Going into Google Ads as a small or medium business can feel like going into uncharted seas with a small budget. But if you use the right strategies, even small advertising amounts can bring in a lot of money. Small businesses can improve their online visibility, get more customers, and compete with bigger companies without spending a lot of money if they focus on low-cost strategies.
It’s important to know how Google Ads works so that you don’t waste money and every dollar you spend helps you reach your business goals. We’ll talk about how small businesses can improve the performance of their ads, get the most out of their budget, and make their campaigns more effective in this introduction to Google Ads techniques that won’t break the bank.
These tips will help you put your resources where they will do the most good. They include using negative keywords to stop clicks on unrelated keywords, choosing high-intent keywords, optimizing for quality scores, and geo-targeting. Scheduling ads for peak times, keeping an eye on and changing bids, and using automated tools like Smart Campaigns can also make the process easier and improve campaign success.
Small businesses can build a strong base for their Google Ads campaigns by using these methods. This will bring focused traffic to their products while keeping control over how much they spend on ads. Learn how to use these low-cost methods to get the most out of Google Ads and help your small business grow.
Budget-Friendly Google Ads Campaign Strategies to Grow Your Business
1. Optimize Your Keywords
Keyword optimization is a fundamental aspect of search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM), including Google Ads campaigns. It involves researching, analyzing, and selecting the best keywords to target to drive qualified traffic to your website or landing pages.
When optimizing for keywords, consider the following strategies:
Keyword Research: Begin by identifying a comprehensive list of potential keywords that are relevant to your business and your customers’ search intent. Use tools like Google Keyword Planner to find keywords that have a good balance of search volume and competition.
Understand User Intent: Classify keywords by user intent—informational, navigational, transactional, or commercial—to ensure you’re targeting the right audience at the right stage of the buying funnel.
Use Relevant Keywords: Incorporate keywords that are highly relevant to the content on your landing pages. Relevance can improve your Quality Score in Google Ads and organic rankings in search results.
Optimize Keyword Placement: Place your keywords strategically within your website’s content, including titles, headings, meta descriptions, and throughout the body text.
Employ Long-Tail Keywords: These are longer, more specific keyword phrases that are less competitive and often have a higher conversion rate as they capture users with more specific search queries.
Monitor Keyword Performance: Regularly track how your keywords perform in terms of traffic, conversions, and ROI. Use this data to refine your keyword strategy.
Optimize for Local Searches: If you’re a local business, include location-based keywords in your content and ads to attract local customers.
Consider Keyword Density: While keyword stuffing is penalized, having a natural and reasonable presence of your target keywords within your content is beneficial.
Update and Expand Your Keyword List: As market trends and search patterns change, regularly update your keyword list to include new terms and remove those that are no longer relevant.
Use Semantic Variations: Google’s algorithms are sophisticated enough to understand synonyms and context. Use semantically related keywords to capture a broader range of search queries.
Tools like Google Keyword Planner or SEMrush can help identify these.
2. Use Ad Extensions
With ad extensions, you can show more details about your business on your Google Ads (which used to be called Google AdWords). Most of the time, these additions increase click-through rates because they make your ads stand out more and give potential customers more useful information. These are some popular types of ad extensions and how to use them:
Sitelink Extensions: These let you put extra links to different pages on your website below your ad text. Use them to send people to certain parts of your site, like pages with special deals, product groups, or business hours.
Call Extensions: You can make it easy for people to call your business right from the search results page by adding a phone number or call button to your ads. Show your business’s address, phone number, and a map icon along with the text of your ad. This is very helpful for getting people to walk into brick-and-mortar stores.
Callout Extensions: These let you add more text to your ad to describe things like deals or unique selling points (like free shipping or customer service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week).
Structured Snippet Extensions: Choose a predefined header (like “Destinations” or “Service catalog”) and list items to draw attention to certain parts of your goods or services.
Message Extensions: Get people to text you right from your ad. This is helpful for people who use their phones and would rather chat than call or navigate websites.
Price Extensions: Show the prices of your goods or services so people can look through your options right from the search results page.
Promotion Extensions: Draw attention to sales and deals by showing users your discount codes and special offers before they even visit your site.
App Extensions: If your company has a mobile app, you can use app extensions to make links that go straight to the app store page where you can download it.
Lead Form Extensions: Get details about leads from the search results page, so people don’t have to go to your site.
To get the most out of ad extensions:
Choose add-ons that help you reach your goals: Pick the extension types that will help your campaign’s goals the most and connect with your target group the most.
Give correct and up-to-date information: Check and update your apps often to make sure that all of the information is correct and up-to-date.
Use More Than One Extension: You can use more than one type of extension in a Google Ads ad. Utilize ad extensions to enhance your ad’s visibility and relevance. They provide additional information (like location, callouts, and site links) and can improve click-through rates without incurring extra costs.
3. Negative Keywords
A well-optimized Google Ads campaign needs negative keywords to work well. By letting you exclude certain search terms from your ads, you can make sure that your advertising budget is spent on keywords that are important to your business and are more likely to lead to a sale.
Negative keywords help you get better leads by removing traffic that isn’t relevant. They may also raise your click-through rate (CTR) and make your campaigns run better overall.
Here are some good ways to use negative terms in your Google Ads campaigns:
Find search terms that aren’t relevant: Look over your search query reports to find terms that are bringing up your ads but aren’t converting. These could be words that are like your keywords but don’t have anything to do with your business or goods. You can add negative keywords to either the whole campaign or just certain ad groups to stop your ads from showing up for those terms. How you set up your campaign will determine which negative keywords you can add.
Use a Range of Match Types: Negative keywords can be added as an exact match, broad match, or phrase match, and each will filter search questions differently. Pick the right match type based on the types of searches you want to leave out.
Regularly Update Your Negative Keyword List: As you get more information about how your campaign is doing, keep improving your list of negative keywords to make your campaign work better.
Think About the Situation: When you add negative terms, think about the situation in which those keywords are used. Make sure you don’t leave out terms that some people may find useful. Use shared lists of negative keywords. If you have more than one campaign, you can make a list of negative keywords that can be used in all of them. This will save you time and keep things consistent.
Don’t use too many: negative keywords can help, but using too many of them can make your strategy less effective. To make sure you don’t miss out on possible traffic, balance is key.
Use Suggestions and Tools: Google Ads can help you find bad keywords, and third-party tools can use your campaign data to help you find terms that don’t belong in your ads.
Google Ads’ geo-targeting is a powerful feature that lets advertisers make their ads more relevant to people in certain places. This method works well for small businesses that want to get local customers or for bigger companies that want to tailor their marketing to different areas.
This is how geo-targeting can be used effectively:
Define Your Target Locations: Choose the geographic areas where you want your ads to appear. This could be as broad as entire countries, or as specific as zip codes or a radius around a particular address.
Understand Local Preferences: Tailor your ad copy, language, and offerings to align with local customs, events, or preferences, which can improve engagement and conversion rates.
Adjust Bids by Location: Increase or decrease your bids for certain locations based on performance data. If a particular area is converting well, you might bid more to increase visibility there.
Use Location Extensions: Enhance your ads with location extensions to show your business address, phone number, and directions, which can be particularly effective for driving foot traffic to physical stores.
Schedule Ads Based on Time Zone: Consider the local time zones of your target locations and schedule your ads to run during the most optimal times for engagement.
Exclude Locations: Just as you can target specific areas, you can also exclude locations where you do not want your ads to show, which can help focus your budget on more profitable regions.
Analyze Location-Based Performance: Use the geographic performance reports in Google Ads to understand how your ads perform in different locations and adjust your strategies accordingly.
Consider Local Competitors: Be aware of the competitive landscape in your targeted locations and adjust your bids and strategies to account for local competition.
Localized Landing Pages: If possible, direct users to landing pages that are customized for their location, which can increase the relevance and effectiveness of your campaigns.
Leverage Local Events and Seasons: Align your campaigns with local events, holidays, or seasons to make your ads more timely and relevant to the audience in a specific location.
5. Ad Scheduling
Google Ads’ ad scheduling, which is also called “dayparting,” lets marketers choose which hours or days of the week they want their ads to appear. Businesses can use this feature to time their ads to reach people who are most likely to be looking for their goods or services. This can help them get more from their advertising dollars and make it more likely that they will buy something.
Here are some tips for setting ads that work best:
Look at your audience: find out when the people you want to buy from are most likely to be online. For B2B companies, this could be during work hours. For consumer-focused companies, this could be in the evenings and on the weekends.
Review Historical Data: Look at the historical data for your account to see patterns in the times when you get the most sales. Use this knowledge to make sure that your ads run during these busy times.
Consider time zones. If you want to reach people in more than one time zone, change the times of your ads to match the times of day when people are most busy in each zone. You can change your bids by raising or lowering them for certain days or times that are more or less important to your business. Ten Thousand Foot View says that you might pay more during the week if that’s when you get more business.
Test and optimize: Start with a broad plan and make changes to it as you learn more about how well your ads are doing. Always try out different plans to see when your ads work best.
Align with Business Hours: If your company relies on phone calls or visits, make sure your ads run during business hours when someone is free to talk to buyers.
Use Seasonality: Change the times of your ads to match how people act during different times of the year, like during holidays or special events.
Reach and Efficiency: Cutting down on the number of ads you run can help you save money, but be careful not to limit your reach too much. Make sure that being too strict doesn’t cause you to miss out on possible customers.
Use Ad Scheduling Across Platforms: If you’re running campaigns on more than one platform, you might want to use ad scheduling on all of them to keep your marketing approach consistent.
Regularly: Check your ad schedule’s performance regularly to make sure it stays in line with your business goals and how your audience acts.
6. Optimize Landing Pages
Optimizing landing pages is essential for improving the performance of digital marketing campaigns and increasing conversion rates. Here are some recommendations for optimizing landing pages, supported by data from the search results:
Clear and Concise Headlines: Your headline should be attention-grabbing and convey the value proposition of your offer.
Simplicity in Design: Keep your landing page design simple and free of clutter to focus visitors’ attention on your message and call-to-action (CTA) (Crazy Egg).
Use of White Space: Embrace white space to make your content more digestible and to guide visitors towards your CTA (Yokel Local).
Compelling Copy: Develop relevant, engaging, and persuasive copy that speaks directly to your audience’s needs and interests.
Strong Call-to-Action: Your CTA should be prominent, clear, and compelling, encouraging visitors to take the next step.
Optimize for mobile: Ensure your landing page is fully responsive and provides a seamless experience on mobile devices.
Fast Load Times: Improve your landing page’s loading speed to reduce bounce rates and prevent losing potential conversions.
Use Images and Videos: Incorporate high-quality images or videos that are relevant to your message and can help increase engagement.
Social Proof: Include testimonials, reviews, or case studies to build trust and credibility with your audience.
A/B Testing: Continuously test different elements of your landing page (like headlines, images, and CTAs) to determine what works best for your audience.
Above-the-Fold Content: Place the most important information and CTA above the fold so that it’s visible without scrolling.
Navigational Simplicity: Reduce or remove navigation links to minimize distractions and keep visitors focused on the conversion goal.
Alignment with Ad Content
7. Monitor and Adjust Regularly
Constantly monitor your ad campaigns’ performance and make adjustments based on the data. Experiment with different ad copies, bidding strategies, and targeting options to find the most cost-effective approach.