What are the differences between Google Ads and Google Ads Express?
While paid search has become an essential part of any web marketing strategy, not everyone can be a Google Ads expert. But Google’s advertising network has foreseen everything! Thanks to Google Adwords Express, it is possible to create a referencing campaign and to get your own sponsored links quickly and easily, even if you are an amateur in digital marketing. Of course, Google Ads Express being a very simplified tool, it will not be as powerful and impactful as Google Ads. So why use one rather than the other? What are the differences between the two ad networks? We explain it all to you now!
Google Ads Express: what is it and what is it for?
Google Ads Express: a simplified ad network
It is true that Google Ads can be impressive when you have no experience in creating ads. Between the different types of campaigns, the budget to be managed, the bidding system, the choice of keywords, the settings and the analysis of the campaigns, it is easy to lose your head! Google Ads Express has been developed to allow small and medium-sized businesses without in-depth knowledge of paid search to run sponsored ads on the Google search network. The aim is to democratise Google Ads with a simplified, quick and easy-to-use interface so that any business can benefit from the advantages of Google Ads and the fast and powerful results that internet advertising offers. If the commercial links can redirect directly to your website, the other great advantage of Google Ads Express is that you can create advertising campaigns without having a website! A simple Google My Business page will suffice to promote your business.
Google Ads Express: similarities with Google Adwords
Cost per click
With Google Ads Express, you can only run text ads that appear on Google results pages. It is therefore possible to manage your budget by billing on a cost per click (CPC) basis. This way, your ad can appear as many times as possible in Google results, you will only pay when your ad is clicked by a user. This is a great system if you want to pay for the number of visits to your website or Google page. It can also be interesting if you link to a landing page to receive conversions or if you want to encourage a purchase.
The local campaign is one of the many campaign types offered on Google Ads. On the other hand, on Google Ads Express, it is the only campaign that is offered. As you can see, this tool is only for local businesses that want to reach people near their shop. The entire tool has been designed for this type of campaign, which is why it is so easy to use! It is impossible to get lost in dozens of objectives or parameters, here everything is done to go to the essential: to be visible locally and to bring new customers into the shop. Everything necessary to achieve these goals has been retained, including Google ad extensions. These are practical information that encourage people to come to the shop: address, telephone number, opening hours etc. Thus, whatever your sector of activity, Google Ads Express can be interesting to increase local awareness.
Limitations of Google Ads Express
A simplified tool means less choice of parameters and therefore less convincing results. One of the major drawbacks of Google Ads Express is the impossibility of defining a precise targeting. Indeed, since it is only possible to run local campaigns, Google Ads Express only allows you to target by geographical area. But if you also want to target young people, men or women, people who are interested in cars or who have just got married, this will not be possible. Conversely, you will also not be able to exclude specific audiences. This means that your ads may be seen by people who are not interested in your products or services at all. As a result, there is a high chance of not generating qualified traffic, not reaching your prospects and therefore getting fewer conversions and fewer sales. By reaching the wrong people, you may even lose money if someone doesn’t fit your target audience and clicks on your sponsored ad.
In paid search, ad copy is crucial to getting results. A well-written ad increases the quality of the ad and increases the chances of being displayed in the search results. A dynamic advert that arouses interest through its text will also generate clicks and therefore bring more sales and conversions. Unfortunately, Google Ads Express does not allow you to personalise your ads. The size of the text is also reduced compared to Google Ads, where you can write a larger number of characters.
No choice of keywords
While it is recommended to have an excellent keyword strategy on Google Ads, you will be limited here too on Google Ads Express. Instead of choosing the keywords you want to rank for, Google Ads Express only offers you a short list of keywords based on your field of activity. If this technique greatly facilitates the creation of a Google campaign, it does not allow you to position yourself on precise, relevant and strategic keywords. The consequences are that your ads will be displayed on competitive keywords, that you will not stand out, that you will attract less traffic and therefore get fewer sales.
No modification of campaigns possible
While you can modulate and optimise your campaigns according to your digital strategy or their statistics on Google Ads, no modification is possible on Google Ads Express. In order to simplify the tool as much as possible, the idea is to let the Google algorithm work on its own, without you having any control over the campaign and according to the parameters selected from the start. It is the algorithm that will, for example, spend your defined budget as it wishes (without ever exceeding it) or that will highlight your ad on a specific keyword that may no longer suit you. This lack of manageability does not allow you to create campaigns that evolve over the long term.
Lack of tracking and reporting
The tracking table on Google Ads Express is also very limited. If this allows you not to get lost in all the figures offered by the Google Ads interface, it is however impossible to know the real performance of your campaigns and to conclude on the aspects to modify or not. It is therefore difficult to draw conclusions about your conversion rate, your impression rate and even your return on investment! While it is easy to create a campaign on Google Ads Express, it is more difficult to determine whether or not ads are profitable. However, it is the analysis of KPIs and the management of campaigns that are at the heart of paid referencing in order to optimise them to the maximum. In other words, setting up campaigns to obtain the best results while spending the smallest possible budget.
The budget itself is difficult to manipulate on Google Ads Express. There is little choice of bidding systems, little monitoring, little quantified data, etc. Everything is automated by the Google algorithm. But the algorithm’s choices are not always the most relevant! Don’t forget that Google is first and foremost a company that seeks to increase its turnover. The algorithm will therefore go in the direction of the company. Therefore, there is a good chance that you will get results with your ads, paying more via Google Ads Express than via Google Ads.
Google Ads Express or Google Ads: Which to choose?
The benefits of Google Ads
Using Google Ads Express may seem interesting at first for people with little technical skills in SEA. However, this increased simplification limits the optimisation of sponsored campaigns very strongly. In the end, even if you succeed in running your campaigns via Google Ads Express, you will probably lose money via this tool rather than using Google Ads. This is because the many possibilities offered by Google Ads allow for a precise and powerful optimisation of each advertisement promising profitable results. However, achieving excellent results via Google Ads is only possible if you understand how Google works. It is therefore strongly recommended to be accompanied in your SEA strategy by a specialised web agency with Google Adwords certification. The latter will offer you its expertise and experience to create and manage your campaigns so that they reach all your objectives by correctly managing your dedicated budget.
More information about Google Ads :
What are the different types of Google Ads campaigns and formats?
What is the difference between Google Ads and other advertising systems?