How do I manage my own Adwords campaign?

February 21, 2024

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20 years ago an excited young boy sat down in front of his new computer.

Something very exciting had just happened. The internet was plugged in!

For the first time, his computer was connected to the outside world. Before long he had figured out that he could affect the outside world from the humble origins of his lounge room.

He discovered that he could make a security camera in Time Square physically move, by pushing an arrow on his keyboard. From that very moment, the world was a different place!

His life was never the same again.

I am William Polson, and I am neurotically obsessed with online marketing.

You are about to uncover possibly the most detailed and practical report on how to build a powerhouse Google Adwords campaign that will provide you with a return on investment you didn’t think was possible.

Below you will discover everything you need to know to get the maximum performance out of your Adwords budget.


In this report you will gain in-depth insight into the following topics:

  1. Keywords Match Types
  2. Ad copy
  3. Bidding
  4. Click fraud blocking
  5. a/b testing
  6. Attribution
  7. Search term clean up
  8. Conversion tracking
  9. Campaign neglect
  10. Analytics linking
  11. Unit metrics
  12. Scaling
  13. Remarketing



Keywords Match Types

So you’re ready to build your first Google Adwords campaign and you have your list of keywords to upload to your ad group. Hold your horses! Not so fast Einstein.

Adwords match types new console
New Adwords Console



Google AdWords has match types that you need to take into consideration.

What are match types your asking? Well luckily for you, Google has realised that it would be near impossible for you to think of every keyword one of your potential customers might type into the search bar. So they have made it easy for you.


adwords Match types
Old Adwords Console

Let’s say for example you’re a dentist. You want to come up for keywords that people might search when looking for a… yep you guessed it, dentist 🙂 But as a dentist, you offer different services, and you have patients that come from a wide area to visit your practice.


For this scenario, you can list your services as broad match, or broad match modified to ensure that you will come up for all searches that are related to or include the words in your targeted phrase.

The different types of keyword match types are:

Broad match

This is where there are no additional symbols for your keyword/s. Google can trigger your ad for searches that match, include, are related to, or misspelled versions of your keyword. When first starting a campaign this match type can be useful to discover what people type in before clicking on your ads and performing a task that registers as a conversion.

Phrase match

This is where Google AdWords can trigger your ad for searches that include the phrase you have entered with text on either side. If a user performs a search that includes your phrase, however, contains words in between your chosen phrase your ads will not be eligible to be triggered.

+Broad +match +modified

Broad match modifier will become your favorite match type and is the most widely used. It will trigger your ads for any search that contains the keywords, in any order, with any additional words in between, before or after.

Exact match

Exact match helps you to gain more control over your bids and traffic for highly relevant searches that you want to specifically target. They have a higher overall CPC in most cases but are used effectively when you know which exact searches are going to provide you with the highest conversion rate.

Your well-built campaign will contain a combination of match types.

Ongoing optimisation of your campaign will involve pausing, adding and editing existing keywords according to the data.

For Google’s description, you can visit their information page.

Ad copy

It’s the old 80/20 rule. 20% of the ads get 80% of the clicks. Why? Ad copy, that’s why.

Have a look at some of the ads coming up on the search results page for your keywords. Chances are, most of them are boring, right?

You have 30 characters for the top line, 30 characters for the second headline and 80 characters for the description.

Make the most of it. Don’t be boring. Stand out!

You can use a number of techniques to achieve this goal. The first thing is not to write what all the other ads are saying. Do something different. Make a bold and assertive claim, ask a daring question, offer a crazy deal or scare the crap out of somebody.

Whatever it takes, put some thought into it and evoke emotion.

Keep a close eye on your CTR (click through rate) so you can track the performance of your ad copy. The higher the CTR the better your ad is engaging with your audience.

Click through rate is an important metric to measure the success of your ad copy. However, if an ad has a high click-through rate but is lacking in conversions, have a look at the landing page and the congruency in the overall message being conveyed.

Google has 5 tips for writing text ads available for you to read.


Adwords bidding strategies
Bidding strategies new console

This is an underestimated aspect of any AdWords campaign. Your bidding will affect your ad position, the cost of your campaign and inevitably the conversions and your return on investment.

If you bid too low your ads will not have the necessary quality score and ad rank to garner enough clicks for the right keywords. Your campaign will underspend and you won’t get the traffic required to convert sales, enquiries or subscriptions.

Bid too high and your cost per click will be much higher than necessary to gain relevant traffic. Your budget will run out quickly and your return on investment will suffer greatly.

Aiming for an average ad position of 2.2 is recommended. Updating your bids often in order to gain optimum results will potentially double or triple your conversions from the same budget.

Definitely not something to be ignored right?

There are automatic bidding machines available that you can plug into your campaign in order to have your bids updated automatically throughout the day. The cost associated with this is often too high for a business owner unless you are spending over 10k per month.

If this is the case for you, using enhanced bidding is a way to affordably have your bids managed by Google. You can set a maximum that you are willing to pay and Google will increase or decrease your bids based on historical data.

This technique works well for campaigns that have already been running and have enough conversion data available.

An easy way to make bulk edits to your bids is by using bid adjustments. Bid Adjustment helps you to increase or decrease your bids for all of your keywords within a campaign depending on certain metrics.

You can adjust your bids according to device, time, location and audiences. A great way to use this it by keeping a keen eye on your click-through rates. When you see a jump, reduce your bids by 20%. And when the CTR drops increase by 20%.

This will keep your campaign from spending too much on clicks as well as making sure your getting as much relevant traffic for your budget as possible.

Google has written a very informative article on, Determine a bid strategy based on your goals

Click fraud blocking

Yep, click fraud is real and it’s costing advertisers buckets of cash.

IP Addresses blocked in Adwords
IP Addresses blocked in Adwords

How do you avoid becoming a victim?

Click fraud software. There are numerous software solutions available today. Before you choose one make sure they have automatic blocking available as well as device detection.

Just tracking the IP’s of the devices that are clicking on your ads is not enough. Pesky click fraud budget waisters change their IP address at the click of a button.

Use software that will also track the device that is clicking on your ads as well to get that extra level of protection.

Also, check to see if they request refunds from Google on your behalf. This is a handy tool that will save you some $$$ if you do become a victim.

Some software that I know is very useful is

A/b testing

Ladning page split testing
Landing page split testing

A/B testing, also known as split testing is a powerful way to make sure you’re always looking for new ways to improve your campaign.

It’s important to leave your opinions at the door and try everything. You will be surprised at what works.

Split testing ads is easy and worth it. There are setting in AdWords for how Google will rotate your ads. When split testing, set this to evenly rotate your ads so that you can get accurate data.

Again the ads with the highest click-through rates will get you the best results.

Split testing landing pages is done by driving an equal amount of traffic from the same campaign to more than one page. Over time you will see which of the landing pages is providing you with the highest conversion rate.

Software like Instapage makes this very easy. You can create different versions of the same page with the click of a button. It will automatically split the traffic from your campaigns to each of your landing page versions and give you the stats on which is performing better.


Conversion attribution adwords
Conversion attribution Adwords

This is the term used to describe the method of which you track your conversions.

Here is an example.

An internet user types in a keyword removalist Sydney and clicks on one of your ads but does not put through an enquirer.

The next day the same user types in cheap removalist Sydney and clicks on a different ad in your campaign and this time converts.


To which ad and keyword should the conversion be attributed?

The “last click” attribution model will attribute the whole inversion to the keyword that triggered the ad and the ad that was clicked on last. This may not provide accurate data in respect to the behavior of the user prior to the conversion as they may have been compelled to go through with making the inquiry with your business through having become familiar with your brand.

The “linear” attribution model evens the score. In the same scenario above, both of the keywords and ads that were involved in the conversion will have been attributed 50% of the conversion in order to deliver a more detailed understanding of what components of your campaign are providing you with the results.

There are a number of attributions that can provide you with more insight at a glance and empower you to make more effective decisions.

Search term clean up

Search Term Cleanup Adwords
Search Term Cleanup Adwords

Your getting clicks on your campaign but your bounce rate is high and conversion rate depressingly low. What to do?

Step one! Check your search terms. This tool will enable you to study what users typed into Google before clicking on one of your ads.

What could cause irrelevant clicks? A deadly combination of broadly matched keywords and ad copy with dynamic keyword insertion is a common killer of campaigns ROI.

Let’s say you have a removalist company “I know I know, I’m not in the most creative mood right now”, and you have a keyword, removals, in your campaign.

This keyword has had 100 clicks and costs you $1,000. But the conversions are practically non-existent.

Well, a simple 5-minute inspection of the search terms typed to trigger the ad, will show you that your getting traffic from people searching for rubbish removals.

These people are looking for someone to help them remove their rubbish not move house, and when they land on your page they can see that you obviously do not do rubbish removals.

But hold on a minute you say. What about the ad comply. Why are users clicking on my ads if they are clearly written to appeal to people looking to move house?

Dynamic keyword insertion my friends. This is why, if using dynamic keyword insertion it’s is imperative that you regularly check your search terms and make sure that all of your clicks are from relevant searches.

Another handy tip is that through the shared library you can compile one negative keyword list for all of your campaigns in one place.

This can save you valuable optimisation time as you won’t have to add the negative keyword to every campaign or ad group one by one.

Conversion tracking

You’d be amazed at how many campaigns I have taken over the management for that were not even tracking conversions.

This is what it’s all about! A conversion is a phone call, form submission, purchase or set of actions taken on a website to which you can assign a value.

Through the tools section, you can click on conversions and set them up straight through AdWords.

Or you can set up goals in your analytics account and import them into the AdWords console.

Either way, it is imperative that you are able to some degree, track the success of different campaigns, ad groups, keywords, ad copy, audiences, and videos.

After tracking conversions it is very easy to add the column to your AdWords console for cost per conversion. This should be the sole focus of your AdWords optimisation activities. Driving down the cost per conversion.

The less it costs you to get a conversion the better your ROI is going to be at the end of the day.


Campaign neglect

Set and forget will not cut it in today’s world of dynamic marketing and cutthroat online competition.

The desktop right-hand side ads are Gone from Google’s search results page. This only leaves the coveted top 4 available to compete for.

Simply building a campaign and leaving it to fend for itself is going to be like opening a bag of money and pouring down the drain.

Your campaign has to be regularly checked, analysed and optimised.

Analytics linking

Adwords linking to AnalyticsLinking your Google AdWords account to your analytics account will help you gain more insight.

The extra data will help you gain further insight into the performance of all of your online marketing efforts, not just your AdWords campaign.

You can measure bounce rates and see which keywords are winning traffic that spends more time on your site.

You can set up (micro) conversion through goals and funnels based on user behavior. The goals can be pulled into your AdWords campaign so that you can easily gain an understanding of how successful each, keyword, ad copy, demographics, schedule, and area, is for you in building your audience.

Gaining enough statistical data to make significant improvements to your campaign will take less time.

The insights you have access to will mean that you will have a bigger picture of your campaigns performance, user behavior and the true value that any of your online marketing efforts are providing for you.


Unit metrics

You are not going to be able to make smart, informed decisions to grow your business if you don’t know your unit metrics.

The most important metric you need to know is your LTV:CAC ratio. (This is the average lifetime value of a customer vs the cost of acquiring a new customer.)

This is simply calculated by working out what your average customer lifetime net value is, and comparing that to the cost of acquiring a new customer.

Traditionally you want to recover the cost of acquiring a customer within 12 months.

And ideal LTV:CAC ratio is 3:1. The beautiful thing about running AdWords campaigns is that everything is traceable.

Using analytics and conversion tracking you can enter the value each sale or lead is worth to your business (your average lifetime value of a customer divided by your close rate) and Google will do the rest for you. You can use targeted cost per acquisition bidding and as long as the return on investment is positive Google will continue to spend.

It’s scary the number of business owners I have spoken to that do not know what their average customer is worth to them. It’s the first question I ask. If you have a low ticket item with no margin and a low closing rate, you should not be paying to advertise on Google.

Once you have determined how much you can afford to acquire a new customer, you know what your target is with any online marketing campaigns you run.


So your campaign is running successfully and you want to crank it up and start growing your business?

This is not just a matter of increasing the spend. Before you turn your daily budget up it’s important to note that any keywords and ad groups that are providing conversions have potential.

If you choose to run only with the ad group or campaign that has achieved the lowest cost per acquisition, you may be missing out on a whole lot of business.

This is another reason why it’s important to know your unit metrics. Any campaign that is providing you with a conversion at a cost that lower than your average customer lifetime value over 12 months is worth continuing to run.

After making sure that you have enough statistically significant data, you may choose to turn off an ad group/keyword/ or ad. Just be sure that you are not missing out on potentially fruitful campaigns.


Adwords Remarketing AudiencesYour landing page or website will have a conversion rate. No matter how well it is designed, Some of the fish will get away.

This is where remarketing comes in.

Users will more often than not (depending on your market) click on your ads and look at your content more than once before they convert.

Bringing your business out of ambiguity is the key.

There is a small percentage of users often willing to take action right now on solving their problem and engaging your company to help.

The funnel gets a lot wider as you move up to people who are looking to do something soon and wider again as you move to people who are in discovery and research mode.

This is why it is imperative that you run remarketing for your business. It will take people who have visited specific pages on your website and follow them around on Google’s display network with a banner or video ads.

Another advantage is that you can be sure that your banner ads are being clicked on by real users. Running display network campaigns can result in paying for impressions that were not even seen by a real person!

Having your ads displayed to users who have been tagged by visiting your site will mean you can be sure they are human.



All digital marketing campaigns require careful planning and execution. Campaigns that have ad and landing page copy that is well thought out will provide you with a more compelling proposition in the search results.

PPC Campaigns can provide your business with the valuable phone calls, leads and sales your business will need to thrive and grow at a rapid rate. If you don’t have the time required to strategize, implement and manage a campaign that will not be neglected and potentially cost you thousands of dollars, get a Google Adwords Manager.

Search engines are formidable places and without the appropriate keyword research and well-trained account manager, yourself and other business owners will be provided with underwhelming results from their paid search campaigns.

Why choose pay per click advertising?

Google Adwords is a reliable, long-term medium for a business owner to gain new customers and track everything about where they came from, how much they cost and what can be done to get more!

I provide Adwords management services with the help from my colleagues here at AIA and would be more than happy to discuss this with you at time that convenient if you’d like to gain some insight into how other campaigns in your industry have performed in the past.

Happy Googling!

Another article you might enjoy: What Are AdWords

Billy P.

About The Author

William Polson founded Australian Internet Advertising in 2013 and has over 12 years of experience immersed in Digital Marketing.

With an in-depth level of digital marketing knowledge, William has been sort after by and worked for, many large national brands including Subaru, Blooms The Chemist, and Nova 96.9.

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