Introduction to Search Ads for eCommerce
To establish a successful eCommerce business, you need to be able to get in front of as many people as possible and always at the right time. This is a more proactive form of gaining leads because your ads appear in front of the right audience when they enter search terms, rather than a business waiting for users to find their website among thousands of others.
Social media and native ads do this well enough, but there’s still a way to leverage ad space into your personal playground for generating leads and conversions- Search ads on Google Ads.
Google Ads can be very intimidating to navigate and set up, but there’s always the option of hiring an eCommerce expert to put together search ads for eCommerce.
What are search ads in Google Ads?
Search ads are those text-heavy ads that appear on the top of the list on a Search Engine Results Page (SERP). They are also called pay-per-click ads because you only have to pay for every click-through to your website or on your other calls-to-action.
Text ads that follow Google’s formatting guidelines have a headline, a description, a destination URL and sometimes more extensions like phone numbers or email addresses. Images and catalogs can’t be used in text ads, which makes them both limited and fruitfully challenging to work with.
You can customize your search ads towards individual business goals or targets, like generating sales per month or driving a certain amount of traffic to your web pages. This way, your ad will get users to act- or more accurately, perform the action you’ve set.
You can organize search ads by the group. Each ad group can be assigned a goal or set of goals and targets. This makes it easier to keep track of ads and also manage similar ads for similar products.
You can also customize search ads based on where they need to appear. For placing ads on search-related websites, the Google Search Network is key. For image-friendly ads, there’s the Google Display Network while for eCommerce or e-retail product ads encouraging direct purchase, there is the Google Shopping system.
Why do you need search ads for your eCommerce business?
There are almost a billion searches carried out on Google every day and a lot of it for common keywords. With search campaigns, you can ensure that your destination link appears on the top of the list, depending on if a potential customer uses a search term you’ve bid on.
For search ads to show up, businesses are expected to place bids on search terms, which will regulate when and where their ads show up. This can be customized for ad groups as well so that bids for one search term are taken only from a specific ad group and not another. If your bid wins over other business’ bids, then Google will display ads from your set ad group in response to a user search term.
There are many benefits of using search ads for eCommerce:
Benefit #1: Get targeted traffic.
With ad targeting in Search Ads, you can indicate the demographic and psychographic you want an ad group to target. This helps to prevent unwanted traffic, develops trust in users and avoids unnecessary ad spend on a demographic you don’t want to target. This traffic is targeted towards your calls-to-action and end goals, like increasing leads or increasing traffic on one of your landing pages.
Benefit #2: Track traffic and progress.
Using Google Ads search ads will also give you access to a dashboard that tracks, monitors and organizes your results. With reports, analytics and tips to make campaigns more successful, any business can keep a tab on general ad spend and any leaks and spills in the form of irrelevant traffic or low-functioning campaigns.
Benefit #3: Manage all campaigns at once.
Since all ad groups are collected on one dashboard, monitoring and managing campaigns based on strategic or monetary decisions become easier. Google Ads also allows offline changes to ads through Google Ads Editor, which is a free downloadable software to make changes and manage multiple accounts.
Benefit #4: Organize based on product categories.
Since businesses can make ad groups on Google Ads, it becomes much easier to customize ads and bids based on product categories. For example, all search terms based on ‘shoes’ can be directed to the business’ ‘shoes’ ad group. Not only does this reduce the chances of irrelevant ads for the user, but it also keeps all your ad campaign and budget per category data in one place so you can adjust as required. This is especially handy during sales and discount seasons.
Benefit #5: Control costs.
With search ads, there’s no minimum spend and the account owner has full control over how much money to assign to each bid or ad group. Further, the amount spent per day and per ad is also customizable. By setting maximum and minimum bids, this cost control measure allows businesses to regulate their ad spend strategically.
How to create search ads in Google Ads
The process of successfully setting up a search ad campaign in Google Ads can be a bit complicated for first-timers. Here is how Google explains creating a search ad.
Method #1: The default way
Step 1. Sign in to Google Ads and create a campaign.
Step 2. In the menu on the left side of the page, click on “Text Ad”.
Step 3. Enter a final URL (where the ad should lead to), a headline, description and optional text in the ‘Path’ field.
Step 4. Take a look at the instantly generated preview for desktop and mobile then tweak as necessary.
Step 5. Hit ‘Save Ad’ when you are satisfied.
Google is strict about the ads it displays, so each ad, its text, and formatting will be reviewed by their team before being shown to relevant users.
Many businesses may not have the bandwidth or wherewithal to begin setting up Google Ads search campaigns. If yours is such a case, consider contacting an eCommerce or Google Ads expert, like AdNabu, to help you successfully set up campaigns, monitor them and get regular statistics and reports.
Method #2: The AdNabu way
To get expert help in navigating Google Ads or powering your search ad campaigns, sign up to AdNabu and have your campaigns created in a jiffy.
Alongside keeping costs lows, AdNabu uses their expertise in the field to expertly create and optimize search engine campaigns to meet business goals, be it churning leads or boosting click-through rates.
AdNabu’s assistance extends beyond merely setting up campaigns. Even in times of sales and discounts, AdNabu can effectively monitor and optimize campaigns to display the right ads at the right time, generating more than 30% in conversions. The team can work with ad groups of changing products, as well, and can successfully track changes and updates to ensure bids and ads are continuously optimized for their best performance.
Best practices for search ads in Google Ads for eCommerce
Setting up a Google Ads search ad campaign is quite the trial-and-error process. While there is no set formula that guarantees high ROI, increased click-throughs or more leads, there are some practices that the best of digital marketers follow in order to ensure their campaigns are driven, target-focused and making the most out of the money and effort put in. Here are a few best practices:
Best Practice #1: Write an influential ad copy.
Since search ads on Google Ads are text-heavy, the only way a business can convince a user to take the leap and click the link is by writing compelling and engaging ad copy. Headlines need to be attractive as they’re the first element a user will notice. The description must contain a call to action that urges a user to perform an action, be it clicking on a link or giving your number a call.
Best Practice #2: Exclude irrelevant traffic.
It is important to weed out useless leads and traffic to make your campaign more effective. This can be done by making sure your eCommerce site has no dead or broken links and your ad groups don’t have products that are out of stock or limited edition (unless that campaign group is for limited edition items only). This will increase returns on investment and chances of a sales boost.
Best Practice #3: Include ad extensions.
These extend regular text ads by adding more information about your business that makes sense in terms of your goals and targets. Google found that text ads with ad extensions performed better than those with just the text. Ad extensions include phone numbers, addresses, and website links- it’s a business decision which one of these would fast-track the process towards fixed goals.
Best Practice #4: Test your ad text before launching.
There’s no rulebook to play by while writing text ads; however, it’s always good practice to test your text before saving the ad and letting Google show it to users. This way you can see how each iteration is doing and change or re-hone accordingly. An excellent way to do this is to set up a campaign draft and create an experiment from it.
Best Practice #5: Select the right campaign type.
While setting up an ad campaign, choosing the right type determines where your ads show up- on the Search Network, the Display Network, Google Shopping, Google Video or Google Apps. Campaign sub-types allow you to further customize the reach, design, and target of each campaign type.
What be aware of while creating search ads in Google Ads for eCommerce
As with any such extensive tool, Google Ads also has its own facets that need to be considered before making the leap and putting all money in towards search ads.
Consideration #1: Text ads can’t have images.
Unlike dynamic search ads and display network systems, regular search ads use only text, no multimedia of any kind. This is why persuasive ad copy is critical. If you find it necessary to experiment with images and videos, then Video, App, or Shopping ads campaigns might better fit the bill.
Consideration #2: Google monitors PPC Quality Score.
Google has a metric called the Quality Score that determines how useful and relevant your PPC ads in connection with the terms you bid on. Only the company knows how much weight each element is assigned, but click-through rates and keyword relevance are up there on that list.
Consideration #3: Older ads must be weeded out.
If you have a lot of campaign groups, chances are there are one or two ad groups that are no longer relevant to your cause. It is essential to find these and remove them as they are certainly harming your ad spend and bringing in irrelevant traffic, or worse, driving relevant traffic to old links or out-of-stock products.
By keeping your ads current and specific, you can capitalize on this ad space than just setting up campaigns and letting them run for a year without monitoring.