Google Ads vs AdWords Express - Considerations and tips for working with these tools in 2019.

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In today's business landscape, offline advertising is not sufficient to remain competitive. In the last 10 years, digital advertising has transformed to be the present and future of mass marketing efforts. The most commonly used platforms company's are utilising to advertise online have been provided by Google:

  • Google Ads
  • AdWords Express.

These platforms essentially provide two entirely different strategies for online advertising. Here's a quick comparison Google Ads and AdWords Express before we delve in deeper:


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AdWords Express

From the name "Adwords Express" you can guess the primary difference it might have in relation to your standard Google Ads platform - the ability to create advertising in Google faster and with less effort. Adwords Express was designed with small-to-medium sized businesses in mind. The platform is tailored to those who do not have the budget or time to be fiddling around with settings or to be optimising ad copies every month, yet still want to promote their website online and generate traffic as quickly as possible.

In addition, AdWords Express allows for those with no experience in SEO and PPC to deliver targeted ads, as there is no requirement to perform and implement keyword research. No wonder it's Express, keyword research is usually the most time-consuming process!

With Express all you have to do is add a couple of keywords that are relevant to the product you are going to advertise, write a brief description, add payment details and voilà, you are ready to advertise your product through Google. Essentially, it only takes a few minutes to get an ad campaign up and running.

but what's the catch?

AdWords Express is built around ease of use, but as always this comes at a cost. As Express runs automatically, it is impossible for you to manage the way Google spends your ad budget. Using Express also limits your ability to optimise your advertising to improve your conversion rate and ensure a strong advertising ROI.

So basically, AdWords Express allows you to be extremely time effective when creating and implementing your digital advertising, but your budget can disappear fast without a decent return given for what you paid.

Another disadvantage of using AdWords Express is the lack of analytics data. Express will only allow you to see the number of clicks each ad is given. This is extremely limited when you contrast it against Google Ads' available metrics:

  • How long the client stayed on your website

  • If they filled out a contact form or called your business

  • What time of the day they clicked

  • What day they clicked

  • If the click was profitable for you or not

  • What city, zip code, state, country it happened in

  • What query generated that click

  • What position the ad was shown on the search results

  • How many impressions the ad had to get that click

  • Where on your website the client landed

  • How much the click cost you

  • Who is competing with you on this particular keyword

  • What ad has been shown from the A/B testing

For web analysts, digital marketers, or business decision-makers who want a positive ROI on their advertising spend, it is crucial to understand each ad's performance and how an advertising budget can be optimised to be spent more efficiently. So the cons may outweigh the pros with AdWords Express, but it all depends on your business type, size, and goals.

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Google Ads is basically the more complex big brother of AdWords Express. The setup and implementation of ads is much more time consuming - you can spend hours and days on keyword research if you really want to identify the most effective and efficient keywords for your product / business.

In addition, you can advertise your website all across the Google Display Network (so not only Google and Google Maps) and use retargeting and video advertising features.

This platform is ideal for businesses that have their own website, and plan to launch lots of campaigns with multiple landing pages, and a variety of creative ad formats, etc.

Also, if you are planning to A/B test anything – creative, text ads, or landing pages – Google Ads is the way to go!

In further contrast to AdWords Express, Google Ads allows you so much control over the entire platform setup so that you can perfectly tailor it to your specific business needs. You are given full knowledge of what is going on with your ads and their specific performances, e.g you can also list negative keywords, vary ad schedules to target key audience viewing times, and most importantly see how much money you’re getting in return (ROI).

What have we covered?

In summary, both Google Ads and AdWords Express are useful digital advertising tools that will drive the traffic to your website. Both can work well if you set them up and optimise them appropriately with a goal of improving results over time.

AdWords Express is the ideal platform to kick-start any business' digital advertising outputs. However, if you are looking for a greater level of control and ROI insight on your advertising efforts then Google Ads is the right platform for you.

Internetrix is a certified Google business partner. We deliver digital marketing projects utilising Google Ads in partnership with Google's other premium services, including Google Analytics, Google Data Studio and Google Optimize Google Tag Manager. If you are looking for digital marketing or analytics assistance get in contact with Internetrix today. We help your business improve marketing ROI and achieve target outcomes efficiently.