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Understanding the Search Network: Some Key Insights into a Setup Strategy

By: Abdi Morrison

Setting up a Google Ads account from scratch requires a strong understanding of the Google Ads search channel. The approach that you should take for these account setups is different for a lead gen business compared to an ecommerce business. Knowing how best to use the search network is necessary if you are going to complete a full account setup. This article will highlight some of the search network components that are necessary for a strong account setup. It will also highlight some of the key areas of difference that you should consider when doing search campaign setups for ecommerce versus lead gen businesses.

Branded Search Campaigns

A branded campaign should always be included in your account setup. Running a branded campaign will allow you to capture the market share for your branded terms. Branded campaigns also help to defend your brand’s turf from competitors looking to bid on your branded keywords in order to capture leads for their business. Branded keywords generally have a low cost per click (CPC) because the brand has a high Quality Score. These keywords are high quality so targeting them in your branded campaign is relatively inexpensive. Branded campaigns typically have significantly higher click through rates compared to non-branded search campaigns/ These campaigns will almost always generate a high ROAS for you, so they are a positive addition to any Google Ads account. 

The picture below is an example of how well a branded campaign can perform compared to  your typical non branded campaigns.

Branded campaign data compared to top performing non branded campaigns data (30 days)

Remarketing Campaigns

Remarketing campaigns should also be included in an account setup. Remarketing campaigns can improve the overall performance of your advertising efforts because they allow advertisers to stay connected to their audience after they visited or converted on their ecommerce website or landing page.

The setup for a remarketing campaign is the same as setting up a standard search campaign. The only difference is with the audience targeting. The remarketing ads you create would be set to target past visitors rather than targeting potential new customers.

Running a remarketing campaign on the search network requires an audience size of at least 1,000 people. Some industries are more niche and can’t generate the amount of traffic necessary to be eligible for remarketing. It’s important to know if the remarketing option can work for your industry.  

One scenario in which a remarketing campaign would likely be less effective is if you are in an industry that has a short buying cycle. Pest control, plumbers, electricians, and lice removal services are all examples. If someone has a pest problem in their house, they will immediately look for a pest control company to fix it. They are best used for industries that have a longer buying cycle and where customers require more exposure to your brand.

The real estate industry is an example of an industry that has a long buying cycle. Buying or renting a property is a big financial investment for people to make, so they will not make that decision impulsively. A potential customer could take months to decide whether they want to invest in a real estate property, so repeatedly advertising to them over a long period of time is necessary. Remarketing to past website visitors is crucial in this industry because it gives you multiple attempts to convince a potential buyer why they should purchase or rent a property. 

Ad Extensions

Advertisers should always use sitelink extensions when advertising for an ecommerce business. If your paid search ad is advertising a certain product on the search engine results page (SERP), you should still include sitelinks that advertise other products on your site. That way you can give visitors more options for products to purchase when they see your ad on the SERP. Revenue is often a key performance indicator (KPI) within ecommerce, so whether users purchase the product being advertised in your main ad copy or the products being advertised in your sitelinks is not a major concern. 

If you’re advertising for lead gen, then you might want to consider adding lead form extensions to your ads. Lead forms generate leads for your business by letting users submit their information in a form directly in your ad. These extensions are highly optimized for mobile devices, so they can help increase the amount of leads you get on mobile. The online world has increasingly become more mobile dominant, which makes lead forms a great addition to your advertising strategy for lead gen.  

In Conclusion

The approach to setting up search campaigns can vary in its application for lead gen and ecommerce businesses. Some key areas of difference in search campaign setup were highlighted for those two business types. There are many more areas where the search campaign setup can vary within an account, but the examples shown here will help to guide your setups in the future.

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