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Google Ad Extensions – Improving Your Google AdWords PPC Campaign Results

Friday, September 8th, 2017

Previously, I have discussed why Google SEO is an important task to complete prior to undertaking Google AdWords pay-per-click advertising campaigns. If you were to watch Google AdWords tutorials themselves, they will tell you that where you place in a search result on their system when doing AdWords PPC advertising is a resulting combination of your bid price on a keyword phrase combined with your Quality Score – and this is defined by them as “useful information” to the consumer which means, in essence, how much they like your site and its content.

There is a lot of competition these days to get to Page One on a Google search engine paid search and to get there, you need to both outbid others and Google needs to like your site in relation to the end-user keyword phrase searching being done through their search engine.

As you learn more about using Google AdWords to promote your business, you will also learn about their “Google Ad Extension” features which, if you implement them for your promotional ads, will increase your quality score and will give your site a stronger argument in Google’s eyes for getting to Page One of a Google paid search.

Why will “Google Extensions” help your score? This is due to the fact that by using these extensions, you are helping to target more “relevant search content” for the Google search user – and Google likes that. So, lets dig a little deeper into these extensions and how to use them for your Google AdWords ad placements.

Once you login to the Google AdWords environment and view the initial “Dashboard” screen, You will see on the left side of your screen a menu option titled “Ads and Extensions”. Clicking on that menu option brings you to this section of the Google AdWords system where across the top, you will see three options: Ads, Extensions and More. Click on the Extensions tab.

In the center of the Extensions screen, you will see a “+ – Create Ad Extension” button. Clicking that button opens up a popup window containing different types of Ad extensions. Let’s go down the list of these to discuss what they do for your ads. Note: verbiage below comes directly from Google Help pages.

Location extensions

Encourage people to visit your business by showing your location, a call button, and a link to your business details page-which can include your hours, photos of your business, and directions to get there. If you want customers to visit your business location but to call a centralized line (rather than specific locations’ numbers), use call extensions with your location extensions.

Affiliate location extensions

Help people find retail chain stores that sell your products.

Callout extensions

Add additional text to your ad, like “free delivery” or “24/7 customer support.” Callouts can be used to encourage people to convert offline.

Call extensions

Encourage people to call your business by adding a phone number or call button to your ads.

Message extensions

Encourage people to send you text messages from your ad. Available globally at the campaign or ad group levels.

Sitelink extensions

Link people directly to specific pages of your website (like “hours” and “order now”). Google will display up to 8 of these within the framework of an ad. A great way to improve your site’s Quality Score.

Structured snippet extensions

Showcase information potential customers will find most valuable by selecting a predefined header (like, product or service category) and listing items.

Price extensions

Showcase your services or product categories with their prices, so that people can browse your products right from your ad.

Review extensions

Add quotes or rankings from published sources.

App extensions

Encourage people to download your app. Available globally for Android and iOS mobile devices, including tablets.

In summary, as you build your Ad Groups and sales campaigns within the Google AdWords system, using the ad extensions described above will help you to show better within Google search engine results and will help you fare better against similar ad purchasing competitors who are not using extensions. In fact, Google mentions in their Help documentation that in certain instances, they will place your add in a search result above a competitor’s even if there’s was the lower keyword phrase bid and your ad will place at the lower bid price per click instead of your own, thus saving you some advertising expense.

Website Planning: Why Strategy Beats Design Every Time

Friday, September 8th, 2017

What to Do First Before Designing Your Business Website

I see it all the time. People are excited about their business. They set out to hire a web designer. They share their vision for their website and excitedly wait for the big reveal.

Then, disaster strikes. “You got it all wrong.” they say.

Design dollars are wasted. Revisions begin. Everyone scratches their heads and wonders where it all went wrong. And before you know it what should have been a simple project becomes a nightmare.

This doesn’t have to happen to you.

Without a map, it’s easy to get lost in unfamiliar territory. The same is true of website development. Before you begin you really need to have a solid plan in place.

That’s the real difference between working with a full-service marketing firm or a solo website developer. A marketing firm can help you do the proper due diligence and analysis needed to make sure the website designed for you truly meets your business needs.

Much of the design process breaks down to a few simple steps:

MESSAGING

Who do you serve? Defining your ideal client is one of the most important steps before building a website. The more specific you are about who your ideal client is, the better you’ll be able tospeak to their needs when they visit your site.

Here are some questions to ask yourself while doing an ideal client analysis:

  • Who do you have a passion for serving?
  • What are their biggest pains?
  • Are they men or women?
  • What level at they in their business or situation: newbies, established, or experts?
  • What are their values?
  • What are their biggest goals?
  • What is their personality?

This clarity helps you laser-focus your messaging to speak directly to their needs.

Everyone has the same basic human needs. Knowing and understanding the pains of your target market is critical. Tell them how you will help them overcome their challenges or how your products will alleviate their concerns.

Having credibility is also important. Most prospects haven’t heard about you upon their first encounter with your website. So it’s your job to build trust that you have knowledge and experience and proven results.

Credibility comes through testimonials, media clippings,blog articles and sharing results you have achieved with clients. Showcasing the education, training and credentials you achieved also shows prospects you have expertise in what you do.

FUNCTION

Another critical part of the web design and development process is being clear on the website’s function. The layout for your website will vary greatly depending on your business goals.

  • What is the goal of your website?
  • Will it be an online store?
  • Do you want to build a list and online community?
  • Will it serve as a free information site where you gain revenues on advertising and affiliate sales?
  • Are you selling services?
  • Is your website an online brochure?

Once armed with this clarity, your designer will know if you need a landing page, chat tool, email list management software, online booking tool, or other special features in order to support your vision.

Knowing the path you want visitors to go and take the desired action helps your designer put the right elements in place to accomplish that.

LOOK AND FEEL

If you have ever gone shopping in a store with a friend you have probably experienced that we all have very different tastes. The same is true when you design a website.

Even though you have described what you envision, the web designer may have something entirely different in mind. The goal for both of you is to create a visual brand that is appealing to your target market. It needs to immediately say to them they are in the right place.

Before sending your designer a bunch of colour swatches and other websites you want your site to look like, the better approach is to create a brand standards guide first that encompasses the colours, fonts and style of your overall business brand. This process should be done at the time of designing your logo since your logo functions as the base point of your brand.

The key is to remember you are designing your website for a target audience in relation to your business, not for you personally. Yes, for many entrepreneurs, your personality is directly infused into your brand but it is possible the look and feel could be quite different from your personal taste. It all depends on who you are trying to attract to your business.

In saying that, it doesn’t hurt to still send your designer sample websites that you like and be specific about what exactly you like about them. That kind of feedback is very valuable especially with the layout and overall messaging of the site.

THE DO IT YOURSELF DILEMMA

It’s easy to think when you start out doing it yourself is a better way to save money.

But how much is your time worth? How much do you know about copywriting or effective marketing strategy or design?

How much more revenue could you create if you focused on business building and outsourced your web design and marketing?

Finally, you can’t put a value on the insights and expertise that a marketing team brings to the table. It’s well worth investing in a polished website that converts clients.