Analytics

31 Expert Tips for Setting Helpful Goals in Google Ads

How do you set goals in Google Ads? 50+ PPC advertisers share their top tips and best practices.

Jessica Malnik Jessica Malnik on July 30, 2020 (last modified on September 17, 2020) • 30 minute read

Why do some brands see 10x returns on their Google Ads? And, other brands lose a ton of money with little to nothing to show for it. 

While there are a lot of factors that go into a successful Google Ads campaign, the big three are goals, strategy, and execution. 

In today’s post, we’ll focus on one of these: goals in Google Ads. 

We’re going to dive into how to set up (and track) goals, as well as some goal-setting tips, including: 

How do you set goals in Google Ads?

As one might expect, Google Analytics and Google Ads work in hand. 

The first step is creating your first few goals in Google Analytics.

Editor’s Note: Here’s a step by step guide that we put together on how to do this.

Once you have a few goals in Google Analytics, it is time to link them to your Google Ads. Sign into your account and go to Tools and Settings Conversions

Then, you’ll see four different conversion tracking options: 

  • Website 
  • App 
  • Phone Calls 
  • Import 

Select Import and then Google Analytics if you are just looking to track conversions on your website. 

Note: If you want to set up cross-tracking between say your website and mobile app, you’ll want to select “Google Analytics App + Web.  

From there, you should see all of the Goals you have created in Google Analytics. You can import them so that any new conversions are properly attributed. 

Tommy Landry of Return On Now says, “Any good Google Ads campaign will have solid goals, and the best way to generate those goals is via a Google Analytics import.

A lot of businesses still set up conversions in the AdWords backend, which can be a more accurate metric of Ad performance when deployed properly.

However, other marketing and executive stakeholders will be looking at Google Analytics, and it’s imperative that the numbers line up on both ends. Otherwise, you’ll waste too much time discussing the disparities instead of analyzing the results themselves.

Just be careful when importing – take time to ensure that all of the conversions are working right on the GA end. And also ensure that you are only importing real conversions instead of events and other site interactions such as views of videos. We often find companies tracking non-conversions as goals, and that’s not the ideal way to manage your conversion volume.”

Vince Martellacci of Forge Collective agrees, “Make sure you’re set up to measure, with whatever code or plug-ins you need for analytics properly set up and linked to your Google Ads.”

Editor’s Note: Use this Google Ads Dashboard to quickly analyze your campaigns, ad groups, keywords, and engagement metrics to improve your return on investment. 

Google Ads Dashboard

31 tips for using goals in Google Ads

Here are 31 strategies you can use to set better goals in Google Ads.

  1. Define your goals before you build your ad campaigns
  2. Make sure your goals align with key business objectives
  3. Keep it simple
  4. Set S.M.A.R.T Goals
  5. Be realistic
  6. Get clear on the action that you want customers to take
  7. Make sure the Google Ads objective you set matches your desired result
  8. Set conversion goals
  9. Use enhanced eCommerce tracking
  10. Use Google Tag Manager
  11. Pay attention to ROAS
  12. Know your customer acquisition costs
  13. Identify the reasons why people don’t convert
  14. Consider the context of the ad campaign
  15. Test your goals
  16. Make sure to cross-reference data
  17. Assign a monetary value to each goal
  18. Evaluate your goals each quarter
  19. Measure quality score
  20. Set brand positioning goals
  21. Measure website traffic
  22. Track your ad CTR
  23. Pay attention to direct competitors
  24. Target specific locations
  25. Take into account seasonal trends
  26. Treat your ad campaign like a science experiment
  27. Allow room for experimentation
  28. Use confirmation URLs
  29. Keep your goals and campaigns separate in Google Ads
  30. Reverse engineer your goals
  31. Be patient

1. Define your goals before you build your ad campaigns 

“You need to know what your main conversion goal is before setting anything up in Google Ads,” says Nick Yee of Portent. “Is it sales? Leads? Website traffic? You must have proper conversion tracking set up in Google Ads and on your website so you know exactly your return on ad spend.” 

Vera Mirzoyan of AIST Global says, “Set a goal that is similar to what you want your campaign to achieve for your business. Ask yourself, ‘Why do I run this campaign?’ and set the answer as a goal. Google Ads does the rest for you according to it.” 

Daniella Pozzolungo of PupDigital adds, “There are two considerations for setting helpful goals. The first is to ensure that the goal being measured is meaningful and valuable for the business. The second is to ensure that the goal is actually being measured.

If you have no conversions being reported, then you haven’t got a chance to optimize based on conversions. Some flexibility is recommended so that you can adjust your goals based on the activities that are happening on the site, and therefore optimize the campaign.”

For example, Rex Freiberger of GadgetReview says, “When it comes to Google Ads, you need to set clear goals from the outset and design your campaigns around them. At GadgetReview, we’re most interested in conversions to our list or through our sales channels, but we’ve decided these are the best options for us based off of testing.

When setting goals for your own campaigns, it’s helpful to do the research first. You may think conversions are always the way to go because you’re obviously focusing on the revenue generated, but this might not always be true.

To start with, you can create a variety of small test campaigns, and tweak them as you go. See which performs best, then do another batch of tests to confirm. Once you do that, you’ll have the data necessary to set the right goals when building Google ad campaigns.” 

2. Make sure your goals align with key business objectives 

“The key to setting helpful goals in Google Ads is an accurate understanding of your business objectives,” says Alexandru Avirvarei of RENTCafe. “If you are very well connected to your business needs and its KPIs, then you’ll only need to monitor if the paid advertising campaigns generate results in the desired direction.

Moreover, setting-up meaningful conversions will allow the system to leverage the machine learning process and generate improved results through various automated bidding strategies.” 

Jonathan Aufray of Growth Hackers Company says, “To set helpful goals on Google Ads, make sure your goals match your brand’s goals. For instance, if you want to generate leads, make sure your Google Ads are set up for lead generation and not CTR or traffic.” 

Ian Dawson of Shah agrees, “The best tip I could offer anyone trying to set effective goals in Google Ads is to set relevant metrics that align your campaign goals with your overall business goals. If the goal for your business as a whole is to increase awareness, the goals you set in Google Ads should use metrics that reflect this.

It’s important to set appropriate metrics or it may be impossible to see how Google Ads is helping you achieve your larger goals as a company. By setting goals using Google Ads that are consistent with your high-level business goals you are putting your company in a position to succeed.” 

Kimberly Scholten of Odd Dog Media adds, “While specifics for setting Google Ads goals vary based on the overall campaign type and mission, goals should always be specific and measurable.

Regardless of the campaign type, goals (or conversions) should always help you identify the success and effectiveness of the campaign. Setting goals up properly and discussing what success means to the client ahead of time is invaluable. Knowing the desired ROI at the start will help you engineer the conversions to show effectiveness.

A few examples:

  • If you’re a towing service, utilizing call-only ads or setting up call extensions calls as a goal, would be a great way to measure success as people typically require fast assistance and it isn’t a service they plan out in advance. Form submissions take too long for this business type and the opportunity to convert has usually passed, so while it’s measurable, it doesn’t meet the need of the industry.
  • If you’re in the B2B space, you may want to set lead generation based goals to get prospective clients into your marketing automation funnel to nurture them through your sales process. Phone calls, while measurable, are highly unlikely to convert at that moment, making attribution much more difficult.

I’m a huge fan of a solid lead, so in general – keep it specific, keep it measurable, keep it relevant.” 

For example, Steve Bourie of American Casino Guide Book says, “If you create a highly engaging Google Ad, then you will know it’s successful if it is creating increased traffic to your website as well as increased brand awareness. If you are noticing that more people know about your product/service, or you see that more users are going to your website, then you have created a successful Google Ad.” 

Melissa Hughes of Foundation Marketing agrees, “To really understand the goal of your ads. If the ad is focused on raising awareness then you want lots of impressions. If the ad is about driving a behaviour like sales than you want lots of clicks. Once you have this, make sure you are leading with a clear call to action on the ads to achieve your goals.” 

3. Keep it simple 

“Keep it simple,” advises Nick Benedict of King, Edward, First. “Only set up goals that you can use as a dashboard when you make changes to your marketing funnel. There’s no point tracking parts of a process you have no control over (e.g. shopping cart abandonment if you’re on a platform that doesn’t let you customize the shopping cart).” 

Aalap Shah of 1o8 says, “Make your goal(s) extremely simple. Your conversion process should also be simple and easy to track. Whether your goal is increasing the number of downloads of a file like a white paper, increasing sign-ups for a newsletter, or purchases of your product – the ad should direct them to the page that requires the least amount of steps to convert. 

For example, if the ad is for a product, it should take them to the product’s page on your website so they can add to cart and check-out. Don’t add unnecessary pages or follow-through by the user – simpler is always better and easier to track success towards your goal.” 

Dylan Zsigray of Kiwi Creative adds, “One mindset we use when setting goals is to keep it simple and focus on ‘why’ you are forming a paid search campaign.

For example, we recently strategized a Google Ads brand awareness and buyer intent campaign. The purpose of this campaign was not to drive conversions but instead focused on making industry professionals aware of our client’s product by going to its website. As such, it would be odd to set a goal for a concrete number of conversions, for example.

Instead, we formed goals that related to increased click traffic MoM and having an efficient CPC within the campaign. As an aside, we would recommend staying away from goals like ‘number of conversions’ as we sometimes find clients seeing this number as an end-all, be-all, even though the number from Google Performance Planner is merely an estimate.” 

4. Set S.M.A.R.T Goals

“Be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound,” says Carloyn Cairns of CreationBC. “For short, SMART. These 5 key elements will help you in setting helpful goals in Google Ads.

Be sure you are specific with what you want to set up, be sure it is measurable so you can see how it’s going. Be sure it’s achievable so as to not waste time and money. Be sure it’s realistic so that it actually can happen. Lastly, be sure to be time-bound so you are kept on track and on time.” 

5. Be realistic 

“The biggest piece of advice for any Google campaign is to be realistic,” says Allen Greer of Fuze.“If you’re a startup and your goal is to absolutely crush it in the first few months, you need a serious reality check.

I have always told clients that the first few months should be dedicated to learning, testing, and synthesizing data. Once you have enough data to tell the story of how people are engaging, you can then make intelligent decisions about where to spend less/more budget and how to optimize for conversions.”  

6. Get clear on the action that you want customers to take 

“The best way to set a goal for Google Ads is to determine what behavior you want from the customer or prospective customer,” says Katherine Hunter-Blyden of KHB Marketing Group.

“For instance, Hello Cheffy wants potential customers who visit their website to request a quote for chef services. The company uses a conversion action within Google Ads to measure its goal of maximizing quote requests. With the conversion action, the company can track how frequently ad clicks turn into quotes. Google will then calculate not only the company’s cost per click but also the cost per quote, allowing the company to measure the behavior it wants to see.” 

Mazen Aloul adds, “My tip for setting an effective Google Ad goal is to meet your customer’s end goal. End goals are basically what the customer’s demand and you can stand out from your competitors who are using dynamic keywords by formulating headlines that give an end solution that customers are looking for.

Provide ads that customers want to hear that will solve their problems straightforwardly. This will help you gain a much better advantage and for maximum optimization which can lead to an increase in site landing.” 

7. Make sure the Google Ads objective you set matches your desired result 

“Your goals should always correlate with your advertising campaign objective,” says Shannon Denton of Total Girl Boss. “Whatever you aim for in your campaign, make sure that you set your goals accordingly.” 

For example, Oliver Andrews of OA Design Services says, “If you want to drive traffic to your website, then you will select a higher traffic target. Likewise, you can select your goals according to the requirements such as lead generation, website traffic.” 

“The goal that you set depends on the result that you want to achieve for each campaign, so let’s say you want your ad to drive sales, then you’ll need to select ‘leads’ and ensure you set up a conversion,” explains Joanna Zambas of CareerAddict. “To ensure you’re getting the most out of your campaign, be sure to track your results and adjust your bid strategy and location setting accordingly.” 

Stefania Borchia adds, “The one tip for setting helpful goals in Google Ads is to have in mind the type of business objective you want to achieve and which campaign settings will help achieve such a goal. In addition, I would add that such a business goal cannot be achieved organically and therefore a PPC campaign becomes a need rather than a choice.

Once the business objective is clear – website traffic, sign-ups, sales – it is a matter of choosing among three types of campaigns: Search, Display, and Smart. Search is ideal for people actively looking for the business’ products or services – especially when your organic ranking is lagging behind strong competitors.

Conversely, Display allows any business to reach people that are not actively looking for the business name, product, or solution. This type of campaign is perfect for businesses whose proposition is so new that no descriptive keywords for such product or service are still commonly used.

Once the campaign type has been chosen, I set the campaign final goal. Personally, I only select Sales or Leads as they represent clear and measurable business objectives. I use Sales for anything that has to do with people who are further down the sales funnel and might be looking for Product Information, Demo sign-ups or direct sales. Conversely, I pick Leads for users that are further up the sales funnel and might still be looking for free resources such as PDFs, videos, webinars.

Finally, I use Smart only for physical and local businesses. Easy to set up, Smart Ads are a mix of text and images that get displayed on search, display, and maps to an audience located at a set distance from the store physical address. Only in this instance, I create three campaigns to satisfy each campaign’s goal: phone calls, sign-ups, store visits. By creating three campaigns, I can test which contact system generates the highest number of customers.” 

Bernadett Dioszegi of Bannersnack explains, “For small businesses, who are new to Google Ads, Smart Goal is a good choice. Smart Goals use machine learning to analyze signals about your website sessions, in this way can determine which of those sessions are most likely to convert.

Examples of signals are Session duration, Pages per session, Location, Device and Browser. In order to use Smart Goals your linked Google Ads account must send enough traffic to your website, also Google Ads clicks have to result in at least 500 Analytics sessions over the past 30 days. It is also important that the reporting view must not receive more than 10 million sessions in 30 days.

A best practice to optimize your campaigns’ performance using Smart Goals is to use Target CPA bidding, which is an automated bid strategy. Please keep in mind that Smart Goals cannot be used for mobile app views.” 

And, Roy Morrison of Meaningful Profits adds, “One helpful tip is to set up multiple goals for different purposes. So for instance, one goal could be to make a sale, while another could be to get a newsletter sign up.

These goals are at different stages of the funnel so it gives you a better understanding how your Google Ads are performing for you. If you are not making sales right away, but you are generating plenty of newsletter sign-ups you know that you are on the right track and the funnel is being filled at the top. Then you can also use the email addresses that you got from the newsletter sign-ups for retargeting in Google Ads and push them further down the funnel.” 

8. Set conversion goals 

“Set conversions for important and measurable actions,” says Reeva Cutting of Cutting Edge Digital. “Don’t set goals for things like contact page visits – they don’t actually count for anything unless someone takes action to contact you. Focus on contact form submissions, phone calls, emails, and online purchases – things that result in you making money!” 

John Pinedo of Freedom Bound Business says, “When you’re setting Google Ad goals, you should always take into account what your target conversion goals are.

What are the conversion goals for the campaign you’re about to start (i.e.., phone calls, form submissions, chatbots, etc.)? Once you know these goals, you can start making educated predictions on the campaign’s CPA (cost per acquisition), conversion rate, cost per customer, etc. Taking these Google Ads aspects into account will help anyone running a Google Ads campaign have a better return on ad spend.” 

Djordje Milicevic of StableWP agrees, “To effectively track and measure the success of your Google Ads campaigns, focus on setting up goal conversions for high-value actions on your website or landing page. These are the main actions you want people to take once they click through your ads, like purchases, signups, and phone calls.

And it’s also what you’re trying to optimize campaigns for. Setting up your conversion goals correctly can also help with smart bidding strategies like Target CPA and Target ROAS. Unlike Google Analytics where you can configure any action as a goal (even a visit duration), with Google Ads you should remove noise from analytics by only creating tightly defined and high-value goals to measure performance and make better optimization decisions.” 

Brett Stevens of Lendio adds, “If it’s a new campaign with a goal of conversions, by default Google Ads will select CPA bidding. In this situation, I would change the bidding type to Maximize clicks and set a max CPC bid ceiling to keep the cpc’s within a reasonable range.” 

For example, Bruce Harpham says, “I recommend setting up conversion goals and then thoroughly test that conversion tracking is working properly. The first time I set up a lead generation Google Ad campaign, I made a mistake in the settings. No conversions were being tracked!

After running $100 worth of traffic, I figured out the problem and got conversion tracking working. Once I got conversion tracking working, I was surprised to see the top-performing ad copy in my campaign. I never would have guessed it without the data.

The lesson is this: if you are generating leads through Google Ads, go back and test your conversion tracking several times to verify that everything is working once your ads start to run.” 

Editor’s Note: Use this Google Ads Campaign Dashboard to view performance, conversions, and custom insights on the campaign level. 

Google Ads Campaign Dashboard

9. Use enhanced eCommerce tracking  

“If you’ve got an ecommerce site, set up enhanced ecommerce tracking (with order value) via Google Analytics and pull that through to Google Ads,” says Rich Mehta of Rigorous Digital.

“If not, you should use Google’s free call tracking to track any calls from ads on your website. It’s a little known trick that you can use this to track calls from the number on your website, as well as the calls from ads in Google’s SERPs.” 

10. Use Google Tag Manager 

“One of the best tips for setting up goals is making sure you use Google Tag Manager,” says Crystal Diaz of Xtractor Depot. “This makes it super easy to expertly track your events/conversions. Make sure to set up google tag manager first, then set up GA to track it in analytics! I use google tag manager for form fills on the site like contact forms and for phone number clicks.” 

11. Pay attention to ROAS 

“Cost per lead (CPA), and your return on ad spend (ROAS) should be much more important,” says Andy Cabasso of Postaga. “Not all keywords are created equally. Some keywords are going to be likely to have a better conversion rate and be more valuable customers.

Higher CPCs, especially for some keywords, can translate into lower CPAs and more leads for your money spent.

As a simple example: You could spend $100 on 100 clicks to get 10 leads at $10 per lead, and that can be great. Or, you could spend $100 on 50 clicks to get 20 leads at $5 per lead.

And at the end of the day, ROAS should be more important than anything else. If you can spend $100 (it doesn’t matter how many clicks or leads you get) to make a profit of $500 or $1,000, you will always want to make that higher profit margin. So, keep that in mind too.” 

12. Know your customer acquisition costs 

“Know your target cost for customer acquisition when setting your goals in Google Ads,” says Lane Burns of Your Marketing People. ”That way you can optimize your campaigns based on how much you are willing to spend in a month to achieve your new customers.

It’s helpful to first start out with a goal like clicks so you can start to increase your website traffic, then review the data to get an accurate idea of what cost per acquisition is realistic to hit, and then switch your goal to CPA once you have enough data so you can ultimately make the most of your ad spend.” 

13. Identify the reasons why people don’t convert 

“Try to understand in a very deep way what stops your customers from converting, and what is their behavior on your website,” says Alessandro D’Andrea of Clickable.

“You can create two different families of conversions: behavioural conversion, and money-conversions, and create some group of conversions in Google Ads to better optimize your campaigns. I’ve seen those conversion groups aren’t used that much in Google Ads, but they are definitely powerful, and can help you have campaigns more tailored to your client’s needs.” 

14. Consider the context of the ad campaign 

“I had one and only one tip to recommend for setting goals in Google Ads, it would be to always consider that different campaigns may have different goals,” says Mike Visconti of V12 MARKETING.

“A campaign targeting your brand name versus one targeting a competitor’s name likely have completely different purposes and are targeting users in different stages in the marketing funnel. Make sure all your tracking and attribution models are in place before going live and test them, otherwise you’re not getting accurate data, and potentially making future decisions on bad data. Spend the time to plan out the conversions, and plan to get familiar in tracking them. This usually means form fills, phone calls, chat engagements, and possibly others.”

15. Test your goals 

Brooke Logan of Sagefrog Marketing Group says, “Test them! Once you create a specific goal for Google Ads, act like an end-user, trigger an ad of yours, and go through with the goal completion to make sure it’s tracking properly.” 

Ryan Scollon adds, “Make sure you have every method of contact tracked. Don’t just set up tracking for your main contact form, you’ll be surprised how much data you can get from tracking all of the other methods such as call tracking, live chat tracking, newsletter sign-ups, etc.

Even if they are not as popular, all this data adds up to paint a bigger picture which will help you make more informed decisions when reviewing your Google Ads campaigns.” 

16. Make sure to cross-reference data 

“Setting up goals that can be measured and tracked outside of Google Analytics is important for cross-referencing data,” says Albert Salinas of Leadhub.

“For example, if you can measure incoming form submissions through Google Analytics and through a plugin on your site, you can accurately log all of those submissions. This leads to accurate reporting and helps us identify reporting errors when and where they occur.” 

17. Assign a monetary value to each goal 

“Assign a value to the goal,” says Elise Richardson of Element Marketing. “Even if it is $1, being able to see the return and the value generated from the goal is helpful to visualize your return.” 

Raj Dosanjh of Rentround adds, “It helps to put a value on each conversion to track the impact on ROI. This lets you see through the other metrics such as traffic and ties up the ad campaign directly with how well the company is doing.” 

18. Evaluate your goals each quarter 

“Set goals for three months,” says Jack Choros of IronMonk Solutions. “The reason for this is because it takes time for Google’s algorithm to understand what your ad account is trying to achieve. Your cost per acquisition should go down each month if you’ve targeted your keywords properly.” 

19. Measure quality score 

“One basic but helpful goal to set in Google Ads is to get the quality score of your keywords to at least a 7,” says Takeshi Young of Optimizely. “It’s a clear and concrete goal you can optimize towards, and improving the quality score of your ads will lead to lower CPCs, and ultimately better performance for your ads.” 

20. Set brand positioning goals 

“The most important tip is understanding that Google Ads is not a lead generation machine especially if you’re in the B2B world,” says Joanne Nassar of Hovi.

“It’s actually a tool to assist with Brand positioning, Product positioning, Competitor landscaping, and will definitely provide some good leads if optimized properly. But the essence of Ads on Google comes handy when it’s part of an entire lifecycle where it makes up for a touchpoint within a closed-loop campaign that is well-targeted towards your ICPs (Ideal Customer Profiles).

In that sense, stripping down your leads to attribution weight, understanding the weight Google Ads carry historically in the conversion of your leads will help you quantify the costs associated with each of those leads from a touchpoint perspective. Then projecting that into an upcoming campaign to target the same Cost per Lead or Cost per Action is the safe way to go about setting attainable goals for an optimal Google Ads campaign.” 

21. Measure website traffic 

“One important tip is to keep an eye on the website traffic goal,” says Chris Gadek of AdQuick. “After all, the main reason for ads is to draw visitors to your site, to read your content, and to hopefully become a customer. Knowing if your ad is producing the traffic that you’d hoped for will be a good indicator is the ad is going to be a success.”

22. Track your ad CTR

“Apart from getting revenue and leads from your Google Ads, another helpful tip is to track your CTR (click-through-rate) and setting goals for them,” says Brendan Golingan of Studio Culture.

“By getting a good CTR for your ads it can help determine if your ads are performing and whether users are engaging with the ads when they see your ads on the search results. Here you can see how effective your campaigns are.”

23. Pay attention to direct competitors 

“One tip to set goals in Google Ads would be to look at your competitors closely,” says Beth Cooper of KNB Communications. “Competitors should be defined as anyone bidding on the same keywords as you.

It is important to look where you fall in relation to your competition. Once you recognize where you fall in relation to your competition, balance your budget with projections, and only invest your efforts into aspects that work towards your company’s goal.”

24. Target specific locations 

“Know the physical location of your audience,” says CJ Xia of Boster Biological Technology. “Google Ads are all about results but to set the ad campaign for the first time, know what you want to gain and how you are going to measure your success based on those goals. Like if I want to increase my ROI, it is important that I first manage to set the campaign with the same goal so that I can make smart changes to improve the performance where needed.

Local industries like apartments, hotels, lawyers often identify their ideal customers by how close they live near them. However, geotargeting is not limited to this. If your products and services are dependent on the nearby location, you still can target the vast majority of the customers from across the states based on seasonality, weather, and user needs.

If you sell the snow shovels, but you live in Florida, a warmer city, you can target other states where the people are likely to experience increased snowfall from an incoming cold front. Using the strategy won’t waste your money, and with the right target, you will get to increase your sales and so the ROI.” 

25. Take into account seasonal trends 

“A helpful conversion tip for all Google Ads is to understand seasonality, and also to understand Google doesn’t,” says Kevin Pike of Rank Fuse Interactive. “For example, some businesses run PPC ads all year, but their peak season might be back-to-school, or Christmas, or anytime the weather gets hot or cold.

These factors make auto-goal optimizations suffer because conversion rates and overall sales can drastically change from one month to the next. Factoring these types of off-line situations into your goal setups and management style is what makes a real Google Ads expert, great!” 

26. Treat your ad campaign like a science experiment 

“Set up specific goals which would help you to evaluate your hypothesis,” says Milosz Krasinski says.

“For example, let’s assume you are running remarketing and believe your ideal customer is a woman at around 30 years old (demographic), usually buying the most using iPhone devices but only when connected to the 3G free wifi.” 

27. Allow room for experimentation 

“When you first set up your campaign, allow a little extra budget for experimentation,” says Tasia Alexis of Online Team Building Bingo. “You may find that an extra $100 or $200 is enough to provide data that gives much deeper insights into your goals and how you can achieve them.

For example, the extra budget may allow you to focus on website visits instead of conversions, and then you can focus on optimizing your landing page and other funnel components to increase conversions. This approach can create meaningful increases in your ad performance and reduce or optimize your spend in the long term.” 

28. Use confirmation URLs 

“Use confirmation URLs, or thank you pages,” says Daniel Reeves of Dandy Marketing. “So for example, if someone submits your contact us form, upon submission have the user redirected to a thank you page. If you accept online bookings have them redirected to an appointment confirmation URL.

e.g www.example.com/thank-you

or www.example.com/booking-confirmation

Set up destination goals for either of these and import them into Google Ads.

Then you’ll be able to see down to a keyword level what’s driving leads for your business.

You could also set up one that tracks just viewing the contact us page. Although this won’t be classed as a lead, you can still see that people are showing the intent to get in touch with you.”

29. Keep your goals and campaigns separate in Google Ads 

“When creating a successful Google Ads campaign, it’s critical that you set a specific goal for each campaign and keep the campaign and goals separate,” says Karlee Tate of Optimistic Houston Content.

“If your campaign and their goals start to combine, your ads will become less relevant, making it difficult for viewers to differentiate your product or service offerings.

For example, specific and separate goals keep people who are looking for ‘maritime training’ from seeing your ad about ‘OSHA certification courses,’ which leads them to believe that you don’t have what they need.

With focused goals, you’ll be able to reach the audience that is interested in exactly what you offer.” 

30. Reverse engineer your goals 

“Stuck on how to determine if your Cost-per-Acquisition (CPA) numbers are acceptable,” says Matt Oney of Zenmaster Wellness. “Using your historical funnel conversion rate data, work backwards from Closed deals to build out a maximum acceptable CPA (or CPC).

For example, if your Average Order Size (AOS) is $1,000, and you know that 1 out of every 100 leads converts into a Closed deal, you should be willing to pay from $0-10 for a lead.

So as long as your Google Ads campaigns are bringing leads in for less than that, you’re good! You can even structure your bid strategy with limits to ensure that you’re never paying for more than this. It’s like a stop limit for your Google Ads.” 

31. Be patient 

“One tip that we have learned is to be patient,” says Mike Pavlak of StashStock. “Google provides live data of your ads exposure, clicks, and what keywords are working the best. It is easy to get excited when looking at these stats and seeing all the traffic that is being generated to your website. It is a lot easier to get discouraged though.

It is understandable to want to change words around If a keyword isn’t being as efficient as the others in the beginning week. What we found is that you need to give these keywords some time to work.

We like to wait 7-10 days before changing any of the keywords. This also allows you time to think of better options while also giving these new words time to thrive for the rest of the campaign.” 

In sum, setting goals in Google Ads allows you to see how your campaigns are contributing to key business initiatives.

About the author
Jessica Malnik
Jessica Malnik Jessica Malnik is a content strategist and copywriter for SaaS and productized service businesses. Her writing has appeared on The Next Web, Social Media Examiner, SEMRush, CMX, Help Scout, Convince & Convert, and many other sites.
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Google Search Console is a free SEO tool to track your website’s performance in SERPs. Here, 49 SEOs share how they’re using it to track rankings.

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