The hard truth about advertising on Google


I frequently get asked by small businesses if I’ll help with their paid search engine campaigns (ads at the top and bottom of Google search results). My response is to share my knowledge but explain I can’t take their business.

In general, freelancers or agencies charge for managing paid campaigns by taking a cut of your ad budget, and they usually have a minimum fee. If you had a budget of, say, £5,000/month, they might take 10% (£500). But if you had a budget of £200, they’d still charge you £500 to cover their time.
This might seem unfair, but running effective campaigns takes time, expertise and often expensive software. At the very minimum, your expert would need to research the market, then target audiences, competitors and keywords. They’d need to create effective landing pages and matching ad copy that gets clicks. They’d need to take advantage of formatting options to boost your ad rank and ensure it isn’t clicked by people who aren’t in your target audience. The list goes on…

This means small businesses often can’t afford to pay someone to run a campaign but can’t do it themselves, making it increasingly harder to compete with their larger counterparts.

So what can a small business do? It’s time to start learning. I’d recommend checking the Google Digital Garage website – they have some excellent resources to start you off for as little as £2/day.


Scott Bowler is a digital marketer and developer with over 12 years’ commercial experience. He works in conjunction with WW! to deliver digital solutions to businesses across Shropshire.

  • Published on 17th December 2018

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