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Google Ads (AdWords)

With Google Ads, advertisers have various options for being present online in the Google advertising network. The network includes, on the one hand, advertising space above, below and next to the SERP as well as on YouTube, in Android apps and on all pages that are monetized via Google AdSense. The old name AdWords was made up of the words “Advert” (German advertising) and “Word” (German word) and could therefore be translated as “advertising word”.

Google AdWords: Google's main source of income

Anyone who does not deal professionally with the topics of search engine optimization and the Internet is often faced with the question of where the high income of the search engine company Google comes from. Google Ads has the answer. Google Ads has been the Mountain View company's primary source of income since 2000, when Google decided to use ads to fund its ad-free search.

With the establishment of its own advertising program, Google has dominated the SEM market to this day and is way ahead of competing products such as Bing Ads. The popularity of the search engine Google, which is used by 90 percent of the population in some countries of the world, is beneficial for the dominant position.

The advertising program Google Ads has developed continuously since it was founded and offers advertisers a wide range of options for targeting advertising online depending on the type of advertising.

A brief outline of the individual stages of development

Google Ads is the core product of the Google Group. In less than 15 years, the advertising platform has continuously developed.

1998: Google Inc. is founded
August 2000: Start of the Google Sponsorship Program
October 2000: Google is initially launching its AdWords as a beta version with almost 400 advertisers only in the English-speaking market
2001-2004: Constant adjustments to the advertising guidelines as well as expansion of the offer to other languages ​​such as French, Spanish, German and Chinese
2006: the AdWords API is chargeable; Installation of a dedicated blog for AdWords users "Inside AdWords" (also available in German since 2008)
2008: For the first time, it is possible to set up advertisements for certain devices such as the iPhone
Mid 2008: Expansion of the quality guidelines for keywords and ad groups
2012: YouTube is part of the AdWords advertising network; Video advertising is now possible with AdWords
also 2012: Expansion of the targeting options
2013: Expansion of the advertising offer through product listing ads, for which the Google Merchant Center must also be used
2018: Renamed in Google Ads

Building a Google Ads campaign

The requirements for creating Google Ads campaigns are a valid Google account and an accessible website.

The hierarchy within the account is as follows:

First, the campaign is created, which consists of one or more ad groups, which in turn contain several keywords.

It is possible to create many different campaigns within one ads account. Since each campaign is provided with an individual daily budget, different products or website areas can each be advertised with a different campaign and targeting can be tailored to the campaign goal. In order to achieve the most precise and efficient budget distribution possible, advertisers should always work with several campaigns.

Ad types and their structure

Advertisers have the option to use different types of ads with Google Ads. These should be selected based on the previously defined marketing goals.

  • Text ads: are classic text ads that are placed via Google Ads, can either be displayed next to, above or below the Google SERP or they appear on partner sites in the Google advertising network that use Google AdSense. Each text ad consists of an ad title, two-line ad text and the link displayed. There are restrictions on the length of the characters. The title must not exceed 25 characters, while 35 characters are available for the ad text per line and for the link displayed. It is important that no special characters may be used in the link text. Likewise, the use of a question mark or exclamation mark is only permitted once in the ad text.
  • Image ads: are image ads as GIF or Flash files that are displayed on pages of the Google advertising network that use AdSense. Image ads can either be created yourself and uploaded via the Ads interface or made with the AdWords ad tool. Image ads are reviewed before they are approved. The examination can take up to three working days.
  • Product Listing Ads: are a special form of ad within Google Ads. These are image ads with price information and minimal text that are displayed next to or above the organic search hits. Ads obtains the data for the Product Listing Ads from a product data feed via the Google Merchant Center. In turn, special conditions apply to the creation of this data record, which can be viewed here: https://support.google.com/merchants/answer/188494
  • Video ads: Here advertisers have the option of using their own YouTube videos to advertise on other YouTube channels. Click-to-play or sponsored videos are also possible. Billing is done via CPC.

 

Detailed information and guidelines for all ad formats can be found here.

How are the prices created?

The common billing model for Google Ads is the so-called CPC (Cost per Click), i.e. the costs that the advertiser pays for a click on his advertisement. The amount of the CPC depends primarily on how much other advertisers are willing to pay for a certain keyword that triggered the display of an ad that was ultimately clicked on by a user. That sounds complicated, but in principle Google AdWords works according to the bidding model. So it is a kind of auction for prices on keywords. Every advertiser makes a bid for a keyword. Those who are willing to pay the maximum price for a click on an advertisement for a certain keyword will be placed most prominently within the advertisements.

But that only says a fraction about the click prices. Because Google has introduced other factors that determine the actual level of the CPC:

  • Quality factor: this determines how well a keyword, in combination with the ad text, fits the target page. In addition, values ​​such as loading speed or accessibility also influence the level of the quality factor. The range goes from 1 to 10, with 10 being the best rating.
  • Number of competitors for a specific keyword: The click price for a keyword in a competitive industry such as credit can sometimes increase to several euros, while for other industries a CPC of 10 cents on average is common
  • Quality of the Ads account: Google can recognize, among other things, by adjusting bids and adding keywords, how much an Ads account is maintained. The less care is taken of maintaining the Ads account, the higher the click prices can be
  • Targeting: Here it is important whether the targeting type "exactly matching" or "largely matching" is chosen for a keyword

In addition to the components already mentioned, the form of advertising also determines how much advertising with Google Ads costs.

Extended billing modes

As usual in the SEA, Google offers other billing modes depending on the type of ad.

  • CPM: Display ads can also be billed based on the usual CPM (cost per mille). The number of clicks is not used to calculate the costs, but the number of impressions. If the CPM is two euros, the advertiser has to pay this as soon as the advertisement has been shown 2,000 times.
    CPA: If conversion tracking is set up for Google Ads, the conversion optimization tool can also be used after a certain period of time. Then it is possible to pay for the advertisements via CPA. The advertiser therefore gives Google a price proposal, and thus either a price that he is willing to pay for each conversion or a price that he would like to pay at most per conversion. Google Ads uses these suggested prices to target the ads.

Every advertiser has the option of either entering an individual offer for each keyword or submitting a blanket bid for all keywords within an ad group. In addition, it can also enable Google Ads to automatically target the bids for individual keywords based on a maximum bid.

Targeting opportunities

Text ad campaigns can be targeted based on various socio-demographic criteria. Advertisers can choose between regions or individual cities, languages ​​or age groups. In addition, the targeting can also be adjusted based on the end devices that are used to access the advertisements. In addition, the ads can also be shown on certain days or times of the day.

With display campaigns, advertisers have even more specific targeting options to choose from. In addition to areas of interest or placements, i.e. websites or apps where advertisements are to be displayed, campaigns can also be set up according to retargeting criteria. So z. B. Banners are displayed to users who have visited certain pages of a website but have not caused a conversion there (purchase, newsletter registration, etc.).

Link Google Ads with Google Analytics

If you use Google Ads, you can make your web analytics even more efficient if you link your Ads account with your Google Analytics account. This has the following advantages:

  • Import of conversions from Google Analytics
  • More precise evaluation of AdWords campaigns via Google Analytics
  • Simplified creation of retargeting campaigns (require a small adjustment of the tracking code)

The link is made very easily directly via the Google Ads account under the heading "Tools & Analyzes".

Useful tools

With Google Ads, advertisers not only receive a management system for online advertising, but also additional tools that make working with the system easier:

  • Keyword Planner: This can be used to search for new keywords for campaigns and to carry out traffic and cost estimates for new campaigns. The tool also suggests ad groups.
  • Display Planner: precise planning for image advertisements can be carried out with this tool.
  • Conversion Optimizer: if conversions are registered through Google Ads, Google will automatically suggest the Conversion Optimizer. Google Ads then independently optimizes the existing budget in order to achieve as many conversions as possible.
  • Ads Editor: the Ads Editor is a desktop version of AdWords. This allows different accounts to be managed. The user logs in with his access data and can use the Ads Editor to optimize, save and upload keywords, ad texts or campaigns offline.

 

Certificates for professionals

Google offers free certifications to companies that work with ads. To be certified as a Google Ads Professional, individuals must first pass a basic exam as well as an advanced exam. Further requirements apply to companies.

Google Ads and SEO

Google AdWords offers online shops and companies the opportunity to generate traffic both as part of marketing campaigns and on a permanent basis. Even if it is wildly speculated in SEO circles that major customers of Google Ads are preferred for organic placements in the SERP, there is so far no evidence of this. Google Ads therefore has no direct influence on the placements in the organic search result lists. However, SEM measures can definitely have a positive effect on the rankings and trust of a website.

For example, if a website If, for example, you place massive advertising via Google Ads, it increases the traffic enormously, thereby also increasing your web presence and achieving reach. Customers who have already visited the relevant page may remember their names the next time and enter them as "direct-type-in" in the Google search box. Or they have unconsciously noticed advertisements on the website while surfing and also remember the name during a specific search. This could theoretically increase the strength of the brand, which in turn could lead to an increase in the trust. It is important to note that the advertising expenditure must be very large in order to achieve such effects with ads