July 24, 2023

An Overview of Google Ads | Setup, Best Practices, and Common Mistakes

Running Google Ads campaigns can be a challenging task, but by avoiding common mistakes and following these best practices, you can ensure that your campaigns are successful. It is essential to conduct thorough keyword research and keep track of your campaigns' performance to make data-driven decisions and optimize your ads.

Google Ads is a powerful tool for businesses looking to increase their online presence and drive more traffic to their websites. However, like any tool, there are common mistakes that businesses make when using Google Ads that can hinder their success. Before we dive into problems advertisers can face with Google Ads, let’s get acquainted with the program and understand how to use it.

Google Ads Account Setup

Setting up a Google Ads account is the first step in creating successful campaigns. While it might seem like a daunting task at first, Google makes it as user-friendly as possible.

Creating a Google Ads Account

To create a Google Ads account, you will need to have a Google account. If you already have one, you can use it to sign in to Google Ads. If you don't have a Google account, you can create one during the sign-up process. Once you have signed in to Google Ads, you will need to complete a few steps to set up your account.

1. Set up billing information: You will need to provide billing information before you can start running ads. You can choose between automatic payments or manual payments.

2. Set up a campaign: You can create a campaign from scratch or use a template to get started. You will need to choose a campaign type, set a budget, and select targeting options.

3. Create an ad group: An ad group is a collection of ads that share a common theme. You can create multiple ad groups within a campaign to target different audiences.

Setting Up Campaigns

Setting up a campaign involves several steps, but it is essential to get it right to achieve your advertising goals. When setting up a campaign, keep in mind the following:

1. Choose the right campaign type: Google Ads offers search, display, shopping, and video campaigns. Knowing which is best for your business is crucial to achieving your advertising goals.

2. Set a budget: It’s no surprise that setting a budget is one of the most important aspects of launching up a campaign. You will need to decide how much you want to spend on your campaign and how you want to allocate your budget.

3. Select targeting options: You can target your ads based on a variety of factors, including location, language, device, and audience.

4. Create compelling ads: Your ads should be eye-catching, relevant, and informative. Make sure to include a strong call to action to encourage users to click on your ad.

Now that your Google Ads account is set up, what next? Starting with keyword selection is a logical next step.

Keyword Selection and Match Types

When it comes to creating a successful Google Ads campaign, selecting the right keywords and match types is crucial. This starts with understanding keyword match types and then conducting research on your keywords.

Understanding Keyword Match Types

Google Ads offers three main keyword match types: broad match, phrase match, and exact match. Each match type has its own benefits and drawbacks, and it's important to understand how they work in order to select the best match type for your campaign.

-Broad match: This match type allows your ads to show for searches that include your keyword (or variations of it). While this can help you reach a wider audience, it can also result in irrelevant clicks and a lower click-through rate (CTR).

-Phrase match: With this match type, your ads will show for searches that include your keyword in the exact order you specify, along with any words before or after it. This can help you reach a more targeted audience, but still allows for some variation in the search terms.

-Exact match: As the name suggests, this match type only shows your ads for searches that exactly match your keyword. This can result in a higher CTR and more relevant clicks, but may also limit your reach.

You must carefully consider which match type is best for each keyword in your campaign. In some cases, using a combination of match types may be the most effective strategy.

Conducting Keyword Research

Before selecting keywords for your campaign, conduct thorough keyword research. This involves identifying relevant keywords and phrases that your target audience is likely to search for.

There are several tools you can use to conduct keyword research, including Google's Keyword Planner and third-party tools like SEMrush and Ahrefs. When conducting research, consider factors like search volume, competition, and relevance to your business.

Once you've identified a list of potential keywords, it's important to organize them into ad groups based on their relevance to each other and the products or services you offer. This will help you create more targeted ads and improve your overall campaign performance.

Ad Copy and Extensions

When it comes to Google Ads, the ad copy and extensions you use can make a huge difference in the success of your campaigns. Here are some tips on how to make the most of your ad copy and extensions, which will enhance your Google Ads campaign.

Write Effective Ad Copy

Compelling ad copy is what gets clicks and conversions. Your ad copy should be clear, concise, and compelling. As mentioned, it should also include relevant keywords and a strong call to action at the end.

One way to write effective ad copy is to focus on the benefits of your product or service rather than just the features. For example, instead of saying, "Our product is made with high-quality materials," say, "Experience the luxury of our high-quality materials." Ad copy can make or break your campaign, and a professional copywriter might be a good investment in your business if you need help crafting persuasive advertisements.

Test Ad Variations

Testing ad variations is crucial to finding the most effective ad copy for your campaigns. Try experimenting with different headlines, descriptions, and calls to action to see what resonates best with your audience.

One way to test ad variations is to use Google's Ad Variations feature. This allows you to create multiple variations of your ads and test them against each other to see which performs best.

Use Ad Extensions

Using ad extensions can help make your ads more effective and improve your overall campaign performance. Ad extensions give your ads an informative and engaging touch, easing the user experience. They can also help improve your ad's visibility and click-through rate.

Some common ad extensions include:

-Sitelink extensions: Sitelink extensions allow you to add additional links to your ad, such as links to specific pages on your website.

-Call extensions: These enable users to call your business directly from your ad.

-Location extensions: Location extensions show your business's address and location on a map.

Budgeting and Bidding Strategies

Budgeting and bidding strategies are also significant with Google Ads. In this section, we'll cover the basics of setting a daily budget, understanding cost per conversion, and using smart bidding.

Setting a Daily Budget

Your daily budget is the amount you're willing to spend on your campaign each day. It's important to set a budget that's both affordable and realistic; it should consider your overall advertising goals and how much you're willing to spend to achieve them.

When determining a daily budget, keep in mind that Google Ads operates on an auction system. This means that the cost of each click can vary based on competition and other factors. To avoid overspending, it's a good idea to set a maximum cost per click (CPC) that you're comfortable with.

Understanding Cost Per Conversion

Cost per conversion is the amount you pay for each conversion, such as a sale or lead. Understanding your cost per conversion is crucial to determining the effectiveness of your advertising campaign. To calculate your cost per conversion, divide the total cost of your campaign by the number of conversions.

It's important to keep in mind that your cost per conversion can vary depending on the bidding strategy you're using. Smart bidding strategies, for example, can help you optimize your bids to achieve a lower cost per conversion and a higher return on investment (ROI).

Using Smart Bidding

Smart bidding is a set of automated bidding strategies that use machine learning to optimize your bids for conversions. There are several smart bidding strategies to choose from, including:

-Target CPA (cost per acquisition)

-Target ROAS (returns on ad spend)

-Maximize conversions

-Maximize conversion value

When using smart bidding, give the algorithm enough time to learn and optimize your bids. You should regularly monitor and adjust your bids as needed to ensure that you're getting the best results.

Campaign Optimization

Optimizing your Google Ads campaigns is crucial to ensure that you are getting the most out of your advertising budget. By monitoring your metrics, analyzing reports, and optimizing your landing pages, you can improve the performance of your campaigns and achieve better results.

Monitoring Metrics

Monitoring your metrics is essential to identify areas that need improvement. By keeping an eye on your metrics, you can make informed decisions about how to optimize your campaigns. At the campaign level, you should monitor these metrics:

-Click-through rate (CTR)

-Cost per click (CPC)

-Conversion rate

-Cost per conversion

-Quality score

By monitoring these metrics, you can identify which campaigns are performing well and which ones need improvement. For example, if your CTR is low, it may indicate that your ad copy is not compelling enough, and you may need to revise it.

Analyzing Reports

Analyzing reports can help you gain insights into the performance of your campaigns. Google Ads provides a range of reports that you can use to identify trends and patterns in your data. Some of the reports that can be useful for campaign optimization are the following:

-Search terms report

-Keyword report

-Ad performance report

-Auction insights report

By analyzing these reports, you can identify which keywords are driving the most traffic, which ads are performing well, and how your campaigns are competing with others in your industry.

Optimizing Landing Pages

Optimizing your landing pages improves the performance of your campaigns by increasing the likelihood of conversions. Your landing pages should be relevant to your ads and provide a clear call to action. Some tips for optimizing your landing pages include:

-Keep your landing pages simple and easy to navigate

-Include a clear call to action

-Use relevant keywords on your landing pages

-Ensure that your landing pages are mobile-friendly

Appealing to Your Target Audience

As a business owner, it’s no surprise that you must understand your target audience and aim advertising content at them directly. Understanding search and display networks, targeting by location and schedule, and using sitelinks and structured snippets can all help you reach the right people.

Understanding Search and Display Networks

Google Ads offers two primary networks for advertising: search and display. Search ads appear when someone searches for a specific keyword or phrase, while display ads appear on websites and apps that are part of Google's display network.

Understanding the differences between these networks and how they work can help you tailor your ads to the right audience. For example, if you're targeting people who are actively searching for a product or service, search ads may be more effective. On the other hand, if you're trying to build brand awareness, display ads may be a better choice.

Targeting by Location and Schedule

Location and ad schedule targeting can also help you reach the right audience. If you're a local business, targeting people in your area can be a great way to drive foot traffic and increase sales. Ad scheduling allows you to show your ads at specific times of day or on specific days of the week, which can help you reach people when they're most likely to be interested in your product or service.

Using Sitelinks and Structured Snippets

Sitelinks and structured snippets are two ad extensions that can help you provide more information to potential customers. Sitelinks allow you to add additional links to your ad, which can help people find exactly what they're looking for on your website. Structured snippets allow you to highlight specific features or benefits of your product or service, which can help you stand out from the competition.

Common Google Ads Mistakes

Now that we’ve seen how to run a successful Google Ads campaign, what are some actions that could potentially hurt a campaign? Three common Google Ads mistakes that any advertiser should avoid are misusing negative keywords, ignoring the search terms report, and neglecting search intent.

Misusing Negative Keywords

Negative keywords are an essential part of any Google Ads campaign. They allow you to exclude search terms that are not relevant to your business, which can help you save money and improve the quality of your traffic. However, misusing negative keywords can be detrimental to your campaign's performance.

One common mistake is to use too many negative keywords. While you should exclude irrelevant search terms, using too many negative keywords can prevent your ads from showing up for relevant searches. It's important to strike a balance between excluding irrelevant searches and not excluding potential customers.

Ignoring the Search Terms Report

The search terms report shows you the actual search terms that triggered your ads. It's an essential tool for identifying new keywords and negative keywords to add to your campaigns. However, many advertisers ignore this report, which can lead to missed opportunities and wasted ad spend.

By reviewing the search terms report regularly, you can identify new keywords to target and negative keywords to exclude. This can help you improve the relevance of your ads and increase your click-through rates.

Neglecting Search Intent

When creating ads, consider the intent of the searcher. Are they looking for information, or are they ready to make a purchase? Neglecting search intent can lead to irrelevant clicks and wasted ad spend.

To bypass this mistake, create ads that are tailored to the searcher's intent. For example, if someone is searching for "best running shoes," they are likely in the research phase and not ready to make a purchase. In this case, you could create an ad that highlights the features of your running shoes and includes a call-to-action to learn more.

Avoiding these common Google Ads mistakes can help you improve the performance of your campaigns and increase your return on investment. By using negative keywords effectively, reviewing the search terms report regularly, and considering search intent when creating ads, you can create more relevant and effective campaigns.

Tracking Conversions and Sales

In addition to the mistakes listed above, one of the most common errors businesses make with Google Ads is using the wrong conversion actions. Conversion actions are the actions that you want users to take on your website, such as making a purchase or filling out a contact form. If you're not tracking the right conversion actions, you won't be able to accurately measure the success of your campaigns. We will discuss how to choose the right conversion actions and how to track them effectively.

Setting Up Conversions

To track conversions, you need to set up conversion tracking in your Google Ads account. This involves creating a conversion action, which is the specific action you want to track, such as a purchase or form submission. Once you have created the conversion action, you will need to add the conversion tracking code to your website to track when the action is completed.

Measuring ROAS

Measuring return on ad spend (ROAS) is another important metric to track when running Google Ads campaigns. ROAS measures the revenue generated from your ads compared to the cost of running the ads. This information can help you determine which campaigns are most profitable and which ones need to be optimized or paused.

Analyzing Regional Trends

Analyzing regional trends can also provide valuable insights into how your ads are performing. By looking at data on a regional level, you can identify which areas are generating the most conversions and adjust your campaigns accordingly. For example, if you notice that a particular region is not generating many conversions, you may want to adjust your targeting or ad messaging to better resonate with that audience.


In conclusion, running Google Ads campaigns can be a challenging task, but by avoiding common mistakes and following these best practices, you can ensure that your campaigns are successful. It is essential to conduct thorough keyword research and keep track of your campaigns' performance to make data-driven decisions and optimize your ads. Google Ads is a profitable undertaking, and Get Quicker Leads is here to help with your search ads needs.

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