4.2 Research your Google market
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The most important thing you bring to the search marketing “table” is your knowledge and passion for your business and some familiarity with your Google marketplace. It will help a lot if you have a good understanding of how your competitors use Google to get customers. Then you can use QuickStart to do it even better.

Find out how customers are buying

Your competitors may have some very creative ways they use Google Ads to get customers, so you need to do enough research to fully understand them. Do they ask you to call and talk about your problem? Sign up for an estimate? Come in for a free sample? Buy a product or service?

A clear picture of how your competitors use Google is very valuable

Don’t just click on ads. Call and talk. Fill out the forms. Buy the samples. Chat online – several times. We hope you will develop some new innovations for selling on Google, but you’re going to need to know what’s happening first.

This will REALLY help you to think like your customer – to see what they see when various terms are typed in. Both before you even have campaigns and definitely after.

Consider holding a weekly meeting where everyone involved in selling or customer service spends an hour going through every Google search possibly related to your market. You can even simulate searching from different devices and locations using tools such as Browserstack.com.

Uncover your market opportunities

There’s another benefit to being exuberant Google researchers: discovering where your competitors have left “holes” for you to take all the customers from. In other words, where you might get a lot of business very cheaply.

Here’s some examples (each of which we have seen working in the marketplace) of how using Google to scan the marketplace can reveal opportunities that you would otherwise not find.

  1. You discover that your competitors have “free” as a negative search term. You decide to put “free” in your keywords, and feature an ad that tells us why you’re a lot better than any “free” solution, and you might get a lot of business very cheaply.
  2. You discover that your biggest competitor runs very high bids starting at 8am each day, but runs out of budget by 11am. You decide to start your campaigns at noon and you might get a lot of business very cheaply.
  3. You discover that your competitors all offer “free inspection”. You run ads that say: “no inspection necessary” and you might get a lot of business very cheaply.
  4. You discover that your main competitor runs call-only ads, but not on weekends. You decide to run call-only ads on weekends and, you guessed it, you might get a lot of business very cheaply.
  5. Your competitors just run a generic “Chicago Area” type of ad. You take the time to create ads customized for each suburb, and – well, you can fill in the rest.

 
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