Google Ads, previously called Google AdWords, started over 24 years ago. Since then, the online world has changed a lot.
Online ads are more competitive and challenging now. There are more ad options and free & paid marketing strategies available. Is it still a good idea to use Google Ads in 2024, even with all these changes?
In this article, we’ll tell you why Google Ads are still a good choice (and when they might not be worth the money).
What Are Google Ads?
Google Ads is a tool for online advertising that businesses can use to promote their products and services. When you search on Google, the first results on the page are often ads related to what you searched for.
These are the most common types of Google Ads, but there are other options too. You can also use Google ads to promote on YouTube, show banner ads on websites, advertise apps on Google Play, and more.
Most Google Ads work on a pay-per-click (PPC) basis, but some are based on the number of times the ad is shown or on app installations.
What’s the success rate of Google Ads?
Your success with Google advertising depends on a few factors, such as how much time and effort you put into refining your campaigns, the industry you’re in, and the type of ads you run.
When it comes to Google Ads there are a few simple ways to determine if it is a viable channel. Here are a couple of questions to ask yourself:
- Are you targeting the right keywords? For example “board games” is a bad keyword and “buy Ark Nova” is a good keyword to target
- Are you targeting the right Geos? Only target the Geos where previous customers have bought games from you.
- Are you sending traffic to the right landing page? Make sure the keyword searched matches the landing page they land on.
- How good is the user experience on your landing page? If the landing page doesn’t convert well then traffic won’t matter. This is all about conversion rate optimization (CRO).
To gauge how well your Google Ads are doing, you can look at the average cost per click (CPC). This varies a lot by industry. For example, lawyers might pay around $8.67 per click, while restaurants might only pay $1.73.
However, don’t let these numbers fool you into thinking Google Ads aren’t effective for lawyers. For example, getting a single legal client can bring in a significant amount of money, compared to a single customer for a restaurant.
The easiest way to check how well advertisements are working is to keep an eye on their conversion rate. However, the standard for what’s considered good can be quite different depending on the industry.
For example, when it comes to products related to animals and pets, the average conversion rate for search ads is really high at 19.19%, but for furniture, it’s only 3.25%.
This isn’t surprising because people usually look around a lot before buying something expensive like furniture. On the other hand, someone might decide to buy cat food after just one Google search.
The main idea is that PPC advertising is effective for most businesses. It helps generate business for 74% of companies and 79% of agencies. And, with about 27.5% of the market, Google Ads is the advertising platform that these businesses are probably using the most.
But ultimately your question is ‘does it make sense to spend this money’ and the data you need to answer that is:
- What % of people who hit your site ultimately convert today? You should have this in Google Analytics.
- How much volume do searches for home automation, tv installation, etc. have in your local region? You can find this in Google’s Keyword Planner.
- What’s the average CPC for those searches? Again, in keyword planner.
- What’s your average profit per job? If you tend to scope projects by job type (tv installation vs. full home automation set-up) then do the same here and pin a rough value.
Then it’s just a math game. Say your average job is $250 in profit, and you’re willing to do the work for only $50 in profit in order to scale up (and ultimately hire out). Then you’re setting a max spend of $200 to acquire that job ($200 for the job, $250 profit before ads, $50 profit after cost of ads).
Then look at your conversion rates and estimated CPCs. Say you convert 5% of your web traffic and the estimated CPC is $5. So you’d need to drive 20 people to the site to get 1 customer, so that’ll cost $100 ($5 x 20). That’s under your $200 max that we set above, so it’s likely profitable for you to do. So you check the search volume and make sure you can get at least 20 of those searches, then hit go.
If the numbers don’t work out profitably, then you don’t go and explore other avenues.
And that’s just baseline projections. Once you are actually live and getting real data you can make the call in real time, adjust spend in real time, etc. to profitably scale. That’s the general approach to identify if it makes sense and (once you are up) if you should continue running them.
11 Reasons Google Ads Are Worth It in 2024 and Beyond
68% of all customer purchases start with an online search, and Google makes up 91.61% of those searches. Using Google Ads with content related to search results gives you an edge in your specific market.
Google Ads can boost visitors and sales for many businesses. However, to avoid wasting money, it’s important to carefully choose what you include in your marketing plan. Wondering if Google Ads are really worth the money?
Here are the top 11 reasons why you should consider using them.
1. Everyone Googles
Most people around the world use Google to search for things online. Google is the top choice for 88.14% of desktop searches and 95.16% of mobile searches, based on November 2023 statistics. Bing, its closest competitor, has a 10.52% share in desktop searches and only 0.53% in mobile searches.
Google’s influence extends beyond just search — websites owned by Google, like the search engine and YouTube, get over 277 million visits every month in the United States alone. This is even more than the combined visits to Facebook and Microsoft, which are top competitors in PPC advertising.
Most importantly, when people search for new products, 54% to 57% of them visit a website owned by Google first. Simply put, if you want your ads to be seen by potential customers, it’s a good idea to place them on Google.
2. The ads reach the people looking for you
You operate a business selling handmade wooden buckets. Who’s most likely to buy your product? It’s likely the person currently searching for “handmade wooden bucket” on Google.
Google Ads are better than many other types of advertising because they don’t just target a broad audience or a specific group (although you can do that too). Instead, they aim for people actively searching for a product like yours. When you reach a potential customer already looking for a business like yours, your chances of making a sale are likely to go up.
3. It’s easy to get started with Google Ads
First, set up a Google Ads account. You can use your existing Google account, like your Gmail address. Fill in some details and add a payment method to begin. Google needs to review your ads before they start running, usually taking a day.
Once approved, your ads will show up quickly. Getting started is easy – if you open an account today, you might see views, clicks, and even sales by tomorrow.
However, Google Ads can be a bit tricky. It takes time to become an expert and make the most of your investment. If you’re not sure what you’re doing, it might be better to hire PPC specialists.
4. Google Ads will work with any budget
You can use Google Ads effectively, whether you have $100 or $100,000 to spend each month. When you set up a Google Ads advertising campaign, you choose a daily budget, which is the most you’re willing to spend per day.
Google decides how often your ads can appear based on this daily budget. It’s important to note that you might end up spending more than your usual daily budget on a single day.
This happens because Google optimizes your campaign spending for days when you’re likely to get more clicks and conversions, like when search traffic is high. Consequently, you might spend more than your regular daily budget on some days while spending less on others.
Rest assured, you won’t exceed your daily spending limit (twice your usual daily budget) or your monthly spending cap (30.4 times your usual daily budget).
5. You only pay if someone clicks
Google’s search ads work like this: you pay a small fee whenever someone clicks on your ad—this is called PPC or pay-per-click. Using Google Ads won’t incur any extra charges.
If your PPC ad doesn’t bring a user to your website, you won’t have to pay anything. While not all Google ads are PPC, the basic idea remains.
If you run a pay-per-impression (CPM) campaign, it won’t cost you unless someone views your ad.
6. There’s an Ads format for everyone
While search ads are widely recognized as Google’s main type of ads, choosing a display ad might be better for boosting brand awareness.
Let’s say you run a plumbing business, and you’re not keen on having potential customers go to your website; instead, you want them to give you a call right away. In this case, a call-only ad might be more suitable. Whatever your advertising aim is, Google Ads has a format that fits it perfectly.
7. The targeting is precise
We’ve talked about how Google search ads use specific words to reach the people you want. Google offers more ways to reach the right folks with your ad. You can aim for these groups:
- Affinity audience: This is based on what people like, do, and enjoy.
- Detailed demographics: This covers info like age, if they’re married, or own a home.
- Life events: Folks going through big life moments.
- Custom audience: Those who look for certain words, websites, or apps.
- In-market: Based on folks wanting to buy something soon.
- Remarketing: Like people who visited your site, used your apps, or are like your current customers.
With many options, you can make sure your ad gets to the people most likely to buy.
8. You can start and stop your campaigns at any time
Can’t spare the time or money for Google Ads this month? No problem. You can stop and start your campaigns whenever you want. You won’t be stuck in any long-term commitment, and you can always modify your ads.
This makes the platform flexible and budget-friendly.
9. The ads can be effective quickly
Paid search ads are often compared to organic search and search engine optimization (SEO). Both are important for bringing search engine users to your website.
SEO involves making changes to your website that will bring in traffic and conversions over time, but it may take a few months to see big results.
Google search ads are different. If you start them today, you might notice an increase in traffic and sales within a few days. However, campaigns usually work better after they’ve been optimized for a while. We suggest starting small and slowly increasing your spending.
10. Google Ads are easy to optimize
The Ads platform gives you lots of information that you can use to always make your ad campaigns better. It also suggests ways to improve your ads, so you don’t have to figure everything out on your own.
Your Optimization Score is like a grade for how well your Google Ads account is set up. When you make the changes that Google suggests for your account, your Optimization Score will go up.
Remember, the Optimization Score and Google’s suggestions are helpful tips, but you don’t have to follow them exactly. They’re just good starting points to make your campaigns more successful.
11. Google Ads helps you learn about your audience
PPC ads offer valuable insights. They reveal which words or images attract potential buyers and which audience groups are most likely to make a purchase. This info is handy for improving your PPC ad strategies.
But that’s not all. The data gathered from Google ads can also benefit your other marketing efforts. The top PPC keywords can be used in your next SEO campaign, and the most clicked ad copy can inspire your next email subject.
Google Ads make it easier to connect with your desired audience, no matter the type of marketing campaign you’re running.
When Are Google Ads NOT Worth It?
One great thing about Google Ads is that anyone can create and run an advertising campaign. The downside is that doing it right requires time and expertise.
Small businesses, especially, often don’t have the time to understand all the details of Google Ads, let alone keep an eye on and improve campaigns. You might not be happy with your results if you don’t use the best Google Ads methods.
To be straightforward, running average ads with Google Ads can be a waste of money. If you want to get the most out of your investment, work with professionals who can handle your PPC ads for you.
So, here’s the big question. Is it a good idea to use Google Ads in 2024?
If you set up your ad campaign correctly, you could see a significant boost in visitors and sales in a short time. Need help getting your campaigns perfect? It’s a good idea to work with a skilled PPC company to make the most of your Google Ads investment.
With our expertise, you can start getting the clicks that will move your business ahead!