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Advertising on Google

How to Start

Ready to try Google AdWords? Here is how to get started:

1. Find a Google Partner

If you do not have an in-house team member with experience in AdWords, it is best left to the experts. Google recommends working with a certified Google Partner agency to ensure ad campaigns are running at their best.

2. Identify Products/Services

Focus on products or services that have the largest ROI or those that need extra visibility and promotion. Also consider focusing on products or services that are not already ranking well in the Organic Search Results.

3. Conduct Keyword Research

Use a tool like Google Keyword Planner to determine search volume, competition, and average cost per click for the keywords that can be used to trigger ads. Build initial keyword lists related to those products or services.

4. Establish a Budget

After identifying products or services to advertise and expected cost per clicks, determine a monthly budget. Consider the cost paid to Google for the ads and also any ad management costs.

5. Optimize Landing Pages         

In order for an ad to perform well, the ad copy and keywords triggering the ad need to be relevant to the page displayed when the ad is clicked. If a highly relevant landing page does not already exist, build an ad-friendly page on the website. Optimize product or service descriptions, add quality images, and ensure fast loading times.

Tips for Success

Setting up the ad campaign is

only brushing the surface. Here is

how to be successful:

1. Ad Type Variety

Experiment with multiple types of ads as fitting to your industry. For example: Search ads, Display ads, Shopping ads, Video ads, Mobile, etc. Determine which ads best fit the marketing goal.

2. Ad Extensions

Utilize all relevant ad extensions to increase the likelihood the ad is clicked. Examples include: Location extensions, Callout extensions, Price extensions, Review extensions & more.

3. Test Ads & Plan Ahead

Test everything. Experiment with ad copy, images, and landing page variations. Determine which ads yield the highest Quality Scores and conversions. Also consider seasonality. Ad spend typically increases near the holidays. Set up campaigns and test ahead of time to maximize results during busy seasons.

4. Track Performance

Ensure conversion tracking is set up properly and linked to Google Analytics. Work with a Google Partner for assistance if needed.

5. Measure ROI / ROAS

Don’t throw away money! Calculate Return on Investment (ROI) and Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) to ensure ads are profitable.

ROI = (Revenue - Cost of goods sold) / Cost of goods sold

ROAS = (Revenue derived from ad source) / (Cost of ad source)


Courtney McKeown is the SEO/SEM Director here at With 10+ years of experience in the Internet industry, Courtney understands the evolving nature of digital strategy and the importance of staying current on SEO/SEM practices. At, Courtney oversees the SEO/SEM team, which is focused on driving both organic and paid search traffic to our clients' websites.

Courtney is a big sports fan and tries to attend as many football, baseball, and hockey games as possible. She also participates in Fantasy Football and Fantasy Baseball leagues.

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