Google Ads: Creating a Plan That Won’t Derail Your SEM Strategy

The goal of Search Engine Marketing (SEM) (also known as PPC) strategy is to promote your site’s visibility using paid search, contextual advertising, and organic search rankings. For this article, I’ll focus on SEM ads on Google and not on SEM as a whole. That’s a whole can of gummy worms that can wait (and it isn’t hard to decipher the fact that there’s far too much that goes into SEM than just paid ads).

Search is an extremely effective way to reach your target audience, generate new customers, increase revenue, and cut acquisition costs. It does come at a price, however.

Cost. When you hear people talking about how expensive Ads has become, it’s because so many small businesses don’t understand why they’re paying more.SEM is more expensive if you’re not also focusing on long-term strategies including keeping that quality score up, SEO, and a social media presence. When you run effective SEM campaigns, Google rewards you with lower costs and higher visibility. But if you choose the “set it and forget it” method, then Google will increase how much you pay.

When you hear people talking about how expensive Ads has become, it’s because so many small businesses don’t understand why they’re paying more. In the short term, nothing can drive more leads and sales faster than SEM.

SEM is more expensive if you’re not also focusing on long-term strategies including keeping that quality score up, SEO, and a social media presence.

Instant Brand Awareness in Search Engines

SEO and organic/unpaid social media take time. Google says it can take up to a year for a quality site to scale the rankings. In contrast, SEM positions you at the top or bottom of page one. A business that has no current visibility or brand recognition can instantly get some attention.

Getting Started with an Incredibly Scalable SEM Strategy

Keep costs low if you have a very limited budget. Then, as revenues rise because of your SEM practices and strategy, increase the number of ads. Remove ads that aren’t working. Refine your campaigns. And increase your daily ad spend. Use testing. Check your ad performance often. The frequency at which you check your ad spend will depend on factors like how much are you spending a day. $150 a day may be peanuts for some, and many companies pay as little as $15 a day. However, if you find yourself spending $10-50 thousand dollars on ads every day, it’s probably a good idea to check the ad performance very often. Keep an eye on your analytics. Don’t forget about your SEO.

The most important takeaway here is that Google will reward you with less expensive ads if the ad provides the customer/user with a good experience. Don’t lie to them. Don’t be shady. Be direct. There’s going to be someone out there who wants that three-quarter-length pink sweater with Zach Morris on the front. So, be exact in your wording. Tell people where they’re going to go if they click on your ad. You’ll pay for it if you don’t.

There’s a lot more than goes into SEM strategy. Get in touch today and let’s talk.

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