How to manage Google campaigns with small budgets?

Gotraffic author

Marko Kvesic

12 October 2021 | Uncategorized

How to manage Google campaigns with small budgets?

The great advantage of Google Ads advertising compared to other forms of advertising that budget is completely flexible. You can advertise for $500 or $50,000.00.

If you have a limited budget for digital marketing, this article will help you make the most of it.

Now, the question is what is a limited budget, but let’s say that everything below $2000 per month is a lower budget.

1. Use the Pareto principle

The Pareto principle says that 80% of consequences come from 20% of the causes.

For example:

  • 20% of keywords bring 80% of conversions
  • 20% of web portals on the display campaign bring 80% of newsletter users
  • 20% of clients generate 80% of revenue, etc.

I often use this principle when optimizing my campaign and every time I confirm how accurate it is. 20% of keywords often bring 80% of conversions.

So, you need to detect that 20% and invest your budget in those keyword words. Detect up to 10 words that could bring you the best results, set those words as an exact match and advertise just for them.

Another way is to use only broad keywords, set a low bid and use a lot of negative keywords. Also, it’s important to follow the search terms report regularly to see which words your ad is showing for and to find new negative keywords.

How to know which keywords to choose?

Usually, most expensive keywords with a lot of competition are the ones that bring results. Why would everyone bid so much on them if they don’t bring results?

Analyze users’ search intent. Ask yourself what the user wants to achieve by searching that query, what problem does he want to solve, is he in the search phase or is he in the purchase phase? 

Avoid using generics and focus on keywords where the user’s intention is concrete and clear. If you are advertising an expensive villa in Istria, the word ‘holiday in Istria’ would be too general because the user is in the research phase. Your budget is low and you can’t afford those clicks, so it’s better to advertise on: luxury villas in Istria.

You should always define exactly what your KPIs are.

Usually, the main KPI for Google Campaigns is ROI. You need to know how much you can invest in a new client. If your user acquisition cost is $150, and you can afford $100 – then keywords that cost more than $100 per acquisition should be eliminated from your campaign.

2. Use remarketing

Remarketing is one of the most effective ways of advertising. General benchmark shows that only 3% of users convert when they first visit a page. Remarketing allows you to show ads to users who have been on your page to remind them of your offer and to convert.

A few tips on how to take advantage of remarketing when you have a small budget:

  • Create a list of users who have actively spent time on your page (such as users who have viewed more than 3 pages or spent more than 30 seconds on a page) to direct your ads towards users who have shown interest in your offer.
  • Create a list of users who have visited the website without sending a query to remind them to fill out the form.
  • If you have a large selection – don’t advertise everything. Create one offer that gives better value to the customer and advertise only that offer to users who have visited related pages on your website. For example, you have a car saloon that has a special offer for Hyundai i30. Create a remarketing list of users who have visited only Hyundai related pages and promote this special offer only to those users.
  • Be sure to implement the remarketing list on search campaigns as well (if you have a large traffic, consider having only a search remarketing campaign).

3. Use Google Analytics to better target Google Ads

Detect the segments that bring results:

  • In which locations you have the most conversions and the best conversion rate?
  • How is your desktop performance compared to mobile?
  • Which demographics (age, gender) perform best?
  • On which days and at what time of day do you get the most conversions?

Once you’ve detected this, implement it on your Google campaigns to show your ads to users who convert better.

4. Avoid display advertising

Display advertising generally has a lower conversion rate than search engine advertising. It is expected because the user, unlike on the search network, is not in the active phase of buying something.

It should be said that Google has made a lot of progress and continues to make progress in terms of display targeting capabilities. 

Thus, it is possible to target users who are in the research and purchase phase – the so-called Custom intent audience. For example, you sell financial services – you can target customers who visit bank sites and inform themselves about lending money.

You can also create an audience based on URLs. Enter the URLs of your competitors and Google will create an audience based on that.

It’s a good idea to create a converters similar audiences so that Google can find users with a similar profile to those who performed the action on your website.

Although Google has made a lot of progress in terms of targeting, if your budget is limited, you want to target it to those channels that have better conversions – Google search and remarketing.

If the keywords you want to advertise have a high search volume and have a lot of competition, it’s a good idea to implement audiences on your search campaign.

5. Invest your time in a good ad

If you have a small budget, you need to have a lot of creativity.

Think about how you can attract the user’s attention? How is your offer better than your competitors offer?

A better deal and a more attractive ad will result in a better CTR, and a better CTR will result in a better Ad Rank and a lower cost-per-click.

When you are working with a small budget every dollar is important. So, it’s crucial to reduce spending without compromising the results. The best way to achieve this is through ads that have better CTR and better conversion rate.

But, be careful. You don’t want to have an ad that only aims to get a click with bombastic statements. The ad should always be in line with your landing page and offer.

Look to include the targeted keyword in your ad and highlight the unique benefits of your offer with a clear call to action.

6. Optimize your landing page for conversions

The landing page is the foundation of any successful campaign because that’s where the conversion takes place. You can have the most technically advanced campaign, but if a user can’t easily find the information they need when they come to your website, a well-set campaign doesn’t mean anything.

The landing page should be an extension of your ad. You need to create an expectation through the ad and clearly describe your offer, and the landing page should be in line with the user’s expectation.

Landing page task is to motivate the user to choose your solution and make a conversion (send an inquiry, call, order online, etc.)

How to optimize landing page for conversion?

  • Communicate your Unique Value Proposition (UVP) 
  • Highlight the unique benefits of your offer – what are the benefits for the user, why he should use your solution, how it will improve his life.
  • Build trust – every user wonders why should he trust you. How does he know that your offer is true? If there is no trust there is no sale. Therefore, highlight the clients statements, invest in great website design, highlight references, write case studies and blogs, present an authentic image of your company, etc.
  • Take care of the user experience – make sure the page is easy to use and easy to navigate, use authentic and quality photos, make sure the text is readable (short paragraphs, bullet points, titles and subtitles) and it has all the necessary information 
  • Eliminate distraction – whatever distracts the user from the goal (which is to convert) should be eliminated from the landing page. Make sure the page loads quickly and is optimized for mobile devices.
  • Have a clear call to action – Once you have convinced them that your offer is better than the competitors, shown the unique benefits of the offer, demonstrated clear credibility – you need to encourage them to do the final step. Design a contact form that stands out clearly from the rest of the design and highlight contact information (email and phone).

7. Measure and optimize campaigns

You must have tracking configured to optimize your campaigns. You need to configure conversion tracking, set a conversion value, implement a tracking template, and link Google Ads and Google Analytics.

Before starting a campaign, define KPIs (Key Performance Indicator) that will serve as a starting point for campaign results analysis. KPIs can be ROI (return on investment), cost per user acquisition, cost per lead, number of conversions, etc.

Campaign optimization metrics

In general, your main KPI should be your ROI – that is, the ratio of invested and earned. So when evaluating your campaign performance, you need to analyze the results of all the segments:

  • campaign, ad groups, ads, extensions, and keywords performance
  • examine your search terms report to find out for which specific keywords your ads have shown
  • use negative keywords
  • compare results on desktop, tablets and mobile devices
  • analyze user demographics
  • keep track on what days and in what time of the day you have the best results.

Attribution models

When analyzing your results, take attribution models into the account. Note that if you are using the Last Click attribution model, the conversion will be assigned to the last click on the conversion path.

For example, the user searched for “internet packages”, examined the offers of the different operators and decided on one of them. He then googled the operator’s name and converted.

That conversion will be awarded to the brand keyword while the keyword “internet packages” that contributed to the conversion won’t get any credit. Therefore, be sure to use another attribution model such as Decrease with Time or Position-Based.


  • Find 20% of the campaign segments that bring 80% of the results. Invest your budget in those 20%.
  • Create remarketing campaigns to show your ads to users who have shown interest in your offer.
  • Detect profitable segments in Google Analytics for better targeting through Google Ads.
  • Avoid display network advertising because of lower conversion rate.
  • Create an offer that your visitors can’t refuse and emphasize it in your ad.
  • Optimize landing  pages for conversions.
  • Measure the results of your campaigns and optimize them for even better results.
  • Depending on your results and your Google Ads revenue increase, gradually scale your campaign and increase your budget.

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