Google Search or Facebook Ads?

digital marketing facebook ads google search ads Aug 14, 2020

A few months ago I ran a survey asking my subscribers what types of internet advertising they prefer for promoting their business. This group of subscribers are primarily contractors or small businesses offering services in the construction sector.

Unsurprisingly most respondents told me that they were using either Google Search or Facebook Ads. In fact, I have been getting many questions on which one of the two mediums I believe is better.

Really the question you should be asking is not which is better, but which is more suitable for your business!

Let me clarify:

Imagine the person who wants to buy your services. Try to imagine her life. Lets assume that she is thinking about getting her house painted.

If she looks at the wall every day and can’t stand to see the cracked paint, she will very likely go online and do a google search for “paint contractors etc”. She is planning to get the house painted in the upcoming weeks.

But imagine her now in a different state of mind. There is no urgency to paint her house, but she has been thinking of giving her house a makeover. And one day, as she is browsing facebook she just happens to come across an ad by a local paint contractor.

And this is the key difference between the two mediums. Google Search is direct, it is suitable for people with a pressing problem that needs to be fixed fairly quickly. Google is great for the customer that knows he needs to get his bathroom remodelled in August when the kids will be away for a week. He can search out the companies doing remodelling and make his pick.

Facebook is great for raising awareness for problems people were not even aware they had. Yes the customer knows the kitchen does not look great but he never really considered renovating. And one day as he scrolls his Facebook feed, this video flashes in front of him showing a local contractor take a drabby old kitchen and turn it into squeaky clean and new. And that triggers the customers interest and he reaches out to request a quote.

The chances of someone proceeding with your project because they saw a Google Ad is much higher than with a Facebook Ad. This is something I keep on seeing with my business. Google search customers tend to be more determined. In fact I tend to turn every 1 out of 4 leads into a customer. This is why I am prepared to spend more money per clicks on Google Search Ads. I know I will get my money back.

On Facebook I need far more clicks to get an inquiry. And usually these inquiries are someday maybes. So my conversion is more like 1 in 10 or 1 in every 20 leads. However Facebook is excellent for keeping the pipeline warm throughout the year. Facebook is great for expanding my reach, and building a list of people that you can touch base with in the future through email marketing. After all there are only so many people searching for our solution on Google. But what about all those others who could potentially become customers, if only they knew about us?

Take some time and think of the types of customers that you attract in your business. Are they more short term that seem to have urgent problems (my roof is leaking!) ? Well Google Search is great for that.

Or are they more long-term thinkers that would like to see their front porch finally redone after all these years. In that case use the visual power of facebook to raise awareness in your town.

And if you want to learn more about how to use Google or Facebook for your business have a look at out the Contractors' Handbook for Digital Marketing. In this E-book I have collected and documented my personal experiences with both medium and I talk about in depth on how to use them.

Finally I want to hear your thoughts. Which medium do you prefer? Google Ads or Facebook Ads?