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Getting started with Google AdWords definitions and terms

Is it time to finally get seen by search engines and reach that top spot?  If you are starting to play with Google AdWords and how it can help your digital marketing strategy, you should invest the time to learn all of the terms and key points of AdWords before you begin.

Google AdWords can reach an amazing number of people.  Consider the following graphic from

Google AdWords definitions - display network reach

Thanks to our friends at who compiled this list, here are some of the core Google AdWords definitions you need to know:

 Term  Definition
1. Campaign   An ad campaign on Google AdWords is made up of your ad groups, and has the same budget, campaign type and your other ad settings. It’s generally what you first set up when you advertise, and it helps you organize your different paid advertising efforts. You can run multiple campaigns at any time from your Google account.
2. Ad groups  An ad group is your set of keywords, budgets and targeting methods for a particular objective, within the same campaign. For example, if you are running an ad campaign for a shoe sale, you could set up ad groups to target for online sales, women’s shoes and men’s shoes. You can have multiple ads in each ad group.
3. Campaign Type   Your campaign type is where you want your ads to be seen. Google has:
  ·“Search Network only” (which means Google search only)
  ·“Display Network only” (which means your ad shows up in Google’s Display network of websites, videos, YouTube, Blogger and more. This is also known as AdSense)
  ·“Search Network with Display Select” (which is a combo of search and display)
If you have a Google Merchant Center account and want to use Product Listing Ads, you can also choose “Shopping” as a campaign type.
4. Keywords  Keywords are very important in your Google Ads. They are the words or word phrases you choose for your ads, and will help to determine where and when your ad will appear. When choosing your keywords, think like your customer and what they would be searching for when they want your product, service or offer. Though you can include as many as you like, I suggest a maximum of twenty keywords.
5. Quality Score  A quality score is the measurement from Google based on the relevancy of your ad headline, description, keywords and destination URL to your potential customer seeing your ad. A higher Quality Score can get you better ad placement and lower costs.
6. Impressions  An impression is the measurement of how many times your ad is shown.
7. Ad Rank  Your Ad Rank is the value that’s used to determine where your ad shows up on a page. It’s based on your Quality Score and your bid amount.
8. Mobile ad  Mobile ads are what your mobile searchers see on their devices. Google AdWords has WAP mobile ads and “ads for high end mobile devices”.
9. Ad extensions  Ad extensions are extra information about your business, such as your local address, phone number, and even coupons or additional websites. They’re what shows up in blue below your ad descriptions.
10. Call to Action (CTA)  A CTA is literally the action you want your searcher to take. Good CTAs in your ads are short, action oriented words such as “Buy”, “Get”, “Act Now”, etc.
11. Click Through Rate (CTR)  Your CTR is an important metric in your account settings. It measures how many people who have seen your ad click through to your link destination.
12. Landing Page  Your landing page is the page on your website to which you’re driving traffic from your ad.
13. Optimization  Optimization in Google AdWords is like optimization elsewhere in marketing. It means making the changes in your ad that get you higher results for your objectives.
14. Split Testing  Split testing includes A/B and multivariate testing. It’s a method of controlled marketing experiments with the goal being to improve your objective results (such as higher CTR’s, increased conversion or even better Ad Ranking).

Need more customized AdWords help?

At Digital Workshop Center, we have personalized Google AdWords classes and consulting available both online and in person in Denver or Fort Collins.  You will work with an AdWords professional to learn the latest tips and tricks from an industry expert.

Contact us for more information: