ICS Magazine

Setting Up a Google Adwords PPC Campaign

January 4, 2012

Last month I began a new three-part series on Adwords and your pay-per-click campaign. We identified what it was, when to use it, when not to use it and how it can help cleaning companies. Now we’re going to get right into developing your Adwords ad campaign.

At least half of the cleaning companies I consult with have big mistakes in their Adwords accounts. These mistakes cost an average of $50 (and sometimes much more) per month in unnecessary Adwords cost. Follow this article closely and you may save serious money.

The first thing you’ll need is a free Google account. If you already have a Google account, you can use your existing account. Simply type into the Google search bar, “Adwords.” From there you’ll be taken to a page where you can enter your existing Google login or create a free new account. Next you’ll be taken to a somewhat complicated looking page where most beginning users get confused.

Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of your initial campaign set-up:

Name Your Campaign

Name the campaign something you’ll be able to identify your ads with. One easy way is to name the campaign by the city you are creating the campaign for. If you have more than one city, you can create a different campaign for each of city. This is one way to help you target your ads to specific cities and services.

Locations and Languages

This is where you assign the city you want to target. In the locations area, enter the city you want to target with this campaign. In a separate campaign you can target another city.

You can either type your city into the form or click “show map” to specify a particular area of the city. Your ads will show up only for people who are searching in this city and for people outside the city who Google search for the specific city keywords. For example, people in Florida who search “Carpet Cleaning Atlanta” may see your Atlanta-based ad even if they are physically located in Florida.

Networks and Devices

This is perhaps the biggest mistake. You’ll surely want to choose the network by clicking the “Let me choose” tab. From here, your best bet is to only choose “Google search.”  This will only allow your ads to show up in the Google search instead of on other local websites. The Google search is where your prospects go when they are ready to hire a cleaning service, so that’s where you want to spend your entire budget.

Bidding and Budget

As I mentioned in last month’s article, a large factor of how high your Adwords ad ranks depends on the amount you bid. At first, you’ll want to bid low. It’s not a problem if you don’t get clicks right away. In fact, it’s possible you may not get very many clicks when you begin this test. Then you’ll bid your price per click a little higher until you find the right balance in bidding low enough to get the clicks you want.

How much of a bid per click should you start with? It really depends on the competition in your city. If you’re in a small or non-competitive city, try bidding $1-$2 per click. In medium competitive areas try $3-$4 per click. In large competitive areas you may want to start at $5 per click. Costs per click for services like “Water Damage” may be $10 or more in some cities. You should start on the lower end and increase your bid price later if needed.

Your budget should reflect what you want to spend per day on this particular campaign. Keep in mind, if you are setting up multiple campaigns, you’ll need to take into account all of your campaign budgets. They add up.

Ad Extensions

Should you do ad extensions? It depends on whether or not any of the extensions are useful in your own situation. For instance, if your address were in the city of Atlanta and your Adwords campaign targets Atlanta, it would be a good idea to extend ads with location information.

However, if your address is 50 minutes outside of Atlanta, the ad extension showing your location information may hurt your response. And if you answer you phones live during business hours, you may want to extend ads with a phone number. But if you don’t answer live, it may only cost you money.

The thing about ad extensions (like your Google Adwords ad) is that you pay for the click regardless of whether the prospect hires you or not. Think about whether or not your response and quality of leads will be improved by using the ad extension.

Create Your First Ad Group!

In Adwords, you have two main categories:
  1. Campaign- The settings for your group of ads (as we set up above)
  2. Ad Group- The group of ads within your campaign
  For each campaign, you’ll create a set of ads. Let’s say for instance you create a campaign for Atlanta. Within that campaign you’ll create ad groups that target only the Atlanta area. Some ad groups could target carpet cleaning, while other ad groups could target another service like water damage or tile cleaning. And then you may have an additional city to target, like the city of Marietta. Simply create a separate campaign with ad groups under that campaign for each of your services.

Writing Your Adwords Ad

What do you say in your ad in such limited space? This gets complicated. You want to call out your prospects and identify with them. Then you want to give them a benefit that no other ad gives them. You have to do all this in 95 characters or less!

As with all advertising, first decide your target market. Then decide what you want to say to them. Here’s an example of an ad targeting move-ins and move-outs:  In your headline, call out the prospect. If your ad group is targeting the keywords for “carpet cleaning” in the Atlanta area, you may want to say something like, “ATL Clean Carpet Today.”  The search was for “Carpet Cleaning Atlanta,” so using the ATL abbreviation is short and identifies with Atlanta residents. For the description lines, give benefits and call the prospect to action. In description line 1, say “Call 757-433-3333 Now For Appointment.”  In description line 2 say, “20% Discount For Empty Home/Office.”

Next month I’ll give you more examples of Adwords ads that pull in your prospect. As well, I’ll go over the best keywords for cleaning companies and show you how to properly monitor your Adwords campaign for maximum bang.