How to use AdWords Successfully with Online Shops


When used properly AdWords is the most effective form of online advertising for online shops. But when not managed well, AdWords is a very good way of getting rid of a huge marketing budget. So what is the difference?

The difference is how well managed the campaign is.

There are three ways of managing your AdWords account. You can:

  • Manage it yourself
  • Ask Google advisors to help you setup and manage your account
  • Use a PPC Agency to manage your AdWords campaign.

Managing the campaign in house is a good option for a large business with a large marketing department that can devote more than two members of staff to monitoring and optimising the AdWords campaign. This works if this is their main or only duty, but not if one of many tasks.

Managing the campaign yourself also works well for small owner businesses setup by people keen to do their own marketing and selling, and for whom this is the part of the business they do, with the rest (fulfilment, accounts etc) outsourced.

However the owners of many online shops do not have the necessary in house skill or resource to effectively manage their AdWords campaigns. This is where using a PPC agency makes sense. An agency should have skilled professionals who are able to achieve very good results for clients, with the improvement in PPC campaign paying for the management fee many times over.

Google advisors can help those with no knowledge get started, and in our experience they are good at setting up accounts to spend lots of money. In over seven years of managing PPC campaigns we have never yet encountered a recommendation by Google to reduce spend! So if you want to remove the hassle of management and do not worry too much over escalating PPC advertising costs then this is a one option.

Independent PPC agencies are the choice of most growing online shops, as these can provide the resource and skill required to get the best returns on your investment. When choosing an agency to look after your shop, things to consider include:

  • Experience; everyone must start somewhere, but not on your account!
  • Holiday cover; one person might offer lowest rates, but can they offer a continuous service
  • How often is your account actually looked at? Many agencies use online tools to automate account management. These use rules to alter the account setup. We like it when competitors do this as it makes our job easier! If we know when and how competitors change bidding then we can respond better. This does mean that leaving an account for a month on an ‘account management system’ does not give the best results.
  • Reporting level. Automated standard reports are quick for agencies to produce, but a customised report gives better information for you and ensures better ongoing communication and optimisation of the account.
  • Examples of savings from running previous campaigns

When looking at using an agency the monthly fee should not be the most significant factor, as this should be a small proportion of the amount saved through a more cost effective campaign.

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