Google Ads – The Basics

Improving the performance of your Google Advertising

Whether you are managing many client accounts or just your business account, understanding the key areas and how to assess them correctly, is critical to you and your clients saving time and money. So, what’s the process to ensure they are running well? Do you know what and where to check in your Google Ads account? If you are looking to ensure that all is well, then an audit of your account from top to bottom may be in order.

What can a Google Ads audit for your business?

When you purchase a car, you are told about the regular service intervals required to retain the performance of the vehicle and ensure there is less likelihood of something going wrong with it. This is no different to your Google Ads account and servicing it will ensure you are not losing money as you could. Remember, Google is in the business of making money and if you are making money using their platform, they’re making money.

So why is a Google Ads audit so important? Here are a couple of reasons:

  • Wasted budget in non-performing areas of the account
  • Finding new opportunities to target
  • Understanding what the data is telling you and how to capitalise on it
  • Allow you to test, rinse & repeat assumptions from that data

So where do we start?

Here are the 5 simple steps that can turn your Google Ads account around.


Step #1 – Goals & objectives

What’s the point of running any form of advertising unless you have a focused goal in what you want to achieve from it.  In one account, there may be many objectives that you are wanting to achieve. You need to ensure each one is clear and has a measurable outcome to help you assess its performance.


Step #2 – Account Structure

Let us say you are working on a jigsaw and you throw all the pieces on the table. Eventually, you will complete it but imagine how much quicker it would have been if you had methodically arranged the pieces into their areas. Am I the only one that starts a jigsaw by working in the frame edges and corner? Your Google Ads account is no different.

When reviewing your account structure, ensure that each campaign has the following at the very least:

  • Each campaign has a clear goal
  • Locations, budgets and bids are aligned with that goal
  • Ensure Ad groups and keywords have a common thread


Step #3 – Ad Groups

In the previous step, we touched on the account structure. Part of this structure includes Ad Groups. This is where all the magic starts to take place. After spending hours of keyword research, all that hard work can be undone by setting up poorly structured Ad Groups. What do I mean by this?

In these Ad Groups, you will run various ads (more about this in later steps). These ads need to align themselves with the keywords you have in the group. Let us say all your keywords are stacked into one Ad Group. When writing an Ad for it, you are going to find it difficult to align it with every keyword you may have. For example, let us say you collected keywords around car parts. Now you might get away with using generic terms but let’s say you had a headline that read “Buy Holden Parts Online Today”. Now your business may sell parts for other makes and models and someone searches for BMW parts. See how it can be confusing?

This is the reason why you need to give as much thought into how you want to layout each Ad Group so that it aligns itself with those amazing keywords you researched for hours or days. For a little extra work here can save you so much time and money down the track.


Step #4 – Keywords

We briefly mentioned this in the previous step and to those getting started, it can become quite daunting when you start hearing about match types, negative keywords and keyword bids.

In the beginning, you will spend a good amount of time researching keywords that will bring in traffic to your website. There are many tools out there which will help with your efforts, but they do come at a cost. For those on a budget, a simple way to get started is by using Google Ads Keyword Planner. As you can see from using the generic term of “BMW parts”, the results offer you some great insights:

  • Other keywords (remember breaking down those Ad Groups?)
  • Average monthly searches
  • Competition

Once you start here, keep building a list of keywords relevant to your business and once collated, started putting them into similar groups (your eventual Ad Groups). By doing the hard work here, makes your account a lot easier to manage.

Google Ads - Keyword Planner

Step #5 – The Ads

With all that hard work you have done setting up the account, structuring the Ad Groups into themes and placing the perfect types of keywords, can all come undone with poorly written Ads

When writing ad copy for each Ad Group, you need to stand out from the crowd. Easier said than done, right?

Writing effective ad copy comes down to understanding the end goal – what customers want to accomplish with the goods or services you are offering. As an example, using the previous BMW example, which headline do you think will make more of an impact for someone that typed in “buy BMW distributor”?

Looking For A Distributor?


Best Prices On BMW Distributors

See the difference? One has asking about their pain point, the other is offering a solution. This is just the beginning of structuring the perfect Ad but somewhere to get you started. We will dig deeper in future articles.


google advertising Pay-Per-Click

In Summary

As you can see, Google Ads is not as simple as it looks. Often people dive straight in, not employing best practices and burning up a lot of hard earned $$$. Take it from me, I have seen this before and I am sure I will be seeing it again when someone needs help with their Google Ads account.

There is no reason you cannot do this yourself but you need to ask a question:

“Is my time and resources better suited elsewhere?”

Let me know and if you would love to dabble in the digital advertising space, you can reach out below.


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