ROARlocal Ecommerce Agency

How to Set up the Perfect Google AdWords Campaign in 3 Hours

How to setup a google adwords campaign. I’ve worked in the Paid Traffic industry for over 8 years. I’ve looked after pay-per-click accounts for all sorts of businesses, from giant blue-chips to tiny start-ups. No matter the size of the company, the number of employees or the weight of the budget, I always hear the same three concerns when people first get in touch….

  1. I just don’t have time to set it all up.
  2. I don’t get it.
  3. It’s going to cost me a flipping fortune!

In this blog, I’m going to show that with just a few hours and with absolutely no prior knowledge, you can set up a really successful Google AdWords account that will increase your business’s profits. Huzzah!

9.30 am to 10.30am: Setting Up

Creating an Account

  1. The first thing you’ll need is a cup of tea. Aaah.
  2. Secondly, a Gmail address. If you don’t have one, head here to set one up.
  3. Thirdly, sign up for Google AdWords using your Gmail address. Select the options ticked in the image below.
how to set up a google adwords campaign
how to set up a google adwords campaign
  1. On the next page, simply choose your Time Zone Country and Time Zone and choose the right Currency.
  2. Click on the ‘Sign in to your AdWords account’ and ta da! You’ve now got your very own AdWords account.

Campaigns and Ad Groups

  1. Next up, we need some Campaigns. These are an organisational tool (like folders) and it’s really important to set up a different one for each main section of your site. So if you’ve got a shoe shop, set up a High Heels Campaign, a Sandals Campaign, a Boots Campaign, a Children’s Shoes Campaign etc. Click on ‘Create your first campaign’ to get going.
  2. The next page is a list of settings for your Campaigns. Leave them all as they are except for:
    1. Change the Campaign name to a relevant one (e.g. High Heels)
    2. For Type, select ‘Search Network Only’
    3. For Networks, untick ‘Include search partners’
    4. Choose your Locations carefully. If you’re a shoe shop in Bath, maybe it’d be a good idea to use Somerset as your location so your ads only get shown to people in or searching for stuff in Somerset? If you’re selling online and deliver to Europe, you might want to choose Europe as your location?
    5. You’ll also need a budget for each Campaign. There are lots of complicated formulas for working out how much to spend on AdWords, but really, unless you have access to target advertising profit margin figures and suchlike, it’s about what you feel comfortable with, especially when you’re just starting out and testing the pay-per-click water. So, take a total daily amount that you’re happy to spend on driving the right people to your site, and divide it by the amount of Campaigns you’re going to have. Stick that figure in the Budget box. Once you’re live and gathering some data from AdWords, you’ll need to refine this. We’ll do a follow up ‘Optimisation’ post soon!
    6. After you’ve saved your first one, head to the Campaigns tab in the top green bar and create as many Campaigns as your website needs.
how to setup a google adwords campaign
how to setup a google adwords campaign
how to setup a google adwords campaign
how to setup a google adwords campaign

Setting up Ad Groups

  1. Ad Groups are another organisation tool, like a sub folder, that sit within each Campaign. So within my High Heels Campaign, I’d have a series of Ad Groups: ‘Leather’, ‘Red’, ‘Stilettos’ and in my Children’s Shoes Campaign I’d have different Ad Groups: ‘First Shoes’, ‘Crawlers’ etc.
  2. The settings that you’ve chosen for your Campaign will be applied to all the Ad Groups within it.
  3. To create Ad Groups, click in to each Campaign to get to the Ad Groups tab, and click ‘New ad group’ until you’ve done all of the Ad Groups required within each of your Campaigns.

10.30am to 11.30am: Keywords and Ads


  1. Peckish? Time for a quick slice of cake I think. Nom.
  2. Each one of those Ad Groups you’ve set up needs filling up with some keywords. Keywords are words or phrases that people type in to Google’s search bar. Your next job is to try and find all of the keywords that people will be typing in when they’re looking for exactly what’s being offered on your website.
  3. The best way to do this is to head to the ‘Tools and Analysis’ tab in the top green bar and then choose ‘Keyword Tool’ from the dropdown.
  4. Beware! You can spend hours and hours in this tool and it’s not always time well spent, particularly as once your account is up and running, lovely old Google will provide a fantastic list of additional keywords that you might want to add. So, to start, for each of the Ad Groups that you chose earlier, type the main phrase in to the Tool. Select the settings shown in the image below.
how to setup a google adwords campaign
how to setup a google adwords campaign
  1. A list of keywords will appear. Tick the ones that are really, really relevant to your business, and then select ‘Add to account’ and ‘My Keyword Ideas’. Choose the right Campaign and Ad Group for those keywords. You might only find a couple of keywords and you don’t really want more than 10 per Ad Group.
  2. Keep going for all of your Ad Groups.
  3. Once you’ve got all of your keywords, click ‘Campaigns’ in the top green bar, then click on ‘Keywords’ in the tab set. Select all of your keywords, go to ‘Edit’ and select ‘Change Max CPC bids’ from the drop down. Change your bids to £1.00. This might seem a bit random, but once you’re live, Google will give you more details about your bids. They’ll tell you if that’s too low for your ad to appear on the first page (in which case you can increase the bid, or delete it if that’s going to make it very expensive) etc. The budget you set when you created your Campaigns will stop the spend going beyond what you’re comfortable with.
  4. Again, select all of your keywords, go to ‘Edit’ and select ‘Change Match Type’ from the drop down. Change your match type from Broad match to Exact match. This means that your ads will only appear to people who search for the exact keywords you’ve chosen which will improve your relevancy and quality score (a formula that Google use to work out which position on the results page to show your ad in). Again, we’ll talk about how best to utilise the other match types in an ‘Optimisation’ blog.


  1. Next up we need some ads. Every single Ad Group you’ve created needs 3 ads. Click in to a Campaign, then an Ad Group, then to the Ads tab and then ‘New Ad’.
  2. Each one of the 3 ads needs to:
    1. Include the keywords within the Ad Group, preferably within the Headline and repeated in the Description and the Display URL.
    2. Be really well written. Spelling mistakes or punctuation errors will put people right off.
    3. Have a destination URL that lands to the right page. If you’re writing an ad for your Birkenstock sandals page, then use the URL for that exact page.
    4. Then, pick a different focus for each of your 3 ads. Each of the focus points should be designed to really promote your product or offering, to make your ad stand out from the page, to really drive the right people to click on it and to repel the people that won’t engage with your site once they get there. The focus for one ad could be price (e.g. ‘10% off today!), for another it could be calls to action (e.g. ‘Phone now’) or USPs (e.g. ‘the biggest shoe collection in Bath’).
    5. Stuck? Have a look at what your competitors are doing. Type your keywords into and see what else looks good.

11.30am to 12.30pm: Tracking & Billing

  1. Treat yourself to a toilet break. Aaaand relax.
  2. Conversion tracking code needs to be added to pages on your site that people will land on after they’ve bought or signed up for something. These are typically ‘thank you’ pages. You might have more than one of these. Set up a new conversion for each page. Once you’re live, the conversion stats will tell you how many people have landed on those pages, next to the keyword and ad that led them there. Brilliant!
  3. Go to Tools and Analysis in the top green bar, then choose ‘Conversions’ from the drop down. Give each conversion a unique name and select ‘Web page’. Save & continue. Choose the relevant conversion category and leave all other other settings as they are. Save & continue. Either copy the code on to the right web page yourself, or email it via AdWords. Double check it’s working using Google Tag Assistant.
  4. You’re ready to go live! All you need to do is input your credit card details. Head to Billing in the top green bar, then choose ‘Billing Preferences’ from the drop down and follow the steps. I recommend ‘Automatic Billing’ so that your ads will run without you having to do anything manually.
  5. Almost as soon as this bit’s done, your account will be live. Exciting!
  6. The next steps are to add on all the extras like Location Extensions and a Google Plus link, understand what the data means and what you can do to improve your account’s performance and how to keep your profits high. But that’s another blog….

Thanks for reading,


P.S. If you get stuck with any of the above, get in touch with me and I’ll help 🙂

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