There is no doubt in my mind that Google, together with eBay, Yahoo and Amazon, is one of the biggest revolutions that the Internet has provided to us.
Today, Google is worth over US$100 billion simply because it has managed to successfully exploit the money-making potential of what is still its free service - the Google Search Engine!
How did it do so? With a product called Google Adwords. As I've said in my other blogs, Google's main competitor today is not Yahoo or MSN. It competes with the traditional, more established MEDIA companies like CNN, NBC, BBC etc.
Why? Let's suppose you want to advertise a product or service. A few years ago, you would have placed an advert in the newspaper, on radio and/or on TV. True, you can still do so today but you now have another great choice. To advertise on Google Adwords!
Google today reaches more people than any national TV company. And it only advertises your product to people who have shown a vague interest in it by typing some relevant keywords in its search engine. Even better, you do not have to pay Google a cent unless someone clicks on the link to the product or service you advertised. Now do you understand why it is a huge success?
So does this mean that you should use Google Adwords to make money online? The answer is No, you should use Google Adwords only to market a product or service online!
Google is great to divert traffic to your website - for the ordinary home-based business, there is probably no better tool. But it can be very dangerous - use it like a knife. The costs can rack up very quickly. If you are on a limited marketing budget, this will be costly.
Since I have lost over US$2,500 spending money on Google Adwords, I cannot claim to be an expert at it. But I am sure that if there is one lesson you can draw from it, is BE CAREFUL OF GOOGLE ADWORDS. It is not a licence to print money like some people claim. And if you do want to use Google Adwords to promote your product or service, be sure to buy an ebook on how to use it - I have given a selection below. The cost of one ebook will be far less than what you will WASTE ON GOOGLE ADWORDS if you do not know what you are doing. Trust me!
1. As stated above, use Google Adwords, only to market a product or service. Do not use it together with marketing sites such as Clickbank or Commission Junction to drive traffic to other people's sites. Clickbank wins, Google wins, the publisher wins, BUT YOU WILL LOSE!
2. Make sure that you have set aside a marketing budget to spend on Google Adwords and state your maximum spending limit on Adwords. Otherwise, you will literally burn money that you can't afford!
3. Make sure that you use the broadmatch function with the keywords you are buying - they will give you more visibility on Google;
4. If you own your own website, use Google Adsense too (see my related blog), this will give you a residual source of income;
5. Remember that Google Adwords ranks your listing using various criteria. The price you are willing to pay is only one of them, albeit a major one. A listing that generates more clicks can well be placed above yours if it is generating more clicks;
6. (5) above means that when you have started purchasing a keyword, you should expect to pay more. But if you have generated some successful clicks, you should bid less and hence reduce your costs. You may still be placed around the same average position or maybe even better.
7. Log into your Google Adwords account every day and monitor your costs. Otherwise, the costs will quickly spiral out of control. You can run a budget of several millions of dollars if you are a large company. If if you are the small home-based business who is marketing his (or someone else's) product, chances are that you are generating this marketing money out of your paycheck or savings. So clearly, this money is limited and means a lot to you. Actively monitor the keywords that are generating clicks, and lower your bids on those that have been generating clicks;
8. Remember, Google Adwords is like a car. It can be used to take you from A to B, but it can get you into a nasty accident. So just like you would learn how to drive a car before actually driving, I strongly urge you to buy one of the following ebooks and read thoroughly before you start using Google Adwords.
Whilst I have carefully chosen 3 ebooks to suit various extents to which you want to use Google Adwords, I think that they are all of value and the price you pay, in every case, is well worth what it can otherwise cost you.
(a) The Keyword Elite - a great ebook on both Adwords and Adsense that explains to you how to make the best use of each. As I describe in the Adsense section, you will not master Adsense UNLESS YOU KNOW ADWORDS. And this ebook tells you exactly what pitfalls to avoid when using Adwords. Suitable for anyone who wants to take their ecommerce business seriously and help it grow within years;
(b) Beating Adwords - this book does not go into as much detail on Adwords and Adsense and is much cheaper than The Keyword Elite. Ideally suited for people who want to become super-affilites;
(c) Google Is Making People Rich - this is ideal for starters and those who want to make money using Clickbank. Value for money ebook and there is not as much detail as the above two.
How much time will Google Adwords require from you? As much as you are willing to give. I spend about 1 hour every day reviewing my campaigns (when I run them). But you will need to do more than that - say 2/3 hours a day - when you start in order to get the hang of it.
And finally, remember that Google takes money by bank transfer out of your bank account each month. So make sure you have money to pay for the marketing. Non-payment will result in account suspension and a bad credit rating.