Google AdWords is probably one of the most predictable methods of online marketing to increase website traffic. Google has made it very easy to set up a campaign, insert phrases to target, create generic advertisements, and launch the campaign. With a little knowledge you can pay them a lot of money and increase your website traffic by 909%.
Yep, 909% is a real number that I've seen a few times. I've also seen the real advertising cost involved with that number and the minimal sales. Just because you increase your website traffic doesn't mean you will actually have sales.
AdWords has a method to target the broadest range of potential customers. When you set the range too broad you increase your traffic, you increase your advertising spending, but most of the time you attract customers that are only "browsing" and not actually interested in "buying." There are other ways to really target customers, but they are more advanced and require a lot of preparation.
Through AdWords you pay for text ads, banner ads, map ads, product ads, and mobile ads. When it comes to targeting new customers, mobile ads are the most accurate, but you also need a mobile website.
There is a big debate between creating true mobile websites compared to responsive websites that know to show mobile code to smartphones. When it comes to AdWords, there's no way around it; you need a true mobile website written in WAP, xhtml, chtml, or PDA-compliant html. AdWords will only recognize those languages and take notice that the latest and greatest HTML5 is not in that list.
AdWords forces these mobile website versions because that's the only way to guarantee a mobile ad will lead people to a properly functioning website. Google does not want the user to have a bad experience when clicking a mobile ad, so they force you to comply with their mobile ad guidelines.
Those 4 programming languages have been around for several years, but unfortunately many of the easy to use mobile website conversion programs only use HTML5. If you want to run quality Mobile AdWords ads, you will need to hire a programmer to set up your site for you.
From my own experience, I find that the xhtml mobile language is better than the other 3 choices. Once you set up a real mobile website you can have extreme targeting with your ads because you can target mobile phones within a specific distance of your store. We refer to these extremely targeted campaigns as "hyper-local."
Here's the simple setup ideas for a hyper-local AdWords campaign:
1. Build yourself a true mobile website using xhtml.
2. Make sure the mobile website us useful, and user friendly.
3. Inside your AdWords Settings you would select the hyper-local targeting to Mobile devices and Tablets only.
4. Inside the AdWords Settings you would select 2 mile - 4 mile areas around your store. You may have to enter your longitude and latitude, or select a distance around your town.
5. For your advanced location options you only want to select "People in, searching for, or viewing pages about my targeted location." You also want to exclude "People in my excluded location."
6. Set your hyper-local daily budget to $35 or higher with a click of $10.
7. Set broad keywords phrases like "engagement ring," "jewelry stores," "jewelry," and "diamond rings."
The $10 per click budget is very high for AdWords, and you shouldn't normally pay that much except for the holiday season. In this case the $10 bid is there to make sure you don't lose the opportunity to attract a potential real customer, in reality you shouldn't be charge more than $3.50 per click.
You won't increase your traffic by 909% with this hyper-local targeting; in fact you'll be lucky to attract 2 or 3 customers per week, but they will all be real sales leads.
In short, a person within 4 miles of your store does a web search for one of your simple keywords. Google matches your keyword to their mobile device and to your small radius around your store and suddenly your ad appears.
In most cases, the person will easily be able to tap your ad link to jump to your mobile website. If designed correctly your mobile website will immediately show a map to your store. A few minutes later they will be walking in your front door.
So what would you rather have? A few new customers walking in your front door every month for $3.50 each, or would you rather pay a lot of money to increase your website traffic by 909% with minimal or no sales?
Feel free to leave your comments or contact me through Twitter, Google+, or Facebook if you need help setting up a mobile website or a Google AdWords account.