With 4 million advertisers currently using Google Ads, you might be wondering what all the buzz is about. If your business isn’t visible on Google, you’re dead in the water.
This article is for start-up business owners who want to get on the Google Ads bandwagon but aren’t sure where to start. Google Ads is a viable marketing outlet for all types of businesses — big and small.
For the purpose of this article, we’re going to pretend that your start-up is in the property industry. We’ll use examples like an estate agent’s marketing efforts looking to generate leads and attract both landlords and tenants.
By the end, you’ll know the answer to all your Google Ad questions including:
- What estate/letting agent keywords offer the highest conversion rates?
- How do your competitors always make it to the top of the SERPs?
- How do I design my own letting agent advertising campaign?
So, buckle up and get ready to learn the ins and outs of setting up Google Ads for your start-up including lead generation and tips for maximising your ROI.
In This Article:
- What are Google Ads and How Can They Benefit Estate/Letting Agents?
- How to create your own estate/letting agent ads
- Keywords and phrases that will get you the most leads (and ones that won’t)
- How much do different terms cost?
- Which words offer the most conversions?
- How to target specific locations surrounding your letting/estate agency
What Are Google Ads and How Can They Benefit Estate/Letting Agents?
Let’s start by discussing exactly how Google Ads can help your start-up. Remember, we’re using the property industry as an example. So, in this case, we’ll cover how Google Ads can help benefit estate and letting agents.
For those who know nothing about setting up Google Ads for your start-up, let’s start with the basics. Let’s say a potential landlord searches for the term, “letting agent in London”.
Even if your company doesn’t organically rank first for this term, if you pay for Google Ads, your agency will appear as the first result. Not only does this gain you much-needed attention, traffic, and clicks, but it lets people know that your start-up has the services they need.
Why Are Google Ads Important for Letting/Estate Agents?
If you’re in the property industry, you may be thinking that Google Ads don’t serve you. They’re more for companies selling a specific product, right?
Like any other business, Google Ads give your agency a competitive edge over your competitors. You can now rank for top keywords and phrases that prospective customers are searching for.
Things as simple as “best letting agents”, “letting agent near me”, or “how much are estate agent fees”, are popular searches for landlords and property sellers. The better you rank for these terms, the more likely you are to generate leads and land new clients.
With that being said, you also need to learn how to convert these leads. Google Ads help bring the customers to you, but you have to ultimately close the deal.
Ranking at the top of the SERPs organically isn’t easy, which is why most start-ups and businesses (large and small) use Google Ads to help them along. Even ranking on the first few pages will help boost business and general more leads.
Take Rentround, for example. Created in 2019, Google didn’t even know the company existed until several months later. At that point, 100% of the company’s traffic was being generated by paid advertisements.
The best part of setting up Google Ads for your start-up is that anyone can do it. All you need to do is enter your personal information including your email address and billing information.
You’ll need to answer other questions like what the objectives of your campaign are (i.e. increase leads, generate more traffic, etc.) and how much you’re willing to spend. More on budgeting for your Google Ads later!
Creating Your Google Ads and Tracking Leads
The next step in setting up Google ads for your start-up is actually designing and creating the ads. Once you do, you can determine which ones generate the most leads. That way, you’re not wasting money on ads that don’t produce.
Google isn’t a mind reader. You need to tell it what you want your ads to say and look like. Remember, your advertisements are competing with countless other agencies that are either already ranking organically or are paying for traffic just like you.
Start by highlighting what your agency does best. Are you an expert at finding high-paying tenants? Do you offer low estate agent fees? All of these are good places to start.
Match your Google Ads to whatever services and attributes are already showcased on your website. That way, when a visitor clicks on your ad and arrives on your website, they’ll see the same information in both places. This helps build trust.
Google Ads will ask you to create a headline, description text, and provide a link to your website. The page you choose is where landlords or property owners will be directed when they click on the advertisement.
The key here is to make your ad stand out from the rest. You also want to include search terms that are currently trending among property sellers and landlords. After you become proficient in setting up Google Ads for your start-up, you can ask Google to automatically include keywords that are currently being searched for.
Creating Your Estate/Letting Agent Ad Description
Your ad description is the short paragraph that visitors will see and read before clicking on your advertisement. Think of this as your first impression. It needs to be good!
Here, you can include more detailed information about your agency and what you have to offer. You can (and should) also include information on any awards you’ve received and unique selling points. Many agencies include their fees as well, especially if they’re lower than your competitor.
Ideally, you only want your target market (property sellers and landlords) clicking on your advertisements. Each time a visitor clicks through to your site, you need to pay. This is called pay-per-click advertising (PPC).
With Google Ads, you pay each time someone clicks the ad and visits your site, not just for displaying the ad. This arrangement has its pros and cons.
The more clear and informative your ad description is, the more likely only serious interested parties will click through.
Include as many relevant terms and keywords as possible. For example, if someone searches for “lowest letting agent fees near me” and your description includes the phrase “letting agent fees”, it may very well show up in the search results.
Make your services as clear as possible in both the heading and the ad description. This prevents confused individuals from clicking on your ad with no intention of using your services. While this isn’t intentional, it will cost you money.
One way to prevent this is by creating a negative word list. We’ll cover more on that in a minute.
Create More Than One Advert to See What Works Best
You won’t know until you try. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Start with several Google Ads and see which ones are most popular with your target audience.
While this isn’t a guarantee of success, it lets you appeal to multiple prospects.
You also have to take user behaviour into consideration, which is unpredictable. Some words and terms will translate and convert better than others.
It’s best to create several advertisements and then monitor which ones produce the most clicks and conversions. Once you narrow down which ads are performing best, you can make other changes to improve results and delete low-performing ads.
For example, your ads that contain the words “letting agent fees” might get more clicks than those that say “letting agent near me”. In this case, remove the phrase “letting agent near me” from your descriptions and add the phrase “letting agent fees” into your other ads.
Continuing to monitor your ads and their results will help you fine-tune your advertising campaign and generate more leads.
Understanding Your Ads CTR (Click Through Rate)
Google wants you to succeed which is why they provide you with a breakdown of your ad’s CTR. These results display how many times your ad was shown and how often people clicked on it.
The results will also show the amount you’re bidding for your ad. Keep in mind that if you’re paying on the low end of the budget scale, your advertisements won’t appear as many times (or as high up) as higher-paying ads. The more you pay, the better your advertisement’s position will be.
If you maintain a low budget, your Google Ad might end up at the bottom of the page, or even on subsequent pages. The lower and less frequent the ad appears, the less likely it is to be clicked.
For this reason, your budget plays an important role in the success of your Google Ad campaign.
Targeting the Right Words to Attract the Most Leads and Clicks
The words and phrases you use when setting up Google Ads for your start-up are crucial for your success. Timing is also important, which is why you need to tell Google when to display your ads.
These two steps are intertwined. By choosing what keywords and terms relate to your property agency, your ad will surface each time these key phrases are searched.
Understand that the words you choose will likely overlap with other agents because they’re generic. Things like “sell your property”, “estate agent fees”, and “letting agents” are all terms and phrases multiple agencies will be ranking for.
This is why you need to include more specific and localized phrases like, “tenant referencing in London” or “lowest letting agent fees in Birmingham”.
You also need to think about additional services and features your agency offers that stand out from the rest. Are your prices lower than most other agents? Target words like “low letting agent fees” or even “letting agent costs”. It’s okay (and recommended) that you use different variations of the same words and phrases.
You can also highlight specific services you offer like full management or tenant referencing. Be sure to include these when setting up Google Ads for your start-up.
Search Volume for Keywords in the Property Industry
Another way Google helps you rank for specific keywords and phrases is by showing you which ones are searched the most. They also make suggestions for which ones you may want to include using their “keyword planner” tool.
If you’re searching for common words and search volume for keywords in the property industry or related to the phrase “letting agent”, you would type this into the search bar and press enter.
Google will generate the results and show other keywords with high search volumes related to the phrase “letting agent”. The results include how many monthly searches there are, as well as competing words and phrases.
The Role of Negative Keywords in Your Letting Agent Google Ad Campaign
Sometimes the words you don’t use are just as important as the words you do. Negative words actually play an important part in the success of your ad campaign.
To better understand the use of negative keywords, let’s use an example. If the purpose of your Google Ad campaign is to attract more landlords, you won’t necessarily be advertising to tenants (yet).
Your keywords should target landlords first, not tenants to fill your property rentals. In order to do this, targeting keywords like “letting agent fees” makes good sense.
A related term like “letting agent fees for tenants” is also searched frequently. But in this case, the searchers are more likely tenants trying to determine how much they’ll lay in letting agent fees, not landlords looking for agents to help fill their properties.
Don’t waste your money on keywords that target tenants. Your main focus should be on landlords. To avoid generating clicks by tenants, add the phrase “tenants” or “for tenants” to your negative keyword list.
In time, you’ll generate a list of the exact terms and words that trigger your advertisements. To get the most out of your letting agent digital marketing campaign, you need to keep adding and tweaking your negative keyword list.
Bidding for High-Ranking Keywords
There are different Google Ad campaigns for customers with different budgets. These are known as bidding campaigns and range from manual to automated bids, based on your need and budget.
If you pay for automated bidding options, Google will target users it thinks are most likely to click on your ad and convert based on their past behaviours and partners. This Google algorithm does most of the work for you.
In order to get the most out of automated bidding, you need to enable conversion tracking. This means your website is set up to tell Google which users converted. Now, they can target these same types of users in the future.
Manual bidding campaigns are also a popular option and the type of Google Ad we’ve been discussing so far. These are pay-per-click ads where you pay each time a user clicks on your ad — whether or not they convert.
The biggest difference between these two ad campaigns is price. Not every start-up has the same funds to spend on advertising and marketing. You can adjust your campaign accordingly by choosing which words you want to pay more for per click and which you want to pay less.
How to Set Your Bids for Letting Agent Keywords
When setting up Google Ads for your start-up, the first thing you want to consider is cost. Understand that the price you pay for specific keywords will fluctuate based on demand. The more agencies competing for the same keywords, the higher the pay-per-click rate will be.
For example, as of this writing, if you want to rank at the top of Google for the word “letting agent”, it’ll cost you £3.39 per click. These prices aren’t randomly generated. Google will show you the bid rate before you set up your campaign.
They’ll let you know which bid will score your ad at the top or bottom of the SERPs. From there, you can decide which bid makes the most sense based on your budget and campaign objectives.
Keep in mind that there’s a significant jump in price between your ad appearing at the top of the SERPs vs the bottom.
While this might seem like a pretty straightforward process, choosing where to target your keywords can actually be difficult for some letting agents.
You don’t want to waste your money on the first position if the bids are too costly and the searches don’t convert to leads. On the flip side, if the bid is too low, your ad may get buried at the bottom of the page and never convert.
Conversion tracking helps show you which words are performing best and result in a landlord or property owner passing on your information or contacting you via your website. From here, you can adjust your bids to target the keywords and phrases that convert most often.
Why Do Some Keywords Cost More Than Others?
When deciding and landing on a bid, you might be wondering why some keywords and phrases cost so much more than others.
The cost of keywords is based on demand. Demand is determined by how many of your competitors are trying to rank for the same keywords, which, not surprisingly, are the ones that convert best.
If you want to rank for a keyword that converts well, be prepared to pay a high bid.
For example, the term “online letting agent” is priced at £15 per click. This high price indicates that the word ranks first in the SERPs. It’s also safe to assume that this phrase also converts well for online letting agents.
Keep in mind that not all visitors click on the first advert they see. It might be financially wise to try and rank on the first page. This is quite a bit cheaper and still yields decent results. Even the bottom results on the first page will earn you much-needed clicks.
Setting Up Conversion Tracking for Your Letting Agent Google Ad Campaign
As mentioned before, conversion tracking is an important part of your setting up Google Ads for your start-up. Without it, you won’t know which keywords or clicks are providing value and revenue.
Even if your ads generate thousands of clicks, without converting those clicks to paying customers, you’re wasting your hard-earned money.
Setting up conversion tracking is easy to do. It’ll help track how many clicks on your ads reach a point on your website that qualifies as a conversion. For example, if you sell a product, conversion tracking will let you know how many clicks resulted in a sale.
More importantly, conversion tracking lets you know which keywords and terms convert most often. With this information, you can focus your ads on these specific terms and increase your bids.
The same goes for which words and phrases aren’t converting well. Now, you can eliminate those from your ads, saving money and increasing clicks and leads.
Since letting agents and property owners don’t sell a product, you might be wondering how to track conversions. For letting agents, conversions include obtaining a new rental property, house to sell, or attracting a potential buyer.
These conversions are tracked by calculating how many users contact your agency via phone, email, or chat. Setting up conversion tracking is almost as simple as setting up Google Ads for your start-up to begin with.
Google will place a code on your page each time you receive a successful conversion. For example, on the popular property site Rentround, conversions are tracked based on how many landlords submit their details into the personal details form.
The code is placed behind the “see my agents” button. After a landlord enters their details and clicks the button, a message is automatically sent to Google Ads, recording this as a conversion.
Reviewing Your Conversion Process
As with every step in setting up Google Ads for your start-up, you need to monitor and track the conversion process. This gives you insight into what ads are working and which ones need to be tweaked or deleted.
Keep in mind that users might need to take a few steps before their click is considered a conversion. That means conversion tracking documents all the steps that lead to a conversion and the ones that don’t. Now you can see where you lost prospective landlords along the way and make changes to help future users convert.
The goal is to streamline the process as much as possible. Minimize the steps and complexities between the initial click and the final conversion.
For example, Rentround has a total of 4 steps in its conversion process. Using conversion tracking, admins can see if users dropped out at step 2 or 3 and why. With this information, you can make the necessary changes to minimize drop-offs.
Setting Up Locations for Your Letting Agent Digital Marketing Campaign
Location, location, location. As a letting agent, your Google Ad campaign needs to target local landlords and property owners. If users aren’t in your general geographical area, the chance of them converting is minimal.
That’s why setting up a location for your marketing efforts is so important. For example, if you’re a letting agent in London, there’s no point in advertising to landlords in Manchester.
When setting up Google Ads for your start-up, it will ask you which locations you want your ad displayed in. You can choose specific cities or a mile radius. You can also target specific postal codes.
Now, your Google Ads will only show in the areas where you want to generate leads. Some online letting agents target nationwide customers, which means they can tell Google to advertise to the entire UK.
This approach is viable also and will let agents know which areas are more profitable than others. Once you target an area with a high conversion rate, you can increase your bid in this area and adjust your keywords.
Google lets you choose at what percent you want to increase your bid.
Setting Up Google Ads for Your Start-Up Letting Agency Made Simple
We hope that this guide to setting up Google Ads for your start-up (using the property industry as an example) has helped simplify the process.
Now, you can use this information to choose keywords, track conversions, and adjust your bid to produce the best, most lucrative advertisements. With this knowledge, your start-up is sure to succeed!