So, you’ve come to realize that there’s a whole Display Network out there through Google AdWords that, if utilized correctly, will take your online business to new heights. But, you’ve also realized that’s a big “if utilized correctly.” You may have been burned by the Display Network before (formerly called the Content Network). Maybe you just jumped right into AdWords because you knew you wanted more traffic for your site. You heard how easy it was to get it by whipping up a few keywords that were relevant to what you were offering and by writing a few ads to entice the searchers to your site. Then, since you were never taught that the Search and Display networks operate by completely different rules, you went ahead and turned them both on and started getting more traffic.
Man, getting traffic can be so easy…. and dangerous to your bottom line. The truth is, there is an art and science to getting traffic just like any other vocation. It takes skill and knowledge to be successful. So, when it comes to utilizing the Display Network, you need to gather the knowledge that is going to enable you to use the tool correctly to accomplish your goals.
Here we go…
Google reads keywords within a Display Network ad group differently than a Search Network ad group. On the Search Network, your chosen keywords are matched to queries that users perform within search engines. On the Display Network, Google determines one theme from all of the keywords added to your ad group. Then, it matches that theme with the themes of specific pages in it’s Display Network and your ad is eligible to appear on that page.
For example, let’s say I’ve added the following keywords to my ad group -
acoustic guitar lessons
easy guitar lessons
free guitar lessons
guitar solo lesson
online guitar lessons
rock guitar lessons
There really can be no mistake about what the theme of this ad group is…guitar lessons. Well, Google has a bunch of domains and pages in it’s Display Network that it’s determined also has that same theme, like this one….
Therefore, your ad and those pages are matches and you are now eligible to enter the auction for those the specific ad spots available on those pages.
Now, just like you should be testing and optimizing the keywords you use in the Search Network, you should do the same with your keyword themes in the Display Network. Which keyword theme will perform better for my marketing goals, “guitar lessons” or “guitar tabs?” Only one way to find out. Test.
You may even use a group of keywords that describes a keyword theme you’re going for. So, instead of explicitly using your root keyword “guitar lessons” in all of your keyword choices, you could come up with a list of keywords like the following…
So, here we just played some word association with what we’re offering to feed the Google algorithm monster some words to chew on to come up with a theme. They will determine the sites that match and then you will determine if the sites are a good match for you. It’s kind of like you are the giver and Google is the taker in the old game show $25,000 Pyramid…
Just like you keep keywords that perform well and eliminate keywords that don’t perform well in your Search Network campaign, so you do the same with these ad group keyword themes. These themes act like hunters to go out and find sites that will accomplish your marketing goals.
Here are some rules to remember when choosing your ad group keywords:
1. Match types don’t matter (except negative). Google is simply looking for a theme.
2. Up to 50 keywords are analyzed. Even 50 is too many if you ask me. You are looking to communicate a specific theme of the websites you’d like to try your ads on. This should not take many keywords to communicate this theme.
3. Negative keywords matter. If there are words on pages that signal that your desired audience is not reading this page, then you can add them as negatives. So, if you sell guitars but not classical guitars, you may want to add “classical” as a negative keyword.
4. Volume of keywords doesn’t matter.