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Google Ads
Google Ads is an extremely powerful advertising platform. When you’re using Google Ads, you pay on a cost per click (CPC) basis. 

This means you don’t have to pay Google to have your ad shown, but only when someone actually clicks on your ad.

Only pay Google when someone clicks on your ad.

This means that Google is less keen to show un-relevant ads that no one clicks on. For that reason, it uses the Google Quality Score as a factor to decide the ad ranking.

This also means you can’t just blindly add irrelevant keywords to your account.

The Google ad auction works based on a difficult formula, where it takes into account:
  1. The bid that each advertiser puts in for click on a particular keyword.

  2. The relevancy of that advertiser to a particular search query (the Google Quality Score).

What is the Google Quality Score?

The Quality Score is a number from 1 to 10 that shows how relevant your keyword to a particular search query.

A low Quality Score shows that your keyword is totally irrelevant, while a high Quality Score means that it’s spot on and that you’re offering exactly what visitors are looking for.

To decide the Quality Score, Google looks at multiple factors including:

  • Keyword relevancy

  • Expected click-through rate (CTR)

  • Landing page experience

  • Historical account performance

  • Ad relevancy

  • Various relevance factors


How the Google ad auction works

Everytime someone types something into the search engine, Google’s algorithm re-calculates the ad ranking.

To do this it looks at many factors, including:

  • The keyword in your account that could get triggered for the search query.

  • How relevant that keyword is to the search query.

  • The relevancy of your ad to the search query.

  • How relevant your landing page is to the search query.

  • Your maximum bid for a click on the keyword.

  • Ad extensions that get trigger by the keyword.

  • The maximum bid of a competitor on the keyword.

  • Relevancy factors of your competitor(s).

And much, much more. In total, Google uses hundreds of factors to decide the ad ranking and this is being re-calculated for each search query.

How Google decides the ad ranking.

In the example above there are 4 advertisers that are eligible to show for a particular search query:

  • Advertiser 1 has a bid of $4.

  • $3 is the bid of advertiser 2.

  • Advertiser 3 bids $2.

  • And advertiser 4 puts in a bid of $1 per click.

Based on the many relevancy factors that Google uses:

  • Advertiser 1 has a relevancy factor (Google Quality Score) of 1.

  • Relevancy factor of 6 for advertiser 2.

  • Advertiser 3 has a relevancy factor of 10.

  • And advertiser 4 has a relevancy factor of 8.

Based on the bid and the relevancy factor Google decides the ad ranking.
This means that:

  • Even though advertiser 3 only put in the third highest bid, it gets ranking in the first position because of their high relevancy score.

  • Then, Advertiser 2 gets the second ad position.

  • Advertiser 4 gets the third ad position.

  • And even though advertiser 1 put in the highest bid, it still gets ranked the lowest due to a low relevancy score.


Why is relevancy so important?

This is because Google wants to:

  1. Make users happy by providing the right answers to their questions.

  2. Make advertisers happy by not letting them pay for irrelevant clicks.

And it certainly makes Google happy.
Remember that you only have to pay for actual clicks? So by showing relevant ads higher in the ad ranking, more people will click the ad and Google will earn more as well.

So, even though an advertiser pays less for a click, the higher click-through rate (CTR) will make it more beneficial for Google.

How Google uses the Quality Score to decide the ad ranking

To decide the ad ranking, Google uses the following formula:

So, if you want to increase your ad ranking for a particular keyword there are two things you can do:

  1. Increase your CPC bids, which will increase your costs.

  2. Improve your Quality Score.

So in plain words: a higher Quality Score will give you a better ad ranking against lower costs.

How Quality Score affects CPC

The maximum CPC bid that you put in for a keyword is not necessarily the cost you actually have to pay Google.

You only have to pay Google the cost of what is needed to keep your closest competitor below you. This means you pay whatever is needed to maintain your ad ranking plus $0.01.

In the example we had before, this means:

  • Advertiser 3 ends up paying $1.91. It needs 19 to maintain it’s ad ranking (as advertiser 2 has 18), so the formula to calculate the actual cost per click is: (19/10)+$0.01 = $1.91.

  • Then, Advertiser 2 pays $1.51 (9/6 + $0.01).

  • Advertiser 4 pays $0.63.

  • Lastly, Advertiser 1 pays their maximum CPC, which is $4.

Note: all of these calculations are based on the information that is available. The actual formula that Google uses to determine ad ranking and cost per click is a secret.

How to improve Quality Score

If you can increase the relevance of your campaign, you will get higher Quality Scores.

This will significantly decrease your cost per click so that you can squeeze more clicks and conversions out of your budget.

There are a few ways to do this:

  1. Fine-tuning your keyword list. 
    You can run a search query report to see the search queries that triggered your keywords. Adding new keywords to your campaign will allow writing more specific ad copy’s.

  2. Adding negative keywords.
    You can add negative keywords to ensure your keywords won’t get triggered for irrelevant search queries and improve your click-through rates.

  3. Testing ad copy’s.
    You should write ad copy’s for each ad group individually and start testing them. Then, remove ad copy’s that have a low click-through rate and focus on the ones with a high CTR.

  4. Optimising landing pages.
    Send your visitors to a relevant page on your website based on the search query that they’ve typed in. Also, follow best practices for your landing pages.

Following these steps can improve your Google Quality Score, meaning you can get higher ad rankings and more value for your buck.


Google Ads
Understanding the different match types is critical to get maximum results out of Google Ads.

The goal is to only show your ad for relevant search queries. The match types will give you control over which search queries will trigger your ads to eliminate irrelevant clicks.


There are 5 different match types in Google Ads:

  • Broad match. Triggers all search queries closely related to the keyword.

  • Broad match modifier. Limits broad match to make sure certain words need to be within the search query.

  • Phrase match. Triggers all search queries that have the keyword as a phrase within them.

  • Exact match. Triggers search queries that exactly match the keyword, plus all close variants.

  • Negative match. Prevents your ad from being shown for search queries that contain this keyword.

Explanation of different match types in Google Ads.

Broad match

Standard all of your keywords are added as broad match within your campaigns.

Broad match means that your ad will be triggered for all search queries that are closely related to the keywords. Although this will give you a wide reach, there’s a big chance your ad will be shown for a lot of irrelevant search queries as well.


Keyword: plumbing service.

Triggers your ad for search queries like: plumbing service, plumber emergency service, plumbing tips, how to become a plumber, plumbing courses, repair my toilet.

As an experienced Google Ads specialist, I would highly recommend to not use broad match keywords in your account.

Using broad match keywords either blow out your budget on irrelevant clicks or has a negative effect on your account’s Quality Score.

Broad match modifier (BMM)

Broad match modifier gives you a bit more control than broad match.

It means that all of words that have a “+” in front of them, need to be exactly like that in the search query for your ad to be triggered. They can be in a different order tho, as well have additional words in-front, in-between, or behind them.


Keyword: +plumbing +service

Triggers your ad for: plumbing service, plumbing emergency service

Doesn’t trigger your ad for: repair my toilet, plumbing tips.

Broad match modifier is a great way to identify new potential keywords, by expanding your reach but still have control over when your ads are triggered.

Phrase match

Phrase match means that your keyword needs to be within the search query for your ads being triggered.

You will still need to make sure you have a large negative keyword list to limit your irrelevant clicks.


Keyword: “plumbing service”

Triggers your ad for: plumbing service, plumbing service near me.

Doesn’t trigger your ad for: plumbing emergency service.

Exact match

Exact match keywords will give you the most control over when your ads get triggered.

It’s highly recommended to create a large keyword list with as much as possible exact match keywords.


Keyword: [plumbing service]

Triggers your ad for: plumbing service.

Doesn’t trigger your ad for: plumbing service near me.

Close variants

It’s good to keep in mind that Google will show your ad for close variants.

These could include plurals, misspellings and function words. This is not a setting (anymore) so there’s no way you could turn this off.

If you don’t want your ad to show for certain plurals or misspellings, you could create a negative keyword list with these and add them to your ad group or campaign.

Explanation of close variants in Google Ads.

Negative keywords

Negative keywords will prevent your ad from being triggered.

It’s very important that you build a large negative keyword list, especially if you’re using a lot of broad match and negative keywords.

For your negative keywords, you can use similar match types as with the normal keywords, so broad, phrase and exact.

Image that shows how negative keywords works within Google Ads.
Broad match modifier doesn’t work for negative keywords, however broad match for negatives works similarly as BMM.


Google Ads
Are you running a local business?

Or do you offer a service that is specifically targeting certain suburbs?

Here’s some tips to make Google Ads working for you.

Tip #1: Act like a local!

You probably don’t have a marketing like the “big guys”, so you’ll have to be smart. By emphasising the fact that you’re a local business you can beat them on your turf.

Nobody knows your area as well as you. 

See this example of a locksmith on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. They mention in their headlines, description lines, ad extensions and even brand name that they’re locals!

No big company with an office in the CBD will be able to compete with this.

Screenshot of local Sydney business on Google Ads.

Tip #2: Split out your campaigns

Being a local requires you to split out your Google Ads campaigns. 

You want to create 2 separate campaigns:

  1. A location targeting campaign. In this campaign, you can use more generic keywords (eg. “plumbing service”) but only target the area that you service. 

  2. A location keyword campaign. In this campaign, you use suburb specific keywords (eg. “plumbing service sydney”) and target a larger area.

Tips #3 to #5 will dig deeper into these 2 campaign types.

Tip #3: Use geo-targeting

For the location targeting campaign, you only want to target the area that you actually serve.

You can either use radius targeting (where you draw a circle around your business address), put in each of the suburbs individually, or use postcodes for this. It depends on your business which option you want to use.

Tip #4: Expand keyword list with location keywords

Once you split out your campaigns, you can expand your Google Ads keyword list with location related keywords.

Location keywords are related to a certain suburb, council, city or even country.

They can be described as long tail keywords, meaning there’s likely to be less competition than the more generic keywords in your list. Therefore there will be a lower cost-per-click (CPC) on these keywords and you will be able to achieve higher ad rankings.

Although one of these keywords won’t give you that much extra traffic, all together they can significantly increase your reach. Also, as they’re more relevant you’ll be able to write better ads, improve your average click-through rate (CTR) and improve your conversion rate (CVR).

As they’re more relevant you will also be able to achieve a higher Google Quality Score, which could potentially reduce the CPC of all the keywords in your account.

Tip #5: don’t limit yourself

How many keywords can you add you ask? A lot!

For example, for a business servicing North Sydney and Sydney’s Northern Beaches you will already be able to add the following suburb keywords:

  • Manly

  • Palm Beach

  • Curl Curl

  • Dee Why

  • Collaroy

  • Narrabeen

  • Mona Vale

  • Warriewood

  • Newport

  • Avalon

  • Frenchs Forest

  • Forestville

  • Belrose

  • Davidson

  • Terrey Hills

  • Beacon Hill

  • Allambie Heights

  • Balgowlah

  • Seaforth

  • Clontarf

  • Cammeray

  • Cremorne

  • Crows Nest

  • Kirribilli

  • Kurraba Point

  • Lavender Bay

  • McMahons Point

  • Milsons Point

  • Neutral Bay

  • North Sydney

  • St Leonards

  • Waverton

  • Wollstonecraft

Depending on where you’re potential customers are, you would be able to extend this list further. For our clients were able to significantly improve the performance of their Google Ads campaigns using location keywords.

Tip #6: Use negative keywords

To filter out irrelevant traffic, make sure that you create a list of suburbs/areas that you don’t service.

By adding this as a negative keyword list to your campaigns, people who include this in their search query won’t see your ad, even if they’re located within your location targeting. 

This will help you focus on clicks that will give you actual potential customers. 

Tip #7: Track your phone calls

You want to make sure that you track all of your conversions.

If you’re a local business that has a phone number on your site, make sure that you track your phone calls. Google offers free forwarding numbers to local businesses in Australia. All you need to do is add the script to your website.

Tip #8: Monitor your search queries

Although you would want to set up a tight keyword list, your ad might pop up for irrelevant search queries.

Especially if you’re working with a small budget, you want to filter these out as much as possible. 

Google Ads allows you to pull a search query report. By going through this report you’ll be able to identify irrelevant search queries and add them as negative keywords to your campaigns.

You’re able to find this report in Google Ads by going to your Keywords tab and then go to Search Terms.

In the Added/Excluded you’re able to see if a keyword is added already or not:

Screenshot of search terms report in Google Ads.

So if I’m not servicing Adelaide, based on the example above I can add the keyword “adelaide” to my negative keyword list.

Tip #9: Use ad scheduling

If you’re running a local business, it might not make sense for you to get leads when you’re not there to follow up straight away.

Google Ads gives the opportunity to use a time schedule. That way you can turn off your ads during certain hours. For example in the weekends or even during the week outside office hours.

Tip #10: Use location extensions

The big benefit as a local business is that you’re close to your customers. You want your customers to know that as well!

Google Ads gives the opportunity to show your address within your ad. These are called location extensions. As a local business, it’s highly recommended to set this up.

Screenshot of location extension within Google.

To enable this you will need to set up a Google Business Profile and link this with your Google Ads account.

Keep in mind, that to process to verify the location in your Google Business Profile will take a few weeks. Google will send a postcard to your address with a unique code to verify this.

Tip #11: Use local search ads

Local search ads will show up when customers are searching on Google Maps.

It promotes your Google Business Profile, using the location extensions. You will need to include Search Partners in your campaigns to make sure local search ads will show.

This setting is on a campaign level in your Google Ads account. 

Extra tip: Optimise, optimise, optimise

Google Ads has a lot of data available.

There’s no such thing as set and forget. To get maximum results out of your campaigns you will need to constantly optimise based on this data.

This means that you will need to change your keyword bids, pause underperforming keywords, add new keywords, test different ad copy’s, tweak your campaign setting and much, much more.

It’s the only way to improve your ROI.

About Vazooky Digital

Vazooky Digital is a boutique Google Ads agency based on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. If you need any help with improving your local Google Ads campaigns, please get in touch.


Google Ads
We often get the question why a client should advertise on their own branded term in Google Ads.

They already have an organic top ranking for this search query, why would they pay for people to click on their ad instead?

There’s a few benefits of advertising on your own branded term, as listed out below: 

1. As branded keywords are highly relevant, the cost per click that we’ll have to pay for these are very low

First of all, branded keywords are the most relevant keywords in your account.

Therefore, you will have a higher Quality Score (relevance factor). This means that the cost per click will be relatively low.

So you won’t pay the highest price for your branded clicks anyway.

2. They have a positive impact on your account’s Quality Score

As they’re very relevant they have a positive impact on the Quality Score of your entire account.

This means that for all the non-branded keywords you will have a higher ranking and decrease their cost per click.

From a campaign management point of view, this is the main reason why I would always recommend to advertise on your branded term.

3. Competitors are allowed to advertise on your brand

Even though you might decide not to advertise on your brand, this doesn’t mean your competitors won’t!

Winning athlete to show how competitors advertise on your brand in Google Ads.

Within Australia all advertisers are able to use your brand name as a keyword in their account.

This means that if a potential customer types in your brand name in Google, they might see one of your competitors first. Yikes!

4. You have more control over the messaging that you want to promote

Although you’re able to instruct Google with meta tags what to show in your organic listing, there’s no guarantee. Google could use anything from your site to show in the search engine.

Having your ad showing first gives you far more control over the messaging you want to promote. Because of that you’ll be able to add offers, promote different USP’s and even test different landing pages other than your homepage.


To sum it up, advertising on your brand name will give you far more control and has a positive impact on the performance of all the keywords in your account.

Because of the relative low cost per click that you’ll have to pay makes it a no-brainer to advertise on your branded term.


Google Ads, News
Google decided to change the name for Google AdWords. Alongside the changes to the AdWords platform there will be a rebranding for the DoubleClick platform as well.

The changes that will be made:
  • Google AdWords will change to Google Ads,

  • DoubleClick Search, Bid Manager and Campaign Manager will, together, be called Google Marketing Platform,

  • DoubleClick for Publishers and Ad Exchanged will be called Google Ad Manager.

So far this will only be a name and logo change. No big changes to the platforms will be made yet and all the campaigns that you’ve set up will continue to keep running as normal.

The new interface to has been in beta phase for the last few months will be rolled out as part of this, however most advertisers has already been using this. 

Have a look at the announcement on Search Engine Land for more information.


Google Ads

The main goal of your AdWords Google Ads campaigns is to work towards a positive ROI.

When you spend money on Google you want to make sure that, in the end, you get more value out of it then what you put in.

With e-commerce websites, this is relatively straightforward, as you’d be able to track the exact outcome of your campaigns.

But how do you make sure your lead generation campaigns are profitable?

Step 1: Understand how much a new client is worth to you

The first step is to know (on average) how much you earn per client.

Is the client returning to your business or is it a one-off sale and, if so, how often is he likely to return?

You want to know your total customer value and how much profit you earn from it.

Money to show how much a client is worth to a business.

Example: your customer value is $500 and $400 of this is profit.

Step 2: Decide how much you’re willing to invest to get a new client

Once you know your customer value and your profit you’ll need to decide how much of this you’d be willing to spend on getting a brand new client in.

Often this is a certain percentage. The higher it is, the more volume you’d be able to reach (as Google works based on an auction model).

Example: You decide to invest 30% of your profit to get a new client. 30% of $400 is $120.

Step 3: Understand how many leads you need to get a new customer.

Not all leads will automatically convert into a customer (unless you’re a great salesperson – in that case well done!).

You need to know how many leads on average you need to get one sale. This will give you the cost per lead target that we need for our AdWords campaigns.

Example: On average you need 2 leads to make 1 sale. 50% of $120 is $60, which is your cost per lead target.

Step 4: Know the conversion rate of your site

The conversion rate of your site will decide how much you, on average, can spend on a click to your site.

All you need to do is to make sure you’ve got conversion tracking in place and that you set up your Google Analytics goals.

Example: 15% of your clicks convert into a lead. 15% of $60 is $9, which is on average the cost per click you can afford to make your campaigns profitable.

Step 5: Optimise your campaigns based on the data

Now the fun part starts.

Growing ROI by optimising Google Ads campaigns.

All of these numbers will change depending on how well you’re doing. It will also be different for each of the keywords in your account.

Some of your keywords will have a lower conversion rate (CVR), while others will be more relevant and have a higher CVR. If the CVR of a particular keywords turns out to be 25%, you can spend $6 more per click as it attributes more value to your site.

Once you have meaningful data you’d be able to optimise your bids down to the keyword level to get maximum result out your budget.

Also, you can A/B test your ad copy’s and landing pages to improve the CVR of your campaigns. This way you can bid higher, get a higher ad ranking and get more volume and leads for the same cost per lead target!


Google Ads
If phone calls are important for your business we can set up phone call tracking within Google Ads. We can then see which keywords are giving you leads.

This is valuable information that we can use to optimise your campaigns.

Google Ads call tracking: how it works

Australia is one of the countries in which Google offers call-forwarding numbers.

There are 2 ways to make this work:

  1. Add call extensions to your ads and select “call reporting”. Google will start showing ads with the Google call-forwarding number.

  2. By adding an extra piece of code to your site, we can swap the phone number that is displayed on your site to a Google forwarding number for all Google Ads visitors. Once potential customers call this number it will instantly be forwarded to your original phone number.

Image of phone calls being tracked in Google Ads.

On your site, the call-forwarding will show a localised phone number.

So if you’re business is located in Sydney and you’re using a Sydney based phone number, the new call-forwarding number will start with (02) as well.

If your business is in Melbourne, it will start with (03).

As Google will have access to a large but limited amount of phone numbers, you will need a certain amount of impressions in each ad group first to make the call-forwarding work.

The phone calls will be recorded in the conversion column within your Google Ads reporting.

Together with any other conversion points that you’re tracking, these will provide valuable data which you can use to optimise your campaign.

Video: tracking when ads lead to customer calls

Need any help with setting up call tracking for your PPC campaigns? Feel free to get in touch.


Google Ads, Search Engine Optimisation

First of all, this article does not intend to give the impression that there’s a direct link between your organic rankings and AdWords Google Ads.

Google keeps paid and organic completely separated from each other. This means that advertising on Google Ads will not give you a higher organic listing.

However, here are 3 ways how Google Ads could indirectly influence your organic rankings.

1. Using Google Ads data as a guide to improve your SEO

Since the moment that Google Analytics stopped showing search query data for Google organic, it became a lot harder for SEO specialists to find guidance to boost their organic rankings.

SEO drowning asking Google to help him.

If you’re running Google Ads campaigns you have a access to a great deal of keyword data. You can use this for your SEO strategy. Keywords that are performing well for Google Ads (decent search volume, high conversion rate) are likely to perform well for organic as well.

Also, if you enable and use the paid & organic report in Google Ads you’ll be able to see which keywords you’re organically listed for (alongside your text ads).

2. More visits from Google Ads lead to more mentions

Not just limited to Google AdWords, but also all other sources that send traffic to your site.

The more visitors you get to your site, the more likely these visitors will share your content across the web.

This can potentially help your link building and grow your online authority. This can then help you to improve your organic rankings.

3. Higher CTR from previous visitors

Once people visited your site through Google Ads they’re (hopefully) familiar with your brand.

If they continue to search for terms that are related to your website and see your organic listing, they’re more likely to click. This will improve your CTR for that search query.  This is one of the (many) factors that Google take into account to decide the organic rankings.

The inspiration for this article came from Rand Fishin’s whiteboard Friday about How Google AdWords (PPC) Does and Doesn’t Affect Organic Results. I highly recommend watching as well.


Google Ads, Google Ads For Industries
Google Ads offers $10,000 USD free advertising to eligible charities.

Through the Google Ad Grant program, charities can get more visibility on Google Search for free.

Logo of Google Ad Grants.

How to qualify for Google Grants

To get free advertising on Google your charity needs to:

  • Apply for the Google Grant program. 

  • Hold a valid charity status.

  • Agree to Google’s required certifications.

Limitations of Google Grant accounts

Although charities can apply for a Google Grant account for free, there are unique limitations once you have access to the program.

The main limitation is that there’s a maximum bid limit of $2 USD per keyword. So if you have keywords that are performing well for your charity, you won’t be able to increase your bids in order to improve your ad rankings.

After that, you will only be able to run campaigns on Google Search (so excluding the search network) meaning you can only target based on keywords and can only use text ads.

The application for Google Grants can take quite some time before getting approved. If you need any help to get started or improving your Google Grant accounts feel free to get in touch.


Google Ads, Growth Marketing
When talking about search volume, Google has the majority of the vote.

Within Australia roughly 94% of 2016’s online searches were done using the search engine giant. Microsoft’s Bing Ads follows with just over 4%.

For search advertisers Bing Ads might give you that extra volume to boost your conversions. However, using another advertising platform also doubles the time and effort of setting up and managing your campaigns.

Therefore, is it worth going the extra mile to get started with Bing Ads?

Image that shows going the extra mile for Bing Ads.

Bing Ads, how it works

For who is familiar with Google Ads, Bing Ads works pretty much the same.

You can set up an account for free and gain access to their platform instantly. Once you’re logged in to the interface you’ll notice that the account structure is similar as well.

The main thing to remember is that Bing Ads uses its own conversion tracking. There’s no way to import goals or data straight from Google Analytics.

So before launching any campaigns, you will need to add the Bing UET tag to your site.

Comparing Bing Ads with Google Ads

Bing won’t be able to give you the same volume as Google Ads.

However, in the past, I have been running successful ads on Bing for several advertisers. Due to the low market share, it’s obvious that the amount of times your ads are being served is a lot lower on Bing.

As there are fewer advertisers using Bing Ads the average cost per click tends to be lower than Google Ads.

Here’s per country a benchmark of what you can expect from Bing Ads compared to Google Ads:

  • Australia: -92% fewer impressions than AdWords. Average CPC is 41% lower.

  • United Kingdom: -87% fewer impressions. -27% lower average CPC.

  • United States: -43% fewer impressions. -16% lower average CPC.

Is it worth it to use Bing Ads?

This really depends on the type of advertiser that you are.

For large advertisers that are targeting worldwide, this is a no-brainer. Yes, you should be advertising on Bing.

Especially in the United States Bing has a decent market share and can offer you more search volume. Combined with the lower average cost per click you’re likely to get conversions for a lower cost as when using Google AdWords.

For regional advertisers within Australia, I would hold off on this, depending on the knowledge you have in-house. Unless you reached your limits with Google AdWords already, there’s no point in managing another search advertising platform.

Because of the low market share of Bing Ads in Australia, the number of clicks and conversions you’d be able to get remains low.

Need help improving your campaigns? As a boutique Bing & Google Ads agency we can def help you out, get in touch today.