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Are Google Ads worth it for small businesses?

You may have heard of Google Ads, or Google AdWords as it was previously known. It is a powerful tool for effectively marketing your local business. As with many marketing tools, it can feel like something that businesses with deep pockets use and not SMEs. In actual fact Google Ads for small businesses can be highly effective, deliver a great return on investment and be targeted to the right type of customer within a specific geographical area. So are Google Ads worth it for small businesses? Yes, and here’s why!

What are Google Ads?

Google Ads work using a PPC ads (Pay-Per-Click) system, where you are charged a small amount per click your ad receives. These ads are shown on Google search results pages, right at the top, placing your business right in front of the potential customers you are marketing towards.

Where you appear in the paid search results depends on how much you ‘bid’ to appear (i.e. your budget) but also the quality and relevance of your website to that particular search. Therefore, it isn’t just about your budget but also the quality of your website and ad that influences how much you pay.

You have a great deal of flexibility on the copy used in your search results, you can determine which sitelinks appear as well as other features such as star ratings. The ads can be tailored so that they are shown to a specific selection of people. All of which makes Google Ads a very attractive and effective marketing channel for small businesses.

The snag...

However, Google makes it very easy for you to spend a large amount of money extremely quickly, without bringing you much value if your campaigns have not been set up correctly. This is why it’s vital to work out your marketing budget and ads budget, and set up the necessary controls and reporting, to avoid overspending. 

Due to this, you might be wondering if Google Ads are actually worth it for your business, and our answer remains a yes!

Are google ads worth it for small businesses? Person with megaphone

Finding your audience

Google Ads are ideal for small business owners, as long as they know how to optimise them.

If set up correctly, they can very quickly become one of the most profitable digital marketing tools in your arsenal. 

The main reason Google Ads are so powerful is the level of customisation you are afforded and how you can accurately target the right potential customers for your business. 

For example, you might be a local cleaning company looking to attract a higher conversion rate; you can specify which areas to advertise in, and also attach keywords to narrow down which searches you will appear in, so only the people searching for ‘local cleaning company’ (in your specified area) will show up. 

You can also create individual ad campaigns which target different groups of people. For example, maybe you have a new offer for over 65’s, or you are running a student promotion? You can tailor each ad to be shown to these specific groups. 

It’s vitally important that you target your ads, as you are charged each time someone clicks on them. If your ads are not optimised properly, it can lead to unnecessary ad spending, which can ultimately undo any benefit you receive from the ads. 

The most common issues we see people encounter are things like incorrectly setting their desired location (e.g. targeting London, Canada, rather than London in the UK) and not being specific enough with their keywords. This leads to your search ads appearing on the screens of people who either aren’t in the right location or have no interest in your specific offering. 

Trackable results

One of the things we like the most about Google Ads is the fantastic analytics toolkit that the platform provides. 

You can track things like clickthrough rate, ad spend, and conversion rate from your Google ads analytics. It’s also possible to run A/B tests to see which version of an ad is performing best for you. The main benefit of these PPC ads is the fact that through the analytics toolkit, you can track your return on investment with great accuracy. 

As a small business, knowing the amount you spend on Google ads can allow you to tailor the service to work for you, as a £0.35 click which turns into a £2,000 conversion, is always a good thing!

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Using Google Ads for your small business

Still wondering if Google Ads are worth it for small businesses? How about these recent results from some of our own clients, in just the last few months:

  • Since going live in December 2021, 40 leads have been generated for this high-end conservatory company, directly from this campaign alone
  • A chiropractor firm have received 80 quality phone calls off of the back of the Google Ads campaigns we are running for them
  • Since the floor restoration company’s PPC campaign went live at the end of January 2022, they have received 37 web form enquiries and 17 calls.

Whilst Google Ads may seem like the answer to your online marketing needs; it does come with quite a steep learning curve. As we’ve discussed, paid search ads can very quickly rack up costs without benefitting you if you don’t know precisely how to optimise them properly. 

So to truly answer the question: are Google Ads worth it for small businesses – the answer is yes, but only when you also invest in the right expertise.

This is where we here at Growth by Design can help. 

We have a wealth of experience setting up and running successful Google Ads campaigns, which work within a set marketing budget to bring your company the best results possible. Having helped hundreds of companies over the years, our team can work with you to understand your needs and tailor the service to boost your incoming traffic from the day the ads begin to run. 

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