The Value of Adwords for Every Industry and Business


As the importance of appearing high in the search engine rankings has grown, the growth of Adwords is without question a reflection of how key the internet is to business. But, is Adwords the right business tool for every industry and every business model?

If your target audience is online and you have a strong product or service offering then Adwords can be an invaluable tool. Your return on spend will depend on how tightly you run your Adwords campaign.

Why can’t I rely on the organic search listings?

If you are one of the very few companies with a unique offering or you have an enormous online presence then maybe relying on the organic search listings is an option. The warning is that one day you will be at the top, the next day Google may change their algorithm or your competitor does something newsworthy and suddenly you could disappear off the 1st page.

If your competitors are using Adwords then you probably need to be there too.

If you’re already using Adwords and finding traffic is expensive and not converting into new business then your Adwords account needs a review. The flags for bidding, match types, negative keywords etc. are critical tools for helping you control your budget. And your landing pages are essential – they must show a link with the Adwords advertisement. Don’t disappoint your target audience by making them have to hunt for the special offer or product advertisement in your website.

But what if….?

Adwords is just one of my responsibilities

Google have cleverly made Adwords very easy to start working with, but it takes a huge amount of time and dedication to dig into the data and structure your campaigns to make a successful channel. It’s very easy to find yourself spending the majority of your week analyzing Adwords. Of course there are some options:

  • Employ someone to be focused on PPC. Normally people are targeted with some specific PPC metrics, maintenance of the account, campaigns, ads and landing pages and ultimately a target for new business. For small businesses it is not going to be viable to employ someone so perhaps then look at employing someone part time. By employing someone directly they will have more of a vested interest in learning and understanding your business.
  • Outsource the role to a contractor or Agency. This is the route many people follow. Make sure whoever you are using knows your business.
I’m a PPC Novice

Like most things, they may initially look complicated but once you focus and put some time into the subject you can make a difference to your Adwords campaigns. There is a huge amount of free online resources to learn from:

  • Google AdWords Learn Center: AdWords has a plethora of free learning material, and since it comes from the source you can be sure it’s legitimate.
  • PPC Chat: A weekly Twitter Chat where PPC’s smartest people come together for 1 hour of Q&A on Tuesday at 12:00PM EST. This is the place to connect with the smartest people in the industry.
I Have a Long Sales Cycle

Adwords wasn’t designed just for selling low priced widgets. Adwords can be used to try to speed up the sales cycle by, for example targeting people who are researching options. If you’re not prominent in the search engine results pages during the whole sales cycle then unless your brand name is very strong you are likely to be missed out.

Should You Use AdWords? Tips for Your Industry:

If You’re a SaaS or B2B Business

The B2B/SaaS world comes with its unique challenges including longer sales cycles and niche audiences. PPC might seem like a path to avoid, but many B2B businesses (including WordStream) have found that PPC plays a critical role in their lead generation strategy. As long as you’re doing it right, you can succeed with AdWords. Ensure you’re doing the following things to gain AdWords success.

  • Conduct keyword research to gain insight on how your audience searches based on where they are in the buying cycle.
  • Bid on “problem” keywords and direct your ads to “solution” content.
  • Create a custom schedule to ensure you’re advertising during the most profitable hours. For B2B offerings we’ve found that this is typically during working hours Monday-Friday.
If You’re in the Retail Space

The biggest challenge for e-comm and retail marketers doing AdWords is the insanely high level of competition. According to Adobe’s Digital Index, retailers spent 47% more on Google’s shopping ads than they did a year ago. But if you’re not advertising on Google, your chances of significantly growing your business are small because people often start shopping with search.

To outsell your competition through AdWords, make sure to:

  • Use Google Shopping ads. Shopping ads allow you display an image, price, your brand and even reviews allowing the searcher to get all the information they need before even clicking. This ensures more high-intent clicks, which are generally cheaper then search ads with higher conversion rates.
  • Ensure shopping ad images are high quality and prices are accurate.
  • Don’t forget about search ads. Text ads are still important for retail marketers because they help raise brand awareness and create repeat buyers.
  • Take advantage of automation. Things like ad customizers, dynamic remarketing ads, and ad scheduling will save your life when you’re selling thousands and thousands of products.
  • Understand your seasonal peaks and adjust accordingly. If you’re not running higher budget campaigns for events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday then I’d start questioning your career choice.

These tips are just dusting the surface. Check out the full guide to PPC retail marketing tips.

If You’re a Local Businesses

Local businesses need not underestimate the power AdWords can have in driving foot traffic to their storefronts. Whether it be local residents or out-of-towers, people are hopping on Google to find a new restaurant, a dentist office to fix their chipped tooth or a place to buy baby clothes for their friend’s twins. The following things are crucial to gain success in the local PPC space:

  • Claim and maintain your Google My Business page. It’s free, easy to manage, and allows you to show your business off on the SERPs in the best light possible. Learn more about Google maps optimization here.
  • Ensure your location targeting is accurate within AdWords. Target the most relevant radius to best focus your budget.
  • Have a call strategy in place. Calls are critical for location-based businesses so you need to be utilizing call-only campaigns, call extensions, and have a complete mobile strategy in place. You also must track calls to properly optimize your AdWords account.
  • Implement all relevant ad extensions (call, location, sitelinks, callous, etc.) to make it as easy as possible for searchers to gain information through the SERPs.
If You’re in the Legal Industry

“Sixteen years ago all you needed to do was purchase a yellow page ad, and that was it. Nowadays if you don’t spend time on digital marketing, and paid search specifically, you’re not going to make it,” says Jeff Kelly, owner of his own law firm specializing in bankruptcy. “Your business will quickly dry up if you’re not marketing online.”

Folks, you must listen to this wise man. Legal PPC is tough since you’re dealing with some of the most competitive (i.e. expensive) keywords in search, but if people can’t find you on Google then you’re business growth with come to a standstill. To gain AdWords success in this industry make sure to:

  • Differentiate yourself from your competition. There’s a lot of it out there, so this is critical. Use actionable calls-to-action, implement ad extensions, and most importantly highlight what makes you better.
  • Ensure your ads speak to the searcher’s intent and readiness to hire a lawyer.
  • Build trust in your brand. This is so critical for the legal industry because cases are often expensive and stakes are high, so your clientele needs to trust you. To do this provide ample opportunity for leads to call your business, use videos on your landing pages to put a face to the firm, and have an online chat system in place.

Check out the full guide to law firm PPC marketing here.

If You’re in the Travel & Hospitality Industry

Ah, one my favorite industries! Since 74% of both travel and leisure planning occurs online, with the majority starting with search, utilizing Google AdWords is a necessity for those in the business. To maximize your hotel and travel bookings:

  • Bid higher on locations, days and hours when people are more likely to book travel.
  • Create separate campaigns for each offering and destination.
  • Get visual on the display network. Just the image of your location can probably sell itself so why not take advantage by running captivating visual campaigns.
  • Expand to Bing. Travel tends do well there.

For more travel AdWords tips check out this guide.

If You’re in Healthcare

From self-diagnosing (we’ve all done it), sensitive information, language restrictions, and the issue of not being allowed to re-market, AdWords can turn healthcare marketers off, but according to a Google study 90% of hospital administrators rely on search engines to identify vendor and product options and to research features. To foster healthy AdWords performance:

  • Get to know your audience well. What keywords will they use to search for when looking for a management software or specific medical equipment? Are there different levels of experience, occupations or personas that you’ll need to target in an alternative manner? Asking questions like this will get you on the right track to running a relevant and successful AdWords campaign.
  • Ensure your mobile strategy is top notch. With over 50% of healthcare administrators using their smartphones while making a purchasing decision, this is critical for healthcare PPCers.
  • More is always better when it comes to your landing pages. People want a lot of information in order to make a decisions when it comes to their health.

Are you still sceptical about Adwords?Still unsure of whether you should use AdWords? Start off with a smaller budget promoting your highest selling products. Once you’re seeing results, build out your other offerings and keywords groupings to maximize your results. In no time your business will be growing at a faster rate than you ever imagined. Good luck!


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