Both Google pay-per-click ads (PPC) and Facebook Ads are powerful advertising platforms. When executed well, they can cater to nearly every type of business. In terms of paid channels, these two are the main contenders. Whether one platform is better than the other in delivering a solid return on investment continues to be a question many people are asking.
The reality is choosing between the two tools depends on your business goals. So, let’s take a closer look at when to use Google’s PPC ads and when to use Facebook Ads.
Paid Search vs. Paid Social
Google Ads, or paid search, is basically paying to have your listing featured on a search engine results page to get found more easily. The end goal is to create conversions and earn revenue for your business.
Using paid search, your ad is placed based on a keyword phrase or a natural long-tailed keyword phrase instead of targeting a certain audience. That said however, I advise you to adjust the settings of any paid search campaign to target specific audiences based on location and other factors.
Paid social, or Facebook Ads, is advertising your product or service on Facebook and/or Instagram. Because of Facebook algorithm changes, it has become increasingly difficult for brands to be seen by their potential customers organically. Since the company went public, it’s pay to play for most businesses.
Facebook offers a variety of options as to where your ads will be placed. In addition to your Facebook news feed, you can use Facebook ads to advertise on Instagram, the Audience Network, and Facebook Messenger.
It’s worth mentioning that paid social also includes running ads on other social media networks such as Pinterest or Twitter.
Benefits of Using Google Ads
Google has now become a verb for the act of searching for something on the Internet. Because of this, it’s no real surprise that Google is the world’s most popular search engine. Google fields more than 3.5 billion search queries everyday which offers advertisers access to an unprecedented potential audience of users who are actively searching for goods and services.
One of the largest misconceptions is that whoever has the biggest advertising budget will somehow automatically win when it comes to Google Ads. Fortunately for those of us with smaller marketing budgets, this is not the case. The focus is primarily on the relevance and quality of ads rather than how much advertisers spend.
Google is about user experience. The more relevant an ad is to the user, the better experience that user is likely to have. When Google’s users are happy, Google is happy. Because of that good user experience, it is more likely that the user will continue to use Google as their primary search engine. Part of Google’s algorithm has these factors come into play to determine and ads quality score. The higher your ads quality score, the more they will serve your ad to users. Quality score is determined by a mixture of keywords, relevance, ad, and URL. You can check your quality score at any time while running a campaign.
Benefits of Using Facebook Ads
Both Google and Facebook ads give you options for targeting and retargeting specific audiences. Both platforms allow you to Target by age, location, gender, income level, and other things. However, Facebook is the winner when it comes to advanced targeting options, especially in the B2C space.
Beyond the variety of targeting options, Facebook enables you to create audiences based on a list of interests, behaviors, and demographics. Facebook will remember these lists if you ever want to target the same audience in the future.
You can target parents, parents of children between the ages of 9 and 11, and even vegan parents with children between the ages of 9 and 11. You can take it one step further to Target those vegan parents with children between the ages of 9 and 11 and a household income ranging between $50,000 and $75,000 and to follow health and fitness pages. You can get highly specific and granular with your targeting here.
A big misconception about Facebook ads is that they will generate immediate conversions. Facebook ads are less effective for getting leads to convert quickly. The reality is people typically go to Facebook to socialize and relax not shop. However, this isn’t a downside if you have other goals in mind with a bit of patience.
The Facebook platform is incredibly useful for building your audience. It’s unique retargeting capabilities are designed to create conversions from interested people who may have clicked on an ad and not brought or added to a card or even who spend time and read the ad or watch the video. Facebook’s algorithms are great for getting results. If you can create recognition with a sense of community around your brand on social media, people will be more likely to buy when they need your service or product. If this is part of your business is Kohl’s, then Facebook is your best choice.
Which Should You Use?
If you’re new to the word of PPC, it can be intimidating to get started. Both Google Ads and Facebook Ads promote themselves as being easy to get started with, but the variety of targeting options and advanced features are a bit difficult to digest at first. It takes a lot of time and energy to reach expert status for either platform.
That means when it comes to choosing the right platform it is important to match your goals with the unique features from each platform.
Facebook ads gives you deeper demographic targeting to match ads to the interest and progress of different audiences across your funnel. You’ll also get better conversions for a B2C company or brand. You’ll get better branding opportunities with creatives on Facebook to help build awareness over the long-term. You’ll have a platform to run your campaigns when looking for a long-term conversions and the opportunity to build a relationship with your customers since you’re interacting with them as they perform other actions on Facebook. You also have the ability to retarget an existing customer with messaging that directly matches their interests and shopping habits.
Google Ads provides text contextual targeting to reach your customers closer to the end of the sales funnel when they are looking for your products or services. You’ll get a faster return on investment, especially within the B2B space. A lot of people will convert with their first interaction with a PPC ad because they have a stronger purchase intent. You’ll also get better coordination with your SEO efforts and drive increased visibility of your organization and its offerings.
If all of this makes sense to you but sounds too complicated, the team here at Sachs Marketing Group can help. We work with both Google and Facebook ads on a regular basis and can help build the right campaign for you.