AdWords Solutions for Small Local Businesses

Last week we published a blog that weighed in on a post discussing the “Top 5 AdWords Strategies to Avoid”.  We were almost 100% in support of all the strategies to avoid.  You can read that post to find out which items we had qualms about in particular. Today though we want to dive into some of the scenarios we are able to use Google AdWords for small local businesses in ways that provide realized value and success

Call Only campaigns for your business name

Even if you have a very small budget or don’t think you want to spend advertising dollars on your core service it may still be advised to run a call only campaign bidding on your business name, nick names, or maybe even competitors.  When we go with a branded campaign we break those terms out from the other keywords and set them aside with unique budgets and bids and ad copy.  This is a recommended strategy to ensure that your reporting is clear and your strategies remain manageable.  With a properly structured campaign we are able to identify opportunities and weaknesses as well.

Branded Name Campaigns Perform Better…Hopefully

In fact, when we structure our campaigns in such a way we generally see better conversion data than our local campaigns.  You can see this from the screenshot below.branded adwords campaign vs localThe example above is of AdWords campaign we run and optimize.  This example shows why you should consider running a branded AdWords campaign even if you feel like you don’t have the budget.  Let’s break down just how the two campaign types compare:

  • Period Cost: The branded keywords, in the same time period, spent only 5.23% of the budget.
  • Period Total Conversions: The branded keywords had 21.43% of the total conversions.
  • Period Cost per Conversion: The non-branded keywords cost 493% more per conversion
  • Period Conversion Rate: The branded keywords converted at an almost 16% higher rate

So basically, branded keywords perform much better.  This shouldn’t come as a surprise really but it demonstrates that for a relatively small budget (who can’t spare $20 to get 6 phone calls/form submissions?) you can reach your customers still.

Use Local Business Manager to Target Local Searches

With our Local Business Manager tool and service we are able to claim, verify, and optimize your Google My Business (GMB) listing.  If we manage your AdWords campaigns we always link your GMB listing into your campaigns to target local map search results. Using the same campaign from above we can see that using this strategy is great for local businesses.  Remember, in this post we’re highlighting that a “Branded Call Only” campaign is worth the small budget and ad spend required due to how effective it is for local businesses.

local ad extension conversion rates

This screen capture shows that of all the 28 conversions above that 27 of them occurred when the GMB listing was integrated into the search results.  Furthermore we are able to identify that 22 of those occurred with the “mobile click to call” conversion metric.  Again, we remind you that we’re showing you the value of a AdWords “Call Only” campaign for your business.  This means that 78.6% of the total period conversions came off a mobile click to call conversion.  If you’re curious about the Branded Campaign discussed above all 6 of the period conversions came off of the mobile click to call ads. So it is safe to say that the Local Business Manager subscription/tools and the Branded Keyword Campaigns work together to hit your local customers quite well.

ServiceHoot helps optimize your local click to call campaigns

We hope you would consider hiring our team to help you realize performance numbers like those shown above. Our value can be expressed to you in many ways.  We may be of value simply for our peace of mind knowing you have an expert resource to rely upon. You may value your time the most and appreciate knowing your campaigns are being taken care of by ServiceHoot. While those are some great reasons, no other reason is greater than the DOLLAR.  We save you money and/or make your more money when we manager you AdWords campaigns.adwords management performance comparisonThis screenshot is taken from the same campaign above and compares the analyzed period used above with the previous period.  This happens to represent the time period of ServiceHoot optimizing the campaigns. When working with a local business we have to ask ourselves many questions. One of those questions is, “How far out are our client’s customers in actuality?”  We discussed this with the client and decided that we would narrow our search area.  In doing so we ended up delivering a campaign that not only spent less overall but also increased the total number of leads/conversions. In fact, you can see in the screengrab above that we improved conversions 15.79% in our local campaign and 500% in the Branded Campaign.

So in this particular example we not only saved the client money but we made the client more money as well!

We are happy to discuss your business’ AdWords opportunities any time. We can work with almost every type of business but our toolset and services are especially powerful for local brick and mortar or service area businesses.  If you’re interested you can sign up here and get started today!


Top 5 AdWords Tactics We Don’t Do Because We Shouldn’t

Search Engine Journal (SEJ) has recently posted a helpful article about managing and optimizing AdWords campaigns. We always like these professional quick takes to see whether our internal practices are inline with industry norms or if we have a different way of doing things. We think, luckily, this time around we are 100% on board with what SEJ thinks is the top 5 Most Overrated PPC Tactics

What are the Top 5 PPC Campaign Mistakes?

  1. Position 1 No Matter What – Totally agree. It’s  not usually in the best interest of a campaign to just attempt to be number 1 all the time.  We have always stressed that you can get a better ROI if we can settle your ad in the top 3 positions with more compelling ad text and structured data.  This is especially true if we are also managing your Local SEO or you’ve been optimized with our Local Business Manager tools.
  2. Not Bidding on Brand Keywords – Agreed 100%, again.  Your business is local and your brand is your name.  The importance of reputation management (part of our Local Business Manager toolset) can be leveraged in your AdWords campaign by bidding on your business name and similar names.  You should own your brand name AdWords…and perhaps it’d be the only time we’d recommend to ignore point #1 above.
  3. Casting the Net Wide – Agreed, but with caveats.  As a local business you may need to expand the audience you’re attracting in a limited geography.  Sometimes, when we are confronted with an underspending campaign with additional ad budget available we will broaden out our keyword list.  However, it’s important to do this intelligently and make proper use of keyword match types so you don’t waste money.
  4. Single Keyword Ad Groups – This recommendation is, we think, self-fulfilling and able to be avoided when you build your campaigns out correctly from the beginning.  You should be organizing your account by conceptual or similar idea ad groups.  We hardly ever have single keyword ad groups because we like to think ahead of how to best optimize and manage the account in total from the very beginning.
  5. Remarketing First – We agree with caveats again.  Unless your business model is specifically well suited for remarketing first then we believe kickstarting your business with an excellent AdWords campaign first is ideal.  You can always add remarketing later (that’s recommended actually) but you should try to capture NEW VISITORS first with a targeted local AdWords campaign first and foremost.

You can see why those are important AdWords tactics to avoid and why, sometimes, there are exceptions to this.  Still, as a rule, we agree wholeheartedly and appreciate the affirmation from SEJ that we manage our client’s AdWords campaigns effectively and are applying the right skillset and tactics.