How to Tell if Google AdWords Will Work for Your Business

This is a question we get asked all the time.

If you’re an entrepreneur or small business owner, you will no doubt have been told at some point that you should be using ………. to advertise your products or services.

Just in the digital world, you can fill in the blank with any one of the following:

  • Google AdWords
  • Bing Ads
  • SEO
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Youtube
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • Email

And this list goes on.

This advice will most likely have come from very well meaning, but often incorrect, friends, family and business associates.

The truth is…

Different businesses should be using different online advertising platforms.

There is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to digital marketing.

Just because your friend who owns a restaurant is generating tons of new customers through Facebook…

Doesn’t mean you’ll have the same success with your accountancy firm.

Now, of course there are exceptions.

In almost every single market, someone will be profitably generating sales and leads through AdWords.

But trying to be the exception can be very costly.

So I’m going to focus on identifying the industries that will get BETTER results with AdWords than any other online advertising platform.

Just before we get into it.

Let’s quickly make sure we all understand exactly what Google AdWords is.

(NOTE: If you already very familiar with Google AdWords, skip ahead to ‘the short answer’)

What is Google AdWords?

The easiest way to explain is with an example.

If a personal injury law firm in London advertises with Google AdWords…

Their ads will only be shown to prospects that search for ‘personal injury lawyer in London’ or something similar on Google and…

They only have to pay for that advertising when someone clicks on their ad and is taken to their website.

So the website traffic they receive is incredibly targeted.

You probably see Google AdWords ads everyday.

Here’s a screenshot of what appeared when I searched for ‘personal injury lawyer in London’ on Google.

Google Adwords

As you can see, all the prominent spots on a Google search results page are reserved for AdWords ads.

And all the ads give me exactly what I was looking for.

As a searcher, I’m very likely to click on one of these ads and do business with one of these companies because of that relevance.

There’s obviously a lot more to Google AdWords than that…

But that’s all you need to know, to use this article and assess whether or not Google AdWords will work for your business.

So let’s get back to the original question:

Will Google AdWords Work for Your Business?

The Short Answer

As with most things, there is a short and a long answer.

To keep things simple…

Let’s start with the short answer.

I’ve created a list of the businesses and professions that we’ve worked with. And those that we know can have great success with Google AdWords.

Now, this list is by no means comprehensive.

If your business or profession doesn’t appear on this list but you think AdWords would work for you…

Then drop me a note in the comment section below. And I’ll let you know if I agree.

  • Lawyers
  • Accountants
  • Dentists
  • Consultants (most varieties)
  • Psychiatrists
  • Plastic Surgeons
  • Chiropractors
  • Physiotherapists
  • Nutritionists
  • Gyms
  • Leisure Centres
  • Personal Trainers
  • Roofers
  • Architects
  • Interior Designers
  • Building Contractors
  • Real Estate Agents
  • Letting Agents
  • Mortgage Brokers
  • Plumbers
  • Locksmiths
  • Landscapers
  • Caterers
  • Wedding Planners
  • Event Planners
  • Project Managers
  • Funeral Directors
  • Photographers
  • Web Developers
  • Financial Advisors

(NOTE: Want to learn cutting edge Facebook advertising campaigns that will help you generate leads and sales for your business? Click here to watch the recorded webinar: 5 Steps To Creating A Profitable Facebook Advertising Campaign)

Profitable Facebook advertising campaign

Keep reading for the long answer, the reasons why this list is well suited for AdWords…

And the questions you need to ask yourself before launching an AdWords campaign.

The Long Answer

Is Your Business Product or Service Based?

To use AdWords profitably, you need to acquire a customer for significantly less than the cost of your product or service.

Unless you’re Apple or sell something with an engine in it, you can normally charge a lot more for services than products.

I’ll talk more about this in a later section, but that higher average customer value…

Makes it a lot easier to profitably cover your ad expenditure.

Also, there are only 3 positions at the top of any Google search results page.

So when you’re assessing the viability of Google AdWords for your business, you have to take the competition into account.

There are exceptions, but most product based companies sell nationally, if not internationally.

And unless the products you provide are highly specialised, you’ll have some heavy hitters to compete against.

For example, there are very few products that aren’t for sale on Amazon or eBay.

And they have monstrous Google AdWords budgets.

If you own a product based company, then you most likely want to start advertising elsewhere.

Most services on the other hand require the service provider to be somewhat local.

And that reduces the competition enormously.

Which leads on to my next point…

Do You Operate Locally?

Even in very competitive local markets like New York or London, competing for a spot on Google is a lot easier than doing so nationally.

Can Google AdWords work for you, if you own a Manhattan based personal injury law firm?

The clicks will be very expensive, but yes.

But if you offer home insurance…

Those AdWords spots are going to be occupied by nationwide competitors, and outbidding them will probably be too expensive.

Now, be careful not to rule yourself out just because you’re willing to travel.

We have an photographer client that will work internationally for the right project.

But the majority of their prospects want to hire a local photographer.

And that’s what they search for on Google.

Not many people care if their home insurance provider is locally based.

If someone from your company physically meets your clients, then people will look for the services that you provide locally.

And AdWords should work really well for you.

Do Prospects Look for Your Services?

Lawyers, Accountants, Dentists and Architects are perfect examples of industries where prospects will actively look for their services when they need them.

And how would you go about finding a lawyer?

I’m pretty confident that 90%+ of you are going to give one of two answers to that question:

  1. Ask someone close to you, that has worked with a lawyer recently or…

  2. Search on Google

If prospects are actively looking for what you provide, the chances are good that a lot of them will be doing so on Google.

And there is no better prospect than someone who is actively looking for your services.

You just need to make sure they find you.

And AdWords will put you at the top of Google for your chosen keywords, immediately.

However, if you offer asteroid insurance (yes there really is such a thing) not many people are going to be searching for that on Google.

And you should probably advertise your services elsewhere.

Moving on…

How Much Do You Charge?

Sorry to get personal but this is important.

With Google AdWords you’re buying highly targeted website traffic.

And with the best website and sales team in the world, you are only ever going to work with a small percentage of the people that click through to your website.

This is an issue if your average customer value is $50.

Depending on your industry, you’ll find it difficult to acquire a customer for less than $50 with AdWords.

But that’s not a problem provided your average customer value is high enough.

For example, we have a luxury interior design client that has an average cost per customer acquisition of around $1,500.

But they take on projects worth $500,000 and have an average customer value over $50,000.

So they’re delighted with the ROI they’re getting with AdWords.

Make sure you assess lifetime customer value.

Otherwise you could incorrectly assume AdWords isn’t for you.

Chiropractors, and physiotherapists are perfect examples of service providers that will struggle to acquire a customer for less than the cost of one appointment.

In other words, a chiropractor might spend $125 on AdWords ads to acquire a customer that pays $100 for their first session.

But if the average customer comes back for 10 sessions.

Then the lifetime value of those customers is $1,000 each…

And that looks like a pretty good ROI to me.

Are You Doing SEO Work?

This question is a bit unnecessary.

Because the answer doesn’t matter.

And that’s the point I want to make.

If you’re already paying for SEO services or taking action to help your website rank organically…

Google AdWords can only help.

The top three spots on any Google search results page are reserved for AdWords ads.

SEO cannot provide the same level of exposure that AdWords can.

And you don’t need to do any SEO work to profitably use Google AdWords.

Because you’re paying for your spot on Google, it doesn’t matter if you have an enormous blog following…

Or don’t even have a blog.

If you bid enough, your position is guaranteed.

As you can probably tell I’m not that hot on SEO.

I just don’t think it’s reasonable to wait months for results.

That’s why I work with AdWords.

And finally…

Added Bonus – Are Your Services Required Urgently?

Urgency isn’t necessary, but it helps.

If someone has a leaking roof or really bad tooth ache, they want someone to fix it now.

Most people aren’t going to look at and compare 4 or 5 different roofers, if water is coming through the ceiling.

They’re most likely going to Google ‘roofer in (place where they live)’ and call the first one they find.

If they find you first, you’re very likely to get their business.

AdWords is all about being the first company a prospect finds when they search for your services.

But as I said, urgency isn’t necessary.

The previous example I used, of an interior design company, is proof of that.

Unless there has been some sort of disaster, no one needs to redecorate their home urgently.

And they are having great success with AdWords.

Summed Up in a Sentence…

Google AdWords is perfect for…

High end local service businesses.

Questions? Comments? Let’s discuss them in the comments section below.

(NOTE: Want to learn cutting edge Facebook advertising campaigns that will help you generate leads and sales for your business? Click here to watch the recorded webinar: 5 Steps To Creating A Profitable Facebook Advertising Campaign)

Profitable Facebook advertising campaign

About The Author

Ben Heath

Ben Heath is a Facebook advertising expert, writer and the Founder of Lead Guru. Alongside creating content for our online community, he works closely with our clients to develop and implement Facebook advertising strategies that deliver industry leading ROIs.

2 Comments

  • Avatar

    Andy

    Reply Reply April 20, 2017

    Hi Ben could you possibly check out our company and give us some feedback please. Our media company keeps telling us to do SEO aswel as the PPC however like you I have read that it’s a waste of time these days and people don’t mind clicking on the ads. We spend approximately £150 a day on Adwords plus £500+vat on the running of it from another company but don’t think they do anything! In March we had 50 forms filled in yet this month about 15!!!

    • Avatar

      Ben Heath

      Reply Reply April 21, 2017

      Hi Andy,

      Your industry is very well suited to PPC and as you’ve got a decent sized budget you should definitely be generating a return on that.

      It sounds like the company you’re working with either isn’t optimising your campaigns properly and perhaps lacks the expertise.

      SEO could work for you but it will most likely take a long time, cost a lot and there are no guarantees.

      I’d be happy to take a look at your company and your AdWords account to see if there are big improvements to be made. I’ll send you an email directly.

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