How to Structure an AdWords Account — A Practical Guide

The initial structure and setup of your Google AdWords account will go a long way in helping you achieve your paid search goals — whether it’s new customer acquisition, lead generation, efficient e-commerce sales, or branding and awareness.

We’ll start with a few assumptions:

  • You have a strategy and program goals in mind.
  • You have an allocated monthly budget to work within.
  • You’ve conducted some initial keyword research, maybe with Google’s Keyword tool, Trellian’s Keyword Discovery tool, or SpyFu’s Keyword SmartSearch tool.

Before jumping in to the nuts and bolts of setting up your Google AdWords account, it will be helpful to conceptualize how your account will be structured. Synching up your product categories and subcategories to paid search campaigns and ad groups will help prepare you as you begin the process of actually setting up your account.

We’ll use a fictitious shoe retailer, Rob’s Running Super Store, to illustrate.

Campaigns are often best used to house a product category. The ad groups that fall underneath the campaigns will give you the flexibility to describe different attributes of the product that the campaign represents. Ad groups are also where you will be assigning a related set of keywords and ad copy that reflect the product and its attributes.

As you think through this, keep in mind that breaking out your campaigns and ad groups in a granular manner from the start will help keep your ad copy very targeted to the user’s search. The more targeted the ad copy you write for each ad group is to the user’s search, the more efficient your program will be.

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