Targeting  methods on Google Search Ads


Search ads Network and How it Works

Search ads Network is a Google advertising program that helps businesses connect with customers who are searching for products and services like theirs. Advertisers can create text and display ads that appear on, as well as millions of other sites across the web. When someone searches on for a product or service that your business offers, your ad could appear next to the search results. With Search Network your ads can be shown outside searches as well, which means whenever someone searches any search query on third party sites who have used Google’s search bar to power their sites ,your ad can also be shown there. For e.g. many news websites or players like AOL use Googles’ search engine bar on their site too, with Search network we can expand to network sites too and show ads there as well.

The Benefits of Using Search Ads

Many people are unsure about the benefits of search advertising and whether or not it is worth their time and money. However, if done correctly, search advertising can be a great way to get quality traffic to your website. Here are some of the benefits: 

1) Increased Traffic: One of the main benefits of search advertising is that it can increase traffic to your website. By targeting specific keywords and ad campaigns, you can reach potential customers who are looking for what you have to offer. This can lead to increased sales and leads. 

2) Targeted Ads: Another benefit of search advertising is that it allows you to target specific individuals or groups of people. This means that you can reach people who are likely to be interested in what you have to say. This can help increase your chances of converting those visitors into buyers.

3) Integrated Marketing: Search advertising can be used to help promote your company in other ways. For example, if you have a Blog or an Ecommerce store, search ads can be combined with social media and email marketing to help drive additional traffic to your site.

4) Instant Response: Search ads can help you gain access to customers instantly. This is especially useful if you are selling products that are not available in the store, such as a virtual service or downloadable product.

How Targeting Works in Search Ads

When you search for something on the web, you’re likely to see ads for similar items near the top of the results page. That’s because search engines like Google use a targeting feature to show you ads that they think are most relevant to what you’re looking for. Targeting works by figuring out what you’re interested in and then showing you ads related to those interests. For example, if you search for “socks” on Google, you might see ads from retailers that sell socks. But the real question arises how does an advertiser target using these options ?

Let us analyse targeting options one by one:

Location Based Targeting

Are you looking to target people living in a specific location with your search advertising? Maybe you’re a business looking to attract customers in a certain city or region. Whatever the case, using demographic and location targeting can help you reach the right people with your ads.

Google lets you target people by their location in two ways: first, by targeting people who live in a certain area, and second, by targeting people who have searched for terms related to a particular location. For example, if you’re a restaurant in San Francisco, you could target people living in San Francisco who have searched for terms like “San Francisco restaurants” or “best restaurants in San Francisco.”

Location targeting is especially useful for businesses with a physical presence.

Language Targeting

When you target your search ads, you can specify the language in which you want them to appear. This can be a great way to ensure that your ad reaches people who are likely to understand it. There are a few things to keep in mind when targeting by language. First, make sure that you use the correct spelling and accents for the language you’re targeting. Also, remember that some languages are spoken in more than one country, so you may want to target multiple countries if your ad is specific to one region. Finally, keep in mind that not everyone speaks English. If your product or service is aimed at non-English speakers, make sure to target their language as well.

Ad scheduling options:

There are a few different ad scheduling options that you can target when running your search engine advertising campaigns. You can choose to have your ads show only during certain time periods of the day, on certain days of the week, or only when users are searching for specific terms.

Time and day targeting can be especially useful if you want to target people during the times when they are most likely to be interested in what you have to offer. For example, if you are a retailer, you may want to target ads towards people during the evening when they are likely to be shopping online.

Keyword Targeting:

Keyword-based targeting can be a great way to reach people who are interested in what you have to offer. The first step is to come up with a list of relevant keywords. You can come up with this list by doing some research on your own or by using a tool like Google AdWords Keyword Planner. Once you have a list of keywords, you need to decide which ones you want to target in your campaign. You’ll want to target keywords that are relevant to your business and that have high search volumes. You’ll also want to research your competition. What keywords are they targeting and understand how to outrank your competition with competitive bidding.

Also, while you are targeting keywords. When you’re creating a campaign, one of the things you have to decide is which match type to use for each keyword. There are three types: broad match, phrase match, and exact match.

Broad match is the default type; your ad will show when someone searches for your keyword or a variation of it. Phrase match is more restrictive; your ad will show when someone searches for your keyword in that order, with no other words between them. Exact match is the most restrictive; your ad will only show when someone searches for your keyword exactly as you’ve typed it in.

Which type you should use depends on what you’re trying to achieve. Broad match is good for general traffic, while phrase and exact match are better if you’re targeting a specific audience. You can also use different match types together to get even more specific. We will see more details about this keyword match types in our future modules

Dynamic Search Ads

Dynamic search ads are a great way to target potential customers who are looking for specific products or services on Google. With dynamic search ads, you can target keywords that are related to what your business offers. You can also target specific websites where you want your ads to appear.

Dynamic search ads are automatically generated based on the content of the website they’re targeting. This means that you don’t need to create separate ad campaigns or groups for each set of keywords. You can simply select the websites where you want your ads to appear, and Google will take care of the rest.

Audience Segment Marketing

When you’re creating a campaign, it’s important to think about your target audience. Who are you trying to reach? There are many different ways to target your audience, and it’s important to select the right ones for your campaign. Audience Segment Marketing further has multiple options such as Demographics, Affinity, In Marketing, Your data and Combined segments targeting.

Demographic Targeting

Demographic targeting is a form of online advertising that allows businesses to target their ads to specific groups of people. This type of advertising can be used to reach people based on their age, gender, location, income, or interests. One of the benefits of using demographic targeting is that it allows businesses to focus their advertising efforts on people who are most likely to be interested in their product or service. It also helps businesses save money by avoiding the need to target a general audience. Another advantage of demographic targeting is that it can help businesses learn more about their customers. By tracking the responses to their ads, businesses can gain a better understanding of what types of products and services people are interested in. This information can then be used to improve the effectiveness of future marketing campaigns.

Affinity Audience Targeting

 Affinity audience targeting is a form of advertising that allows businesses to target their ads to people based on their interests. This type of targeting can be used to reach people who are already interested in what you have to offer, which can result in a higher conversion rate than traditional advertising methods.

There are several ways to target affinity audiences, including using keywords or interest categories in search engine ads, or by creating custom audiences based on website visits or email lists. Once you’ve created your audience, you can target them with specific ads that appeal to them.

Affinity audience targeting can be a great way to reach more qualified leads and convert them into customers. If you know what interests your target market has, you can use affinity audience targeting to create ads that speak directly to them.

In Market Audience:

In Market Audience is a way to target ads to people who are actively looking to buy a product or service. This is done by using Google Ads and other platforms to target people who have recently searched for terms related to what you’re selling. For example, if you’re a dentist, you could target people who have searched for “dental implants” in the last few days. This ensures that your ad reaches people who are actually interested in what you’re selling, which can lead to more conversions.

Search Ads Remarketing

Before we deep dive into Search Remarketing, let us first understand what is Remarketing.

Remarketing is a powerful tool that can help you reach people who have already visited your website. With remarketing, you can show ads to these people based on what they’ve done on your site.

For example, if someone visits your website but doesn’t buy anything, you can show them a special offer ad to encourage them to come back and buy. Or, if someone visits your site but leaves without signing up for your mailing list, you can show them an ad asking them to sign up.

Remarketing helps you reach people who are interested in what you’re selling, and it can be a great way to increase sales and conversions.

With regards to Search ads we have a special targeting called, Remarketing Lists for Search Ads (RLSA) which is a Google Ads feature that lets you target your existing customers on Google search with specific ads. You can create remarketing lists of people who have visited your website or engaged with you in some other way, like clicking on one of your ads or subscribing to your newsletter. Then, you can show them customized ads when they’re searching on Google.

Google has found that people who have been previously exposed to your brand are twice as likely to convert as people who haven’t. RLSA targeting can help you reach people who are already interested in what you offer, so you can show them relevant ads and convert them into customers. So, using RLSA can help you increase your conversion rate and get more leads and sales from people who are already interested in your products or services.

There are a few things to keep in mind when setting up RLSA campaigns: 

– Make sure that your remarketing lists are well-segmented and target the right audience. If you are running a PPC campaign, make sure that your remarketing lists are being served to the right audience.

When you create a Remarketing List for Search Ads, you’ll target anyone who’s visited your website in the last 30 days. You can also choose to target people who’ve visited specific pages on your website, or who’ve made a purchase within a certain amount of time.

Customer List Targeting

If you’re looking to target a specific group of customers, one way to do that is by creating a customer list in Google Ads. You can add customers to your list based on their location, age, gender, or other factors. 

Once you’ve created your customer list, you can then create an ad campaign specifically for that group of customers. This will help you ensure that your ads are seen by the people who are most likely to be interested in what you’re selling. 

Creating a customer list can be a great way to improve your ROI on Google Ads campaigns. To get started, create a new audience and select “Customer list targeting” and upload your list to create a list and remarket them.

Similar Audience Targeting

Google Ads offers the ability to target similar audiences to your current customers. This feature allows you to create a similar audience list based on people who have previously visited your website or engaged with you on other channels, such as YouTube, Gmail, or Google Maps. Similar audiences can be used as a targeting method for your ad campaigns, and you can also use them as a source for creating remarketing lists. 

When creating a similar audience list, you’ll need to provide some information about the people you want to target. You’ll need to choose the type of audience you want to target (for example, people who have visited your website in the last 30 days), and then provide some additional information about that audience. This could include things like interests, demographics, and behaviors.

Combined Segment Targeting

The power of combined segment targeting in search ads can’t be overstated. By targeting specific combinations of demographics, interests, and behaviors, you can fine-tune your campaigns to achieve even better results. For example, if you’re a retailer selling women’s clothing, you can target women who are interested in fashion and live in a certain area. This way, your ads will only show to people who are likely to be interested in what you’re selling.

In conclusion, search ads offer a variety of ways to target your audience. You can target by demographics, location, and even specific audience segments. You can also use remarketing lists for search ads, or RLSA, to target people who have already visited your site. And, finally, you can target people based on the keywords they are searching for. This gives you a lot of control over who sees your ads and helps you reach the right people with your message.

In conclusion, search ads are a great way to target potential customers. You can target by demographics, location, and audience segments. You can also use remarketing lists for search ads (RLSA) to target people who have visited your website. And, finally, you can target people based on the keywords they are searching for. These targeting options make search ads a very effective way to reach your target audience.

Let us now look at some best practice for Search campaigns

What you need to include within the search ads is the following:

– A final URL, that is, where users will arrive after clicking on the ad.

– Heading 1 – This is the first thing seen in the ad, is the most likely to grab the user’s attention, start with a USP of your product and service.

– Heading 2: The second heading you write,, think about your benefits and how you are going to satisfy the needs of the possible client.

– Display URL, gives the user more information about where they will go

– Description –  use it to tell people more about your company, products, and services.


Here are some tips for creating ads:

Repeat the keyword in the ad: If you already defined your keywords, it is worth repeating them in the ad. In this way, you are reaffirming the search and potential customers will identify that on your page they could find what they need immediately.

Do not make spelling mistakes: By making misspellings you can lose credibility. Thoroughly review your ad before publishing it and make sure that it is fully understood.

If you have already made the mistake, you can go back to Google ads, pause the ad and edit it.

Use the specific lexicon for each country: Depending on where you are going to publish your ad geographically, you must take into account two things: Write it in the language of that country and use the specific lexicon.

Always add a call to action:

In this way, you are encouraging your potential customer to perform the desired action. You can use phrases such as discover more, visit us, see products, or similar.

Monitor goals and performance:

You must carefully monitor and analyze your campaigns so that you can assess which ad was most effective, which keywords worked best, and which brought you the most conversions or sales. So, the next time you run a campaign you can make the most of your budget.

To obtain this information within the Google Ads platform you can enter Tools and Settings. Clicking there will take you to conversions. This way you can track specific conversions.

Since now you have learnt about Search ads, go ahead and apply these best pratices and run your first search campaign

Now that we have sen search, let us also analyze how different is Display advertising 

What are the targeting methods on Google Display?


Google Display network is one of most widely used display ads for many brands across the globe. The Display Network is an option which serves over a trillion impressions each month and it is served to over 1 billion users monthly. It is a massive advertising tool that has the ability to reach more than 90% of Internet users. However, within the wide catalog of advertising campaigns that Google Ads makes available to advertisers, the Display Network is one of the most affordable networks to reach wide audience.

In order to learn a little more about Display advertising campaigns, we have compiled the most relevant information about this form below. 

What is the Google Display Network and how does it work?

The Google Display Network is a type of  campaign that helps brands promote themselves through graphic ads on the Internet. You could say that it is a broadcast network that has more than 2 million websites to display its ads.

Thanks to this, it is possible to publish targeted graphic ads on websites, show videos on YouTube, advertise through Gmail, as well as on mobile devices and applications.

In addition to the great diffusion capacity of the Google Ads Display Network, this advertising format has been designed with the aim of making it easier to find the right audience. Its various targeting options offer advertisers the opportunity to promote content to potential customers in the right places and at the right times.

What are the targeting methods on Google Display?

You can use different types of targeting methods on Google Display such as where your advertisement will be seen or who will see them? The best part of these methods is that you can use more than one targeting method in a particular ad group such as locations or keywords. This can be achieved through several targeting options and segments. We will learn more about it in the below section.

However, please note that most of the targeting options discussed earlier in case of search ads can be used exactly the same way in Display ads as well.

Let us now understand some specific targeting options that we can use  in Display & Video campaigns

Now, let’s move on to the different orientations and segments that we can use in Display & Video campaigns

Contextual Keyword Targeting:

The first option we have is keywords targeting. With this option, your ads are shown  based on the content on the website containing those specific keywords, you can insert keywords you would like to show ads for For example, if we use the keyword “Hotel on the coast”, our ads will show  besides content related to hotels on the coast. This includes blog articles about hotels on the coast, news, among others.

Remember that with this advertising type or segment we are concentrating on the context and not when someone searches, this type of advertising is great for brands who wish to build brand recall and showcase the ad whenever someone is reading content related to their industry or topic. 

Audiences Targeting:

The second option we have is audience interest targeting. The way audience targeting works here is a little different than search ads. This is where we show our ads based on people’s past behavior. These options allow us to show ads to a type of individual based on the content they search for or consume.

We may use an audience or affinity audience to display advertisements targeted to your areas of interest. For example, we may target people who are interested in sports and fitness. This means that our ads are shown to users with these interests, even if they are not viewing content related to sports and fitness. We use an audience or audience based on what people are interested in and not the content they see.

We can also use affinity audience targeting, this is similar to search ads, in this kind of targeting Google has determined that these people are actively looking to buy a product or service. For example, using the motor vehicle audience allows us to show ads to people who are looking to buy a car.

And we can also show the ads to people on our remarketing list. That is, we can show the ads to people who have visited our website but did not convert, or people who have interacted with a specific product in the past. Again it works the same way that we discussed in the past, but this targeting works with banner ads instead of showcasing search ads.

Demographic Targeting:

The third option is by demographic group. This type of targeting or segment allows us to show our ads based on the gender and age of people, among other options. For example, we might choose to specifically target people between the ages of 35 and 44.

We can also choose parental status and family income. These data can be real or inferred. If someone has created a Google account and entered their date of birth, the company will use this information to show ads.

However, Google uses other methods to infer the demographic group. For example, based on the websites we view, Google can estimate our age. So, we can show ads to those people who might have not declared that age, but with machine learning today it is possible to guess it and target them exclusively. This targeting is applicable to all business, especially those who are looking to showcase their product or service to a specific gender or age group. 

Topics Targeting:

The fourth option is through themes or what we call is topic targeting. In this type of targeting method or segmentation, the ads are shown on websites of the display network based on Google’s classification.

Topics are similar to keywords but are broader. For example, we may decide to show ads on the topic of healthy eating, and our ads will automatically be shown on sites that Google has classified as related to healthy eating or sites where they publish lots of articles around healthy eating, in this method we don’t have control on which websites our ads will be shown but we can choose from a list of predefined topic outlined by Google. 

Placement Targeting:

Finally, we have the targeting method where we can choose a web property where our ads can be shown. Here we decided to show our display ads on specific websites. For example, if we want our ads to appear on the New York Times site, we can select it to make that happen.

Depending on the website, we may sometimes select sections of the website. For example, entertainment content within YouTube. We also have the option to display our ads on specific mobile applications. With placement targeting you get an opportunity to select 

  • Website
  • YouTube channel
  • Youtube video
  • Mobile apps
  • Mobile app category 

Any website that has opted for Google to showcase ads can be selected through this targeting option. It is one of the most effective targeting methods as you can show ads where your audience is 

Device & network Targeting: 

Device targeting is a very useful tool in Google Ads that allows you to choose which types of ads are displayed on which devices. By using device targeting, you can easily control where, when, and on which device the ads will be shown. With PC, Mobile, or Tablet, you can easily control the performance of your campaign.

Consider targeting devices & networks- specifically, those used for displaying advertisements. By tailoring ads to specific devices, you can create an advertising experience that is more effective and engaging. 

One of the most effective ways to target devices is to use Device and network targeting options. Display ads are designed to be shown on screens large and small, so they can be targeted towards users across a variety of device types. By including device targeting in your ad strategy, you can ensure that your ads are seen by the right people and at the right time. 

Additionally, by tailoring your ad content specifically for mobile devices, you can increase engagement rates. Unique ad formats and animations are popular among mobile users, so incorporating them into your campaigns will help you stand out from the competition.

You can also choose to target specific mobile networks and showcase ads to people who use various services. For e.g. in India we can target Airtel, Vodafone and Jio users in Google ads, a lot of gaming companies use this option to target users

Other targeting options

Among other targeting options of  Display & Video campaign we have Location, Similar audience, Combined segment and we can also schedule our ads for specific day and time, these options work exactly the same as Search campaigns

Advantages of display campaigns:

Running a display campaign has its advantages and disadvantages. Among the advantages:

Higher reach

We can reach people who are not aware of the existence of your products or services. If we think about a search campaign, someone enters a search term in order to see your ads, they have to be searching for something. While a display campaign means that we can show our ads that are surfing the internet, they are not actively searching.

Build ads across buying cycle

We can reach people in different buying cycles through the use of different targets or segments. It is possible to reach people so that they begin to recognize your brand or we can show the ads to targets who are searching for certain products or services. The Display Network provides opportunities to increase brand awareness, which is not limited to the use of branded keywords like the ones we can use in our search campaigns.

Multiple format of ads

With Display campaigns, we can also create attractive ads in multiple formats including responsive ads with text, images, and HTML5

Generate Brand awareness

People who see your ad may not be ready to buy from you yet, but they may remember your brand when they are ready to make a purchase. Display ads are a great for increasing brand awareness

Multiple targeting options

Like we saw earlier, with Display ads you can target your audience by demographics, interests, and even behaviors. This allows you to get your message in front of the right people, which can result in more sales and leads.

Cost effective

Display advertising is a cost-effective way to reach a large number of people, since the targeting here is a little broad Display ads are much cheaper than a search ad. 

Disadvantages of Display campaigns:

The main disadvantages of Display campaigns are:

Not ideal for Conversions/Sales

They are less likely to lead to direct action like conversions on our website. This is why we recommend considering display ads for brand awareness if you’re just starting out with display, and later remarket those audience who show interest, with remarketing campaigns you can expect the audience to be more primed as they know about you and these  clicks are more likely to result in conversions than other targeting methods

Design skills

Another point to consider is that you will need to create additional ads. In many cases, this means creating ads in multiple formats. We recommend investing in a good designer to create your ads so they are visually appealing.

Disruptive user experience. 

When a user is browsing a website, and an ad pops up, it can be annoying and distracting. Display ads hamper the user experience and many people ignore them.  This is why many websites use pop-up blocking  or ad blocking software.

Less Click through rate

Display ads are also known as interruption advertising since its interrupts user behaviour in middle of an article,app or game by showcasing an ad, which is the reason such ads also receive less click through 

Difficult to track effectiveness

Difficult to track how effective display advertising is since most display ads are used for branding campaign, and some users after they have seen the ad multiple times, will remember and later come to website and purchase, As a brand manager you need to measure what is the impact of Display ads, but practically it’s difficult to track the effectiveness of the same

Other best practice for Display ads

Responsive display ads:

With responsive display ads, you can easily upload your assets such as videos, logos, images, headlines, and descriptions. With that, Google will generate advertisement combinations automatically for Gmail, YouTube, apps, and websites. It can be used in display campaign.

How to optimize the campaign after its launch?

It’s easier to measure results on the fly when ads are already running. The good thing is that Google ads give you the possibility to increase or decrease the investment after launching the campaign. Or in turn, increase or decrease the cost per click.

What to do when the costs are very high?

To optimize your campaign, you can implement the following alternatives:

– Add more negative words.

– Improve the quality score on the quality of the ads.

– Decrease the maximum CPC.

– Review the call to action.

– Pause the ad if it doesn’t work.

– Review account settings.

– Carry out a geolocated campaign.