Home » Blog Articles » Healthcare Marketing » Is Google AdWords Express Worth It?

Anybody who has spent much time online has seen the pay-per-click (PPC) ads and other forms of advertisement. The prominence of these ads especially catches your attention if you offer services or sell products online.

The dominant player in the world of online advertising is Google, releasing their original AdWords system in the early 2000s. Since this time, Google has significantly expanded its online advertising system.

Currently, AdWords is still one of the company’s main sources of revenue. Some readers may not be aware of this, but there are actually two versions of Google online advertising platform —AdWords and AdWords Express.

AdWords is Google’s original online advertising platform. This version of AdWords is complex but provides users with an amazing level of detail. In recent years, Google has released a more basic version of their advertising platform called AdWords Express. This stripped-down version of AdWords was created for local online advertising is intended for small businesses.

The AdWords Express reduces the challenge of managing ad campaigns by automatically creating keyword phrases and ad placement. Basically, the Express version is much easier to start and maintain. However, the following question is increasingly asked in online forums and chat rooms, is Google AdWords Express worth using? In other words, is AdWords Express beneficial or harmful for online advertising over the long-term?

This is a good question, but it does not have a simple black and white answer. Every advertiser’s needs and abilities are different. In the field of advertising, one size does not fit all. With this in mind, Google’s AdWords Express appears to possess both beneficial and harmful qualities.

Benefit:

[1] Quicker visibility for new sites:

If you have a brand-new website, AdWords Express can jumpstart the search engine process. By directly notifying, and paying, Google will actually index your site at a little faster pace.

While your ad (or ads) are active and turned on in the AdWords Express dashboard, your service or product should display near the top of the SERP (search engine results page). This is especially helpful when trying to rank in search engine results for specific geographic areas like cities or metropolitan regions.

[2] AdWords Express is fairly easy to set up:

Google has developed the application in such a way that getting your account up and running is quick and streamlined. AdWords Express does most of the heavy lifting for you. Once you have created a free Google account (this includes Gmail), you can start setting up AdWords. Basically, select a business category, create a text-based ad and set a budget.

This version of AdWords will automatically select keywords based on your business category. Users do not have to worry about biding for keyword phrases and quality scores. Reportedly, Google also selects keywords based on content from the display URL in your ad. In theory, a person does not even need a website to use AdWords Express. A webpage can be generated using Google My Business, but this is not recommended.

From a marketing standpoint, the lack of a well-made website would likely hurt the conversation rate for your product or service.

[3] Only pay when clicked:

In AdWords Express, you only pay when a someone views your ad online and “clicks” on it. The act of clicking is the most important term here. Your ad appears and is viewed in search engine results. But, your account or budget is only charged when there is actual engagement with your ad.

This means someone physically clicks on the ad and is taken to either your website or calls the number listed on your ad. These required actions provide some level of feedback that your ads are being seen and interacted with.

Harmful:

[1] Control of keywords phrases:

The streamlined interface of the AdWords Express dashboard is simultaneously an advantage and a disadvantage. In the full version of Google AdWords, users can select different kinds of match types for their ads keyword phrases.

This means that advertisers can target a PPC campaign that focuses on broad match, phrase match, modified broad match or exact match. There is even a way to focus on negative matching keywords. But, due to the fact that AdWords Express automatically creates keywords, there is a chance that your ad will appear in searches that are not relevant to your product or service. This ease of use means that ads run the risk of being too general.

[2] Specificity, control and feedback:

The second criticism of AdWords Express is the fact that the interface does not grant you enough control and feedback. You are not able to take deep dives into the data and have any granular control. This lack of detail means you are never really sure as to what is working.

Users have some control of where and when their ad is displayed and can even connect their Google Analytics to their ad account. But, these controls are general and lack the specificity of the original AdWords account.

Conclusion:

The full version of Google AdWords is intended for detailed and actively managed marketing campaigns. However, if advertisers do not have the time, resources or ability to actively manage a marketing campaign;

AdWords Express will fit their needs. AdWords Express is great for introducing people to the concept of pay-per-click ads and online advertising. However, if you are serious about advertising your product or service, you would be better off hiring an AdWords agency or actually learning how to operate Google’s full version of AdWords.

Contact Advanced Billing & Consulting Services, if you are curious about how healthcare providers can utilize Google AdWords. or have other questions about medical billing and credentialing — please CONTACT US.

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