The Beginner’s Guide to Online Donations

Get Online Donations with Your Website, Newsletter & Google Ads

Chapter 12: Grant Success! What’s Next?
How to Write the Best Google Ads your very First Time

 

Organizing campaigns, finding keywords and writing the best Google ads. How do you organize campaigns, ads and keywords. Keywords: how to find them and what they do? Writing Google ads. Think outside of the box? Hmmm. How to be wildly creative while working inside of a box.

Learn How to Apply for a Google Ads Grant.
The Beginner’s Guide to Online Donations. CSDi is offering a complimentary nonprofit book on online fundraising.
Boost your donations in 14 weeks:       Learn How to Apply for a Google Ads for Nonprofits Grant.
Each of the 14 chapters include 3 step-by-step guides that lead you in setting up a modern website, launching a donor newsletter program and applying for a $10k/mo Google AdWords Grant. See what the 42 guides include.
 
Last week we introduced Chapter 11. How to Apply for an AdWords Grant. You created a very simple campaign as part of the application process.
 
Today we are presenting the full version of Chapter 12 on Grant Success! What’s Next?
 
Chapter 12. Grant Success! What’s Next? This is a much more detailed look at campaigns, keywords and ads than you experienced in Chapter 11.
 
Here is a quick summary of the 4 steps in the Google AdWords Grant chapter:
Tab 1. Overview: Organizing campaigns, ad groups, keywords and Google ads.
Tab 2. Guide 34. Organizing a structure for campaigns, ad groups, keywords and ads.
Tab 3. Guide 35. Keywords: how to find them and what they do.
Tab 4. Guide 36. Writing Google ads. Think outside of the box? Hmmm.
 
Chapter 12: ‘Grant Success! What’s Next?’ is set-up for you in the 4 tabs just below.
 
Grant Success! Time Requirement.
  1. Overview of a Organizing campaigns, ad groups, keywords and Google ads: 15 minutes.
  2. Step-by-step: Organizing a structure. 30 Minutes.
  3. Keywords: how to find them. 30 Minutes.
  4. Writing Google ads. Think outside of the box?. 1 Hour, 45 minutes.
Total Time for Chapter 12: Grant Success!. Three Hours.
Get free access to the Beginner’s Guide to Online Donations here. Each of the 14 chapters includes 3 individual, step-by-step guides to boosting online fundraising: 42 guides in total. See the syllabus.
Get the online donations book button about Google Ads
Chapter 12: Grant Success! is set-up for you in the 4 tabs below.
 
Links for Email List Building: signup forms, pop-ups and incentives:
 
CHAPTER 12 Overview. Overview: Grant Success! What’s Next?
 
This week in Chapter 12 we’re going to learn about 1) Organizing a structure for campaigns, ad groups, keywords and ads. 2) Keywords: how to find them and what they do. And, 3) how to write Google ads: Thinking outside of the box. Hmmm.
 
 
Guide 34. Organizing a structure for campaigns, ad groups, keywords and Google ads. Step-by-step: How to organize files and folders so you can find everything 6 months from now.
 
The first thing to do is to get your folder structure in Microsoft Word organized so that it accurately reflects what you’re going to paste into your AdWords campaign. We want your Word document of an Ad Group to be exactly the same as the Ad Group in your AdWords Account.
 
Guide 35. Keywords: how to find them and what they do. Create your first sample AdWords advertising campaign to complete the application process.
 
Keywords are the tools that provide the lure to get people from an Internet search to your website.
 
Guide 36. Writing Google Ads. Think outside of the box? Hmmm. How to be wildly creative while working inside of a box.
 
AdWords will connect your ad’s keywords to what a customer is entering into a Google search. So be creative in using some of your keywords in the ad’s copy. And also be creative answering questions that a customer may have. Be sure to use a call to action. Write your first ad. You may want to play around with a couple of versions. Get away from it for a day and then look at it again.
 
Get Going on your Google AdWords Campaign!
So now, click on the second tab to learn about how to organize a Google AdWords Campaign. Click on the third tab to learn how to find powerful keywords. And click on the fourth tab to find out how to write your first series of Google ads.
 
Next week, in the next chapter (Chapter 13) we’re going to learn how to managing and optimizing your new AdWords Account.
 
Enjoy. See you next week.
Copyright © 2016, Tim Magee
 
 
 
CHAPTER 12: How to write the best Google Ads your very 1st time.
Guide 34 Campaigns. Organizing a structure for campaigns, ad groups, keywords and Google ads.
 
In Chapter 11 Guide 32 we looked at setting up a very simple AdWords campaign simply for the purposes of fulfilling the application requirements.
 
But now you’ve received your grant! So we need to begin looking at organizing a replicable process for setting up multiple campaigns. In this Guide I’m going to repeat some Guide 32—and then expand upon it.
 
The first thing to do is to get your folder structure in Microsoft Word organized so that it accurately reflects what you’re going to paste into your AdWords campaign. We want your Word document of an Ad Group to be exactly the same as the Ad Group in your AdWords Account.
 
This is really important because six months from now you’re not going to remember exactly what you did: and this organization of folders will help you when it comes time to modify an existing campaign. Also, if you move on to a new job, this will really help the person who replaces you.
 
So here’s what we looked at in Guide 32 followed by more detailed information and illustrations:
 
Create your first AdWords advertising campaign.
Part 1. Setting up and organizing your AdWords Campaign Documents
You’re actually going to write the ads for your AdWords campaigns first as Word documents. When you are sure you are completely happy with the final ad, then you can paste them into your AdWords account.
 
1. So the first thing that I’m going to suggest you do is to open the program that you use to organize your files and folders on your hard drive; in my case it’s Windows Explorer.
 
2. Create a new folder Called "AdWords Campaign Folders."
 
3. Inside of that folder create a new folder with the name of your first campaign that you’re going to develop in this course. In my case I’m calling it "Campaign Newsletter Subscriptions." Newsletter Subscriptions will also be the exact name of the campaign that I set up in my AdWords account.
 
4. Open up this week’s Word document template "Chapter 11 Ad Group Template with Food Bank Newsletter Ads and Keywords" and save it under the name of the first group of ads you hope to develop for this series of assignments. In my case it’s called "Newsletter for Food Bank Donors Ad Group." I saved it in the folder "Campaign Newsletter Subscriptions."
 
The structure of folders looks like this:
 
Google Ads Grant: Windows Explorer AdWords Folder Illustration
 
Part 2. Developing your first group of Google ads for this Campaign.
AdWords has a very specific hierarchy: individual ads are nested within Ad Groups, and Ad Groups are nested in Campaigns. So this is how both my Word documents are organized—and also how my AdWords account will be organized:
Your Account
 
  • Campaign: Newsletter Subscriptions
    • Ad Group: Newsletters for Individual Donors for Food Banks
      • Google Ads: the ad that we will write this week for this assignment is included Ad Group template:
        • Support a Claremont Food Bank
          • Keywords
So simply add the name of your campaign and the ad group to the Ad Group as I’ve done—and today’s date.
 
Part 3. Paste in your keywords from your research in the last assignment. Next, go back to your Excel spreadsheet from last week and copy and paste the keywords that you found from your research where I placed my keywords.
 
Advanced Tip: Each ad group holds the keywords for its individual group of ads. It’s best to keep keywords unique to each ad group. If you have duplicate keywords in different ad groups Google AdWords won’t know which one would be the best one to select—and in a funny way you will be competing with yourself.
 
So you can see that I copied in the keywords that I discovered in my research for potential donors into two columns of the table. I’ve made the decision that the first column is specific to donors and I will keep them for this ad group. The other keywords are more general and could be very useful and my other three ad groups for volunteers, new clients and job-seekers—so I’m not going to use in this ad group and save them for the others.
 
You’ll see that some of the keywords are really very similar and that’s because people might on the one hand type in ‘food bank’ and on the other hand might type in ‘food banks’ so you want to make sure that you have both.
 
Also, some of my keywords are only one or two words, and some of them are longer: 3, 4, and 5 words. One and two word keywords might be very competitive—and therefore expensive and might be more than our two dollars limit. The 3, 4, and 5 word keywords—known as longtail keywords—won’t be as competitive and will be more affordable for us. So a mixture is a good idea to start with so you can see how they perform you can adjust later.
 
I also wouldn’t recommend more than 20 keywords initially. After you’ve run your first ad group for a few weeks you can begin to see which keywords are working and which aren’t. If you only have 20 keywords you have some pretty simple editing to do; more than 20 keywords can make the decision making much more complex.
 
Advanced Tip: Google AdWords will send you notifications in the upper right corner of your account saying things like: "Increase your click through rate. 37 suggested keywords for your Google ads. Just click here to automatically add these keywords."
 
Don’t do it!
 
First, you will wind up with so many keywords that it will be very hard to make decisions on fine-tuning (optimizing) an ad group. Of course AdWords wants to increase your click through rate because that’s how they make money. So absolutely, those additional keywords might get you more clicks—but are they the clicks that you’re hoping will lead potential supporter towards your website?
 
"Dallas Food Bank News" might actually lead an interested supporter to your website to sign up your newsletter (your goal) whereas these keywords actually suggested by AdWords might not: "food shelves, food giveaway, food vouchers, banks, bank food." You might get clicks—but maybe not subscribers. So spend your clicks on things that will help you reach your goal.
 
Part 4. Learning the structure of an individual ad.
Headline 1: 30 characters
Headline 2: 30 characters
Description: 80 characters
Display URL Two at 15 characters each: nonprofit.csd-i.org/15-characters/15-characters
Destination (final) URL this isn’t visible but can be: 2048 characters
 
Your destination URL will be linked to the headline that people click on. You can write a display URL to be descriptive about where they will be led to when they click on the headline: in other words it doesn’t need to be the destination URL it can be more descriptive and compelling.
 
Part 5. Write your first ad using targeted keywords from your list of keywords.
Writing your first ad will be a combination of creativity and effective use of keywords that you researched last week.
 
Google Ads Grant: AdWords Draft Illustration
 
Remember: AdWords will connect your ad’s keywords to what a customer is entering into a Google search. So be creative in using some of your keywords in the Google AdWords ad’s copy. And also be creative answering questions that a customer may have. Be sure to use a call to action.
 
What I like to do is to simply open up an existing AdWords Ad Group file and rename it. That way each of my files are laid out in exactly the same manner. I then just edit the old file with the new information.
 
Once again, if you simply open this week’s example "Chapter 11 Ad Group Template with Food Bank Newsletter Ads and Keywords" you can use it right away to get started with your own Ad Group file.
 
If you open the file I have named the campaign exactly is named in AdWords and I’ve named the ad group exactly as in AdWords. This can save a lot of confusion future when the file in the ad campaign slightly different names.
 
You can also see that I have made note of the URL of the Ad Groups landing page. If you make some changes the landing page—or if you make some changes to ads and their AdWords ad group relates landing page so that you can make modifications to keep them absolutely parallel to each other.
 
I’ve also included the landing pages headers, focus keyword, and its meta-description. Done this because there might be some great keywords that I can use in the AdWords ad.
 
I’ve also added in the ad extensions that are associated with this ad group.
 
Finally, after I’ve chosen the keywords that I want to use in the ad group I’ve pasted them into the bottom of this page so I can refer to them if I need to. I’ve also highlighted the words in the Google ads themselves that are keywords in the ad group. And, I’ve highlighted the keywords that actually appear in the landing page. You want to make sure and get some of your keywords in your ad group into your landing page so that it keeps up your quality score.
 
The final word document the ad group contains all the information that I have relating to that ad group in my AdWords account. This is really useful when I decided that I would like to modify some ads or some keywords: everything is right there in one place for me to see. Plus, this level of organization will be extraordinarily useful if someone takes over the AdWords account for you.
 
So just below here you can see how the Word document relates exactly to the campaign and ad group.
 
Google Ads Grant: AdWords Draft Illustration
 
Google Ads Grant: AdWords Draft Illustration
 
Remember: AdWords will connect your ad’s keywords to what a customer is entering into a Google search. So be creative in using some of your keywords in the Google AdWords ad copy. And also be creative answering questions that a customer may have. Be sure to use a call to action.
 
So write your first ad now. Using your keywords and your creativity just type right over the top of my example ad. Check your character count.
 
Action: Write your first ad. You may want to play around with a couple of versions. Get away from it for a day and then look at it again.
 
So now that you’ve developed a campaign that you want to work with the name and ad group that you want to work with, you researched keywords and you and have written the Google ads themselves it’s time to move over to your AdWords account and begin including these things.
Copyright © 2016, Tim Magee
 
 
 
CHAPTER 12. Grant Success! What’s Next?
 
Guide 35 Keywords: How to find them and what they do.
 
In the previous chapter we worked on setting up an initial ad campaign to fulfill the last step in the Google AdWords Grant application process. Just to speed things up we simply used keywords from a landing page for which we already done preliminary keyword research just for the purposes the landing page.
 
Now are going to get a little bit more detailed with the research. In Chapter 5, we created an Excel spreadsheet based upon key phrases from our landing page. We entered these key phrases into a Google search and looked at the search results to see if could find high-quality keywords that other people were using in their landing page titles and in their meta-descriptions. We then made a note of those underneath the search terms on the Excel spreadsheet.
 
This week, we are going to go back and use the same search terms see if there any Google ads that come up that will allow us to see what keywords competitive food banks are using. We can then enter competitors URLs into Ispionage or SpyFu to see what AdWords keywords they’re using in their Google ads.
 
You can see the results from the AdWords research on the second page of this Excel spreadsheet:
 
Next, I’ve selected the best 30 or 40 keywords that I discovered from this research. I’ve pasted them up at the top of the Excel spreadsheet. I’ve separated these into two columns: one column that I want to use specifically for the food bank newsletter AdWords campaign and the second column of keywords that I can save for future food bank AdWords campaigns.
 
Then I’ve run them one at a time through Google Keyword Planner to find out how many monthly searches they get, how competitive they are, and what the suggested bid price is. Here’s what that looks like for my keyword ‘donate food’:
 
Google Ads Grant: AdWords Draft Illustration
 
You can see several interesting things based upon the results. First of all, Google Keyword Planner shows me the monthly searches, how competitive the keyword is, and the suggested bid. But secondly, it also shows me related keywords (many I’ve never thought of before and I can add to my growing list).
 
So for example, you can see that the keyword “food bank” gets over 40,000 searches a month, it has low competition, and its value is only $2.18. ‘Food pantry’ only has a value of $1.76. Since our Google AdWords grant caps our bid at $2.00, these are really interesting to see. ‘Food pantry’ seems like a highly qualified keyword—and even though “food bank” is a little over two dollars, my experience is that higher priced keywords do occasionally show in my AdWords campaigns. Perhaps the value changes a little bit at different times the day or different days of the week—or perhaps in the geographical market that I have chosen.
 
An example of this is that our CSDi account has Google ads about Chapter 9 on email newsletters. So the keyword “email newsletters” has a bid estimate of $3.22 but has an average cost per click of $1.64.
 
So if you find what you feel is a perfect keyword, but the suggested bid is higher than $2.00, don’t hesitate to try it in one of your ad groups. It may show periodically for you. If it never shows you can always delete it from your ad group in the future. We’ll go over this in more detail in Chapter 15.
 
Finding Low-Cost Keywords
 
If you look at the illustration above from Google Keyword Planner you’ll see that the list of keyword ideas are organized by relevance to the keyword that you entered in order to get ideas. But you can also organize them in different ways.
 
For example, you can click at the top of the column “average monthly searches” and you will see the suggested keywords rearranged by which are the most popular keywords that people searching the Internet enter. And that’s great, but sometimes the higher performing keywords might also be too expensive to bid on if you have a $2.00 Google AdWords grant limit.
 
However, since you’re not a shoe store (highly competitive and expensive keywords?), and, you are a nonprofit (less competitive and less expensive keywords?) it’s worth checking because sometimes high-performing words have low costs associated with them.
 
The next thing that you can do is to click on "Suggested bid" and then click on the little arrow which allows you to have the least expensive keywords at the top. This is a great exercise and also a great way to find potential keywords that other people may not be using. You can scroll down through the column until you get to the $2.50 or $3.00 level and probably find great keywords that will be useful in your ad campaigns. Here is what that looks like in the illustration just below.
 
Google Ads Grant: AdWords Draft Illustration
 
In Summary:
Typically one begins with a landing page and then develops an ad group that is linked to that landing page. In developing your landing page you did some keyword research which will be useful for developing your Google ads.
 
1. You started by looking at important phrases in your landing page and then doing a Google search to find other keywords and phrases that top performing search results use (that you can use them too!).
 
2. You looked to see how many Google ads appeared with the phrases from your landing page in order to see how powerful and popular your phrases were.
 
3. You borrowed keywords from your landing page keyword research for use in your AdWords campaign.
 
4. You made note of who was showing up in both the search results and Google ads and use their URLs in Ispionage and SpyFu to see what keywords your competitors have been using that may be successful for them. You can use them too!
 
5. You then sorted through your keywords and chose the ones most appropriate for your new AdWords campaign and then ran them through Google Keyword Planner to see how popular they were and how much they cost. In my case, some of my keywords got perfect zeros—but since I had found them on first page search results I can make the decision to try them out—or not. You can try them out and they don’t perform for you can remove them from your ad group.
 
6. You then looked at the suggested keyword ideas that Google Keyword Planner provides to see if there any useful ones you had not thought of on your own.
 
7. You then re-sorted the suggested keyword ideas by their suggested bid to see if you can find some great keywords with a low costs associated with them.
 
Discussion on Landing Page vs. AdWords Keywords
 
Searching for landing page keywords and AdWords keywords have two different sets of goals.
 
However, some of the tools for searching for AdWords keywords and landing page keywords can be used in both instances and have certain similarities.
 
The main differences in landing page keywords and AdWords keywords are this: you usually select one focus keyword for a landing page and then optimize that landing page for that single focus keyword. The idea here is that people searching the Internet (organic search) will spot your search result and click through to your website based upon the single keyword, and what they read in your page title and meta-description which appear in the search results. If you do a Google Keyword Planner analysis of this keyword, the cost per click isn’t terribly important as you may not be using this keyword as one of your AdWords keywords.
 
With AdWords keywords you’re looking for a working group of 5 or 10 or 20 related keywords which are in the background of an ad group. So, after following the seven steps just above you want to initially pick 10 or 20 or 30 related keywords and insert them into the keyword section of your ad group.
 
If your focus keyword from your landing page is included in this group—so much the better—especially if it is costed out in the $2.00 range.
 
Connect the AdWords key words to your landing page with simple, on-page SEO.
The keywords in this AdWords ad group should also be sprinkled into both your landing page and into the Google ads themselves. You can see how I highlighted my keywords that appear in Google ads and landing pages for the Food Bank ad group.
 
It might be cumbersome to try and sprinkle 20 or 30 keywords into a landing page—but just do the best job you can. This will help maintain a high AdWords quality score for those keywords and that ad group. After two weeks or a month, you can go back and look at how your keywords for that ad group have been doing and slowly begin removing ones that aren’t performing for you. If they had been sprinkled into your landing page and don’t sound quite right—you can delete them from the landing page as well. In chapter 15 we will be looking in greater detail about this.
 
So what you wind up with this sort of a custom landing page which on the one hand you are hoping it will drum up organic search traffic with a single focus keyword—and on the other hand is the landing page for an group and sprinkled with keywords from that ad group and you are hoping it will encourage people to click on your Google ads.
 
If you download this Excel spreadsheet you can see that it was originally keyword research for a landing page that the ad group is pointing to. I then used that research to begin identifying related keywords that I could use for my AdWords ad group using the seven steps above.
 
Discussion on Managing your AdWords account.
Keep it simple: start small, move slowly, watch what happens, keep notes. Really, really important.
 
If you’re not careful AdWords can be quite time-consuming. There is also a learning curve—but a learning curve that can be spread out over time.
 
If I can give you one piece of advice, that would be to start very small and move very slowly. People with a lot of enthusiasm tend to quickly develop a number of campaigns and ads before they really know what they’re doing. It can take a lot of time to go back and renovate campaigns and ads after you’ve learned more about how to properly manage your AdWords account.
 
So my suggestion would be to start out with a single campaign and a couple of ad groups that have clearly defined goals and use them as a learning platform for two or three months until you begin to see results. When you see your first donation, or your first email subscriber, or your first volunteer based upon your AdWords account then you can move on and launch another campaign.
 
One of the reasons for doing this is that there are a number of different levels of complexity within AdWords and learning how to use those (and find which ones work best for you) is much easier if you’re working on just a few ads.
 
This also gives you the opportunity of being able to see which specific actions you took worked or did not work. If you have a large collection of ads are trying out a lot of different things it’s harder to link your actions to results.
 
The second thing that I would suggest is to keep notes of what you do. So for example if you develop a new ad group and insert an initial collection of 30 keywords, you can observe the performance of that ad group for a few weeks and see which keywords are performing for you and which keywords aren’t.
 
If you decide to delete some of the keywords, open up an Excel spreadsheet and make a note of the date, which keyword you deleted, and the statistics associated with that keyword which led you to want to delete it (clicks, impressions, the click through rate, and the AdWords suggestions as to why the keyword wasn’t performing which can be found by putting your cursor over the little white bubble next to the keyword).
 
So for example, here is a change log for the ad group associated with this chapter (Ch. 12) that you’re reading right now. You can download and use this as a template to create your own change log.
 
Google Ads Grant: AdWords Change Log Example
 
Keeping track of your activities is incredibly useful six months down the road when you can’t remember what it was that you had done. Maybe you’ll learn something during that period of time that will allow you to go back and look at keywords that you may have removed—and re-include them in a new and different ad group perhaps.
 
Also, if another person takes over the management of your AdWords account they will be able to see what you did.
 
Move Slowly
In the example change log, you can see that I waited approximately 3 weeks before making revisions. I also only removed a few keywords that weren’t performing for me.
 
AdWords has so many variables that the keyword may not be performing for reasons that you don’t understand yet. By removing only a few at a time you can see if that action has a positive impact on the remaining keywords. We will be looking at this more closely in the next two chapters.
 
But for now, start small, move slowly, watch and learn, and take lots of notes.
 
Here is a refresher course from Chapter 5 about how to find keywords:
I’m reinserting it just for you to scan and get re-acquainted with some keyword ideas.
Chapter 5: Keywords for Landing Pages
Landing pages have two different jobs to do. One is to lure people to your webpage (connecting the two of them together), the other is to give them a way to fulfill their search (call to action). They’re both absolutely essential.
 
Keywords are the tools that provide the lure to get people from and Internet search to your website.
 
Keywords and landing pages are bit hand-and-glove. Consequently, there will be a little bit and overlap between 5.1 and 5.2.
 
Connecting with Supporters
This week, in Chapter 5, going to be looking at the cornerstone of all digital marketing. This is the intersection between what people are looking for and what you have to offer. It is making the vital connection between exactly how they ask for what they’re looking for and exactly how you portray what you have to offer. This is what Google, Bing, and Yahoo do. Period.
 
For simplicity let’s say that what a potential customer types into a Google Search is called a ‘search term.’ “Donate to a food bank.”
 
If you feel that specific search term could be beneficial and you include “Donate to a food bank” on your landing page: we will call that a ‘keyword.’
 
If you have a food bank in Claremont, California, and a person looks for a food bank in Claremont by Googling the search term “food banks in Claremont California,” and you have a landing page called “Food Banks in Claremont California” there is a good likelihood that your webpage will appear in that individual’s Google search results.
 
We looked at using Yoast in Chapter 3 to help us make sure that (in this instance) your focus keyword (Food Banks in Claremont) is 1) scattered a meaningful number of times in the landing page’s content, 2) is in the page title, 3) is in the header, 4) is in the meta-description, and 5) is in the page’s URL. By optimizing your SEO in this manner, you will increase your chances of appearing in first page search results.
 
However, this is a fool’s folly if you haven’t first clearly identified what you are offering, and even more clearly identified what search terms people use who are looking for what you are offering.
 
For example, if a number of people are using the search term “free food in Los Angeles County” and your focus keyword for your landing page is “Food Banks in Claremont,” the vital connection between the searcher for free food and your food bank may not be made.
 
If we make the assumption that what this person is looking for is indeed exactly what you have to offer, then you may need to modify your landing page’s focus keyword to better match their search terms.
 
An example could be that in your part of the country the term “food pantry” is more common than “food bank.”
 
Due to be exacting nature of connecting on the Internet, it’s really very important to fully distill what a new landing page is about. A good place to start could be a sound bite of what you are offering on that page (free, weekly emergency food packages for people in need in the Claremont area), perhaps described in several ways (food pantry vs. food bank), and then modified to best fit how a potential client or donor might describe it.
 
A good description can help prevent developing to landing pages that are too similar to each other. Not much help when you’re trying to sell one concept over another with a specific keyword.
 
A good description can also help you “uncover” the focus keyword for that page.
 
A really good sound bite can become your meta-description for your landing page.
 
Step One.
The first thing that I would suggest doing is to develop a simple plan of your website, the landing pages that you hope to develop, and potential ‘placeholder’ focus keywords.
 
So let’s say that your organization has eight programs:
  • a food bank
  • a community garden
  • Meals on Wheels
  • a restaurant and grocery store donation program
  • a homeowner vegetable garden donation program
  • a volunteer program
  • a fundraising program
  • a monthly newsletter
Let’s look at those eight programs as if they were eight potential landing pages:
 
Google Ads Landing Pages and Keywords: 8 Landing Pages Table Illustration
 
This week we’re going to focus on developing keywords for one of these landing pages. The idea is to learn the whole process for developing keywords for effective landing pages before developing additional landing pages.
 
However, mapping out your programs and services like this is a really good exercise. It might help you to prioritize which landing pages to begin with. It can also help you see if you have focus keywords that are repetitive: in other words, you want each program’s landing page to have distinctly different focus keywords.
 
It also begins the process of thinking about: how do we describe what we do in a few words. If this is a sound bite about what you do: “Free, weekly emergency food packages for people in need in the Claremont area,” how will you turn that into a focus keyword of two or three or four words?
 
Step Two.
So let’s say we are going to focus on the food bank newsletter subscription idea that we initiated in Chapter 3.
 
Start with your Newsletter’s sound bite:
‘Learn How we solve hunger in Claremont—and how you can participate in the solution too—in this informative monthly newsletter.’
 
You can even work on generating a page description for additional ideas:
“Use your people skills: End hunger in Claremont. Join a new community of doers, make new friends, support and encourage people who are hungry. Meet the families in need and learn how special volunteering can be at our food bank by subscribing to our people centered newsletter.”
 
Make a list of three or four potential focus keywords. We’re going to use these to look for the search terms that your potential clients use. Write these as if they were being written by someone hoping to help end hunger in Claremont.
  • Subscribe to Claremont Food Bank News
  • How to end hunger in Claremont
  • Claremont families in need of food
Step Three.
If you’re stumped, here are three ideas that you can use to get started: Visit the websites of other food banks to get newsletter subscription keyword ideas.
 
Use your draft keyword options above and enter them one at a time into a Google search. There are half a dozen ways that you can learn more about customer search terms. I entered: “Subscribe to Claremont Food Bank News,” and then narrowed it down to “Subscribe to Food Bank News.”
 
Google Ads Landing Pages and Keywords: Subscribe to Food Bank News Google Search Results
 
1. When you’re entering your keywords into the little search box in the upper left, you’ll see a drop-down menu appear. Those are actually search terms that people have used for what you’re typing in. Make note of some of these rich ideas: this is the real deal!
 
Google Ads Landing Pages and Keywords: How to End Hunger Newsletter Google Search Results
 
2. After you have entered your search, scroll down to the very bottom of the page and you will see (in blue) about 10 additional search terms that people have actually used that may help you choose focus keywords.
 
Google Ads Landing Pages and Keywords: Hunger in America Google related search results at bottom
 
3. At both the very top and bottom of the search results will be Google ads (you can see them in the illustrations above). Many times the organizations writing these Google ads have hired expert consultants to write them and have also tested which Google ads are the most effective. Make note of key phrases within these Google ads as well—because they may be working very well for other organizations similar to yours. They can work well for you too!
 
4. In a similar fashion, Google’s page one search results are the most effective results as determined by Google. These may also have been professionally written and tested as well. It would be wise to note keywords that you spot that could be useful for you.
 
5. If one of the search results looks particularly applicable to your program and landing page, click on it. Read the page looking for keywords. Read the heading at the top of the page and make note of what it says. If it seems like there’s a keyword tucked into the heading—look in the first paragraph and see if the same keyword exists elsewhere in the page.
 
Look at the URL of the page you’re on and see if the keyword is within the URL too. Always a good clue to look here.
 
While on the page, you can hit “control + f” and enter the keyword you’ve spotted—and see if it appears a number of times within the page itself.
 
Tech Tool: This is a lot of information! Do you remember in the second chapter I suggested that you create a folder in a series of files for each one of your landing page themes. So for example, right now, create a folder on your hard drive for Food Banks.
 
Open an Excel spreadsheet and title it ‘Subscribe to Food Bank Newsletter Keyword Google Search.’ Put today’s date in the upper left corner.
 
Paste in your initial focus keyword ideas at the top.
 
Type in new keyword ideas that you found during the five activities above.
 
Also, if you find webpages that you like—copy/paste their URL so you can find them again.
 
If you see an AdWords that is appealing to you, select it, copy it, and pasted into the Excel spreadsheet.
 
Within 15 or 20 minutes you can have quite a collection of donor generated search terms and competitor generated keywords that address those search terms. Boom.
 
Save this Excel spreadsheet to your food bank folder that you are using to match your web pages (as we did in Chapter 2). Over the next few months you will refer to it over and over again, add information, quantify the information you have, and even add additional sheets for different types of information.
 
Download an example of this Excel Spread sheet on Google Search Term Results for Food Bank Newsletters.
 
Finally, another great way to find out what people are looking for, is to look for blogs or Facebook pages or forums like Google + where your potential clients and donors visit and leave comments. It’s quite amazing how well they express themselves in a very short sound bite about challenges they are facing and what they’re looking forward to solve them. Note these on your Excel spreadsheet also—and where you found them.
 
Step 4. Modify Focus Keywords.
Here is the list from step two of potential keywords with potential alternatives found using the techniques above:
 
Subscribe to Claremont Food Bank News
  • Subscribe to Claremont Food Bank News
  • Claremont Food Bank News
  • Learn about Claremont Food Banks
  • Claremont Food Newsletter
  • Newsletter Subscription – Claremont Food Bank
  • Online Newsletter – Claremont Food Bank
  • News – Claremont Area Food Bank
  • Read the latest Food Bank Newsletter
  • Newsletters | Claremont Food Pantry
How to End Hunger in Claremont
  • End Hunger in Claremont
  • Hunger in California ‎
  • Learn about Hunger in Claremont
  • End Hunger in Claremont
  • How Can I Help Food Banks
Claremont Families in Need of Food
  • Sponsor Families in Claremont
Step Five.
Step Three was based upon the fact that perhaps you didn’t have any data on client search terms.
 
Advanced Techniques
There are ways to find the actual search terms that people are using that send them to your website. Here are some ideas:
  • Google Webmaster (now called Google Search Console) provides something called ‘Search Analytics’ which lists the search terms potential clients have used to reach your website.
  • Google Analytics has a similar service called ‘Queries.’
  • Google AdWords has a similar service called ‘Search Terms’ which lists the search terms that people used in Google to make your AdWords ad appear.
  • Google AdWords Keyword Planner. You can enter a competitor’s website and see what keywords Keyword Planner finds. A goldmine for finding keyword ideas when you are getting started.
These three Internet services are more sophisticated than doing a simple Google search as in steps two and three. However, as your skills progress, these three services show you the very search terms that people used to specifically find your ad or your landing page.
 
If you are set up with these services: check them out! If you aren’t, these will be covered in great detail in Chapter 14, Guide 42.
 
Additional Insights.
What I’ve learned about searching for food bank newsletter keywords.
In researching keywords for nonprofit newsletters and food bank newsletters using the techniques that we’re exploring here, I found some mixed results.
 
The reason that I’m bringing this up is that this happened sometimes. You have a concept or product you’re trying to promote about your nonprofit and when you begin researching keywords—you aren’t satisfied with the results. So here are some tactics to move through this challenge.
 
NB: The bear in mind that the food bank newsletter example is just an example. The landing pages that you are working on may be on a different subjects entirely. However, the following solutions will be just as applicable to you.
 
Solutions. If in entering your draft keywords you don’t immediately find promising search results such as (in my case) “Subscribe to Claremont Food Bank News” look carefully at what you are seeing and try to uncover a theme.
 
I discovered four things.
1. Organizations promoting their newsletters didn’t necessarily come right out and say “Subscribe!” They worked with a compelling theme as their page title (your page title becomes the link that you see in the Google search results):
How to End Hunger in Claremont
 
When someone clicks on this link in the Google search results, they are taken to a landing page about subscribing to a newsletter that will help them learn how to end hunger in Claremont.
 
So, on the landing page the person exploring hunger in Claremont learns about several of the ways that the food bank works to solve hunger in Claremont—but then they are also encouraged to subscribe to a newsletter that will help them continue this learning experience.
 
Some of the organizations added something to the end of the page title indicating newsletters:
  • How to End Hunger in Claremont | Newsletters
  • End Hunger in Claremont | Learn More in our Newsletter
  • How to End Hunger in Claremont | Learn through our Newsletter
Bear in mind that swapping a “Subscribe! focus keyword for a keyword from one of your programs, you are going to sacrifice a keyword. In other words, if you’d hoped to use the keyword phrase “End Hunger in Claremont,” it would mean that you can’t also use it for a different landing page specific to that concept.
 
Another way to look at this is that since each landing page needs a call to action, the “End Hunger in Claremont” landing page’s call to action is “Subscribe!” To fulfill the promise you made in your search result “How to End Hunger in Claremont” you need to make sure that you answer the individual’s questions—and then give them an opportunity to receive more information through a subscription.
 
2. A second way that I saw organizations successfully getting around having a search result that says “Subscribe to Our Newsletter!” is to make the name of their newsletter incredibly compelling and a focus keyword all in itself:
  • End Hunger News
  • Hunger in California | The Claremont Food Bank Newsletter
You can look for compelling terms with some of the keywords that you’ve been playing with for other programs. Here are some examples that are general and related to food banks:
  • food banks in Claremont
  • food pantries in Claremont
  • free food in Claremont
  • free food in Los Angeles
  • free food for families
  • help with free food
3. I’m not certain how many people wake up in the morning and begin doing Internet searches looking for newsletters about food banks. I may be the lone wolf here.
 
One clue is this: many times when I’m searching Google for keywords for a landing page for a new product or service I often find search results that are very professionally done—and AdWords that are very professionally done. This would imply to me that other companies and organizations have discovered that people are indeed looking for these products and services and invest time in crafting a captivating page title and compelling page description.
 
I didn’t see much of this in my keyword search around food bank newsletters. This could explain Number 4 just below—where many people weren’t careful with crafting their page titles and page descriptions about their newsletters.
 
So my conclusion from this is that people searching the Internet for subjects surrounding a food bank concept (or whatever your organization’s program is) may be looking for ways to solve a problem that they find painful to see.
 
Because of this, I am more tempted to develop a landing page that addresses a solution to a problem, or offers to help the visitor learn more about solving a problem—and then have the call to action be “Subscribe!”
 
So you kill two birds with one stone here: you fulfill an Internet searchers quest for participating in a solution with a compelling landing page—and your goal of building your email list with a reason to subscribe.
 
You’re also not “sacrificing” a viable keyword: it’s providing you with the double duty.
 
4. Something really, really interesting that I observed while was doing these keyword searches on Google, is what a poor job many people do on their SEO page titles and meta-page descriptions and URL addresses.
 
One search result that I saw—when I clicked on the link didn’t lead me anywhere that had anything to do with newsletters or subscriptions—even though that’s what the link was about.
 
Here are some examples of organizations that didn’t craft informative, captivating page titles nor compelling meta descriptions in Yoast. Because of that, Google just pulled random text from their page:
 
Our Lady of the Assumption – Claremont CA : Outreach
www.olaclaremont.org/cgi-bin/complex2/showPage.plx?pid=202
OLA provides all the food for the Claremont Community Meal hosted at … The meal is served between 3 and 4:30 p.m. to families at risk or homeless. …. In solidarity with the poor and vulnerable, it responds to their material and spiritual needs.
 
News & Events | Alliance to End Hunger
alliancetoendhunger.org/news-events/
The easiest way to keep up with recent happenings at the Alliance to End Hunger is to … Check back regularly to discover the Alliance’s latest news and events.
 
St Faustinas Gate – Food Bank of WNY
www.foodbankwny.org › … › Our Pantry Listing
Food Bank of Western New York
St Faustinas Gate. Pantry. Address, 263 Claremont Avenue Tonawanda … Sign up for our e-newsletter. Sign Up. Manage your e-mail subscription. $$Name$$
 
Newsletter Sign-Up – End Hunger Connecticut!
www.endhungerct.org/newsletter-preferences/
Home › Newsletter Sign-Up. Name*. First Last. *. Organization/Agency/Affiliation. Interests. I’m also interested in hearing about volunteer opportunities …
 
Here is a good example of a compelling page title and a compelling meta description that someone put some thought into:
 
Blog & News | No Kid Hungry | End Child Hunger in America
https://www.nokidhungry.org/blog
Share Our Strength. Come Work With Us at No Kid Hungry. In every community across the United States, children are struggling with hunger. Their lives and futures are at risk.
This week’s chapter introduction is little more detailed than normal because of the incredible importance of this week’s chapter. I wanted to show you the entire three-dimensional process of finding customer-centered keywords rather than just give you a simple overview.
 
So click on the next tab, Tab 3, called ‘Landing Pages’ to find out exactly how to use these rich keywords that you have unearthed.
 
 
 
CHAPTER 12. Grant Success! What’s Next?
Guide 36 Writing Google Ads. Think outside of the box? Hmmm. How to be wildly creative while working inside of a box.
 
In Guide 34 of this chapter, we learned how to set up an AdWords campaign:
 
Learning the structure of an individual ad.
Headline 1: 30 characters
Headline 2: 30 characters
Description: 80 characters
Display URL Two at 15 characters each: nonprofit.csd-i.org/15-characters/15-characters
Destination (final) URL this isn’t visible but can be: 2048 characters

Your destination URL will be linked to the headline that people click on. You can write a display URL to be descriptive about where they will be led to when they click on the headline: in other words it doesn’t need to be the destination URL it can be more descriptive and compelling.

 
Writing your first ad will be a combination of creativity and effective use of keywords that you researched last week.
Google Ads Grant: AdWords Draft Illustration
 
Write your first ad using targeted keywords from your list of keywords. You can see how I highlighted my keywords in my Google ads here:
Google Ads Grant: AdWords Draft Illustration
 
You can download the word document of this ad group and you can look down through the keywords and compare them to the two Google ads that I wrote.
 
I made sure that my Google ads include a call to action, are compelling, answered questions that supporters may have, and used keywords from my list.
 
You write three or four Google ads for your ad group, you can watch and see how they perform over three or four weeks. If one of them simply as performing at all you can delete it, or choose to edit it so that it’s more compelling or is better linked to your keywords.
 
Paste your new ads and keywords into your account by following the instructions in Chapter 11, Guide 33: Pasting your first sample campaign into AdWords to complete the application process.
For example, just a week ago I posted three Google ads about chapter 10 from this book. I usually light to let ads run the first time for three or four weeks, but you can see in the first week how well these three ads are working.
 
By putting my cursor over the little bubble above "Approved" it will tell me how my ads are performing. The top ad has a low click through rate of only 0.77% and it says that it hasn’t been showing very often because of its low ad rank. This compares with the third ad which has a click through rate of 4.65%.
Google Ads Grant: AdWords Draft Illustration
 
Armed with this information I can do some research (using tools that we will cover in chapters 14 and 15) and make a decision to improve this ad to see if it performs better—or simply delete it.
 
In summary, you want to write your Google ads using these guidelines:
1. Your Google Ads, keywords and landing pages all relate to each other.
 
2. Answer a question that a person searching the Internet may be asking.
 
3. Is written compellingly.
 
4. Has a call to action.
 
5. Uses keywords from the keyword list in its ad group.
 
6. Bear in mind that headline 1 is the most important part of your ad—it will drive people to reading the rest of your ad and even looking.
 
7. Use your headline 2 for supporting information that complements headline 1.
 
8. The 80 character description can be your creative, compelling copy that will drive them to act—i. e. click through to your landing page and buy something, donate to your organization, or sign up for your newsletter. So your description should not only be compelling but it should tell them exactly what you want to do.
 
9. Display URL: Google AdWords allows you to put two 15 character ‘path fields’ into the display URL. The display URL is not the actual working URL for your ad; you’re working URL is hidden in the background. This display URL is just to allow you to get more description into your ad. You can use these as a support so that people viewing your ad can see exactly where they’re going to be taken. This can give them confidence that they’re going to be sent to the exact place they want to go. You can also use these two 15 character paths to get a few more of your top forming keywords into your ad.
 
There are a few resources to help you get started writing Google ads:
 
Wordstream Guide: Everything You Need to Know about Creating Expanded Text Ads.
http://www.wordstream.com/download/docs/expanded_text_ads_guide_cheat_sheet.pdf
 
7 Best Practices for Google’s NEW Expanded Text Ads
http://www.wordstream.com/blog/ws/2016/07/26/expanded-text-ad-best-practices
 
So we have 45 more characters in AdWords text ads… Now what?
http://searchengineland.com/45-characters-adwords-text-ads-now-254659
 
How to Get Ahead with AdWords Expanded Text Ads
http://growthpilots.com/how-to-get-ahead-adwords-expanded-text-ads/
 
Copyright © 2016, Tim Magee
 
 
Next week, in the next chapter (Chapter 13) we’re going to learn how to manage and begin optimizing your new AdWords Account.
 
Enjoy organizing your first full campaign. See you next week.
 
Want to enjoy the Chapter 12 AdWords learning process with a live teacher? See the online, teacher-led course behind this chapter.
 
Get free access to the Beginner’s Guide to Online Donations here. Each of the 14 chapters includes 3 individual, step-by-step guides to boosting online fundraising: 42 guides in total. See the syllabus.
Get the online donations book button to Learn About Google Ads
Copyright © 2016, Tim Magee
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