November 7, 2019

PPC – Google vs Facebook Ads

Are the Ads different in any real way?

Um Yes.

So you’ve made the realisation that you’re in the marketing game.

As in, whatever business you’re in, you’re in the marketing game. Good. Now you’ve also realised, because you clicked through to this article, that those who don’t fight the organisations that own the game (Google and Facebook) win.

Besides getting your SEO in order, so you can get free traffic, of course you’re going to want to attract traffic also. Sure, bees fly through big, welcoming, open backyards (SEO) but they are crazy attracted if there’s flowers sending out sweet sweet pheremones (PPC). Not sure if that analogy worked.

Anway, we know, for sure, with a bit of nouse, and a bit of money, we can get people to visit our site. But which platform do we choose? And how do they differ?

The basic differences between Google Ads ad Facebook Ads are:

audience (and what they’re doing when they get your ad)


auction (how the platform decides to serve your ad)

PPC Audience

Both platforms make 99% of their revenue from you, the ad buyer. And they sell to you their product, the ad watcher. So both Google and Facebook have alot to lose when it comes to getting the Ad process exactly right, so that a) they dont overdo it and lose products (people) and b) they dont undersell it and get taken advantage of by their consumers (you). The audiences however are very different.

Google’s audience, ~63,000 searches per second, is vast. Every single one of those searches can have up to 5-6 ads squashed in there, sometimes at ridiculous prices like $50 per click (Insurance keywords).

But the thing about Googlers? They’re looking for that thing.

The Google Audience, getting served your Ad, actually wants to find it. This is the key difference between Google Ads audiences and Facebook Ads audiences. That said, they are very, very vague personas. That is, your targeting of them as a person is difficult, you know nothing about them besides their search terms, and the bare minimum they have in their Google account, if they’re signed in.

Facebook Ads audiences aren’t looking for your Ad. They often dont want to see your Ad (or they dont know they do 😉 ) and they are usually peoccupied with something else. (usually mindlessly scrolling). This means the ads are much cheaper, and often much harder to capture the attention of the target. So whats the benefit of Facebook Ads? It seems like Google Ads are way better? Well, Facebooks Ace up its sleeve is its data. Facebook hold hundreds of data points on every one of its members. And it uses that data to make decisions on advertising.

The longer a Facebook user has been on the platform, the more certain Facebook is that they can predict their next move. This is a goldmine for advertisers. Its literally like being in the mind of the target, except more, because many of the data points we dont even realise, like microseconds spent looking at a post, location data, reactions at different times of the day, and correlations between all these.

It makes Facebook Ads probably the most powerful marketing (ahem and influence) tool today.

PPC Auction

So the auction, how does that differ?

Kind of similar, but again different

Facebook’s auction multiplies the bid amount by the estimated action rate and adds a relevance and quality multiplier to get an overall score, get the best score and your ad is presented.

Google takes the bid amount and multiplies it by the quality score. This calculation, like Facebook’s, takes into account many different individual factors, but, like we mentioned before, is far more vast than Facebook from a user journey perspective, and includes things like user experience on the landing page (because yeah, Google owns that too).

So thats basically it. A quick glance at the 2 main things that separate the two big players in terms of Ads. In order to discover which one is best for your business, you really need to think about who your audience is, where they’re likely to be, when and why they would click your Ad, and how much you’re willing to spend to get a click. This is really just the very tip of the iceberg that is PPC ads. We’ll go more into depth on these points in another article. For now, think about your audience, think about your product, and think about which one your ideal customer would click on.



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