Your guide to Google Ads and how they can change your business forever.

Your guide to Google Ads and how they can change your business forever.

Tanya Dharmapala
By Tanya Dharmapala

So you’ve heard about google ads and you’re here to see what all the fuss is about.

Essentially, Google ads work on a pay-per-click basis. And with over 63,000 of these clicks every single second on any given day, your potential target market just grew big time.

With these kinds of numbers, the potential growth for businesses is astronomical.

But you’re probably also thinking: will Google ads work for small businesses? Short answer, absolutely.

But really, it’s a little more complex than a simple “yes, just sign up and find out”. Here’s how these ads work, and why a strategy is so important when it comes to raking in those leads.

How do Google Ads work?

Instead of paying for advertising that you hope will work, Google ads allow you to pay only when it does work. Basically, you’ll only ever pay for actual real-life engagements by your audience, wherever or whenever that may be. Here’s how Google does this. 

  1. In setting up your Google ads campaign, you place bids on specific keywords that are related to your product and your landing page.
  2. When someone types in your keyword, two things happen: bids on that keyword take place, and Google does a quality assessment of your ad and landing page content to determine where your ad ranks. 
  3. Assuming your bid is successful and Google likes your landing page - Bingo. Your ad is featured.
  4. So far, you haven’t laid down a single cent. That’s until someone actually clicks on your ad. That’s where the term pay-per-click or PPC comes from. 
  5. What’s next? Having clicked on your ad, the potential customer is linked to your landing page - where it’s over to you to convert this lead into a sale.

Where do Google Ads appear?

Google ads appear all over the internet. That’s what makes them so dangerously effective. More specifically though, Google ads appear across all of the major Google networks, namely:

  • Google Search Network
  • Google Shopping Ads
  • Google Display Network
  • YouTube Network

Here are some real-world examples:

1. Search engine results page (SERP)

Search engine results page

Try googling any product - iPhones, furniture - anything. The top few results (highlighted below) are all Google ads. Now imagine your product or service appearing at the top of the search results page. Everyone typing in exactly what they wanted would instantly be presented with your ad. If you’ve got the ad wording right - these search ads can drive serious traffic.

2. Display Ads

Display Ads

If your product or service is easily marketed visually, this is the way to go. Google’s growing army of websites using display ads is feeding multiple audiences in different industries. Check out an example from a site below - ads can appear between website content, around a page’s periphery and more, getting many impressions as people scroll through content. Display ads appear in more locations than SERP ads and target the passive buyer, who may not be looking for your product specifically, but on seeing your ad are now more aware and potentially more eager to purchase.

3. Shopping Ads

Shopping Ads

If you’re running a product-based business, Google shopping ads can be a powerful tool to snap up new customers who are already coming in with buying intent. As you can see below, Google shopping ads help already interested customers decide by placing shopping ads above the organic content.

4. Youtube ads

Youtube ads

For businesses chasing enormous reach and awareness, Youtube ads can be a goldmine. A well-crafted story with quality content is a recipe for success in this department. YouTube ads have become so common that it’s almost weird when a video doesn’t have an ad at the start. Here’s one at the beginning of a video of Gordon Ramsey and Jeremy Clarkson cooking lobster on a beach.

Google ads strategy: how to make this work for you

Google Ads Strategy

There are a few ingredients that go into making a successful Google ads campaign. You can throw all the money you want at a campaign and have little to no engagement, let alone actual customer conversions. In the end, it comes down to your strategy. 

Here’s what we mean by that.

Choose the right campaign goal

Getting set up with a winning Google ads strategy starts with the basics - your end goal. This will depend on what you’re selling, and who your customers are. For example if you’re creating an online homewares store and want to build brand awareness for a completely new product line - display ads will be a great choice for you. If you’re hoping to snap up buyers with custom intent - a quality SERP campaign will suffice.

Target YOUR audience

Your audience is out there, and they’re clicking every day. But getting them to click on your ad and start spending will depend on the location and language targeting settings. Choose the location of your target audience - the people who normally buy your product and those who are likely to - display ads for plumbing services on a kids video game site won’t exactly be the right match, but throw your ad into the right pool of potential customers - that’s where the magic happens.

Write stunning (converting) ad copy

Writing good ad copy is the essence of a good Google ads campaign. Without it, you’re flailing in uncertain waters with nothing to hold on to. Good ad copy should be, besides being spelled correctly:

  • Keyword orientated 
  • Intent orientated 
  • Attention-grabbing 
  • Contain a simple and compelling call to action

Take up more prime real estate with ad extensions

Ad extensions can be powerful tools for businesses that actually have customers who benefit from using them. For example, an emergency plumbing service would benefit from having a call extension, allowing a customer to bypass the landing page and directly contact the company. This wouldn't be so applicable if you’re an online luxury fashion store for example, where you at least want to see what you’re buying before you settle.

Understanding the metrics

Before you get carried away - it’s important to understand the metrics. There are some essential Google ads metrics that you should be aware of: 

  1. Clicks and Impressions. A click is when someone actually clicks on your ad, an impression, on the other hand, is when your ad is shown on a webpage, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that someone has actually seen it. 
  2. Average cost-per-click. This is how much you’re being charged per click on a given campaign. It’s the amount spent on a campaign divided by the number of clicks. 
  3. CTR metric measures the “click-through-rate” of an ad campaign. This tells you how successful your campaign is in eliciting responses from potential customers.
  4. Conversions and conversion value. Conversions are when someone engages with your ad in a specific way like signing up or purchasing. The conversion value is how much revenue you make from this particular conversion. 
  5. Return On Ad Spend or “ROAS” is the final number you’re after. It gives the bigger picture of how much revenue you’ve created for each dollar you’ve spent on advertising. You can easily calculate your ROAS by dividing your Conversion value by Costs.

To determine what type of campaign you want to have and what goals you want to set, you need to identify the metrics that make sense for your business. For example, if you’re wanting to drive traffic, you would want to pay attention to the CTR but if you’re aiming to increase purchases, it’s important to pay attention to the number of conversions you’re getting.

Before you dive in...

It helps to have the basics down, especially if you’re new to Google ads. Basically, it comes down to getting these things right:

  • Campaign structure - make sure you’re structuring your campaign to suit your business goal. 
  • Using Google ads metrics to your advantage - by reviewing, analysing, and adapting your strategy, you can build a powerful advertising campaign for your business. 
  • Goal orientated advertising - by building your campaign around realistic goals that your business can meet.

Alright. I’m in. What do I do next?

Making the leap into the world of Google ads is scary. But the thing to remember is you’re not necessarily laying down cold hard cash for nothing. You’ll only be paying for actual engagements by your audience. 

Anyone can set up a Google ads account and launch a campaign, but tracking, monitoring, and adapting it to a particular audience takes experience, dedication, and time. 

That’s where we can help. 

At Dilate Digital, we aren’t Google Premier Partners for no reason. We’re your guide to google ads. Our PPC specialists work to design, post, track and deliver your Adwords campaign so you can focus on the big picture and your product or service. 

If you're ready to scale up your small business, give us a bell at or send an enquiry today.

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