For those of you who use Adwords or for those of you who would like to have a guaranteed high listing on Google, download the new “Insiders Guide to Adwords” written by the folks at Google. The file is a PDF and gives a lot of insight into how to make Adwords work well for you.
For those of you unfamiliar with Adwords it is a way to ensure the listing for your website shows up on the front page. If you look at a Google search results page you will see listings along the top and listings down the side in addition to the main content in the center. It says “Sponsored Links” next to these special links. If you are having trouble getting a good listing in the central part of the search results page, you can pay for certain key words which will buy you a place in the “sponsor links”.
It works by using key words. For example, if you are a new home builder in Portland OR, you might expect potential customers to use the following searches:
- “new homes portland or:
- “custom home builder portland or”
- “new home contractor portland or”
or something similar. If your website is constructed properly then Google will have found these keywords on the front page of your site and you will have a reasonably good listing. But if for some reason you can’t work all of the key words into the text of your site, or perhaps due to the mysteries of Google you can’t seem to get listed better than page 20 then Adwords can help.
Basically, Google has determined that some words are used in searches more than others. Popular search terms are also more in demand by advertisers and so have a higher value. Search keywords are therefore priced according to their popularity. You can bid on the words important to lead a customer to your website. Naturally companies in highly competitive industries will pay more. You will also pay more if the scope of your company is national vs local.
Anyway, the bottom line is that if you pay for the right keywords you can get a small listing on the first page of the search results page.
The other consideration is that you only pay when someone clicks on your sponsored link (you don’t pay on clicks for your normal links).
Adwords are not for everyone but they can be a very useful tool. Note that MSN, Yahoo and the other search engines all have something similar.