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Google Adwords

Hello everyone,

Google have recently tried to reintroduce me to Adwords with a healthy 'no strings' advertising voucher. So I've read the book and spent time learning how it all works.

But what I really want to know is have any other graphic or web designers benefited from this service? There seems to be far less designers using it now than there was 1 or even 2 years ago.

Care to give your thoughts?



Active Member
Hey Phil,

I think the focus on PPC advertising has moved more towards social media, in the sense that, using services like twitter & facebook you can develop a user base of individuals that are already qualified audience for your product / service and then market to them for next to nothing, rather then shelling out £££ on an audience who may only have a vague interest in your product/service.

Perfect example is face-book advertising, let say you make blue widgets, and you have a fan base who like your blue widgets, its more cost effective to market your blue widgets to your fans and THEIR friends as, friends are more likely to be interested in their friends purchases. rather than trying to hard sell with the traditional PPC model.

I hope that makes sense?

Ideally however, your should use all channels of marketing, be-it social media, PPC, traditional etc, and each of these channels should be refined, so that they can each be monitored and analysed independently of each other.

Hi Geoff,

That makes perfect sense. It makes Adwords seem really ancient now, when there are so many more refined ways of specifically reaching out to prospects and instead of using the ol' shotgun approach.

Well Google have lured me in with a £100 spend. So I am going to give it a go and watch the results from my Adwords/Analytics account!



Active Member
Hey Phil,

I wouldn't discount Adwords completely, when married with other marketing activities and avenues, its still has its uses. If its ok with you I like to hear back from you on how you get on with your £100 :)
I spend about £40 a month on Google Adwords as part of my overall marketing strategy and would say if you're prepared to invest in it, it is still one of the best ways to get enquiries in. Whilst natural listings and social media are also vitally (probably more) important, some of my main clients have come to me via Adwords. It's true that a lot of your paid for clicks will end up being used by the hoards of students googling looking for work, and you can't filter for tyre kickers, but my enquiry rate has pretty much doubled since using Adwords. Whilst my other marketing efforts will have contributed to this in my experience it more than pays for itself.
Geoff - Thanks I will let you know the outcome. Only slight drawback I am finding at the moment is there lack of helpful support, i.e. no phone contact.

Russell - Thanks for the feedback, really helpful thanks.

Have any of you had involvement with Facebook ads? Had a some company phone yesterday ranting and raving about how they are the essential online advertising at the moment...
Google adwords is good if you get it right and target the right areas/words. It works best with conversion tracking installed where your can check goals and monetary conversions on ecommerce websites. So you can track its effectiveness by setting up a goal for say a contact page landing. On the other hand if you get it wrong you can waste alot of money.

Typically you want to get higer then a 1% conversion rate or you are doing something wrong. If you have a free voucher then go for it!

A good conversion rate would be 7.5% which is what my figure was yesterday as part of a PPC management for and insurance website . This meant for ever £1 spent - £8 was returned. Tracking has been installed, goals set up, keyords targetted and well written ads.. help.
The company I'm currently working for use Adwords and spend a lot of money per month using it and from what I gather (I've only been there a week) they make more money from sales than they do spending. Make sure you keep checking for relevant keywords using the keyword checker that your potential audience might search for and target your campaign. You can keep tweaking the settings to your liking. Good luck
they may make more money then they spend but that doenst always mean profit. You need to figure out the CPA or Cost Per Aquistion and decide whter it is worth it. Sometimes it is sometimes it isnt depending on the conversion rate. A well designed website will help.
Sorry, I meant that they actually make a profit, not just that the sales outweigh the cost. Like I said I've only been there a week so it's still something I'm getting to grips with the campaigns that they are doing myself
A summary of how I got on with my Adwords spend...

I used up the £100 Google voucher, with a £10 a day budget. I checked the adverts everyday and followed advice of axing the ones that received lots of impressions but little or no clicks.

The most clicked ad groups seemed to be around "affordable graphic design services..." not surprisingly.

I definitely had a little upswing in enquiries and was keen to ask how they heard about me, but as I have found before you don't always get fully reliable answers. Such as "I think I found you on Google, or was it Yell.com, I'm not totally sure as I have been looking for a while".

Also, I forgot to stop the campaign, so spent a bit more than I meant too. If a couple of prospects come back that I have quoted work for then I will think about allocating a small monthly budget on Adwords.

But again I am only guessing that Adwords triggered the enquiry. I know there is such features as conversion tracking and I have bought a meaty Adwords book to see if I can make some sense of it all before I restart my campaign.

Thanks to all for advice, it was an interesting experiment. I am going to run a couple of magazine ads in the meantime and come back to Adwords.
Thanks for letting us know how you got on with Adwords...I've got a £75 voucher that only last for a few more days so i'm keen to start my campaign.

However it sounds from your experience that I probably need to do more research / info to get the most out of Adwords.
I also read this book before starting the campaign, which I would recommend. It's nice and concise:

Google AdWords That Work: 7 Secrets to Cashing in with the No.1 Search Engine
(2008) by John Smith
I've not looked into conversion tracking as I assumed (maybe incorrectly) this only really works for e-commerse sites/ sites that generate direct online sales. Thanks for the update, let us know if their are any nuggets from your 'meaty' book. I need to give myself a kick to checking out the features more in depth.


Active Member
RussellHall said:
I've not looked into conversion tracking as I assumed (maybe incorrectly) this only really works for e-commerse sites/ sites that generate direct online sales. Thanks for the update, let us know if their are any nuggets from your 'meaty' book. I need to give myself a kick to checking out the features more in depth.
You could track lead enquiries ie. someone completing a contact form using Google Analytics with the goals setup, so that would at least begin to give you an idea on how your website is converting visitors to potential leads/enquiries.

Having used Adwords a fair bit for other projects, I would strongly advise targetting localised searches, would think potential conversion for local business would be greater than generic searches. Also don't forget to create separate ad groups and adverts for each set of keywords, check your quality score on keywords, the better your quality score and the better your click through rate = lower cost per click.

If anyone wants further advice on Adwords let me know and I'll sort out a separate post, used it extensively in the past, getting up to £2k spend per month with one of my sites, so tracking and optimising became crucial. Albeit a very different target audience, but the same principles apply.



Active Member
Hey Greg,

I would be very interested in reading about your experiences with Adwords, me using the system was very much trial by fire and would ideally love to see how you went about doing things with it.

Thanks for offering to post some info & tips regarding your Adwords experience Greg - will be really useful if you can spare the time



Senior Member
I'd be interested in reading some Adwords advice. I'm considering dipping my toe in the water for an e-commerce site I run, as always budgets are tight and I need to figure out the best way of testing to see if it's a viable investment and what sort of returns in might produce.
As with all websites (especially e-commerce and portfolios' I guess) it's getting people to find them. Adwords seems like a good bet, but I need to know more about the best way to use it.