Do Google Ads Work for Small Businesses?

January 4, 2023

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If you’ve ever opened any digital marketing guide or talked to any digital marketer, you’ve probably heard about how important Google AdWords (now known as Google Ads) is for growing your business.

And, in a way, they make a lot of sense:

With over 86% of the search engine’s market share, Google Ads seem to be an amazing opportunity for boosting your brand awareness and generating traffic. And, considering that 63% of users claim that they have clicked on a Google Ad, the chances to maximise your conversion rate seem pretty high too.

But, here’s the thing.

You are a small business owner with a targeted local audience. Sure, Google is massive, but you’re not really interested in dominating the search engine. What you care about is reaching your targeted audience.

With that in mind, it begs to ask the question:

Are Google Ads worth it for small business owners?

Let’s find out!

What Are Google Ads?

Before we dive into establishing whether Google Ads can help your small business or not, let’s first make sure that you understand what they are and how they work.

Google Ads is Google’s paid advertising platform and they work on a pay-per-click (PPC) model. That means that you only pay when a user actually clicks on your ad.

You can opt from a variety of ad types, such as search ads (they appear on the Google search results page,) display ads (they appear on the Google Display Network,) shopping ads, and YouTube ads.
How you set Google Ads campaigns is quite a complex topic, but we’ll try to break down the basics here.

When you create a Google Ads campaign, you will target a set of keywords that you think are relevant to your audience. When someone searches for various products or services on Google, the search engine will check to see which advertisers are bidding on keywords related to that search. But, how does Google decide who’s ads to display?

Enter the auction process.

Google takes two main factors (among others) when deciding which ad to showcase:

  • Quality Score: How relevant your keywords, landing page, and ad copy are to the search query?
  • Ad Rank: A value given by Google to determine your ad’s position. It’s calculated by taking into account your bid amount, Quality Score, ad relevance, landing page experience, expected click-through rate, and so on.

What Are the Benefits of Google Ads?

If you’ve dipped your toes in the Google Ads pool and felt overwhelmed by how complex this platform can be, you’re not alone. But, in order to determine if this advertising platform is right for your business, it’s important to be aware of the many advantages of Google Ads.

So, here are some of them:

Massive Reach

And, when we say massive, we mean that over 8.5 billion searches are conducted every single day on Google. In fact, chances are you’ve come upon this article after doing a quick Google search too.
Whether your audience is global or local, they are probably using Google to ask questions and get information about the products and services that interest them.

Measurable and Scalable

Another benefit of Google Ads is that you can use Google Analytics to track and measure every relevant data that can help you maximise your campaign. You can tweak the ad copy, for example, and see which option can help you generate traffic.
Most importantly, you are in control of how much you actually spend on Google ads. You can set a daily budget in your Google Ads Account and make sure that you are spending your advertising dollars wisely and carefully.

Reach People with a Clear Intent

Perhaps the main difference between advertising on Google versus other platforms, such as social media, is that people are there with a purpose. You don’t hop on social media to see what your favorite brands are up to or to look for information about a product or service. You use those channels for entertainment mostly.

Things are a bit different when it comes to Google. Most of the time, people are looking for something specific on Google and are there with a clear intent – explore, get more information, or buy. Google Ads makes it possible for you to harness this intent and put your products in front of the people who are actually interested in and actively searching for what you are selling.

Numerous Targeting Options

Google Ads can help you reach your audience at every stage of the buyer’s journey. You can adjust your keyword and ad copy to make your ads relevant and attractive whether they are in the research phase or ready to convert.

When Do You Need Google Ads?

The short answer would be whenever you want to give your small business a boost. But, before you dive head first into launching your first Google Ads campaign, you need to make sure that you checked a few important things:

  • You Have a Clear Goal: Make sure that you know what you want to achieve with your Google Ads campaigns.
  • You Have a Relevant Landing Page: What happens after a prospect clicks on your ad? Will they land on your homepage and have to find their way to the information that interests them? That’s a surefire way to lose them. Make sure you’ve created relevant landing pages that make it easy for prospects to convert.
  • Know Your Keywords: Do proper research and find the best keywords for your campaign. Bidding on the wrong keywords can cost you a lot of time and money on wasted clicks.

Are Google Ads Worth It for Small Businesses?

A lot of small business owners are wary about advertising on Google. They worry that it’s too expensive or that might waste money trying to catch the bigger fish when their audience is local.
But, here’s the thing:

Local searches make up more than 69% of global digital traffic. Moreover, reports show that 72% of the users who perform a local search will visit a store within five miles of their current location. With Google Ads, you can target relevant keywords to target your local audience. You can also add call extensions which will make it easier for your prospects to get in touch with you and convert. And, by targeting location keywords and setting a geographic limit, you can make sure that you won’t compete with global brands and waste any money trying to attract an audience that is not local.

The same can be true for businesses that are very niche. If you are careful and smart about your keywords strategy, you can use Google Ads to reach a highly targeted audience that is interested in your products.

If you do want to give Google Ads a try, you might want to consider the following tips:

Optimise Your Landing Page

Make sure that the landing page is relevant to the ad copy. If a prospect clicks on an ad that promises to sell them anti-allergy bed sheets, then the landing page should offer exactly that.

Determine Your Target Locations

If your business is Sydney-based and only serves people in Sydney, then you don’t want your ads to be shown to people in Adelaide.

Set Your Goal

As we said before, a clear set of objectives will make it easier to set up your campaign. Take the time to understand what you want to achieve and how Google Ads can actually help you reach those goals.

Take a Look at Your Website

Put yourself in your audience’s shoes and look around your website. Is the navigation intuitive? Are you having a difficult time finding the information you need? Are the contact details visible and easy to find on every page? Is the site mobile-friendly?

A poor user experience can affect the success of your campaign regardless of how well thought out and targeted your ads are.
Are You Ready to Invest in Google Ads?

Are Google Ads worth it for a small business?

In our experience, the answer is yes.

Of course, it all depends on how you set up the campaign, how well you know your audience, and how quickly you are to adapt when something is not working.

We must admit, balancing all that while trying to grow a small business can be quite difficult, to say the least.

But, that’s exactly why we’re here for!

If you are looking for a Google Ads agency in Sydney that will bring you real customers not just clicks, then the team at Australian Internet Advertising is ready to help you.

Simply reach out to us, tell us more about your business and goals, and we can help you set up, execute, and track your Google Ads Campaign.

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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