Advertising with Google AdWords

Check it out, I made an ad! Don’t worry, I’m not putting ads on this website. My readership is too small (hi, Tracy!) to make that worthwhile but this is a picture of what my Google AdWords ad looks like on other people’s sites.

I haven’t done much advertising of my apps in the past because I wasn’t sure if it’d be worth it. After Apple’s fees, various banking fees, taxes, etc. … I get about 50 cents for each of my 99 cent apps. That’s great because I don’t really have any costs, it’s all profit.

So just how expensive would advertising be? Well, rates vary but it’s roughly a penny per time someone clicks on an ad. But just getting someone to click on an ad doesn’t make me any money. They actually have to buy my app in order to generate some revenue. Then the question becomes, how many people that click on the ad actually end up buying the app? If it’s like 10% of the people (spend 10 cents to make 50 cents), then that’s pretty good. If it’s 1% (spend $1 to make 50 cents), that’s not so good.

My guess is that it’s a lot closer to 1% than 10% so I haven’t bothered to advertise before. But just recently, Google did a promotion offering $100 worth of free advertising if I signed up. So I figured, hey, I’ll give it a shot and find out if it’s worth it.

Oh, and if you’re one of those people that came to my site from clicking on the ad, welcome! I’d love to hear your thoughts on the ad. Did you buy Mach Dice? Also, take a look at Holograms, an app that lets you turn pictures into virtual holograms!

11 Responses to “Advertising with Google AdWords”

  1. Si Brindley Says:

    Wow – I’m staggered that you’re able to have an advert with “iPhone” and “iPod” in it I had a great idea about starting a review site for iPhone apps and turning a small profit using Google Adwords, but my plan was foiled when Google Adwords disabled my ads whenever I used words like “iPhone”. That kinda made it hard to advertise iPhone games, etc – as I’m sure you can imagine.

    If you do make this work, you might also consider using Apple’s affiliate programme for the iTunes store. That way, whenever you send someone to the iTunes store (whether to buy your apps or not), you get a little cut of any sale for the next 24 hours (I think). You can direct people to your apps on the iTunes store via your own affiliate link.

  2. Mach Says:

    Well, so far, I haven’t gotten much of a response from the AdWords. I don’t think anyone’s actually clicked on my ads yet. Might be time to bump up the budget.

    I’ve thought about the Apple affiliate program, but I don’t think I have nearly enough traffic to make it worthwhile. If I ever get a large enough readership, though, I’ll consider it again.

  3. Si Brindley Says:

    Turning a profit with Adwords is HARD. Don’t increase your budget – improve your keywords and other settings.

    What keywords are you using? There are a lot of phrases you can bid on too, e.g. [Dice app] [dice rolling software] [dice software] [dice rolling app] ad infinitum.

    Incidently, can your comments system do reply notifications? There’s no way I can know someone’s replied when I write here :)

  4. Mach Says:

    That’s a good idea, I’ll try out some other keywords next week. So far, I was just using generic keywords: “boardgame”, “dice”, “rpg”, and “iPhone”. As far as I can tell, no one’s clicked on any of the ads. In fact, I’m not sure that the ad has made it on to any websites.

    There isn’t a reply notification system but you can subscribe to the “Comments (RSS)” feed below. I only get a few comments a week so you can just add that to your reader (I use Google Reader) and you’ll find out when you get a response.

  5. Si Brindley Says:

    I can’t believe I missed the RSS feed! Added to Google Reader, thanks.

  6. detoxtechno Says:

    Adwords is really great for promoting your website and also affiliate links. i have just passed the Google Adwords Professional exam today and i am very happy.

  7. MachWerx » Blog Archive » AdWords Didn’t Work Out Says:

    [...] A while ago, I mentioned that I got a free credit of $100 to use with Google AdWords. After a couple days, I wrote that it didn’t seem like anyone clicked on any of my ads. Well, it’s been over a month and as far as I can tell, none of my ads have been clicked on or my ad hasn’t gone up yet. It’s an ad for Mach Dice and I’ve tried just about every relevant keyword I could think of, including all the suggested ones (iphone, dice, rpg, boardgame, etc.). I even tried bumping up my budget to $20 a day with a max bid of $10 per click (which seems insanely expensive considering that my maximum profit would be 70 cents). [...]

  8. Jacnette Says:

    I have been using Adwords for the last 2 years and i can only say that it increased my online sales by about 20%. The pay per click cost of Adwords is even cheaper than Adbrite. I love Adwords.

  9. Mach Says:

    Hmmm … maybe I’m using it wrong because I couldn’t get it to serve a single ad. What kind of budgets, max bids, and keywords do people use? Mine are $20, $10 max bix, and pretty much every keyword I could think of related to iPhone dice rolling.

  10. Ed Says:

    I got to your page googling ‘adwords to advertise iphone apps’ because I was curious about how effective it was. Typically with Adwords you place an ad and it’s one click to the page you want your customers to be. I’m assuming you can’t use itunes deep links in adwords so advertising an iphone app creates two clicks – making it seemingly harder to make that conversion.

    I manage the adwords account for the company I work at and it can be really effective. Mach – are you getting impressions? $20, $10 sounds a bit high. I’m assuming there’s something wrong with the keywords you chose or something along those lines. If you’d like, email me and possibly we can set up a trade of some kind and I could audit your adwords account for you to help you get some success out of it.

  11. Post free ads online Says:

    I actually found your blog accidently, but wow I’m so glad I did. Thank you for posting this. I will bookmark you and add you to the feed reader.