Google Ads for SaaS: The Winning Strategies for 2024

Shiyam Sunder
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Shiyam Sunder
Google Ads for SaaS: The Winning Strategies for 2024

Contents

Believe it or not, Google Ads can be a huge game changer for your SaaS business. 

While the SaaS industry is flourishing, so is the saturation level in this ever-competitive landscape. 

In today’s fast-changing era, it’s ideal for SaaS marketers to embrace the demand generation model and attract high-intent buyers.

The good news is that Google Ads lets you quickly reach potential buyers and convert them into paying customers. 

In this actionable guide, let’s learn how to create winning Google Ad strategies for your SaaS business.

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The Power of Google Ads for SaaS 

SaaS companies are betting big on Google Ads. According to recent data, companies like WordStream, IBM, and Adobe have spent over 80 million dollars on Google Ads in 2022. 

Don’t forget that Google has 91.4% of the search engine market share worldwide.

Do you wish to be left behind? No, right? Here are more reasons why Google Ads is a significant growth marketing channel for your SaaS business. Google allows you to run ad campaigns based on different audience parameters such as demographics, location, and search terms. 

Therefore, it’s an excellent platform to sell to your ideal customers with targeted messages. 

  • Start small and scale when you see returns. Google Ads is a low-risk, low-investment channel that helps you fight it out with bigger competitors.
  • Enjoy the flexibility to run multiple campaigns and optimise outcomes. 
  • Measure campaign results with ease and accuracy. 
  • Get deeper insights into your customers’ likes and dislikes. 
  • Experiment with varying ad formats to reach prospects cost-efficiently.

Crafting a Winning Google Ads Strategy for SaaS

The best way to start building a Google Ads strategy is to understand your SaaS business. Here are some vital steps:

Define Your Campaign Objectives

Start by documenting what you wish to accomplish from a Google Ad campaign. 

  • What key success metrics are you tracking: demo bookings, free trials, sign-ups, MQLs, etc.?
  • Now, determine how much you can spend acquiring each lead or customer. 
  • Estimate the total lifetime revenue you can expect from each new customer.

Develop Audience Personas

Building ideal buyer personas is essential to building your Google Ads strategy. It helps you customise campaign messages to your audience’s needs. 

For instance, if you’re selling a billing tool, you must target accounting professionals, freelancers, and small business owners. 

But if it’s for a B2C SaaS company like Airbnb, you must think in an all-new direction.  

Research your industry and study your most potential buyers. 

Then, document prospect details, such as age, location, profession, goals, interests, and preferences. 

Conduct Keyword Research

Effective keyword research is another cornerstone for a successful SaaS Google Ads strategy. 

  • The first step is brainstorming niche topics and popping niche search terms in a tool like the Google Keyword Planner. 
  • Enlist and segment keywords based on search intent and audience personas. 
  • Look for commercial and transactional keywords with a high search volume and low CPC/CPA. Here are excellent examples of high-intent keywords: “buy invoicing software, “best invoicing software for small business
(Source)

Write Compelling Copy 

Craft concise titles and descriptions to showcase your product USP. Don’t forget to include an irresistible call-to-action that gets prospects to click on your ad. Take a look at this example:

Set up Conversion Tracking for Measuring Succes

A conversion tracking mechanism helps SaaS marketers to observe and analyse key campaign metrics. 

Here are common data points to measure:

  • A phone call that generates from your Google ad
  • A website action such as a purchase, a button click, or a form-fill
  • App downloads and app installs

Once you know what matters most, track it with the following process:

  • Create a conversion action that defines the key metric
  • Add the relevant tracking tag to your website
  • Go back to your Google Ads account to check your tracking tag

Structuring Your Google Ads Campaigns 

Creating a SaaS Google Ads campaign structure can seem daunting. But it’s not. I’ll now show you innovative ways to organise your SaaS Ad campaigns

A Google Ads framework helps you control how each ad triggers and appears in the search engines. 

The exciting part is that Google’s ML allows you to create complex ad structures that align campaign results with business goals. 

Here are the critical elements of a Google Ads account structure:

  • Campaigns: Every Google Ads campaign structure has a few campaigns around your main topics and keywords. Hence, campaigns are at the top of your Google Ads pyramid.
  • Ad Groups: Ad groups help you to divide your campaigns into specific topics. Each ad group has about 10-20 keywords. 
  • Keywords: Keywords are critical to your campaign structure. They fall under different ad groups. Every keyword has parameters like Match Type, CPC, and quality score. 
  • Landing Pages: Landing pages carry a core offer or message that helps convert prospects into leads or customers. A click directs the user to a landing page where they can see the offer benefits and take an action
  • Negative Keywords: This list helps you to weed out all the irrelevant keywords from your campaigns. For instance, “free invoicing software” is a negative keyword if your invoicing software is paid. Therefore, running an ad on such a keyword is wasteful.
  • Ad Text: Ad copy is integral to your campaign structure. Each ad group has 2-3 ads and texts that direct the user to a single landing page. You must follow Google’s Adwords policies while writing your ad text. 

Organising Your Google Ads SaaS Campaign 

There are various interesting ways to organise your ad campaigns. But you have to choose one that suits your SaaS business. 

  • Product Offerings: When you have multiple products, promoting them using different campaigns or ad groups is ideal. But if you have one product with varying price points, you can divide your ad groups based on price points.
  • Location: If you’re targeting product buyers in different locations, cater to each segment with a separate ad group.
  • Target Audience: It’s best to create unique campaigns for different audience segments, such as small business owners, freelancers, accountants, etc

Budgeting and Bidding Strategies 

The right budgeting strategies help you control how much you’re spending on your SaaS Google Ads.

And just like in an auction, bidding allows you to tell Google how much you’re willing to pay for a click or an acquisition. Isn’t that fascinating?

Let’s now learn how to make the most of these two strategies to squeeze the most out of your Google Ad campaigns. 

Budget Allocation

Just like budgeting for household expenditure, you can cap how much you wish to spend on your Google Ad campaigns. Here are some budget types you need to know:

  • Daily Budgets: Google allows you to set a daily budget for each campaign. But there’s a catch. Google can spend less or more of this budget each day depending on the search traffic on a particular day. So, your spending will average out over the month. 
(Source)
  • Shared Budgets: This strategy allows you to allocate a single budget across many campaigns. 
  • Campaign Total Budgets: Helps you to set a cap on the total lifetime spend of a Google Ad campaign. 
  • Automated Rules: Automate your Google Ads account spending based on preset conditions. For instance, you can enable campaigns, pause campaigns, or change budgets depending on each campaign’s performance. 
  • Monthly Limits: Set a monthly spending limit on your Google Ads account. 

Bidding Strategies and Optimization

You can use manual or automated bidding strategies to achieve specific goals with your SaaS Google Ads campaigns. 

  • Target CPM: This strategy lets you bid the maximum you’re willing to pay for every thousand impressions. Target CPM is helpful when your goal is to maximise brand awareness.
  • Manual CPC (Cost Per Click): Set a maximum bid for each click on your ad. 
  • Maximise (Cost Per View): Bid for the most 30-second views on your video ads. 
  • Target CPA (Cost Per Acquisition): It automatically sets bids for the maximum possible conversions at a pre-set target CPA. 
  • Maximise Conversion Value: Set a maximum target return on ad spend, and Google will automatically help you get the highest possible conversion value.
  • Target ROAS (Return On Ad Spend): This strategy uses Google’s machine learning algorithms to adjust and optimise return on ad spend.

As you can see, Google gives you many bidding strategy options. Pick the ones or use a combination that aligns with your business objectives. 

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Know Your KPIs

Knowing your Google Ad campaigns' key performance indicators (KPIs) helps you monitor campaign performance and tweak strategies for optimum results. 

Important KPIs include Conversion Rate, Click Through Rate, Cost Per Click (CPC), Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC), Customer Lifetime Value (CLV), Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR), and Return on Ad Spend (ROAS).

At TripleDart, we use a combination of tools such as Growthnirvana, Google Ads, and Looker Studio to generate comprehensive reports for our clients. 

For an in-depth analysis, we create end-to-end reports with metrics at all levels, including campaign, location, ad group, pipeline, and channel.

Remarketing in SaaS

Remarketing is a powerful Google Ads feature that lets you connect with prospects who have already shown interest in your business. 

With the help of remarketing, a SaaS marketer can tag website visitors and show them relevant ads on different web platforms. 

By showing your campaign messages to “warm” prospects, you can multiply the chances of getting conversions from your Google Ads. Here are some interesting examples of how some SaaS companies benefited from remarketing in Google Ads:

  • Zendesk used remarketing to achieve a 1,317% ROI
  • Intel used it to drive a 30% increase in conversion rates 

Here are simple steps to set up and run a successful SaaS remarketing campaign:

  • Install the Google Ads tag on your website and track visitors to create your remarketing list. 
  • Customise your audience to target those who visited specific pages or performed certain actions. 
  • Create an exciting offer that’ll trigger an action or a purchase. 

Google Ads for SaaS: Insights from r/SaaS

Exploring community discussions on platforms like Reddit provides valuable insights into real-world experiences and strategies. Here’s a summary of a major discussion on r/SaaS regarding the effectiveness of Google Ads for SaaS products:

1. Mixed Results:

Users have varied experiences with Google Ads. Some find it ineffective due to high costs and poor traffic quality.

2. Preferred Alternatives:

Platforms like LinkedIn, Capterra, G2, Twitter, and Facebook are often preferred for better targeting and higher conversion rates.

3. Strategic Use:

Success with Google Ads requires thorough keyword research, competitor analysis, and effective remarketing strategies.

4. Expert Management:

Effective management of Google Ads demands expertise in data tracking, CRM integration, and sales funnel optimization.

5. High Costs:

Rising costs necessitate careful tracking of lifetime value (LTV) and customer acquisition costs (CAC) to ensure profitability.

6. Innovative Products:

Traditional Google Ads may not be suitable for highly innovative products. Instead, video and display ads might be more effective for raising awareness.

7. Data-Driven Approach:

A robust, data-driven approach, including continuous optimization and testing, is crucial for improving return on investment (ROI).

In summary, while Google Ads can be a useful tool for SaaS businesses, its success depends on strategic management and expertise. Many users find better results using alternative advertising platforms, highlighting the importance of choosing the right channel for your specific needs.

Scaling and Evolving Your SaaS Google Ads Strategy 

Scaling your SaaS Google Ads strategy is about making wise investment decisions. Monitor your campaigns to learn which keywords and campaigns are fetching the highest ROI in terms of net revenue. 

  • Conduct an ongoing opportunity analysis to put money into high-intent keywords. 
  • Expand to high-return geographical markets and audience segments. 

Final Thoughts

An effective Google Ads strategy is vital for SaaS marketing success. And it could become the go-to strategy to drive consistent revenue for your SaaS business

But it takes an arm and a leg to set up and implement a successful SaaS Google Ad strategy.

But don’t worry; at TripleDart, we’ve got you covered. With experience in managing $15 million in ad spend, our saas PPC team are ready to help you with end-to-end solutions. So, please feel free to get in touch with us

Shiyam Sunder
Shiyam Sunder
Co- Founder | Tripledart - Growth Startups

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