Building an Google Ads campaign

So you want to build an Google Ads campaign, do you? Well, if you’ve been following this series you’ll have got to grips with the new AdWords experience and also have defined your goals and targets. Hopefully, you’ve also done all your keyword research, grouped your keywords together into ad groups and grouped your ad groups by themes to create your campaigns. If not, I’d do that before diving in here. If you have, it’s just about taking all of that and building your account out. So, let’s build a campaign straight into the new platform.

Choosing your campaign type

A screenshot of the different campaign types available in Google AdWords

First, you’ll have to pick the type of campaign that you want to create. For now, we’re just going to show you how to build out a search campaign. Once you click search, you’ll then be shown the next window (below). You’ll be prompted to then define the goal of your campaign. Is your website prompting people to fill in a quote form or call you directly? Leads will be the one for you. If you’re an e-commerce business then sales is a no-brainer! If your goal is to just get people onto your website then choose website traffic. You can create a campaign without a goal but this isn’t recommended for reasons we will come on to soon.

A screenshot of selecting your goal in Google AdWords

Naming your campaign

Next, you’ll be asked to name your campaign. We suggest making sure it’s simple, intuitive and follows the structure of the rest of your campaigns. The box below this then talks about networks and has two pre-ticked boxes. This is Google sneakily trying to get you to opt into the Google Search partners and Display network: sites in the Search Network that partner with Google to show ads. Search partners extend the reach of Google Search ads to hundreds of non-Google websites, as well as YouTube and other Google sites. On search partners sites, your ads can appear on search results pages, on site directory pages, or on other pages related to a person’s search. The display network is websites which allow Google to serve much more creative ads such as banner ads. If you have search with display then you’ll be showing your text ads on a network designed specifically for compelling creative ads. Not what you want really is it?

A screenshot of Google AdWords showing tick boxes selected for Search Network and Display Network

Choosing locations and setting your budget

On to locations – You can then choose where you want to serve your ads. If your budget allows, and you offer your services nationally or even internationally, you can target the entirety of the UK as well as other countries worldwide. Alternatively, if your budget is limited, or you only sell your goods or services to a local area around your store or offices, you can target individual cities, towns and even postcodes.

Now you have to set your target language, your daily budget and how you’re going to bid on your keywords. Pretty self explanatory, except maybe the bidding method. Remember when I mentioned picking a goal for your campaign? Well, this was important due to the bidding method. You can choose to change the bids yourself, allowing each bid to be exactly the same for every auction you’re put into (there can be thousands per second), or you can leverage Google’s machine learning algorithms which can make real time bids for each of your keywords based on users’ behaviour. Manual bidding, however, does give you much more control over the bids you select and is useful for those who have a very strict budget to stick to as Google’s machine learning bidding methods do have a tendency to really up your bids! There are pros and cons to all the methods, you just need to look at what’s best for each one of your campaigns as getting this wrong can really affect the performance of your account.

A screenshot showing where to set your budget and bidding method in Google AdWords

Defining your audiences and creating ad groups

In the next box you’ll see you can schedule start and end dates. Great if you’re creating a seasonal campaign to push a certain product or service! You can also define your audiences here. You can pull these in from Google Analytics if you’ve linked your two accounts up or you can create them within Google Ads. You’ll be able to create similar audiences and also look at the in-market audiences for search. You’ll also be able to create your ad extensions here to add more depth to your ads and potentially give you more “real estate” on the SERPs.

Ad groups are up next. This is where you can name them and add in the keywords that you’ve found to target. If you haven’t done your keyword research, fear not, there’s a keyword tool just to the right of where you put your keywords in, very handy.

A screenshot of naming ad groups and adding keywords in Google AdWords

Writing your ads

Your next stop is the ads themselves. You’ll be able to create them straight into the ad group – All you need is to write the two headlines, a description and then drop your specific landing page in. We’d recommend that you have specific landing pages for each of your campaigns/ad groups to make them super specific to the keywords you’re targeting. We’d also say that having at least three ads in the ad groups is best. This gives you plenty of opportunity to test copy to refine and improve KPIs in the account.

And there you have it, you have created your very first campaign in the Google Ads platform, congratulations! Now, it’s time to go back and go through the whole process again and again until you’ve covered every keyword you want to target. Good luck, have fun!

A screenshot showing campaign build complete in Google AdWords

Need help building your campaign?

Please get in touch if you'd like further assistance - our team of PPC specialists are more than happy to help.

Get in touch

Written by Joshua Bailey