The Ultimate Google Ads Beginner’s Guide

by | Apr 9, 2020 | blog

Welcome to our ultimate Google Ads beginners guide! If you’re an eager entrepreneur wanting to expand your business, a marketer wanting to expand their skill set or a PPC professional wanting to touch base with the basics, this Google Ads beginner’s guide is exactly what you need.

Not interested in reading? Watch the guide instead!

Table of Contents

  1. Getting Started
  2. Google Ads Tools Overview
  3. Create/Set-up Account
  4. Create Your First Campaign
  5. Campaign Optimizations
  6. Creating The Perfect Ad
  7. Adding Conversions
  8. Conclusion

Google has come a long way since it’s inception. Today, Google fetches over 63,000 searches per second on any given day. It’s kind of hard to grasp the sheer computing power it takes to interpret that amount of data.

Nonetheless, Google has expanded its product offerings over the years to increase profits and expand its reach. One of the major moneymakers for the company is Google Ads.

Just to clear up any confusion, Google Ads used to be called Google AdWords. They rebranded last year in an effort to make all their marketing services synergize better and be easier to understand.

During this time, it also revamped the UX to be much easier to work with. Assuming that you’re new, you shouldn’t really have to worry about the old platform too much. So, let’s get started.

New Google Ads Logo

Getting Started

First and foremost, you should recognize that there are two types of Google Ads you can create. MCCs (manager accounts) are great if you own an agency or if you want to manage multiple accounts. They’re great tools to save you time with reporting, access control, and consolidated billing. If you’re just starting off with Google Ads its probably best to create a normal account.

Once you get your account created, all you have to do is enter your credit card information to have access to all the tools. Don’t worry, they won’t charge you for anything unless you have actively running ads!

Once you’re at the Google Ads homepage, take a second look around and fiddle with some buttons. You should be getting a guided tour by Google of the basics of the home page, campaign tab, etc.

When you enter Google Ads and click the “Tools & Settings” at the top right-hand corner of the screen, you will see six different subcategories: 1. Planing 2. Shared Library 3. Bulk Actions 4. Measurement 5. Setup 6. Billing.

Planning

A vital aspect of running successful campaigns in Google Ads is thorough planning and research, especially keyword research.

Keyword Research Tool

When some marketers hear “keyword research” they shutter then run away. Honestly’ it’s not as bad as some people make it out to be. In short, you’re trying to find keywords that are searched fairly often, aren’t insanely competitive and are relevant to your products or services.

Go to “discover new keywords,” find type in the name of your product or service, press enter and voila! Google has now generated a list of relevant keywords just for you! You’ll want to sort them by medium competition and the highest volume possible. That way, you can experiment with cheaper keywords and build from there.

Create/Set-Up Your Account

Once you have a decent-sized list of keywords, it’s time to create or link to a new account. This is where all the magic happens. The structure of Google Ads goes like this:

  • Account
    • Campaign
      • Ad Groups
        • Ads

Ads are nested in ad groups that are nested in campaigns that are nested in accounts. Typically, you’ll want to group similar ads into ad groups. Luckily, different ad groups can have different default bids than campaigns. I’ll get more into detail with these concepts in a different article.

Create Your First Campaign

Now that you’ve created an account it’s time to set up your first campaign! Go into Google Ads and on the left panel click “campaigns.” Shocker, I know. Then, click the blue plus button and select “new campaign.”

Depending on the goals of your advertising, you might want to select a different goal. If you have no idea, just click leads. Then, click “search.” Ignore the last part and click “continue.”

You’re actually almost done already! Type in your campaign name, uncheck search and display networks, select your location, language, and daily budget. For your monthly budget, multiply your daily budget by 30.4. This is the average days in a month.

Now under the bidding section, and click “select a different strategy.” Now, select “manual bidding” so you can control your bids. Remember, the most profitable algorithms don’t always align with the advertiser’s goals. Now just click save and continue and your first campaign will have been officially created!

From here, you can continue to fill out your ad groups and keywords or click “cancel” to do that at a different time.

Campaign Optimizations

Google Ads has many different ways to increase CTR, conversion rate and ultimately save you money!

Ad Schedule

One of the first things you can do it make sure your ads aren’t running when your business isn’t open! This is way more common than you think it is. Have you ever clicked on an ad, called the place and they didn’t pick up? There’s a good chance this is exactly what happened!

To get started with the ad schedule tool, click “ad schedule” from the left menu. Then click the blue pencil icon. Then. select the campaign you want to add the ad schedule to. You’ll then be able to choose the hours and days your ads are running for that campaign.

Extensions

Extensions are a great way to make your ads shine over the competition, get a better CTR, improve quality score and save you money. The most commonly used ones are:

  • Sitelink extensions
  • Callout extensions
  • Call extensions

Sitelink extensions are a great way to add extra descriptive copy to your ads and link to specific pages on your site. Callout extensions are great for highlighting some unique value propositions for your company or product. E.g. “open 24/7” or “free delivery.” Call extensions are how you add your phone number so leads can call you directly from your ads!

Location

Have you ever searched Google for something like “hair salons near me” and had an ad pop up for a salon 50 miles away? Chances are the advertiser of this business didn’t have proper location targeting set up.

You can use location targeting to select a location, either radius, zip code, city, state or country. This prevents getting clicks from people that won’t likely buy from your business.

Creating The Perfect Ad

Google Ads categories
google ads tools

There are different variations of ads you can use. However, we will just focus on default text ads. On the left menu, click “ads,” click the blue + icon, click “text ad” and select the campaign and ad groups you want to create the ad for.

To start off, you’ll want to enter the URL the ads should go to.

Headline 1: use this to show off what your product is or does. As an example, “Fresh Italian Cuisine”.

Headline 2: Give a value proposition. E.g. “All You Can Eat Breadsticks”

Headline 3: I typically use it as a branded headline. E.g. “The Italian Bistro”

Display path 1: use these to further explain what your selling. E.g. “Italian”

Display path 2: same as above. “Restaurant”

Description: intriguing copy a call to action at the end. “Our gourmet Italian cuisine is known for perfectly-seasoned meats, fresh vegetables, and precisely baked bread. Come visit now!

A final version of your ad might look something like this:

mobile view if an optimized text ad
mobile view of an optimized text ad

Adding Conversions

One of the greatest aspects of digital marketing is the ability to track KPIs effectively. It’s a lot easier to see who clicked your ad and some insights about them than a billboard, for example.

To get started, go to the Google ads home screen and in the top right-hand corner, click “tools & settings.” From there, go to “measurement” and “conversions.” Now, click the blue “+conversions” button. Generally, you’ll want a baseline list of:

  1. Website conversions
  2. Phone call conversions

This way, you will be able to track call conversions and what people did once they reached your landing page. We recommend any Google Ads user to set up proper conversion tracking using Google Tag Manager. These tools are essential to keep track of tags and immensely improve your local SEO, respectively.

We hope you’ve enjoyed our ultimate Google Ads beginner’s guide. Hopefully, this guide has helped you get started in the complex world of Google Ads and PPC in general.

Conclusion

Google Ads can be intimidating when you’re first starting. However, breaking it down to this these bite-sized chunks can make it much easier to process. In a nutshell, Google Ads is a great platform that lets you customize your advertising efforts down to minute details to save you money in the long run. We offer to set up, manage, and optimize Google Ads campaigns for you.

If you have any comments or questions please leave them below!