. Examples are leaving your site and coming back later, or leaving their computer dormant and sitting on your site for a long time (while they went to get lunch).

Keep all these possibilities in mind when looking at your conversion statistics on Google on any other pay-per-click account, especially if you’re getting lots of clicks and seeing lots of new response, but Google shows few conversions happening. If Google’s not showing any conversions at all, do a “dummy run”. Click on your own ad, go all the way through the process that leads to the conversion page. Then look at your Google account. If Google doesn’t list your conversion, you have something wrong.

GOOGLE ANALYTICS

What is now called Google Analytics used to be called Urchin, and even after it became Google Analytics it was invite-only for some time. Urchin was a very popular statistical analysis tool that seemed to be built around the idea of strengthening your keywords and improving performance through traffic analysis. It was priced out of most people’s reach, but could be purchased without having to be approved. Now it is free, renamed to Google Analytics and available to the world.

If you have an AdWords account, you should also get a Google analytics account. You can tie them to each other easily from within your AdWords account so long as you already have existing AdWords and Analytics accounts to connect to one another.

If you don’t want Google to know absolutely everything about your site’s statistics, if you don’t want Google to have the inside track, then don’t use Google Analytics.

DEMOGRAPHICS

Google has recently begun offering demographic targeting for ads that display on the content network, through careful use of their “site tool”. It is based on what Google thinks the audience is for the sites your ad displays on, it might not always be accurate. There is no real way for Google to be certain of the gender, age or interests of the person looking at the computer screen on the other end. There is only a best guess – which is better that nothing if you want to pare down your audience. As with most marketing, trying to target a specific audience comes with risk.

If you’re going to use the content network, you want to make sure you carefully review what sites you are showing on – and this is another tool to that end. Everything you can do to pare down your audience will help you control your chances of having fraudulent clicks.

Here is what Google had to say about it in March 2006:

WHAT IS DEMOGRAPHIC SITE SELECTION?

Demographic site selection is a way to find and run your ads on sites with the right audience for your AdWords campaigns.

A demographic group is an audience that shares a particular trait or characteristic. This trait might be age, gender, income, or some other factor. If your product appeals to young women, for instance, you might want to target sites popular with the female demographic, the 18-24 age demographic, or both.

With the AdWords site tool, you can pick your preferences in up to three different demographic categories. The system will analyze your preferences and create a list of available Google Network sites that are popular with that audience. If you select multiple demographics, the AdWords system will look for sites that match all of your preferences. For instance, you might ask the site tool to look for sites popular with users who have children, or for sites popular with men earning a high income. The site tool will then return a list of sites whose audience tends to match those demographic descriptions.

The demographic site selection option is found on the ‘Identify sites’ page when you create a new site-targeted campaign, or on the site tool in an existing site-targeted campaign. In both cases you’ll also be able to use two other options to find sites: listing site URLs and describing topics that match your ad. We recommend using those methods along with demographic site selection to identify the very best sites for your ad to appear. For more detailed instructions, please see this Help Center entry: How do I use the site tool?

The demographic website data used by AdWords comes from comScore Media Metrix, an Internet audience measurement provider. At this time, AdWords has demographic information on users from the United States only. For this reason, demographic site selection is available only for campaigns which geo-target users in the United States. If your campaign doesn’t geo-target the United States, you will not see the demographic option on the site tool.

Please remember that demographic site selection cannot guarantee that your ad will reach only the exact audience you select. Most public websites get a variety of visitors. However, demographic site selection will help you choose sites where you’re very likely to find the people you want to reach.

SUMMARY:

Write a great ad. Good luck – that’s harder than it sounds.

Set up more than one ad aimed at the same set of keywords.

Use the “KeyWord” variable in the title of your ad box.

When entering in your keywords, use all three methods to enter each keyword – one of them will stick.

Bid the minimum. You can always raise your bid later if the ad doesn’t display on the first page at Google.

Set a high daily budget.

Monitor your ad campaign (log in and check it daily) the first few days to see how much it is actually costing you.

Track how effective your campaign is with conversion tracking.

OTHER KINDS OF ADWORDS ADS

You may have noticed that our advice has been focused on keyword-targeted ad campaigns only because that is the only one of these we can definitely recommend as a good idea.

There are actually three different ways to advertise in a Google AdWords account. We don’t cover them all because we only recommend the above method of using AdWords. But, so you know and can decide for yourself:

GOOGLE ADWORDS OPTIONS:

1. search network ads
This is what we covered above. Ads displayed only on Google and other search engine sites that are prompted by keyword searches only. You can be in the search network AND the content network (see next item) at the same time. It is a CPC or cost-per-click program; the ads don’t cost you anything unless someone clicks on them. [Who profits? Google.]

2. Content network ads — keyword-targeted
This means ads on the AdSense network (non-search sites that display ads alongside their content). By “keyword-targeted” is meant that you have chosen to display your ad on any AdSense site that relates to your keyword. You can single out specific sites on an EXCLUDE basis.

It is a CPC (or cost-per-click program); the ads don’t cost you anything unless someone clicks on them.

When using this system, we recommend care be taken to keep yourself just on the sites that match your target audience, and that you track the success of this campaign only by the cost-per-conversion. And most importantly, read our advice [Who profits? Google, any AdSense sites your ad is on.]

3. Content network ads –site-targeted
This means ads on the AdSense network (non-search sites that display ads alongside their content). By “site-targeted” is meant that regardless of your keywords, you have to choose to display your ad on that particular AdSense site or category of sites on an INCLUDE BASIS.

It is a CPM (or cost-per-thousand impressions) program; the ads cost money every time they are viewed a thousand times, without regard to clicks. We recommend extra caution when using this method of advertising to ensure that your money’s worth is gotten and to avoid fraud [Who profits? Google, any AdSense sites your ad is on.]

Some of you may be using the content match method of advertising on Google. Our advice? Choose your sites carefully, follow ouradvice. And log into your account often and review it carefully. There’s more to the content match options than we cover – but Google does a pretty good job explaining it.

GOOGLE ADWORDS RESOURCES

We recommend adding the AdWords Blog to your list of blogs to watch, or subscribe to their feed.

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