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AdWords Demystified: Learn the Terms

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AdWords can help your business get found quickly by potential customers that are looking for your products or service at this very moment.


Who should be using AdWords?

Google AdWords caters to all types and sizes of businesses. Whether you are a small brick and mortar store to an international enterprise business.


Is AdWords easy to manage? Can I do it myself?

AdWords offers AdWords express that integrates beautifully with Google My Business for simple management with a great mobile experience. AdWords express is defiantly aimed to cater to the beginner.

If you have a large budget or ready to get competitive you may want to look into hiring an agency or a Google Partner to help with the campaign optimization, reporting, A/B testing and attribution.


How should I budget for AdWords?

AdWords will allow you to measure your return on Ad Spend (ROAS) so it will be up to you how much you spend. Today marketers measure campaign success by profit made from each campaign which can be a lot to handle at first so working with an expert to be able to measure attribution will help you get on the right track. Remember, a successful campaign will rely on the website as well as the AdWords platform to yield maximum results.


Here is a list of terms and definitions to help you get started!


  1. Campaign  Your campaign is made up of ad groups, keywords and ads. You are able to make multiple campaigns.

  2. Ad Groups – Your ad groups are the particular set of keywords with its own budget and targeting parameters within the same campaign.

  3. Campaign Type – How and where you would like your ads to show. Some campaign types offered by Google include:
  • “Search Network” (regular ads in the SERP’s)
  • “Display Network” (This is either text or image ad that will appear in the GDN Google display network)
  • “Search Network with Display Select” (This is where AdWords will offer a mix of both)
  • “Shopping” (This is where you have a merchant account and ad your products directly)

  1. Keywords – Keywords are what will get you found by your next customer. Keywords can also be phrases and they are offered in many different match types [keyword], “keyword” and +keyword also negative keywords. Learn more about keywords and match types here: About keyword matching options.

  2. Quality Score – Your QS is a combination of many factors which determines the quality of your campaign. Google takes in consideration your ads, keywords, URL, CTR and the interaction and engagement of your ads and website to rank your QS.

  3. Impressions  An impression is the measurement of how many times your ad is shown.

  4. Ad Rank – This is a mix of ad quality and your bid to determine where you will show up on the page when advertising.

  5. Mobile Ad – Mobile ads are shown for advertisers on mobile devices.

  6. Ad Extensions – Ad extensions are extra information about your business, such as your phone number, address and other important info in the form of an anchor text link. Extensions show in the form of site links below your ads.

  7. Call to Action (CTA)  A CTA is an action such as “Buy”, “Get”, “Act Now”, on your website or ad to influence your visitor to complete an action.

  8. Click Through Rate (CTR)  CTR a HUGE factor when measuring QS. It basically measures the amount of times that your ad was shown versus the times that they clicked through to your website or landing page.

  9. Landing Page  Your landing page is where your visitor will go after they click your ad.

  10. Split Testing  Split testing includes A/B and multivariate testing. It is going to show two or more ads in the same atmosphere to determine which one has a higher success rate.

  11. Daily Budget  This determines your daily budget per ad.

  12. CPC (Cost-Per-Click) – Cost-Per-Click is the most common bid type in AdWords. This will be the amount that you are charged when your ad was clicked.

  13. ROAS (Return on Ad Spend) – ROAS is the measurement of your profit made from each ad.
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