Gone are the days where the only way to advertise your business effectively was through expensive television or radio ads. The internet has opened the floodgates of advertisement, making way for literally hundreds of different advertising outlets. In the past, small businesses didn’t have much hope of creating effective advertising campaigns, but today businesses of all sizes can see success through their online marketing efforts. One of the most effective tools for online marketing is Google AdWords. Google AdWords is different from other traditional forms of advertising, and it has the potential to be much more effective. You’re In Control, So Start Small.

Google AdWords allows you to be completely in control of your advertising budget. You don’t have to spend a ton of money right off the bat to see success. Start small, and grow your budget accordingly. Google AdWords functions through Pay-Per-Click (PPC), also known as Cost-Per-Click (CPC). This means that you only have to pay when someone clicks on your ad. Essentially, you tell Google how much you’re willing to pay for someone to click on your ad, and then you set a daily budget limit. For example, if you have a daily budget of 10 dollars at 50 cents per click, you can yield up to 20 clicks that day.

This method allows you to start small, and fine tune your advertising budget and your audience increases. Most small businesses aim for an ad budget between 3 to 5 percent of their total annual earnings. Soon you’ll be turning those clicks into customers.

Target Your Local Audience

Google AdWords allows you to target a specific area. You can change the radius of your advertisements, so that they will be shown to people within a 10-mile radius, or more. Whatever size radius you decide. In addition to targeting certain locations, you can also target specific time slots. If your target audience is college students, your prime-time slot might be later in the night than if you were targeting full-time working professionals. Take these things into account and plan your advertising windows accordingly. Test what works best for you by paying close attention to engagement rates at certain times or certain locations. Soon you’ll be able to lock in the most effective windows for your advertisements, and expand from there. Once you know the best time and place to put your advertisements, increase your budget as you continue to learn what works most effectively.

The More Success You Have, The More You Should Advertise

Once you start seeing your advertising campaign yielding positive results, you should increase your spending. Calculate the cost of success. Say for example you own a hat shop. If you yield 1000 clicks per month on your advertisements, and you also sell around 100 hats per month, you know that for every 10 people that clicked on your ads, one purchased a hat. Not everyone is selling physical items, and so this analogy may not directly apply to your business. However, the idea is to modify your budget accordingly. If you feel that you’re seeing tangible results from Google Adwords at this point, consider increasing your advertising budget.

Monitor Your Advertising

Once again, you are in complete control of your Google AdWords account. You can make any changes you feel necessary at any time you want, so take advantage of that! Part of monitoring your Google AdWords account means paying attention to your SEO. AdWords allows you to input keywords that you feel your target audience may search for when looking for a product or service that your business offers. Give a lot of thought to this, and ask others around you what they would search when looking for what you offer. Take their thoughts into account when adding keywords to your ads. No two people use Google search in the exact same way, and the words that they use to find your product or service may differ from what you would normally search. Essentially you want to anticipate what your potential customers would search for.

Hopefully these quick tips will help you take your small business to the next level in the world of online marketing!