Over the last decade, digital advertising has skyrocketed. In fact, many of the biggest brands have shifted large amounts of their marketing budgets to online ads. But why have the major brands cut down on the more conventional methods such as television, display, or print and started to lean towards internet marketing? The answer is simple: digital platforms are where people are spending most of their time. This is particularly evident in Singapore where the market is made up of sophisticated media consumers.
More than 2 in 5 Singaporeans shop online and offline. However, when looking at the results of a recent study conducted to show how Singaporeans first become aware of a product, it’s pretty easy to see which media they prefer. The study concludes that only 2% discover their products through radio, 4% through direct mail, 5% through posters and outdoor advertising, 5% through email, 10% through in-store ads, 15% through television, 16% through newspapers or magazines and 5% through other forms of media. However, a whopping 35% of Singaporeans first discover a product through online search.
This should speak volumes to the average Singapore business owner. It further proves that a business stands the greatest chance of attracting new customers if promotion is done online. While there are several routes one could take for digital marketing, there is one stand out method–Google ads. Let’s discuss what makes Googles Ads more effective than other forms of advertising as well as the best way to go about.
About Google Ads
Google Ads which was previously known as Google Adwords is a service for online advertising developed by Google. The new change got into market on 24th July 2018. The platform serves advertisers with unique and effective advertising services. Those who use these services pay for their brief advertisements to be displayed, product listings, service offerings as well as video content contained in the Google ad attached for site users to view.
The system of Google Ads’ is partly based on both cookies and keywords which depend on the advertisers. In placing advertisement copy on relevant pages as perceived, Google applies those characteristics. Payment by the advertisers is made when those who visit the site click the advert in their process of browsing. Partner website get part of the income generated.
The main source of Google’s revenue is Google Ads, contributing to USD $95.4 billion of the company’s total revenues for advertising in the year 2017.In offering services, Google Ads uses pay-per-click (PPC) model of pricing. Although an improved strategy of bidding can be applied to automatically attain a predefined cost-per-acquisition (CPA), the case should never be mistaken with a real CPA model of pricing.
Advertising on Google
Advertising with Google is an excellent strategy for marketing your business. You can display an ad for your enterprise to audiences who are looking for your type of products or services, particularly within your region. This targeting method makes google the best platform for advertising your business. However, the web is crowded, and getting users to visit your website out of all the other alternatives available is a continuous challenge that owners of sites are aware of.
The Google Search Engine
The world’s largest search engine operates by linking searches to ads based on relevant keywords. Inadvertently, website owners are on a fervent bid to win relevant keywords they deem will most likely be used by consumers in search of their product type. For instance, a custom jeweller in Singapore might try to bid on keywords such as “personalized jewelry” and “jewelry singapore”.
The placement of your ad on Google’s results page is dependent on how much you bid for that keyword. In addition, the landing page experience is taken into consideration when Google’s algorithm ranks your site.
What Makes Google Ads So Effective?
According to Net Market Share, Google owns about 74.5% of the search market. This makes it the world’s large network in terms of display advertising. In fact, according to Google Benchmarks and Insights, Google’s display ads reach over 80% of global users. And according to Google Investor Relations, 97% of Google’s total revenue is from advertising.
These particular stats only serve to highlight just how important Google Ads is to the business of Google. Google’s main priority is to continually improve its Google Ads tool. The harder Google works, the more successful advertisers are. This makes Google Ads a win-win situation.
Setting Up a Google Ads Account
It is quite easy to set up a Google Ads account. When you visit Google Ads website, there is a large button, green in colour, that says “Start Now.” After clicking, you will get a form where you will fill the website you wish to promote and your email address.
You must ensure that the email used has been joined with a Google account. If you don’t have one, you can set up a new one from there.
Here the steps on how to set up your first Google Ads campaign
Signing in: use your gmail or Google Suite email to sign in:
Choose NEW GOOGLE ADS ACCOUNT:
Choosing Your Goals:
Choose Your Existing Or New Business:
Fill Up Your Business Name And Website URL:
Choose If You Want Singapore, Other Countries/Regions, Specific Regions Of Singapore Or Radius From Your Business:
Specify Your Language And Business Categories You Are Promoting:
Write Your First Ad:
Set Your Budget. Unless You Are Pretty Sure What Is The CPC, Clicks And Budget You Need Its Better To Start With “Recommended” – You Can Change It Later:
Review Your Ad And Budget:
Confirm Your Billing Country:
Set Up Your Billing Profile:
Input Your Credit Card – Best To Use Auto Payment Which Deducts Every 30 Days Or Upon Hitting Threshold:
Congrats You Are Done!
And When You Get More Comfortable And Want To Optimise Your Campaigns:
You Can Switch To Expert Mode Which Gives You A Lot Of Power And Flexibility:
Here Is What You Should See In Expert View Overview – You Can Add Keywords Like So:
You Can View The Performance Of Your Keywords And Add New Ones Like This:
The Keyword Suggestion Tool Comes In Pretty Handy Or You Can Use The Keyword Planner Tool:
Setting Up Your First Campaign
Google Ads simplifies the task of getting started with creating digital campaigns by taking you through the steps needed. Below is an overview of these steps.
Select the type of your campaigns
On the Google Ads page, there is a link that contains the five major ad types that you can establish using Google Ads.
- Search ads – These are ads that usually appear above the primary results of the Google Search Engine results page.
- Display ads – Ads that show on sites all over the web.
- Shopping ads – Ads that emerge on the results page of your search engine for searches related to products, and the always feature information like availability and cost, and images.
- Video ads – Ads that appear on the bottom or before a YouTube video.
- Universal app – Ads that appear on apps for mobile platforms.
Select the ad type you want to employ when undertaking your campaign. You can run multiple advertisements, so selecting one ad type does not prevent you from creating the other kinds of ads on top.
Develop your goals
The platform then requests you to select the goal for your ad. It will give you different options depending on the chosen type of campaign, but these are the most usual options:
- Brand awareness
- Brand and product regards
Also, you can decide to develop your campaigns without selecting a particular goal. Selecting your goal enables Google Ads to improve on how it follows up the success of your campaigns and give you the most relevant analytical feedback.
Specify your settings
The next page features various essential aspects.
You start by assigning a name for your ad. This is for use by your marketing team only. Therefore, you need to ensure that the assigned name makes sense to you and PPC account assessment team, and it differentiates the specific campaign from others that you may create or have.
The next step is selecting whether you wish your ads to appear on both the display, and the search network, or on either of them. Search network ads appear on the results page of Google search engine or other Google platforms. Display network ads, on the other hand, appear on all websites throughout the web.
Then, you choose the location and language of your target audience. If you own local SMEs in Singapore, then you do not wish to spoil money on clicks from users in other countries or localities. And if your staff uses the same language as the target audience, you will want to reach the customers in that language since they will understand the information quickly.
Selecting your financial plan is the next step after choosing the language and location. Here, you need to decide the maximum amount you want to spend on your PPC ad on a daily basis, and also the maximum amount you wish to use on each click. As you would imagine, the more the amount you set, the higher the number of times your ad appears and the higher the number of clients you can anticipate to visit your website.
Bidding for your ads can either be done by manual bidding by the website owner, or through allowing Google to conduct automatic bidding. It is recommended that all marketers use the automatic bidding, but the most experienced users of Google Ads can perform their manual bidding. The automatic option is designed to deliver the best output for the money spent. Hence it is always a good option.
Then, you will get a request to input the days you wish to start and end our PPC campaign. You can choose ‘None’ if you want your campaign to progress for an indefinite period.
Add Your Keywords
This is the section where you are needed to enter the keywords that you have researched on. For each campaign, you can develop several groups of ads. You only need to create ads that focus on an individual service or product in each group so that you can enter a particular set of keywords that will be appropriate to the ads.
Create Your Ads
This is where you incorporate all your creativity and put in the images you wish to utilize for every ad that applies to the selected keywords.
Make Payment and Start!
After ensuring that everything else is organized, a red button at the top of the Google Ads page appears to inform you to make payments to activate your campaigns. Click on “Fix It” and input your payment details.
Extensions and Audience
There are a few sections at the bottom of the page that features optional selections. These are the most important among them:
- Targeting Audience- from here, you can specify the persons you want to view your ads depending on their search behaviours and concerns. You can also set up remarketing approach to allow the display your ad to users who had visited your website before.
- Extension Options- this section features various extension options which allow you to improve your ad by adding extra information like links to multiple web pages, discount information, or contact information. It enables marketers to give significant information in a perfect way that attracts the attention of the audience.
Determining Your Keywords
Keywords connect searchers to your ad and landing page. Google provides you with vital information in this area. Keywords pertinent to your site are suggested and popularity statistics are even assigned to each. Go to Tools and select Keyword Planner to access some of Google’s suggestions based on your entered keywords. You can educate yourself on common searches and trends here. An important tip is to use long-tail keywords with more than 2 words. They are more specific, have lesser competition and are more likely to link to your ad.
Keyword Match Types:
Broad Match – Your keyword is allotted this default match type and will show up anytime someone searches one or more of your keywords in no particular order. Your ad will show up for synonyms as well.
Broad Match Modifier – Adding a + in front of the required keyword of choice makes your ad show up only for searches that included that word.
Phrase Match – Insert quotation marks around the phrase that you require in exact order. Searches will only be matched if they searched that exact phrase, but the actual search may include extra words before or after the phrase.
Exact Match – Searches will only be matched if it exactly corresponds to your keyword, without any excess words before or after.
Negative Keywords – Note the searches that led to your site. If there are any poor matches, make the irrelevant word a ‘negative’ keyword so those future searches will not lead to your site.
Write Your Ad
Be sure your ad is as precise as possible as there is a character limit. Two headlines and a description are required. Some rules to follow for a successful ad:
- To ensure Google finds your ad relevant, use at least one of the keywords you bid on in your ad.
- If you want to increase the chances of showing up in local searches, use local terms in your ad.
- Define your business identity in the ad and what its offerings are to consumers.
- Indicate your business’s point of difference in your ad ¾ what sets it apart from other similar ones. This could be affordability or even sustainability.
- State a clear call-to-action. This has been proven to prompt searchers to click on your ad.
- Advertise a promotion. A small offer can spur searchers to gravitate towards your ad over the multitude of other similar ads.
- Add extensions to your ad. They may take up extra space but ads with additional information have had higher click through rates. This could be a store rating, an address or a phone number.
- Search for a similar business type on Google and see what the successful ads look like.
- The longer your ad, the more noticeable it is.
For mobile ads:
- Incorporate click to call and click for directions in your ad.
- The simpler the ad, the more effective.
- Ensure your landing page works on mobile, otherwise chances are Google might not rank your ad for mobile searchers.
Mobile Advertisements are robust in terms of conversion rates as mobile searchers perform the search rather late in the buying cycle with great intent of purchase.
Track & Optimise Your Ad Performance
- Go to the keywords tab in your account and add a quality score column. Your keywords are each given a quality score.
- An ad’s ranking is determined by multiplying its quality score and your bid amount. The higher the score, the higher your ad ranks.
- Quality of ad can be traced with other factors:
- Impressions – An impression happens when your ad simply appears on a results page. Low impressions are a bad sign meaning no one sees your ad. Counter this by checking if the keywords you chose match your site and ad. Also, a competitive bid is recommended.
- Click through rate – This is calculated by taking the number of clicks and dividing it by the number of impressions. This statistic gives insight on how many are acting on the impression of your ad. If the figure is lower than 1%, you should re-compose your ad into a more appealing one.
- Cost per click – Calculated by taking the total cost of ad divided by number of number of clicks. CPC is correlated to conversion rates. How many of the clicks actually translate to sales? If your CPC is not converting well to sales, you might need to rethink your ad and landing page to make it more exciting.
Once you’ve gotten started, check your ad stats regularly for your ad’s performance. Edit your ad whenever necessary. Remember to also streamline your select keywords. All these practices will help you reduce to cost of your ad, which can quickly escalate if done wrong.
Google Ads Express
Google Ads Express service aims at business that are small in size that are trying to minimise the hardness of ad management campaigns by managing ad placement and keywords automatically. Google Ads Express was initially called Google Boost.
It also gives support to small businesses that lack website by giving them a chance to lead clients to the business’s Google Place page.
Additional Google Ads Success Tips
This isn’t to say that using Google Ads guarantees that a business will be able to amass millions overnight. In fact, when not careful, many businesses find that they lose money rather than gain it. So, how can business owners avoid the common mistakes and take full advantage of all of Google’s hard word? Here are a few tips to make using Google Ads a more sure thing:
Obsess Over Ad Copy
A lot of businesses take a huge chunk of time to find the right keywords for their ad campaigns. They spend days, weeks and even months coming up with a winning combination. However, they never ever see the fruits of all their labor and hard work. Why is this? Well, it all comes down to the to their ad copy. While these businesses spend all of this time preparing just the right keywords, they fail to use them in their ad copy. What’s worse, they craft ad copy that is very generic.
Customers are less likely to click on an ad if they don’t see a match for the keywords or search queries that they have just typed in. This is why an equal amount of time and persistence should be spent when crafter the perfect ad copy. Not only should the ad contain keywords, but it should also be customised for the target audience.
Businesses should also make sure to include keywords that focus on commercial intent. For example, the business should include the word ‘buy’ in their keyword phrases. For instance, if the business sells cupcakes, the phrase may be, “where to buy lemon cupcakes.” Remember, it is not enough to just show up on the right search pages. The ad must entice people to click it.
Use The Business Location
A lot of business owners assume that since they are advertising online that they don’t need to refer to the location of their business. They figure that the broader the search is the better and that adding a location will only limit their earning potential. It is better to advertise worldwide, right? Wrong.
This another example of creating an ad that is generic. If the ad does not include the location, the business is setting itself up for failure. What most businesses don’t consider is that shopping behaviours vary according to locations. For example, if someone owns a bubble tea shop, they are more likely to sell more in Bugis and areas near schools like Novena, Bishan Junction 8 and Nex Shopping Mall.
Also, different locations will respond differently to certain ads. And this has a lot to do with their lifestyle and levels of income. Someone who lives in D9, D10, D11 will respond differently to a car ad than someone who lives in an HDB estate. So a business should always mention its location because it can make a huge difference in the campaign.
Send Traffic to a Specific Sales Page, Not the Home Page
Here’s a piece of advice that usually confuses business owners. “Why would a business owner choose to send all of their ad traffic to a page that contains just one item or service? Doesn’t it make more sense to the traffic to a homepage? This way customers will be able to browse through the entire website and gain access to more options instead of just one product or service.” These are easy assumptions to make, but they could not be further from the truth.
Sure, when traffic is sent to the home page, it does give the customer access to more options, however, this does not guarantee that they will be anything. What most business owners don’t realise is that when customers click on an ad, they are usually looking for a solution that is immediate. They do not respond well when they are overwhelmed by a large number options. And this is why many potential customers immediately click the back button and continue their search elsewhere.
This isn’t to say that some won’t stick around. Of course, if a website looks good, some people will want to have a look around. However, this is taking a huge chance. So business owners should ensure that their keywords, ad copy, and landing page are all relevant to each other. In fact, in many cases, Google will uses the success of a landing page to determine the score the ad receives. This affects how well the ad is placed as well as how much it will cost.
Test Absolutely Everything
It’s quite surprising to see how many small businesses never actually test their copy. In some cases, this lack of testing can be due to a lack of education. In some cases, it may be a result of a lack of time. However, in a great majority of these cases, a lack of testing is due to a business that is overconfident. They assume that just because it looks great to them, that it will also have the same effect on their potential customer. Unfortunately, it is this type of confidence that can be very costly when using Google ads.
Sure, a business may feel as if they know their audience. This business may also have hired an excellent copywriter who knows how to craft unforgettable headlines. But here’s the deal, testing can reveal a lot of flaws in ad copy.
By testing the ads with several versions of it, a business can find which one converts the best. They can identify which keywords are the most effective. They can figure out if the headline should be tweaked a bit. Perhaps the change is as simple as a few differently placed words. In any case, the business will never know if they are getting the most out of the copy unless they A/B test it.
When testing copy, the business should only change one element each test. They should set a clear goal for that copy. They should also watch the results over a long period of time, not just initially.
How Much Does Google Ads Cost?
Google Ads is all about paid advertising and you should create a budget for it. On average, it costs between $1 and $2 per click for ads placed on the search network.
However, when it comes to the display network, the cost per click (CPC) is under $1. However, there are some expensive keywords where the CPC is as high as $50 or more. This begs the question, what determines the price of your PPC keywords?
Google ads function in an open auction system. Check out this infographic below to understand how it works:
In every business niche, there are bound to be competitors, and they will affect your bidding strategy, click through rate (CTR), ad position, and the CPC. The bid wars for certain keywords will affect how much you should set aside for your PPC budget.
Case in point, during the holiday season, the number of competitors will lead to a fluctuation in the PPC amount. The retraction of a strong competitor will also affect the variables that determine the CPC.
This is arguably the most significant determinant the CPC. Google Ads has a maximum CPC bid model that calculates the position of your ad and CPC. If you have a low bid, then your CPC will also be low and vice versa.
Having a high quality score will mean that you get to rank your ads higher at a much lower CPC. Conversely, a low-quality score will mean that you have to bid higher for your ad to rank higher.
The quality score directly influences your keyword’s CPC as well as estimating the first-page bid thresholds on Google Ads account, which then affect the position and ranking of your ad. Factors such as your ad copy, click through rate (CRT), and the position and rank of your ad will affect your quality score.
Sufficient to say, PPC changes daily, and this will affect your CPC. However, seasonality will also affect your CPC. For example, if your competitor has recently set up their Google Ads account or they have raised their keywords bids, you have to make changes to your bidding strategy and bid amount for the keyword.
Writing an Ad Copy for Google Ads
The ad copy is the text of your clickable ad, and ideally, it is the second and third line in your ad. The ad copy’s design ought to get the reader to take action. Moreover, the ad copy is the equivalent of the sales letter or pitch in traditional advertising that addresses the customer’s concern and possible objections.
The ad copy also outlines the key features and benefits the customer will receive. However, there is more to the ad copy than the text. Follow these tips to write an excellent ad copy
- Leverage on keywords wherever possible
- Be as specific as the user’s query
- Never omit a CTA
- Test different psychological approaches to find the right fit
- Do not sell a false bill of goods
- Incorporate ad extensions
- Leverage on dynamic ad features
With these best practices of writing the ad copy, always ensure to engage the reader on an emotional yet professional level. With the ad copy complete, you should consider the following factors before submitting the ad
- Does the landing page answer the promise outlined in the ad copy?
- Is the final copy something you would click on?
- Does the ad make sense?
- Is the ad copy sound appealing?
Writing ad copies for your Google Ads is both a science and an art and the more times you practice, the better you will get. It is necessary that you look past the ad to the landing page and assess if your visitors will browse other pages of your site or make a purchase.
Initially known as Google Ads Certification, is a partner to Google Ads program of certification. For you to be their partner you must excel in its Fundaments exam as well as another exam of Google Ads which entails Display Advertisement, Search Advertisement, Shopping Advertisement, Video Advertising as well as Mobile Advertising.
Working With a Google Partner
Truth is the process of creating the ideal Google Ad is daunting, and it might take a while before you get the hang of it. It is, therefore, necessary that you choose one of the many agencies in Singapore offering professional Google Ads services.
Here are the things to consider when working with a Google Partner
- They should have a badge on their website demoting that they are a certified Google Partner
- Assess their level of competencies
Google Partners have several skills that include search advertising, mobile advertising, video advertising, shopping advertising, and display advertising.
The Pros And Cons Of Using Google Ads To Grow Your Business
Best Six Google Ads Practices
Ideally, you could nosedive into developing ads these days. But to gain maximum benefits from the money you use on Google Ads, you should create time to study the basics.
Google provides several videos that can give you an insight into the platform and how to apply it. Viewing all of them can be an arduous task, but it is worth the time as most website owners confess.
Below are the best six Google Ad practices that you need to consider.
Define your goals
Determine what you want to achieve from your Google Ads campaigns. At some point, you must decide on whether getting those first leads for users to learn that you exist becomes the most crucial factor, or you need users to turn into clients without delay. Regardless of your intentions, your campaigns using Google Ads should be developed by the goals you need to accomplish.
Research the keywords
Keywords are among the most crucial aspects of PPC marketing. The list of your keywords plays a significant role in marketing your digital content. You must ensure that your keywords appear specifically when people search for content that matches the content that you have to sell. Taking your time to research is the best means of learning the terms used by individuals, and the viability of different words. Try to use keywords that refer to a large number of products that sell in small amounts rather than those that relate to a small number of best-selling products to reduce the bidding costs.
Give relevance priority
The best thing about digital content sales is that you can reach a specific audience that is most likely to get interested in the content on your website more effectively. The sales for your ads increase when you make them appropriate to the users at the instant they see them.
Thorough research on keywords plays a significant role in marketing your SMEs in Singapore, but website owners should also include ad targeting by demographics and the interests of the users to direct your ads to the right audience.
However, relevance must go past the content displaying on your ad: the content of your ad must always match the content on the page where the ad leads you to increase conversions.
Improve as you proceed
There is suitable analytics on Google Ads that can help you get a better understanding of the content that your audience reacts to based on the performance of your website with time. Google Ads even analyses the success of your ad into the cost you pay for each click using its Quality Score. The quality score of your ads is calculated by how good your ads perform, and this has an impact on your pricing.
Retarget your users
It is nice to get a visitor once on your website, but urging them to visit again is much more beneficial. When using Google Ads, you enjoy the service of retargeting the clients who had already visited your site to show them the items they saw when they were there or even new products.
Try out your ads
It can probably take a few tryouts to know what inspires your audience to react to your ads. Test different ads with various keywords, images, and audience to gather information on the ones that work best. If you just try a single ad, you will never learn whether the ad would bring better results if it were done differently.
Google Ads can be daunting for beginners, but as you can see, setting up your Google Ads is a quick and easy process. However, you need to keep on learning ways to improve your ad copy and the quality score for the best results in Singapore.
Singapore Google Ads can be incredibly lucrative. This is because Google has a huge interest in seeing them succeed. And as a business owner, this information priceless. However, Singapore business owners have to be smart about their approach. Sure, Singaporeans tend to favour digital media, but there are still ways a business can fail if not careful. Its prudent to hire an experienced digital marketing agency in Singapore because they have the benefit of managing hundreds of campaigns to know what works and what does not.
If business owners are to succeed with Google Ads, then they are going to have to be willing to go beyond the generic mode of advertising. Customers cannot be placed into a one size fits all category. Each individual, each location has different needs and wants. And the businesses that succeed in the world of Google Ads are those that are willing to cater to these needs and wants.
They have to always be willing to go a few extra steps and spend a little more time craft the perfect ad copy. They should also be willing to test their results. The best ad campaign is about more than keywords, it’s about the user experience as a whole.
Although Google Ads is distinguished for attaining quicker benefits than other digital marketing platforms, it is also valid that you obtain better outcomes from it the more you continue using it, provided that you wish to learn from your ads and improve them as you advance. When performed well, Google Ads can result in a beneficial ROI and present increased, and relevant, traffic to your site.
You can get professional help in managing your Google Ads campaigns in Singapore from MediaOne’s services. Visit their website https://mediaonemarketing.com.sg/ for more information on how to run a successful online campaign using Google Ads in Singapore.