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Local Google Ad Campaigns Definitely CAN Work.

In this article I’ll share some real local search engine advertising campaign results and also give you some food for thought so you can decide whether Google ads are a good fit for your business or not.

Here’s a quick piece of hard evidence that might help you decide whether Google AdWords can work for your local business. I’ve just finished calculating my client’s 2013 results achieved solely through ReachLocal search engine advertising primarily on Google.com.au.

The majority of my ~60 clients are small to medium sized businesses across a broad range of industries including Home Improvement, Auto, Healthcare, Professional Services & Manufacturing. Most of my clients’ campaigns are targeting only the local Newcastle & Hunter Valley region, so it shows a strong indication of the huge levels of search volumes happening on Google in the local area alone.


Website visits – 458,408

Inbound phone calls to businesses – 61,860

Online conversions (Email enquiries, online bookings, etc) – 10,981


I’m pumped to report that these figures more than doubled my 2012 figures and conversion rates have soared.

You can learn more about how local search conversion optimisation happens here.

If you’re interested to learn exactly how we track these results, you can find out more about that here.


So can local Google advertising work for YOUR business?

Google advertising can definitely provide a fantastic ROI for many companies targeting local consumers online.

However, it’s not for every business and there are some key factors you need to consider when trying to ascertain whether the ad spend is going to be worth your while. Some of the questions you’ll need to answer before spending a cent on Google advertising are:

– Are people searching for my stuff online in my target geographical region?

– Does my website convert visitors to leads & sales? (You can buy as much search traffic from Google as you like, but if your website is rubbish it will never translate into revenue for you)

– Is your offline sales process solid? Do you turn enquiries into sales?

– Based on my profit margins and new customer capacity etc, how much am I willing to spend on advertising to acquire a new customer?


I have some clients who are happy to invest hundreds of dollars per new acquired customer, because their products sell for tens of thousands of dollars. For other businesses, a healthy CPA (Cost-per-acquisition) might be just $10. This completely depends on industry factors, competition levels in your local market, your specific products & services, your profit margins etc. Every business is unique in this sense.

After running so many local Google advertising campaigns with ReachLocal, I’ve grown to learn which types of businesses can truly benefit from AdWords. I’ve also developed a good feel for which types of businesses should forget Google ads and focus on other marketing channels. Since opening our Newcastle office back in 2011, we’ve turned away plenty of prospective clients who we didn’t feel we could achieve strong ROI for.

If you have questions regarding whether local Google Ads could work for your business, feel free to drop me a line or leave a comment in the field below and I can offer some advice to help you make the best decision.