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5 tips to AdWords marketing for web stores

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5 tips to AdWords marketing for web stores In the most efficient ads, there is a message match: the ad corresponds exactly to the user's search term and the content of the landing page adapts according to the user's search.

Google AdWords enables targeted adverts to be shown with organic Google search results. At its best AdWords marketing is very effective and can significantly improve the sales of a web store. Competition is tough, however, and successful search engine marketing requires continuous efforts. Even though most of the web searches are carried out through Google, advertising in other channels as well might be worthwhile.

1. Keep the campaign structure clear

In AdWords marketing it is essential to make sure that the campaign structures are clear. Thoroughly structured campaigns and ad groups help to display the exactly right ads to the users and direct the users to the right products.

The tighter the structure is, the better the ad and the landing page correspond to the search term of the user. The recommended way is to theme ad groups very tightly: even search term specific ad groups can be made for large volume search terms (the so-called Alpha/Beta and SKAG techniques). Remember that in the most efficient ads, there is a message match: the ad corresponds exactly to the user's search term and the content of the landing page (and possibly the rest of the site) adapts according to the user's search. 

Campaign structure in AdWords

Image: The campaign structure of a small web store simplified. In the first campaign there are a few large volume search terms that are optimized further and aimed to visibly increase sales. In the second campaign are the small volume keywords with less prospect.

2. Make sure your ad copy stands out

When the user searches for a specific product or service through Google, AdWords ads are the first ones to show on the search results page. Ads compete for the attention of the user against, not only other ads, but also the organic search results. This is why an appealing ad copy (the ad text) is very important. A good ad copy gets more clicks, helps to raise the quality score, and thus lowers the price paid per click. Try out many different kinds of ad copies and eliminate the ineffective ones.

Ads are most effective when they take advantage of the multiple extensions that AdWords offers. The most popular extensions are adding sitelinks and the recently published feature of adding a callout text. A store location, a phone number or product reviews are additional information that can be shown with the ad.

3. Advertise to the right people

The important factor when it comes to business, is that the ads are shown especially to the customers that are ready to buy. Poorly targeted ads almost always mean extra expenses.

The following techniques can be used to target advertising to potential customers:

  • Limit the visibility of your ads geographically and possibly according to the user's language.
  • Apply the Enhanced cost-per-click feature.
  • Make sure that your ads are shown only with the right keywords. Use the right keyword matching options and negative keywords, if needed.
  • If a mobile optimized version of your site doesn't exist or the mobile conversion is very low, it is recommended to set the maximum price per click for mobile devices lower than normal or even to zero. This way you won't pay for visitors who probably wouldn't purchase anything, or for technical reasons couldn't.
  • Show the price and the features of the product or service already in the ad copy. This way you don't pay for visitors who just check the price of the product on your site and then leave without buying. If a customer is searching for a cheap microwave, it is useless to try getting a click for an ad for the 500 euro flagship model.

4. Remarket

Remarketing means targeting the ads to those visitors who have already been on the site to view the products, but haven't made a purchase. If a visitor has, for example, browsed women's shirts in a clothing web store, third party sites can display ads for these already browsed shirts. Ads can be, for instance, limited to show only for the users that have added a product to the shopping cart but left without a purchase.

5. Monitor the right things

An example of AdWords campaignImage: An example of an ineffective AdWords budget. Over ninety thousand dollars has only made a couple of thousand dollar profit. Instead of monitoring the number of visitors, it is crucial to make sure that the campaign budget at least pays itself back.

When reviewing the success of a web store's search engine marketing, it is important to monitor whether the campaigns produce orders and thus, is the advertising profitable. A good meter for this is the CPA value (Cost Per Acquisition) that is calculated for every product category. It shows how much getting one order has cost.

A very common problem is that the advertiser monitors the wrong things. Even though a visitor wouldn't make a purchase from a web store, he or she might still send an offer request via a contact form or subscribe to a newsletter. These are all valuable things to a web store manager, hence they should be monitored. In most cases, these goals are not set as default in the reports, but require getting familiar with the analytics.

The overall aim of search engine marketing could be campaigns that are so well optimized that they can be operated with virtually limitless budget. However so, that the ROI (Return On Investment) is always on the plus side.

Summary

AdWords itself is not a complicated system, but creating effective ads requires getting thoroughly familiar with it. In the worst case scenario, a lot of money in advertising is spent on the completely wrong things and the whole campaign is watered down – on the other hand, when done right, keyword advertising can bring a substantial amount of additional sales to a web store.

Contact Lianatech experts if you want to talk more about effective web store marketing.

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