Online Advertising: Getting the Most Bang for Your Buck

Online Advertising: Getting the Most Bang for Your Buck

June 30, 2021
(Reading time: 5 - 10 minutes)

Is online advertising worth it? Which is best for me, Facebook ads, PPC, Google Ads? Should I rather increase my reach and convert leads organically? These are some of the most common questions asked by those who are new to internet marketing.

Google Search Ads vs. Social Media Ads – The Beginnings

Advertising has been around for quite a while. The very first ones were the ones that we found in print. The number one source back then was newspapers. Advertising changed with the dawn of new technologies like the TV and radio.

The 1960s were said to be the golden age of advertising.

However, as new technologies were introduced, new advertising methods were presented. This started in the mid-90s when the internet was introduced. That was the time when online advertisements and the first banner ads went on display on different websites.

When you think you’ve seen it all, something new came along again—social media. Nowadays, you will see online advertising not just on websites and social media. You’ll also see them in mobile apps, videos, emails, and pretty much everywhere else.

Consumers used to see around 500 ads each day. That was the estimate back in the 1970s. Nowadays, you get to see as many as 10,000 ads every day. That is a staggering figure, to say the least. 

How Online Advertising Works

To start with you will need to set a budget, target audience, and determines the keywords you’d like to use. One of the most common setups is called CPC advertising, which stands for cost-per-click. When someone clicks on the link in your ad, you are charged an amount based on your daily budget. The higher your budget, the higher ranking your ad will have compared to competitors’ ads (like bidding for the top spot). Niel Patel offers a great example of how this works:

Use the formula below to calculate your Max CPC:

Max CPC = (profit per customer) x (1 – profit margin) x (website conversion rate)

For example, let’s say your average profit per customer is $500, and out of 1,000 website visitors, you convert 10 into customers. That means you have a 1% website conversion rate.

If you are comfortable with a 30% profit margin, then here’s how you would calculate your Max CPC:

Max CPC = $500 x (1 – 0.30) x 1% = $3.50

You’ll then take that result and compare it to what your platform of choice says is the estimated CPC for the keywords you’ve selected. If it is in the ballpark, you’re in great shape! If not, you’ll need to rethink the keywords you’ve selected.

Create a Unique Selling Proposition

Why should clients choose to do business with you versus any other option, including doing nothing? You will need to have a strong selling proposition, also known as your unique selling proposition (USP) as it will generate more traffic from those most likely to spend money with you and it can eliminate comparison shopping.

Instead of claiming to be everything for everyone, focus specifically on what your business does best. This can either be a part of your core business model, or a specific discount or promotion.

Include a Call to Action

No matter what platform you choose to adversities on you are usually limited to a few lines of text for your headline, the ad body, and a URL. The headline should be compelling. The description lines should state your USP clearly and succinctly. The display URL should be easy to read and short.

Measure and Adjust

Most online advertising platforms provide a wealth of information regarding conversions and clicks. Connect your Google Analytics account for a treasure trove of information on traffic and ad success. You can use this information to tweak your campaigns or add other campaigns to target other specific audiences.

Google Ads versus Facebook Ads

For online marketers, the question is not the number of ads that you can put on display each day. The more pressing question is which one has a higher conversion rate. Which one translates to a higher ROI?

Let’s go over the pros and cons of these two options.

What’s Great About Google Ads?

Google Ads

Since Google Adwords has now become Google Ads, we’ll use the latter to refer to this online advertisement option. We will compare its pros and cons to social media advertising, particularly Facebook paid social.

Let’s begin with the pros for Google Ads.

1. Larger Network, Enormous Traffic

You can say that Google Ads is the biggest and most popular online advertising platform today. Sorry guys, it’s still a lot bigger than social media. When you hear someone discussing paid searches, that person is more likely to be talking about Google Ads.

There are more than 5 billion searches made on Google every day. That’s an enormous amount of search traffic.

2. Multiple Ad Options

Google Ads also gives you several ways to advertise your products and services. They include the following:

The Search Network

With the search network, your ads will be displayed based on the keywords used by people when they search for things on Google’s search engine. This includes search terms that are typed using the good old keyboard and also voice search.

The Display Network

Your ads can also come in the form of images, videos, and other visual formats. Again, the related search terms also apply.

Google shopping

Shopping ads on the other hand are based on eCommerce campaigns. These are high-intent searches since people are actually looking for specific products and brands. They also tend to have a higher conversion rate.

Video-based ads

These are ads that are shown on YouTube since it is already part of Google. Some of these ads are pulled from Google’s display network as well.

Google Ads retargeting

Google Ads can help you retarget lost clients. This includes those who put items in the shopping carts but didn’t check out, those who clicked the ads but didn’t buy anything, and others.

3. Double ROI for Every Dollar Spent

Apart from reaching a wider audience through different ad formats, Google reports that those who use these ads correctly tend to get twice the amount of returns for each dollar they spent.

Some companies even report higher ROI because they use different formats. For instance, they use shopping ads for e-commerce. They also use location-based campaigns when reaching out to the local markets. That means they also make use of Google Maps.

4. Traffic That Converts

By using relevant search terms, you may drive traffic with an engaged audience. You can move this type of traffic with the intent of converting site visitors. For example, you can use the search term “DUI lawyer near me” in your ads for law firms that specialize in DUI cases. There is a good chance that the people who use that search phrase are already looking to call the first lawyers they find listed on the SERPs.

5. Builds Brand Awareness

Some leads and prospects are in the middle of the funnel. They’re not essentially that ready to buy. The ones in the middle to the bottom part of your sales funnel still require more brand awareness. They’re the ones you will want to keep in touch with and help along the way. This is where Google’s YouTube and Display Network ads are quite helpful.

What’s Great about Paid Social Media Ads?

Facebook Ads

The big downside with marketing on social media is that people don’t go there primarily to solve a problem. People visit Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tik Tok, etc. – they go to these platforms to socialize.

You know, they want to hook up with friends, catch up with long-lost loved ones, and meet new people. However, there is a thrust to move into selling and services through Facebook’s marketplace. And then there are Facebook groups and pages that are dedicated to selling as well.

In short, Facebook Ads and others are great for brand awareness. The new changes and direction these platforms are headed will one day be great for online advertisers as well. Here are some of the pros of using social media for your online advertising efforts.

1. An immense number of monthly active global users

Facebook alone has 2.5 billion monthly active subscribers. That is a huge and highly diverse market. You can potentially reach new active markets and convert them later on. Some advertisers have found a lot of success reaching and converting them.

2. New and interactive ad platforms

Social media has introduced engaging and interactive ad platforms. Not only can you show multiple products in carousel ads, but you can also advertise on mobile devices, desktops, and also on messenger. Your target market can get a first-hand experience with your business and you can create quite an impression that can end up in lead conversion.

3. Different ads, different goals

Not all ads have the same goals. When on social media, some ads are meant for brand awareness, others are for improving engagement, and others are for conversion.

4. Lower cost per click

The cost per click on social media is currently lower. Some can even go as low as $1 per day.

How to Get the Most Bang-for-Your-Buck in Online Advertising?

To get the most ROI from your online advertising, you need to take a more holistic approach. Simply put, you need to combine both Google Ads and social media advertising.

You can’t favor one over the other or else you will miss out on a huge potential market that can’t be reached elsewhere.

Remember that almost every person you know is already on social media. Nowadays, you will also find many B2B and B2C companies on it. Big hint: use both to get the best results.

Remember that even Google Ads have their downsides. We mentioned the biggest one for Facebook and social media, but here’s one for Google Ads—click-through rates can be a bit low: around 3.17% conversion.

If you want to improve your social following and increase brand awareness and engagement, social media marketing is the way to go. It is also the more affordable option.

However, if you’re looking to sell to clients directly, then Google Ads is the better option since there is a higher intent to buy with every search. On top of that, people on social media aren’t always in buy mode, to begin with.

However, if you’re looking to improve the number of consultations, leads, and potential sales that you already have, then use both.

Improving your ROI from online advertising requires you to use both options. If you want to get the most bang-for-your-buck, then you should cast a wider net and then funnel your catch.

If you are considering Google Ads or Facebook ads and want some help running and managing them or just want some free advice if they are a good fit for you and your business then reach out to us for a free consultation.

Chad Treadway

Written by:  |  June 30, 2021

Chad is a Partner and our Chief Smarketing Officer. He will help you survey your small business needs, educating you on your options before suggesting any solution. Chad is passionate about rural marketing in the United States and North Carolina. He also has several certifications through HubSpot to better assist you with your internet and inbound marketing.

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