Set up a search campaign in Google Ads

1. Log into your Google account, go to, and click on Start Now.

If you’re not already logged in, you’ll be prompted to do so before you can proceed. If you do not have a Google account, you can sign up using any email address. For example, you can use an existing Gmail address or choose your own.

2. On the main advertising goals page, click on the Switch to Expert Mode hyperlink.

Don’t select a goal from Google’s main advertising goals suggestions at the top.

3. Click on Create a campaign without a goal’s guidance, then Search Campaign, and then select a goal for your campaign.

Choose the results you want from the campaign and any further details needed, then click on Continue. For example, if you select website visits, you’ll need to type in your website URL.

4. On the Select campaign settings page under Networks, untick the Display Network checkbox, and select settings like budget and audience.

Select the locations where you want your ads to appear. You can choose whether your ad is only shown in specific countries or all countries and territories. Leave the audiences broad to enable Google to optimize the reach and targeting. Set a daily budget for the campaign and enable the click bidding strategy in the next step.

5. Name your ad group to match the keywords you will be using to target your audience, and decide which of the keywords suggested by Google to keep, edit, or delete.

You can add new keywords to the suggested list, one word or phrase per line. You can also type in your products or services in the field above to generate new keywords.

6. Open Google Keyword Planner and type in your keywords to research volume and competition metrics and generate new ones.

Type in your main keyword. Add a filter to the results to only show exact match results. Click on Ad Filters, select Keyword, add your main keyword, and click the condition contains. The new list will only show keywords that contain your chosen keyword. Repeat the filtering process to filter by competition. Sort the results by the number of monthly searches and identify the keywords with the lowest amount of average searches and the highest competition.

7. Select 3 to 5 long-tail keywords generated by the Keyword Planner, and copy and paste the keywords into a document.

Long-tail keywords are phrases that are usually 2-3 words or more, but show lower search volume and often lower competition as well. Stick to keywords directly related to your business, such as the type of products and services you offer.

8. Return to your campaign setup and create your ads by typing in your landing page URL and at least 5 headlines under 30 characters and 3 descriptions under 90 characters for each ad.

Include the keywords saved from your Keyword Planner research in your ad copy and make sure that your headlines include at least one.

9. Click Save and Continue and wait for Google to review your campaign.

New campaigns are automatically saved as drafts so you can go back and fill in any information by clicking the progress tabs at the top. The campaign will not launch until all required fields are filled in. Once Google approves your campaign details, the Publish button will become active. Click on Publish to launch your Google search campaign.