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Google Ads for Real Estate: The Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide



Google Ads for Real Estate: The Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide

Google Ads is the most powerful tool for real estate professionals who want to connect with the increasing number of home buyers and sellers turning to the internet for their property needs.

Yesterday’s real estate agents spent most of their time using antiquated marketing methods like cold-calling or postcard mailing. Today, Google Ads offers a more scalable and affordable tactic that can put your real estate business directly in front of potential clients who are searching for your services online.

In this step-by-step guide, we’re going to walk you through the entire process of setting up a Google Ads campaign so you can boost your real estate business’s exposure and connect with more home buyers and sellers.

Table of contents

The basics of Google Ads and PPC advertising

Before we jump into the how-to, let’s get some basic definitions out of the way.


What is PPC advertising?

Put simply, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is a model where an advertiser’s ad is displayed, but they only pay for each time their ad is clicked. Since it’s cost-effective, easy to control, and can garner fast results, PPC advertising has developed into one of the most popular ways to drive traffic to websites.

💡 Want to dive deeper into the basics? Download our free guide >> PPC 101

What is Google Ads?

Google Ads is a PPC platform that displays your ads on Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs). The service allows you to set a budget for your campaigns, create ads targeting specific keywords, and pay only when someone clicks on your ad.

Google Ads is the leading platform for PPC advertising right now, and it’s especially powerful for real estate agents, teams, and brokerages. It supplies us with a host of useful tools, incredible reach, and a simple interface that makes it easier than ever to prospect for leads online.

google ads for real estate ads example in serp

Google Ads showing up as the top results in SERPs.

The standout benefit of using Google Ads is its reach. Over 95% of search traffic goes through Google, and millions of people use Google every day to search for properties, real estate services, and related information.

How does Google Ads work?

Google Ads operates on an auction system, which can be a little confusing.


When a user on Google enters a search query, Google runs an auction to determine which ads will appear in the search results. Advertisers bid on keywords relevant to their business.

how the google ads auction works

An ad’s placement is determined by a combination of bid amount and ad quality, which is calculated based on factors like expected click-through rate (CTR), ad relevance, and landing page experience.

You can learn more about how Google Ads works here.

Benefits of Google Ads for real estate professionals

When there are so many marketing platforms out there, why does Google Ads stand out? The key advantage of Google Ads for real estate pros lies in search intent.

Users who see your ads are proactively searching for exactly what your business offers. For example, someone searching “homes for sale in Miami” is likely at some point in a home buying or selling journey.

Compare Google Ads to Facebook Ads, where your ads can be targeted but are displayed to a relatively passive audience who is busy looking at cat pictures or posting about their weekend.


Google Ads enables you to target possible clients in similar ways, but to a crowd that is actively searching for real estate-related keywords, making them more likely to convert into future clients.

How to successfully set up your real estate Google Ads campaign

Now for the fun part: How to create and set up your Google Ads campaign for your real estate business.

Step 1: Create your Google Ads account

Before we hit the ground running, make sure you have a Google Ads account set up. You can go to to sign up.

Your Google Ads account is where you maintain high-level items like billing, admin permissions, and your campaigns.

Campaigns house your ad groups, where you’ll set your budget and targeting. Each ad group will have a different set of keywords that focuses on a segment of your business. Within those ad groups, you’ll have ads that will display when users search for the keywords you specify.

google ads account structure graphic

Step 2: Conduct research and start planning

Once your Google Ads account is created, it’s time to think about the areas your business services and who your ideal customer is.


Is your ideal customer looking for investment properties? Waterfront homes? Searching in a specific city or neighborhood? Put together a list of five to seven cities, neighborhoods, or niches that you’d like to go after. These will eventually make up our ad groups.

For example, if you’re in Miami, you might want to go with these ad groups:

  • Miami
  • Miami Beach
  • Fort Lauderdale
  • Coral Gables
  • Key Biscayne
  • Hollywood

You may also want to include some categorical groups like farms and ranches or oceanfront condos depending on what is popular in your region.

Once you have your locations identified, it’s time for keyword research.

To narrow it down, use applications like the Free Keyword Tool or Google’s Keyword Planner. This will give you ideas of the search volume, competition, and potential cost for the keywords within various segments you might want to pursue.

google ads for real estate - keyword research tool for ads

You may get more ideas in keyword tools that you didn’t previously consider. Getting these keyword ideas helps us discover the high-volume search terms that potential clients use to find properties and services like yours.

Once you have five to seven areas or niches you want to target, it’s time to get the campaign started.


Step 3: Start your campaign

When you’re in your Google Ads account, click the blue plus sign to start creating a campaign.

Choose the right campaign objective and type

The first thing you’ll do is choose a campaign objective that aligns with your goals. For real estate purposes, we typically recommend the website traffic objective, as you’re usually trying to drive visitors to your website.

Here’s a quick summary of the different campaign objectives:

  • Sales: Focuses on increasing the sales and profitability of your products or services. It includes features such as bidding strategies aimed at clicks, assets, and ads that prompt the purchasing or conversion process.
  • Leads: Aims to generate leads for your business by capturing the customers’ information through form submissions.
  • Website traffic: Emphasizes driving traffic, and ultimately conversions, to your website.
  • Brand awareness: Enhances the visibility and recognition of your brand image, not necessarily increasing website visits or leads.
  • App installs and engagement: Specifically designed for promoting app installs and increasing user engagement with a mobile application.
  • Local store visits: Designed to drive foot traffic to brick-and-mortar stores and increase offline sales.
  • Product and brand consideration: Focused on increasing the visibility and recognition of your brand to new customers who may consider your products or services.

google ads for real estate - choose campaign objective

These objectives essentially tell Google what we want to accomplish with our campaigns, giving real estate businesses the ability to continually measure and optimize their ads for the best possible results.

Choose your campaign type

Next, you’re going to choose a campaign type, which determines where your ads appear.

We’re going to use a Search campaign type because we want our ads to show up in Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs) when they are showing the intent of buying or selling real estate.


Name your campaign

Finally, choose a campaign name, but don’t overthink it.

For organizational purposes, a good rule of thumb is to have your campaign name speak to your campaign objective. Something like “South Florida – Search” would be a good name going off our previous examples.

Google is going to ask you about your bidding preferences, but we’ll cover that later. For now, leave it on “maximize clicks.

Select search networks

The first campaign setting to draw your attention to is the networks. By default, your ads also show on Google Search and Display networks. We recommend checking the box off for the Display Network because we only want our ads showing up within SERPs.

differences between google search network vs. google display network

Choose (and exclude) locations

Now we take a look at location targeting, where you will want to enter the cities you are going to be concentrating on, as well as the areas around them. An important note is that by default, Google shows your ads to “people in, regularly in, or who’ve shown interest in your targeted locations.”

This means that your ads will show up to anyone searching your keywords, regardless of their location. However, these locations provide data about where people are clicking your ads, so it’s useful down the line.


google ads for real estate - choose location targeting

You’ll also want to add some negative locations, which blacklist your ads from showing up within those boundaries. Start by excluding countries that have a reputation for click farms and have a very low chance of delivering relevant traffic.

Some recommended negative locations to start with are:

  • China
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • The Philippines
  • Bangladesh

Create audience segments to improve campaign efficiency

Lastly, we’re going to address audience segments, which will allow us to hyper-focus on Google’s in-market audiences. These are consumers who are actively researching products or services and considering buying something.

Look up “real estate” and select in-market audiences that have a “For Sale” label. If it’s relevant to your business, you can also target “Commercial,” “Homeowner,” or “For Rent” categories.

At this point, we’ve got our account created and the framework of our campaign laid out, so we’re ready to move forward.

Step 4: Set up ad groups

Ad groups are held within your campaign and organize your ads and keywords. Using the selections we chose earlier, we’re going to create five to seven ad groups.

Start your first ad group by naming it the location or property type it will be targeting. We’ll name ours Miami.


Determine your keywords

You’re then going to list out the keywords that you want your ads showing up for. Based on our keyword research, we’re going to go with the following keywords:

  • MIami FL homes for sale                      
  • Miami fl property for sale
  • Miami FL real estate                 
  • Miami condos for sale
  • MLS Miami FL              
  • Houses for sale Miami
  • Zillow miami

google ads for real estate - choose keywords for bidding

Understand keyword match types

One thing to take note of about keywords is that Google will display your ads to search terms that are similar to the keywords you list.

However, there are different match types that tell Google how strict they need to be when determining which search terms relate to your keywords:

  • Broad Match (e.g., Miami FL homes for sale): The default match type for Google Ads. With broad match, your ads show in search results for queries related to the meaning of your keywords but don’t necessarily contain the exact terms.
  • Phrase Match (e.g., “Miami homes for sale”): Your ads show in search results for queries that contain the exact phrase and/or a close variation of it.
  • Exact Match (e.g., [Miami FL Real Estate]): Ads show in search results for queries that match the exact term or the same meaning of the term with no other additional words.

google ads for real estate - differences between different keyword match types

Image source

We will start by keeping all of our keywords broad match. Moving forward, you can always adjust your keyword match types if you feel like your ads are being shown improperly.

Select negative keywords to blacklist search terms

Use negative keywords as a list of search terms that you want Google to avoid showing your ads to.


These adverse terms will vary with each market, but in general, you want to consider searches that will not be made by your ideal client, or Avatar. For example, we’re going to list these negative keywords in our real estate campaign:

  • Rent
  • News
  • Lease
  • Airbnb
  • Seasonal
  • Rentals 
  • Commercial
  • Cheap
  • Management

Similar to our keywords, we can always tweak these negative keywords as we analyze the search terms that are triggering our ads to show up.

Step 5: Build your ads

Now it’s time to get into the core of our campaign by crafting our ads. These are responsive ads, which means that Google combines different variations of the headlines and descriptions we provide to make a final ad.

how responsive search ads work

Begin your ad by inserting your final URL, which is the page a user will go to when they click your ad. This will be your landing page—we’ll have more on fine-tuning that below.

Then you’ll want to choose a display path, which allows us to simplify the final URL to look more appealing in our ad. You can get creative here, but we usually advise using straightforward and clean display paths.

Create powerful headlines and descriptions for your ad

This brings us to our headlines, where we will be the main text in our ad. To create great ad headlines, you want to keep some vital tips in mind:

  1. Use keywords: Use the keywords you are targeting. These are, after all, what your potential clients are searching for.
  2. Address pain points: Think about what your ideal client is really searching for and how you can solve their problem. Offering free home valuations or listings for sale are common magnets in the real estate industry, but don’t be afraid to think of your own.
  3. Include data and numbers: Feel free to include things like median home prices, number of active or sold listings, or other relevant statistics.
  4. Use pinned placements: You can keep each headline in positions one, two, or three, using the pin to the right of each box. It’s critical to keep your headlines organized and intentional with these pins.

After that, we’re going to conjure up four descriptions, which will show up underneath the headlines. Writing winning Google Ad descriptions starts with keeping your points short and relevant and including numbers and calls to action.

google ads for real estate - example of writing google ads description

Use assets to improve interaction with your ad

Now that our ads are looking sharp, we’re going to address some of the assets that are available. These are extra pieces of information, previously called extensions, that can help your ad stand out and generate conversions.


The initial asset we’ll set up is sitelinks, and these are additional links that show underneath your ad take visitors to relevant sub-niches that are under the umbrella of what you’re offering.

google ads for real estate - example of ad assets

You can then list out some callouts, which are additional text that quickly tell consumers why your real estate business is unique or what you specialize in.

For example, in South Florida, we might use callouts such as relocation, first-time buyers, and luxury specialists.

There are quite a few assets that you can play around with and visualize how they improve your ad and offering. For real estate lead generation, pay close attention to the Structured Snippet, Location, and Calls assets.

The Image assets are also a wonderful way to get your ad noticed, but they can’t be used until your account is 90 days old.

google ads for real estate structured snippet asset example

The Structure Snippet asset enables real estate companies to indicate the neighborhoods they serve.


Choose a suitable landing page

Remember the final URL we talked about? Well, let’s go over picking relevant real estate landing pages that potential clients are sent to when they click our ad.

First and foremost, the landing page you send visitors to should give them exactly what they are looking for.

If your ad group is focused on Miami, and your ad promotes “Miami Homes for Sale,” then your final URL should be active real estate listings.

An ad that has headlines about “Free Home Valuations” should take the user to a page where they can easily get just that. It’s critical in real estate lead generation to be very consistent with this rule.

A big mistake many will make is sending all visitors of every ad to some static page of their website. Then the potential customer has to dig around to find the information they really wanted in the first place.

You also want to have one clear and apparent call to action so the visitor knows what they need to do to get the piece of value you are providing them.


google ads for real estate landing page example

Example of a high-quality real estate landing page.

Give your target audience what they are seeking, and they will be more likely to convert and see you as the authority in the real estate space.

Step 5: Set your campaign budget

At the end of the campaign setup, you’re going to set a daily budget for Google to use. This can be changed depending on your needs or industry seasonality, so set it at whatever is comfortable for your business.

Google Ads also provides an array of bidding strategies, but we really only need to hone in on the main options:

  • Maximize Clicks: An automated bidding strategy that is designed to bring you the most clicks possible using your daily budget.
  • Maximize Conversions: A bidding strategy that automatically sets bids to help get the most conversions possible based on your daily budget.
  • Target CPA (Cost per Acquisition): This is my recommended strategy. It sets bids to help get as many conversions as possible at the target CPA that you set.

Step 6: Set up conversion tracking

As I said before, most real estate professionals starting out with Google Ads will begin maximizing clicks, but you are definitely going to want to set up conversion tracking since we ultimately want to optimize for leads and sales.

google ads for real estate - conversion tracking set up

Under “Tools and Settings,” go to “Conversions” to set up a new conversion action. This will often be measured when a visitor fills out a contact form or signs up on your website, but you can also measure calls.

Follow the steps that Google provides to set up the conversion tracking on your website, and you’ll be able to accurately measure how your real estate campaigns are performing.


Keys to success with Google Ads for real estate

Now that your real estate Google Ads campaign is set up, here are some best practices to keep in mind.

1. Continually monitor key metrics

As your campaign runs, keep a close eye on critical metrics to gauge your campaign’s performance. Monitor important metrics like cost per conversion, click-through rate (CTR), cost per click (CPC), and conversion rate to assess which ads and ad groups are most effective.

We can evaluate the effectiveness of our ads by going to a Google Ads Performance Grader or a similar tool that will analyze a campaign’s performance and give us some actionable steps to improve it.

google ads for real estate google ads grader from wordstream by localiq

2. Review your campaign’s search terms

Regularly review the search terms that trigger your ads to show up. This insight helps you refine your keyword and negative keyword lists so that your ads only appear for relevant queries.

3. A/B test your ads

Test different ad variations and strategies to identify what resonates best with your potential clients. Create multiple ads with different headlines, descriptions, and calls to action to gauge which are giving you the most bang for your buck.

google ads for real estate ab test example

4. Build relationships

Don’t focus solely on getting leads. Real estate is all about building relationships and Google Ads are just an avenue to grow your database. Provide value and come from a place of contribution and you’ll have long-term success.


5. Commit to a follow-up plan

Effective follow-up is crucial in the real estate business, and it’s even more pressing in the digital sphere. Nurture leads through email campaigns, phone calls, and personal touches to keep your services top of mind.

6. Leverage technology and people

Use a strong Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system to manage leads, interactions, appointments, and sales efficiently.

Make Google Ads a win for your real estate business

Google Ads gives real estate professionals an unparalleled opportunity to scale their businesses unlike anything the industry has seen before. Setting up, managing, and continually optimizing your Google Ads account is the first step in owning your lead source rather than relying on buying leads or waiting for your phone to ring.

Use this as an evergreen cheat sheet when you’re creating or reviewing new campaigns, and remember that it’s not just about running ads. The goal is ultimately to deliver value and build relationships that continue to pay dividends for your real estate business for years to come.

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3 A/B Testing Examples Every PPC Advertiser Should Try




3 A/B Testing Examples Every PPC Advertiser Should Try

We hear it all the time as a tenant of paid media marketing: Always be testing. But it’s only helpful to “always be testing” when your tests are sure to contribute to more successful campaigns. 

I fall into the camp of “always be testing…when you have a good hypothesis.” If you see something can be improved and you have an idea for how to improve it, by all means, give it a shot. But don’t just throw things at the wall and hope something sticks. It’s important to have a thought-out approach to A/B testing so that if and when that needle moves, you know why and can test and iterate on it again and again.

In this post, I want to run through my best PPC A/B testing examples and share tips that will help you create the most meaningful and impactful A/B tests for your PPC campaigns.

Table of contents

❓ Not sure what you need to A/B test in your PPC accounts? Find opportunities for optimization fast with our free Google Ads Grader!

PPC A/B testing hypotheses examples (+tips)

Regardless of which A/B testing example you find inspires you to do your own test, be sure to focus on your hypothesis throughout your experimentation. Here’s what I mean:


As I mentioned above, I believe you should always start any test with a hypothesis. What are you trying to test and why? But don’t just say “I think a new ad will perform better.” Try to articulate what you’re going for when running your A/B test. In my experience, when you’re more particular during the hypothesis creation, you’ll have a better test and more actionable and transferable results.

To help illustrate this point, here’s a typical A/B testing example hypothesis: “I want to test automated bidding to see if it works better.”

Sure, this might be a good test, but what does “work better” mean? A good, focused hypothesis almost always incorporates some level of detail. In the following steps, we’ll outline what the specifics are, but for this stage, think of it as a statement to the highest boss you have. They likely don’t know the nitty gritty numbers you’re looking at on a day-to-day basis, but they want to know what’s going on.

ppc ab testing examples - checklist of what to include in a ppc test hypothesis

This would be a better version:

Hypothesis: “Automated bidding will help us achieve lower CPAs on our main conversion action.”

To get you started, here are some A/B test hypotheses examples for a few different experiments you could run:

  • “Using cost comparisons in ad copy will help us stand out from our competitors.”
  • “Expanding into a new state will expand our market share at the same cost as our current geotargeted locations.”
  • “A landing page with more supporting content will help create more engaged prospects and we’ll see a higher conversion rate.”

Bonus reading material to help you get started developing a hypothesis: should you use the 10% or 10x Philosophy?

Now that you have your hypothesis, let’s get down to actually making this test happen.

🌱 Make a plan to grow your business in no time with our easy-to-use growth strategy template.

3 A/B testing examples every advertiser should try

There are several ways you can test a hypothesis in paid media platforms, like Google Ads and Microsoft Ads. And, depending on what platform you use, there may be some A/B testing tools available to help.

There are no real “wrong” ways to test a hypothesis, but there are some pros and cons you should be aware of with each of the following PPC A/B testing examples. 

1. On/Off, sequential testing

This first A/B testing example is likely the easiest for most advertisers. Here you take note of the data from your existing setup, then make the changes that support your hypothesis, run the campaign that way for a while, then compare stats. Easy enough.

ab testing examples - screenshot of sequential ab testing formatab testing examples - screenshot of sequential ab testing format

It may look something like this. You have four weeks’ worth of data with your evergreen ad copy. You then pause those variants and launch cost-focused copy for four weeks then compare.


This method of testing can be useful and can yield good results. It’s easy to implement and only requires you to monitor your campaign for large swings in performance.

The downside is that the variants never overlap with each other. Was there some seasonal effect that took place in the second 4 weeks? Were you short on budget for the month and needed to pull back on spending to hit your levels? Did a news story impact performance for worse (or better) during either period? Did any other aspects of the campaign change during the eight weeks the test was running?

It’s not perfect, but it can be useful to test sequentially to see results.

2. Geolocation testing

In a geolocation A/B testing example, you keep the existing campaign set up as it is, then create an experiment variant in a second location. This could be either to an expanded market or a portion of where you’re currently targeting (i.e., your campaign targets the entire United States, but for this test, you make the changes only effective in a handful of states).

ab testing examples - geolocation targeting ab test example screenshotab testing examples - geolocation targeting ab test example screenshot

To accomplish this, you need to make sure your control and experiment are mutually exclusive so there’s no overlap. This can be done by setting up new campaigns and excluding locations in your control campaign. 

Unlike the sequential A/B testing example, Geolocation testing can allow you to run your variants at the same time and compare results. Any head or tailwinds you feel during the run of the test should be equal for both locations.


The downfalls come when you realize that no two regions are exactly alike. Who’s to say why a cost-focused message might work better in Oklahoma than in Nebraska? Or why the East Coast performs better with automated bidding than the Mountain time zone? 

3. A/B split testing

Split tests are likely the best example of A/B testing as it removes some of the cons we see in sequential and geolocation testing. The problem is that true A/B testing is also the hardest to come by.

ab testing examples - screenshot of google ads ad rotation optimization optionsab testing examples - screenshot of google ads ad rotation optimization options

Platforms like Google Ads and Meta Ads have long done away with rotating variables evenly. For example, both platforms have AI-powered machine learning that will pretty much always favor one ad variant over another based on the desired outcome of the campaign or ad set. The same is true for bid strategies. If you’re testing manual versus auto-bidding, or one CPA target versus another, those two campaigns are likely not going to enter the auction on the same foot. One will be prioritized over the other and you’ll have an unbalanced test.

ab testing examples - google ads experiment screenshotab testing examples - google ads experiment screenshot

This is where experiments in Google Ads and split testing in Facebook Ads can come in.

By using these tools, you can set up tests to focus on single (or multiple) variables and give them each a fair shot in the auction.

If you’re interested in learning more about these tools, here are a couple of videos that walk you through Google Ads Experiments and Facebook Ads A/B testing.


Measuring success across different PPC A/B testing examples

Now that we know how we’re going to test, we need to get more specific on the PPC metrics we’re going to use to determine success. Unfortunately, I’m not willing to accept “perform better” as a good answer.

First, we have to decide what our main KPI is. Is it your Google Ads cost per lead? Conversion rate? Click-through rate? Impression share? This will rely entirely on your hypothesis and which A/B testing example you choose to implement. Pick the stat that will best reflect a success or failure for your test. (Don’t worry, this isn’t the only metric we’d focus on. More on that in a minute.)

Just like the functionality of the test, there are three common ways to approach this. Let’s say we’re trying to improve the CPA for an account. Here are some ways I could phrase my “success” metric:

  • Target performance: This test is a success if the experiment variable yields a $60 CPA.
  • Percentage improvement: This test is a success if the experiment variable has a 10% lower CPA than the control.
  • Statistical significance: This test is a success if the experiment variable has an 80% confidence level of performing better than the control.

All of these are valid ways of measurement. Choose the one that works best for your purposes.

📊 Are your key PPC metrics up to industry standards? Find out with our latest search ad benchmarks and new Facebook ads benchmarks!

Set PPC A/B testing limitations and dealbreakers

Now let’s get into some of those other metrics I alluded to. While you might be working to optimize your cost per lead, that doesn’t mean that all other metrics are going to stay flat. In fact, I’d venture to bet that many of them will change quite a bit. It’s up to you to decide what is an acceptable level of change on other stats.

Maybe you don’t care if your click-through rate goes down 20% as long as cost per lead goes down to a profitable level. Maybe you don’t mind if you see a cost per click increase as long as revenue stays stable. But not everyone is alright with other stats moving too much.


Here’s an A/B testing example including varying metrics: I have a client who wanted to decrease the cost per lead on his branded terms by 20%, but he wasn’t willing to let impression share dip below 80%. While we knew it was going to be tricky to thread the needle, we set up an A/B testing experiment for target CPA bidding to try and lower the CPA. As we got into it, we realized that to hit our CPA metric, Google only showed the ads for about 60% of the impressions we could have had. That was a dealbreaker for him, so we turned the test off and found another way.

ab testing examples - google ads experiment goals screenshotab testing examples - google ads experiment goals screenshot

When you set up experiments in Google, they even ask for two key metrics and what you plan to have happen. You should be doing this for yourself and asking, “Are there any potential deal breakers for metrics that would require me to stop this test before it’s finished?”

Consider your A/B testing timeline

Unfortunately, sometimes A/B tests have to come to an end without a clear winner. These tests can’t go on forever or else you’ll never test anything else.

But on the flip side, A/B tests need to run for long enough to make sure you have enough data to make decisions on. Only the very largest of accounts could potentially make a decision after a single week of testing, but even then, it would have to be night and day for me to be onboard.

I usually recommend a minimum of two weeks for a test to run and a maximum of two months. Anything beyond that can be unmanageable and gets into a place where other factors could be causing the test to be invalidated.

This means that, regardless of which A/B testing example you choose to run, be sure that within two months your test will have enough data to decide, with confidence, if your hypothesis was correct.


Putting the right PPC A/B testing examples to work for your business

A/B testing is an invaluable tool that all marketers should likely be using in one way, shape, or form in their ad accounts. Be sure you have a clear head going into the test, including a hypothesis, plan of action, and potential deal breakers before you try any A/B testing example. That way, you’ll have set yourself up for success no matter what the outcome. If you want more A/B testing examples and ideas for your business, see how our solutions can help you maximize your A/B testing success! 

Here are the top three A/B testing examples to try in your PPC accounts:

  1. On/off, sequential testing
  2. Geolocation testing
  3. A/B split testing

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Performance Marketing 101: Everything You Need to Know




Performance Marketing 101: Everything You Need to Know

Performance marketing is one of the most effective ways for B2B and B2C businesses to reach their target audience and generate sales or leads.

However, for many new marketers, this practice can be complicated since it involves a combination of different strategies, channels, and more to drive results. In this article, we’ll simplify everything you need to know to become a performance marketing pro.

Table of contents

What is performance marketing?

Performance marketing is a digital marketing strategy based on results in which the brands or businesses only pay the marketing agencies, advertising platforms, or affiliates when they achieve their specific campaign goals, typically in the form of sales, clicks, or leads.

What’s the difference between performance marketing vs. brand marketing?

Performance and brand marketing are two different types of strategies that can be used to reach the intended audience.

While both forms have their benefits, the main difference between them is brand marketing aims to establish a long-term company’s reputation and awareness among potential customers; in contrast, performance marketing focuses on specific strategies to drive immediate sales without necessarily building an emotional connection with customers first.


🌱 Download our free, editable growth strategy template to walk through seven simple steps for creating the right plan to grow your business.

What are benefits of performance marketing?

Even though this marketing strategy can be challenging for some businesses, there are many benefits for those who dive in.

Here are three reasons why you should give performance marketing a try.

Low risk

Performance marketing is a low-risk method to introduce new strategies since it requires (relatively) little investment. If the campaign works, you can scale up and increase the budget; however, if it doesn’t, it’s easy to back up without a big loss.


This marketing strategy allows you to target the right people with your message. You can focus on demographics and geographic locations or narrow your searches by interests and behavior, such as consumers who visited your site recently or who clicked on the ad in the last 24 hours.

Increased ROI

One of the biggest benefits of performance marketing is that it can result in higher ROI than other types of advertising because it’s focused on a specific goal.


What are types of performance marketing?

Performance marketing can be done through various means. Here are some of the most common.

Social media advertising

Social media ads are one of the most popular forms of performance-based advertising. These ads can target people who have visited your website once or shown interest in similar products or services.

facebook video ad example - zapier

Search advertising

Search advertising, also known as PPC, is the practice where advertisers pay to have their ads placed above organic search results on search engine result pages (SERP) like Google and Bing.

🛑 Want to learn more about search engine marketing on Google? Get the free guide >> PPC 101: Complete Guide to Google Ads

Display advertising

Display advertising is a type of advertising where ads are shown on web pages–typically in the form of banner ads. These ads show up on popular websites, news sites, and more and drive users to your website.

display ad example from austin statesmandisplay ad example from austin statesman

Affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is a performance-based marketing method in which businesses reward affiliates for each customer brought by their promotional efforts.


How do you measure performance marketing?

Performance marketing is the art of achieving your business goals through paid advertising. It’s not just about buying ads and hoping they work. It’s about getting a return on the money you spend, which means measuring performance and adjusting your strategy accordingly.

The following are some of the most important metrics you should track to ensure your campaigns are running smoothly and meeting goals.

Cost per click (CPC)

Cost per click refers to the cost of each click on an ad. The higher the CPC, the more expensive it is for your business to advertise on that particular keyword or keyword phrase.

cost per click definitioncost per click definition

Cost per impression (CPM)

The average amount paid by an advertiser for every 1000 ad impressions. This is calculated by dividing the total cost of the ad by the number of times it was viewed.

Cost per lead (CPL)

The number of prospects responded to your ad and filled out a form. CPL is a standard metric used in PPC campaigns because it gives insight into how much each lead costs.

google ads cost per lead benchmarks from wordstreamgoogle ads cost per lead benchmarks from wordstream

🚨 You can use our search advertising benchmarks to find average the CPL for your industry.


Cost per acquisition (CPA)

The cost per acquisition refers to how much you spend acquiring new customers. When looking at CPA, you should consider both the cost of your ad and the value of each sale or conversion.

Lifetime value transaction (LVT)

LVT is a metric that can give marketers valuable insights into potential revenue from a customer over time. In other words, it estimates how much one customer will spend on your product or services during their entire relationship with your company.

5 steps to build a successful performance marketing strategy

Developing a successful performance marketing strategy takes time, dedication, and much trial and error. But the payoff can be huge if you can get it right.

Here are some steps to build a performance marketing strategy that will bring results.

1. Define your objectives

To create an effective performance marketing campaign, it is fundamental that you have a clear understanding of what you are trying to accomplish because it will help you define every other step.

Your targets should be specific, measurable, and achievable. It should also be aligned with your overall business goals.


smart goals acronymsmart goals acronym

For example, social media advertising is a great option if you want to sell a product or service. However, if your goal is to drive traffic to your website, then paid search might work better.

Once you have identified these goals, they should form the foundation of all your marketing activities. Every campaign should be designed to support them in some way.

2. Choose the right digital channels

One of the keys to being successful at performance marketing is using multiple channels. The reality is that not all channels are created equal, and some will work better than others for your particular business.

The best way to do this is by setting up a few channels, testing them with small amounts of money, and tracking the results over time so you can make better decisions in the future.

Here are some common types of digital marketing strategies you can choose from:

  • Content marketing: Content marketing is the process of creating, distributing, and promoting your company’s content to attract potential customers. It can build authority, trust, and loyalty with consumers.
  • Social media marketing: Social media is an essential part of any online marketing strategy. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have become a place where your consumers spend the most time.
  • Display ads: Display ads are typically placed on news sites, blogs, or e-commerce sites. These ads often appear in the form of pop-up banners that contain a link back to your website.
  • Email marketing: Email marketing helps you build relationships with prospects so they trust your brand and buy from you when ready.

black friday email template - example of black friday sale email to customersblack friday email template - example of black friday sale email to customers

3. Identify partners

The biggest challenge of managing a performance marketing campaign is finding the right partners to work with. The relationship you have with your partner can make or break your campaign.


You need to find partners with a vision and goals similar to yours who will help you reach people that matter.

The best partners have access to a large following and provide high-quality leads with a strong conversion rate, meaning they’re more likely to convert into paying customers.

When looking for partners, ensure they offer transparency about their work and methods. This will help you understand what kind of return on investment (ROI) you can expect from working with them over time.

4. Launch and optimize campaigns

Now that you have a budget and a target audience, it is time to launch your campaigns. You will need to set up a landing page and website where you intend to direct the traffic from these ads.

Once you have all the elements in place, you’ll want to optimize your campaigns for performance.

Optimizing for performance means constantly tracking and improving the metrics that matter most to your business. You should be looking at how many customers are being acquired, how much they spend, and how long they stay engaged with your brand.


Optimization is a never-ending process because it’s not about finding and sticking with the winning strategy. Instead, you must constantly test new ideas and see which works best in different situations.

You can optimize your ads by changing their keywords or budgets to improve performance.

google ads location targeting bid optimizationgoogle ads location targeting bid optimization

For example, if an ad gets clicks but not conversions (sales), you should make changes or remove the ad altogether. Or, if an ad isn’t getting any clicks, you’ll want to try a different approach, keyword, or title until you find something that works better.

5. Monitor results

Monitoring the results of your performance marketing campaigns is crucial to your success. The key is understanding what’s working, what’s not, and what can be improved.

The best way to track your performance is to use a dedicated software program to give you all the information you need in one place. This way, you’ll be able to see how each channel is performing and make adjustments as needed.

You should also pay attention to the quality of traffic that your campaigns send to your site. You can do this by looking at bounce rate, click-through rate (CTR), conversion rate, and other metrics over time.


The results should be monitored daily, and you should also look at the data weekly or monthly. This will help you identify trends and evaluate the performance of your campaigns over time.

3 performance marketing examples

Here are some examples of successful performance marketing strategies.

Dove Chocolate sponsored content on BuzzFeed

BuzzFeed is a famous digital media company that allows advertising on its website. These ads look like regular content but are paid for by companies or individuals who want to promote their products or services to their massive audience.

Dove Chocolate took this opportunity to share a recipe post on BuzzFeed and got over 2K re-pins and 253 shares on Facebook.

performance marketing example from dove chocolateperformance marketing example from dove chocolate


Hostinger’s paid search ads

Paid search ads are among the most common forms of performance marketing that even huge companies like Hostinger participate in. Hostinger is known for services like domain name, WordPress hosting, cloud hosting, website builder, etc.


Earlier this year, the company introduced a blog theme, and to promote it, it wrote a blog post about the “32 Best Free WordPress Blog Themes” and used paid search ads to list the post on the first SERP.

performance marketing example of ppc adperformance marketing example of ppc ad

CME Group’s display ad on Forbes

Display advertising is a classic form of performance marketing. It’s been around for decades and has been used by some of the biggest brands in the world to drive sales and boost their bottom line.

Display ads can be shown on any website that uses an advertising network, although they are mostly found on larger sites with many visitors, such as Forbes, HuffPost, etc.

performance marketing example of display ad on forbesperformance marketing example of display ad on forbes


Is performance marketing right for you?

Performance marketing is simply something that many modern marketers are incorporating into their business models. This form of marketing reduces wasted costs and directs sales through quality leads guaranteed to be interested in your product or service. By practicing the techniques laid out above, you can implement a successful performance marketing strategy and maximize your efforts.

About the author

Author and the founder of Blogituplife Shama Shafiq is a marketing, blogging, and SEO expert. She shares useful and actionable tips on her blog to help beginners out.


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18 AI Tools for Your Marketing Agency to Try in 2024




18 AI Tools for Your Marketing Agency to Try in 2024

Efficiency is the key to running a profitable marketing agency. AI tools for marketing agencies help increase efficiency while maintaining—or increasing—the quantity and quality of work your team produces.

Those are all great outcomes. But with new AI tools sprouting like weeds, where do you start?

Here, you’ll find a brief overview of what AI tools can do for your marketing agency and a list of 18 AI tools to try. We’ve grouped the list by use case, so you can start with the ones that’ll have the greatest impact.

Table of contents

❓ Want to know what 300 agencies think about pricing, services, and challenges? Download our free State of the Digital Marketing Agency report.

What are the benefits of an AI tool for your marketing agency?

Every marketing agency can use AI to its advantage. Here are a few ways it can help yours.


Brainstorm ideas

AI writing tools and search engines can spark new ideas for your marketing content and campaigns.

Prompt an AI tool with questions like, “What are 20 B2B pain points companies face in the [input] industry?”. Or try, “Give me 50 campaign ideas to attract new customers in the [input] industry.”

While you have to verify accuracy and weigh different ideas, it’s a great starting point to get in a creative flow.

AI tools for marketing agency: Screenshot of a prompt and response from ChatGPT.

In this example, I type a question into ChatGPT, and it gives me 20 blog topic ideas to help brainstorm future articles.

Automate repetitive tasks

AI marketing agency tools help reduce predictable tasks. Whether hitting publish or transferring an inbound marketing piece to WordPress, you can save hours with efficient automation.

You can save precious hours you would have spent doing grunt work and instead use them to strengthen your marketing strategy and produce more materials.


Reach new markets

AI platforms can identify audience segments you hadn’t thought of before. You can also reach more markets by automating your process and easily repurposing different content mediums for new platforms.

Many opportunities exist to reach new markets with impressive research and content creation tools.

Reduce avoidable human error

Using the power of machine learning and AI, marketing AI tools can identify and correct errors before your clients see them.

A tool like Grammarly, for example, can correct grammar and spelling errors and improve phrasing automatically. AI is a great option that helps the marketing team be more productive while avoiding common issues.

Save on costs

Whether you need to save on production value with videos or crank out first drafts of social media content, there are plenty of areas where you can save time, labor, and money on daily marketing tasks.

That gives you and your team more time and energy to focus on the most essential, important tasks.


Now that we know the benefits of AI marketing agency tools, let’s review some of the best ones.

💡 Want more? Get your free guide to AI in marketing and see how you should and shouldn’t use this revolutionary technology.

Top AI tools for your marketing agency

Most AI marketing tools are built for a specific purpose, like writing new copy or automating a workflow. That’s how we’ve categorized this list, based on the primary challenge each tool tackles.

AI tools for content creation

AI copywriting tools have received the most spotlight in recent years. That’s helped fuel the creation of innovative generative AI tools with a growing list of useful features.

Since content isn’t all copy, we’ve included platforms that help you create and edit video and image assets, too.

1. ChatGPT

ChatGPT-3.5 and ChatGPT-4 (Open AI continues to create new versions) have led the AI writing craze by offering one of the most accessible copywriting tools.


AI tools for marketing agency - ChatGPT homescreen. AI tools for marketing agency - ChatGPT homescreen.


The platform is excellent for brainstorming. If you’re working on an email newsletter, social media campaign, or blog article, you can ask for ideas, outlines, lists, and many other starter materials to help you save time.

Some marketing agencies use it for content development, though there are risks in trusting its accuracy. Plus, the output often feels “AI-written.” But it’s a great trusty sidekick to get projects started and boost your marketing efforts.

Pricing: ChatGPT-3.5 is free to use, ChatGPT-4 starts at $20 per month.

2. Jasper

Jasper is another great AI writing solution built for teams and creative workflows.

AI tools for marketing agency - Jasper homescreen.AI tools for marketing agency - Jasper homescreen.



You can efficiently work with the platform for quick project creation and execution. The tool offers prompts and automates the “human” part of AI writing by incorporating your brand voice.

The tool also helps you write more factually (compared to ChatGPT) and on-brand.

Pricing: Plans start at $59 a month (billed annually).


An alternative to Jasper, helps marketing teams automate blog briefs, create copy (like scraping URLs for AI ad copy), and accelerate other writing tasks.

AI tools for marketing agency - homescreen.AI tools for marketing agency - homescreen.

Source has many prompts and tools to help guide your writing queries for better results.


Pricing: is free to use with limited words. Upgrade to unlimited words for $36 monthly (annual plan).

4. Typeframes

This clever AI tool creates videos in just a few minutes. If you want to advertise a new product or create buzz for an event, Typeframes is the platform for you.

AI tools for marketing agency - Typeframes homescreen.AI tools for marketing agency - Typeframes homescreen.


Easily type a few words, and the tool automatically makes a video. You can add music, animations, images, and other effects. It’s a great way to ship new ideas and campaigns with a fraction of the time and money you’ve spent in the past.

Pricing: Typeframes starts at $24 monthly (on the annual plan).

5. Midjourney

Midjourney is designed to make image creation easy.


AI tools for marketing agency - Midjourney homescreen.AI tools for marketing agency - Midjourney homescreen.


Using Midjourney, marketing agencies can make stunning, cinematic-style artwork that looks detailed and eye-catching. You can generate any style image in seconds. Whether it’s a realistic photo of customers enjoying your client’s offering with emotional benefits, a painting, or cartoon-style artwork, Midjourney will spin it up with a couple of prompts.

Midjourney can help save on specific stock photo needs or even give your design team a head start on a campaign.

Pricing: The platform starts at $8 monthly (billed annually).

6. Grammarly

Grammarly is an editing tool that spots and corrects your grammar and spelling errors. And its AI additions help you create content, too.

AI tools for marketing agency - Grammarly home screen. AI tools for marketing agency - Grammarly home screen.



Use Grammarly to find awkward phrasings and passive sentences. It’ll also help you reword copy for a better read. The addition of generative AI gives Grammarly the power to suggest new ways to write existing text or help you start writing something completely new.

The platform is a must, and it will save you lots of time (and embarrassing moments like that one time you spelled “expresso” instead of “espresso”).

Pricing: Grammarly is free to use (with upgraded plans available).

AI tools for social media management

Social media is one of the fastest-moving components of marketing. Your clients need you to publish often, engage with their followers, and listen for trends and consumer needs. It’s not an easy job, so AI tools are pivotal to helping automatize and strengthen your agency’s strategy.

These tools automate repetitive social media marketing tasks so you can achieve greater returns for your clients.

7. FeedHive

FeedHive started as a scheduling and publication tool, but has since invested in powerful AI features to make social media content creation better and easier.


AI tools for marketing agency -FeeHive home screen. AI tools for marketing agency -FeeHive home screen.


Now the platform helps you create new posts and get them published faster.

FeedHive’s AI collects analytics so you can get more information on your results. The platform also provides an AI chat assistant built on GPT technology. It helps with social media performance predictions and suggestions (like suggesting the best time to post).

Pricing: FeedHive offers an agency plan for multiple clients at $239 a month (billed annually).

8. Hootsuite OwlyWriter AI

Hootsuite is an early entrant in the social media management space, and it’s recently evolved to add AI capabilities.

AI tools for marketing agency - OwlyWriter AI home screen.AI tools for marketing agency - OwlyWriter AI home screen.



For example, Hootsuite’s OwlyWriter AI is designed to quickly create captions and generate post ideas for all your accounts and segments. It’s a great way to utilize Hootsuite’s winning social media technology with a built-in writer—all in one place.

Pricing: OwlyWriter AI is free for a limited time to Hootsuite users.

9. creates social media posts from your existing content.

AI tools for marketing agency - home screen.AI tools for marketing agency - home screen.


It’s hard to develop great social media content consistently. But what if I were to say you and your clients already have hundreds of social media posts hiding in the middle of all the other content you’ve created? pulls all that dormant content from existing web pages, articles, documents, and ebooks. Then it uses AI to turn long-form assets into social media copy so you can publish more relevant and valuable posts with less effort.


Pricing: offers plans based on your number of social channels, with its first package starting at $49 monthly.

AI tools for automation

One of the best use cases for AI is streamlining operational tasks. Below are a few great platforms to improve key parts of your process.

10. Wordable

Transferring content from Google Docs to a CMS like WordPress can take thousands of hours and dollars. Between formatting posts and optimizing them for SEO, publishing content is a huge time sink. Wordable does it in one click.

AI tools for marketing agency - Wordable home screen.AI tools for marketing agency - Wordable home screen.


The platform takes your Google Docs to WordPress, HubSpot, and Medium. It retains your format, headers, and HTML elements. The app saves you time, so you can focus on publishing more content.

Pricing: Wordable offers a limited plan for free. The paid plan is $50 a month.


11. Zapier

Zapier is a no-code solution that automates almost any repetitive task.

AI tools for marketing agency - Zapier home screen.AI tools for marketing agency - Zapier home screen.


It works by connecting different platforms with APIs so they work together. If you start a new Word doc for each client project, then create an event in Asana, and generate a bill in an accounting tool, Zapier will link those platforms so it all happens as soon as you create the Word doc.

It’s a great platform for building your own AI solution as you face many predictable actions in your marketing agency.

Pricing: Zapier has a limited free plan with the option to upgrade, starting at $19.99 monthly (billed annually).

12. Taskade AI

If you need a great marketing project management tool, this might be for you. Taskade AI generates task lists and mind maps. It also helps you set up agendas and workflows—all with AI.


AI tools for marketing agency - Taskade home screen.AI tools for marketing agency - Taskade home screen.


You can collaborate in your workplace and even utilize in-app AI assistance. It’s project management and strategy empowered by AI technology.

Pricing: The platform starts at $19 monthly (billed annually).

AI tools for chatbots

If you’re looking for a way to connect with clients on your agency website or onboard them for your app or portal, these AI solutions will help.

13. Drift

The Drift app is great for communicating with your clients and prospects 24/7. The B2B chatbot uses Drift technology called Conversational AI, which automates conversations.

AI tools for marketing agency - Drift home screen.AI tools for marketing agency - Drift home screen.



The platform is designed to improve your sales pipeline to get more clients. The one downside is that it can be costly, but if it benefits your clients directly (or your agency), the revenue it generates might be worth it.

Pricing: Drift starts at $2,500 monthly.

14. HelpHub by CommandBar

HelpHub is another AI chat solution that learns from your resources, marketing website, content, and more to answer visitor queries on your agency website.

AI tools for marketing agency - HelpHub home screen.AI tools for marketing agency - HelpHub home screen.


You can equip your clients and prospects with 24/7 assistance powered by AI technology and trained by your documentation.

Pricing: The starter plan is $249 monthly.


15. Perplexity

The Perplexity AI search platform is handy for content marketing research. You can get it as a browser extension and ask questions as you work on a piece.

AI tools for marketing agency - perplexity home screen.AI tools for marketing agency - perplexity home screen.


The bot answers you with multiple citations so you can verify the information, dig deeper, and link to sources if necessary (that’s a big win for AI writing!).

The app offers unique answers and resources that help you save time and escape a jam.

Price: Perplexity is free to use. Users can also upgrade to the Pro plan at $20 a month.

AI tools for SEO research

Research is the foundation of any successful SEO strategy. Here are the top tools you can use for your agency.


👋 Finding the perfect keywords is a snap with our free Keyword Tool.

16. Keyword Insights

Keyword Insights’ AI technology identifies thousands of keyword ideas, puts them into topic clusters, and helps you create content.

AI tools for marketing agency - Keyword Insights home page.AI tools for marketing agency - Keyword Insights home page.


It’s a great automated tool for research, but it also helps you plan and outline your strategy. When you are ready to produce content, you click a button, and the information and brief go right to your content writer.

Pricing: The basic plan starts at $58 a month.

17. Clearscope

Clearscope uses AI technology to identify competing website pages and their common keywords, then analyzes your content for comparison. This can shave hours off the time you spend on each piece.


AI tools for marketing agency - Clearscope home screen.AI tools for marketing agency - Clearscope home screen.


With Clearscope, you input your content and improve your chance of showing up on search engines by adding the suggested keywords and enhancing the piece using a graded scale.

Pricing: Plans start at $199 monthly.


Frase does a great job combining SEO research with AI writing. In short, you can do everything in one place to research, outline, write, and optimize your content.

AI tools for marketing agency - Frase home screen.AI tools for marketing agency - Frase home screen.


Pricing: Subscribers pay $12.66 monthly (billed annually) with options to upgrade packages.


Choosing the right AI marketing agency tools in 2024

Effective marketing AI tools help you save resources and increase productivity to build better campaigns and strategies. You just have to find the right fit.

It’s best to start with a challenge and work backward. Where are the workflow bottlenecks? What repetitive busywork is a creative contributor constantly bogged down by? Then, look for AI tools that address those challenges. Do that regularly, and you’ll run an even more efficient marketing agency.

Here are the best AI tools for marketing agencies:

  1. ChatGPT
  2. Jasper
  4. Typeframes
  5. Midjourney
  6. Grammarly
  7. FeeHive
  8. Hootsuite OwlyWriter AI
  10. Wordable
  11. Zapier
  12. Taskade AI
  13. Drift
  14. HelpHub
  15. Perplexity
  16. Keyword Insights
  17. Clearscope

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