Google AdWords vs Facebook Ads, what a buzz in the PPC marketing world. I know these two platforms are great for generating leads and driving revenues for your business.
But have you ever wondered which one is suitable or the best when it comes to advertising? Don’t worry.
In this article, I’m going to guide you through the basics, the pros, and cons of each and which one should you choose.
What is Google AdWords
Google AdWords a.k.a. Google Ads, according to wordstream, is an advertising system in which advertisers bid on certain keywords or search phrases in order for their clickable ads to appear in Google’s search results.
Since advertisers have to pay for these clicks, this is how Google makes money from search.
It is a part of marketing called PPC marketing, where you pay the advertising system when someone clicks on your ads. It doesn’t matter if the person purchases your products or services or not.
To advertise on Google AdWords, you simply need a Google account to open Google ad account. To learn more about how to get started with the platform, you can check out my Google AdWords Basics for beginners article.
What is Facebook Ads
Facebook Ads is an advertising platform service which is a part of the Facebook ecosystem. The ads can appear in News Feed on desktop, News Feed on mobile and in the Right Column of Facebook on desktop.
This is one of the major ways Facebook make their money on the platform. Other ways include things like a third-party advertisement, app integration, API request, etc.
Just like Google AdWords, it is also a part of PPC marketing.
To advertise on Facebook, you simply need your Facebook account and for effective ad features, you need to have your Facebook business or fan page created.
In order to manage the ads campaign, Facebook has its own platform known as Facebook ads manager, which is a part of the Facebook Business platform.
Before we move on to see which platform is suitable for your business, let’s analyze the pros and cons of each platform.
Goolge AdWords Pros
1. Reach larger audiences
Being the world’s largest search engine, you can be assure that you ads will reach large section of people.
With over billions of searches per day and 90% of internet market share, no doubt why Google ads can proof the be the right weapon for your business
2. User-intent based advertisement
This is the biggest advantage for Google Ads and SEM in general. When people search for something on search engines, they do it with an intent.
For example, if I want to buy a pair of shoes, I would directly search it on search engines like Google and most likely to buy them if I find the desired model.
So the likelihood of conversion through Google AdWords is much higher than Facebook, which I will be talking about later on in the article.
3. Set up quickly
Google ad manager is by far the simplest I’ve ever seen. It hardly takes more than 5 minutes to get your first ad campaign up and running.
The interface itself is quite easy to understand with each and every menu properly placed.
Unlike other platforms, where you may have to call a sales representative, Google Ads takes you through easy-to-follow steps. Now, you can focus your time on building a worthwhile campaign.
4. Blend in with the organic search results
As we know that people don’t prefer to click on ads because there is this kind of stigma behind it – whether it’s not trustworthy or looks like spam.
Over the decade, Google has tried to blend in its ad display more and more to look like an organic search result. This way, it looks more trustworthy so more people can click on it.
Google AdWords cons
1. Competitive segment
With SEO becoming more and more difficult, people are now turning to Google ad and SEM in general.
So no matter how big or small businesses are, they all are competing for the same or similar keywords. This causes the price of the keywords to increase.
As a consequence, you may have to choose secondary keywords. Even though they may cost less, they may not meet your advertising goals. It’s a hard decision that every small business must evaluate.
2. Most often need expert
Knowing just the basics will only get you so far. If you want to dominate the market, you need to know various strategies to outcompete your competitors.
This often comes with cost by experimenting different techniques. Ultimately, you would need to hire an expert to monitor the conversion rate.
Paying an expert may cut into your initial campaign budget, which means less money to target customers. But with their knowledge, you can make your marketing dollars go much further toward reaching new customers.
3. More expensive than Facebook ads
Unlike Facebook advertisement, in Google AdWords, you need to pay money for each and every keywords you bid for.
The rise of competition and targeting multiple keywords to ensure success are the two main reason which requires you to pay 2 to 3 times more than Facebook ads.
Facebook Ads pros
1. Its inexpensive
This probably the main reason why Facebook ad is so popular. You could have your ad reach to thousand of people with as little as $10.
Especially if you are a smaller B2C companies looking to target particular demographic or small specific region.
Set up your budget limit and push the button, this is all it takes for Facebook ads to run. You don’t have to compete with anyone or bid for any keywords.
Another big advantage here over Google ads. True, Google AdWords allow you to run your ads on a specific location and demographic.
But Facebook’s ability to target based on things like people’s interests, age, gender, employment status all the way up to marital status, hobbies and much more makes it such a powerful tool.
This allows you to create personalized ads and do split testing on multiple ad campaigns to see what truly works.
In Google AdWords vs Facebook Ads, I really think this is a huge edge Facebook has.
By placing a small snippet of code on your website called Facebook pixel, you will be able to keep track of your visitors’ activities.
This can help you understand what they are interested most and what they don’t. Then you can use that to your advantage and show the re-target prospects what they need.
This can increase the chance of conversion up to 70%, especially in B2B business, where frequent communication is required.
4. Don’t need a website
You hear that right. You don’t have to have a website set up in order to capture your prospects’ lead.
All you need in Facebook is a Facebook business page and you are good to go. Facebook has different of ad types, including lead generation form.
On top of that, you can basically use things like fancy videos, images and call to action button, just like a typical landing page will do, just on a single platform.
5. One platform, two ad accounts
After Facebook acquired Instagram back in 2012, Instagram ad can now be created and managed under Facebook ad manager.
In fact, for every Facebook ad you create, you get an option to whether run it on Instagram as well. This makes it a double win.
You can manage both the advertising campaign and deploy ads on two different platforms using just one account.
Facebook Ads cons
1. Diminishing Organic Reach
Unless you pay for ads, organic reach on Facebook is almost zero.
Back in the day, marketers was able to generate leads and reach through Facebook organic search. But as time passes, Facebook has changed into more of an advertising platform than social network.
So many businesses who are not interested in paying to share their content on Facebook will not be able to benefit from the platform.
2. Strict policies
As more and more people are using Facebook ads, the platform has continuously come up with newer and more strict policy.
Some of which are quite controversial. Before you are able to make your ad public, you have to fulfill a long list of the terms and rules.
Otherwise, your ad will get rejected and sometimes violation of the policy can even get you banned from advertising.
To learn more, check out the Facebook ad policy page.
3. Users have to view their feed
Unlike Google ads where you can select an option to display your ads on various Google ecosystem like Gmail, YouTube, or on various websites which uses Adsense to monetize,
Facebook ads can only be displayed on users feed. Unless your users open Facebook, your ads will not be effective.
4. Ad manager can be difficult to use
With Facebook constantly changing it’s ad manager design, this can prove to be quite challenging for beginners.
Also, there are various components and things you should know before you get started with your first campaign. This makes advertising on Facebook requires more learning curve than Google AdWords.
Google AdWords vs Facebook Ads: Which one is better?
So you have learned about each of their pros and cons. But question still remains, which one is really for your business.
Well, the answer is simple – It primarily depends on two factors, i.e your target audience and what is your goal.
Your target audience
This is the most important thing you should know. Where are your audiences hang out on most? Is it social media or search engines (specifically here Google).
To know this, you need to create a buyer persona. I talked about this in almost all of my articles. To have full understanding and knowledge about your target audience is crucial to online business.
If you are a B2C company, the chances are you can generate lots of leads on Facebook. This is because beautiful images of products and videos can help capture people’s attention.
Generating leads and sales for B2C companies using Google ads are also effective as well. Many people are searching for products on Google every day. For example, “Best shoes 2019” or “Top 10 reviews. of..”.
But for B2B companies, advertising on Google is much more effective. This is intuitive, isn’t it? Who would search for a web developer or agencies on Facebook right?
The goal of advertising is ultimately to make sales and money. But not everyone goes for sale.
Sometime, certain businesses require to nurture trust and giving values. So capturing leads and creating awareness should be the main goal.
While others can make sales directly. This depends entirely on the business model and prospect target.
This can be classified into two groups of funnels.
Top of the funnel
This include things like
- Website visits
- Social media interaction
- Social media reach
- Blog reads
- Social shares
- Newsletter subscriptions
Middle and bottom of the funnel
This include things like:
- Making sales
- Webinar signup
- Gross profit
- Free items download
Though both the platforms can work well for these two funnels,
For top of the funnel, Facebook ads work the best. No other leads capture system is as powerful as Facebook ads. Things on social media can go viral.
Creating brand awareness and generating leads is great on Facebook.
On the other hand, if your goal is middle or bottom of the funnels, Google AdWords is the best choice. This is because it is a user-based intent advertisement platform.
By “intent” we’re referring to a searcher’s need for a solution to their query. After all, that’s why you navigate to a search engine in the first place. If you’re searching, you’re looking for an answer.
Google AdWords vs Facebook Ads: My choice
In my opinion, no doubt both the system work great. Because they are two giants in this field. They are two of the most popular and best advertising platform.
But if I have to choose one for my business and looking in a general perspective, I would go for Google AdWords.
This is because whether you are a B2C or B2B company, Google ads work well for both. Unlike Facebook ads, which only works well for B2C.
Also, there are certain disadvantages to social media marketing, which make them not suitable for business.
On top of that, Due to larger audiences, search intent and Google domination on the Internet, I believe that ads by Google are likely to convert more.
But again, one thing that can play a huge role and can become a deciding factor is budget. True, in my opinion, Google Ads are better than Facebook. But the cost of running it can be 2 to 3 times greater.
For smaller companies or new business, this can proved to be a major factor and issue.
And that’s all for the Google AdWords vs Facebook Ads showdown. I hope you have understood their pros, cons and which one should you choose for your business.
Take every point into consideration and see what is your priority. Sure they both have their advantages and disadvantages but by selecting them on the basis of your business’s priority, you will be able to decide it.
So let me know in the comment which is your go to advertising platform and why.
I’m just an ordinary guy with passion for web development and online marketing. Let’s stay connected!