12 Useful Google Tools for Digital Marketing Success
As digital marketers, we love a good tool that helps us to successfully implement our marketing strategy. There are some powerful Google tools out there that not only help us with our marketing processes but also give some great insight into our marketing performance.
Google provides some of the best tools for your digital marketing toolbox… and the best part is, most of them are free to use!
1. Google Analytics
As one of our favourite Google tools, Google Analytics has earned its rightful place at position number 1.
Google Analytics is ultimately used to analyse the performance of your website. But it’s not just about how many visits you get to your homepage. This Google tool produces far more meaningful data than that.
What do your website visitors do after they have landed on your homepage? What about your other landing pages? Where are your visitors coming from? Which pages are they spending the most time on? What devices and browsers are they accessing your website on? Are they hitting your goals (e.g. completing an order, filling out a form)? Google Analytics will answer all of those questions… and more!
You can delve into all of the activities and behaviour of your website visitors, work out where you’re doing well and which parts of your website require more attention. Google Analytics is a great tool for understanding how users are navigating your site and how easily they have found the information that they are looking for.
We offer a FREE Google Analytics audit, where we will check that your account is correctly configured and that you’re tracking the right information in the right way. Here’s a quick bit of free advice to show you one of our most basic checks: Have you excluded your own visits and those of search engine spiders and other bots? If not your data is going to be skewed and you may be drawing the wrong conclusions.
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2. Google Ads
Formerly known as Google AdWords, this Google tool is used for Google Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising.
Google Ads is a great platform for setting up, managing and monitoring the performance of your PPC campaigns. Google Ads can also be linked with Google Analytics, so you can see the full customer cycle of your PPC advertising all in one place (from ad impressions and click-through rates, through to PPC landing page conversions).
Of course, Google is not the only search engine, so it’s usually worth checking out Bing Ads too.
If you’re already using PPC and you’d like to know how to get the most of our your campaigns, try our FREE PPC audit. We can pretty much guarantee we can reduce your cost per click and improve your position in the PPC rankings.
3. Google Ads Keyword Planner
As you will see in our blog “What is PPC?”, keyword research is a fundamental part of PPC advertising. Google Ads Keyword Planner is an ideal Google tool to help you to identify which keywords and phrases you should target and include in your PPC campaign and PPC landing pages.
But you don’t just have to use the keyword planner for PPC campaigns. You can use the tool to search for keyword ideas for new website content. It will give you an indication of search volume for your keywords and make suggestions for associated keywords that you may also wish to cover when writing your content.
4. Google My Business
Google My Business is essentially a form of free advertising on Google. It’s simple to do, you just need to claim your Google My Business listing and you’ll be featured in the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) for local searches. It’s also great for your local SEO rankings.
There’s also the ability for people to leave reviews on your Google My Business listing. You should actively encourage this, as good reviews will also help your local SEO efforts.
We’re offering a local SEO package, which is designed to help you to improve your rankings for local searches.
5. Google Search Console
Previously known as Google Webmaster Tools, Google Search Console gives you a great insight into your overall website health. The tool helps you to identify areas that require improvement for better search visibility. Although it gives you a good overview, it has to be said that it is only that…an overview. There are some much more powerful SEO tools out there that will give you far deeper insight into your search engine performance. Why not try our FREE SEO audit for a deeper insight into your SEO performance?
6. Google Trends
Google Trends allows you to look at keywords and see their trends over time. You can compare keyword variations against one another, to see which is more popular. You can even look at insights into search volume by region and there’s a function to see related keywords that you may not have thought of yourself. Similarly to Google Ads Keyword Planner, Google Trends can be used by marketers to make smarter keyword choices when writing content for your website.
7. Google Alerts
With Google Alerts, you can get a notification each time a specific keyword or phrase is mentioned online. Google Alerts are often used to monitor brand mentions or mentions of your competitors. They help you to stay on top of the latest news around your keywords and can be used as part of your PR activity to keep an eye on your company’s reputation online. By setting up daily alerts, you will be able to jump onto anything important in a timely manner, for example, responding to a negative mention of your brand, or reading your competitor’s latest press release.
8. Google Data Studio
Build powerful dashboards with Google Data Studio. When configured properly, your dashboard will be an easy and effective way to display marketing results.
Google Data Studio pulls data from Google Analytics, Google Ads, Google Sheets and more. This makes life easier for you when you want to report on specific data. You can create tables, charts and graphs and you even have the option to change the date range on your dashboard, so you don’t have to pull new data each month.
We must stress the importance of correct configuration when it comes to Google Data Studio. Often, it can take some time to set everything up, depending on the complexities of the data that you wish to see. The beauty is that it only needs to be done once.
YouTube is another great Google tool and probably the world’s biggest video platform, with a huge user base.
Another advantage of using YouTube to host your videos, over others such as Vimeo, is that the platform is owned by Google. Google tends to favour videos from YouTube, giving them a better chance of being shown in Google’s SERPs and thereby helping your SEO efforts.
10. Google AdSense
If you want to host ads on your YouTube channel through YouTube’s Partner Program, you will need a Google AdSense account. This will allow advertisers to place their ads on your channel. Google AdSense essentially connects you to this network of advertisers.
It’s not just used for YouTube. If you want to host ads on your website, perhaps your blog, this is the place where you will offer out your advertising space and receive payments from advertisers.
11. Google+ Business Pages
We know, nobody uses Google+ anymore, right? Google tried to create a social media channel to rival the likes of Facebook and LinkedIn, but it never really took off. In fact, Google+ was shut down for personal use on 2nd April 2019.
However, as it’s owned by the giant itself, having a presence on Google+ could help your company’s SEO rankings.
Google+ becomes more important when it comes to local business marketing. When setting up a Google My Business account, you will automatically get a Google+ page, which will be linked to from your Google My Business page. So, it’s worthwhile updating and optimising your Google+ page.
12. Google Hangouts
Worth a quick mention, and if you use Gmail, this one is particularly handy. Google Hangouts is basically a communication platform. It’s useful for messaging, video and voice conferencing.