February 21, 2012

Some internet marketers would take one look at this title and declare me insane. “Making money with Google Adwords – give me a break, it’s not 2005 anymore,” they might scoff. And they would have a point. It is much more difficult to generate revenue from Adwords marketing than it once was. However, it is by no means impossible. There is a lot more competition, but most of the competition has no idea what its doing. As with anything else, generating sales through Adwords is simply a matter of really understanding the format, thinking creatively, and outmanoeuvring the competition.

AdWords 101

Most of you probably already have a pretty good grasp of what AdWords does and how it works, but we’ll have a quick refresher course here anyway.

AdWords is the premier advertising service offered by Google, and  it generates the majority of Google’s yearly revenue. It was the original super-targeted advertising service, and allows you to create advertisements which pop up when someone searches on Google for the keyword which you’ve bid on. Its an invaluable service, and many internet companies use it as their primary source of new customers.

The AdWords War

The problem is, since AdWords is so easy to use and can potentially generate such great returns on investment, it is no longer solely the domain of small business owners and independent marketers. Large corporations have gotten involved, and have sent their marketing departments, with their nearly unlimited budgets, to scoop up the prime real estate.

Since keyword prices are set by competitive bidding, dealing with a large corporate marketing department in the mix can quickly put you out of the running.

So, rather than trying to take them head-on, the key to success is making a strategic pivot and seeking out better real estate.

Find Your Advantage

The easiest place for you to find your advantage in the AdWords world is to realize how much flexibility your business really has. Keyword selection is the obvious place to start. Look at alternative keywords that you could advertise for. You can probably drive your advertising costs down by focusing on less expensive keywords, and then improving your conversion rates in order to make up for the lost visitors.

The key to driving up your conversion rates is creating a landing page that works. Consider – you’ve already got a potential customer on your site, so you know that they’re at least marginally interested in your product. Moreover, you’ve already paid the cost of getting them there, so you need to sell them the product at that point.

Go back at look at your landing page, the first page that the customer sees when they visit your site. Does it elicit a strong, visceral, emotional reaction? Does it create a need for your product? If not, what can you do to make it stronger? If you want to succeed in today’s hyper-competitive AdWords environment, your landing page needs to convert as much as possible.

The main take-away here is just to consider your customers, and consider how you are advertising to them. And remember that with any pay-per-click advertising, the price of the advert isn’t nearly as important as your return on investment.




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