Kerin Foster

Here's How Google Allocates Its Own Global PPC Ad Spend

Needless to say, Google is a global phenomenon that has taken the world by storm. Although search remains its core offering, the Mountain-View, California-based behemoth has gone well beyond search over the past decade and evolved into an internet services provider whose wide-reaching product portfolio is matched by few. With so many services to offer, how does Google allocate its global PPC ad spend? Are the services they push through PPC ads largely the same across countries, or does it differ from country to country?

With this as the starting point, the following should hopefully help shed some light into Google’s international strategy.

Global Spend

Initially in taking a look at google.com as an entire entity, it is immediately obvious that Google is placing the majority of their ad spend on Ads Keywords within the United States (approximately 780.5 thousand to be a bit more precise), and have the rest of their expenditure spread rather evenly for the remainder of the worldwide databases covered by SEMrush:

Google Global PPC Ad Distribution

Country-by-Country Analysis

US

In the United States database, the top keywords entail:

  • google.com
  • google chrome
  • games
  • google docs
  • chrome
  • youtube music
  • google analytics
  • android market
  • google mail

The highest amount of budget costs, approximately 12%, are going to google.com and google chrome, which can lead us to the conclusion that within the United States market, a top push for them is Google Chrome, and most keywords result in a corresponding URL and ad text. However, other databases confirm dissimilar and interesting results.

UK

Contrary to the United States, Google is placing 84% of their budget on the keyword gmail (which also generates 51% of traffic and directs users to the Gmail site), and the remaining 9 keywords — google, play, google chrome, googlemail, google mail, gmail.com, chrome, goog, angry birds – are quite even.

Canada

In Canada, with 75.6 thousand Ads Keywords, the keyword with the highest budget allocation is google calendar with approximately 12%, so the Google Calendar for business purposes is one of the many concentrations for Google in Canada.

Russia – Chrome is the primary gateway to search glory

The highest costs, accounting for 32% of PPC country budget in Russia, go to the keyword Google, and the remainder of the top keywords are overwhelmingly focused around Chrome, even with the top keyword Google directing to the landing page www.google.com/chrome, as displayed:

Google PPC Keyword Ad Spend in Russia

Therefore, the keyword that Google is utilizing isn’t always directly related to the resulting URL. And more importantly, it becomes abundantly clear that Google sees Russian user adoption of Chrome as its best shot at tearing down Yandex’s search stronghold in the vast country.

Germany – Android focus and competitor keyword targeting

It appears the company is placing greater emphasis on its Android OS in Germany – specifically its Google Play Store, with android market leading to the URL play.google.com (and the corresponding ad text promoting Android apps). Interestingly, internet explorer makes up one of the top keywords and takes the searcher to the Chrome homepage.

France, Spain, Italy, Brazil, and Australia

In France, Google is devoting 19 thousand Ads Keywords that are mostly focused on Google Chrome. Spain, however, has an unlike outcome and more ads with approximately 43 thousand. Top keywords for Google.com have a majority movie focus with peliculas online (online movies), peliculas (movies,)google earth, gmail iniciar session (gmail login),descargar peliculas (download movies), android market, peliculas online gratis (free online movies), adsense, google docs, and google play. While many keywords have a movie-esque focus, historical ads for the domain google.com in Spain’s database show that many of the keywords and ads are directed to Google Play.

Top keywords in Italy (11.7 thousand Ads Keywords) have a primary focus on Google mail and its homepage. Brazil has a great deal more keywords with 69.1 thousand, and a major focus on sending users to the AdWords Brasil landing page. 57% of the Google budget in Brazil is being sent to the keyword Google and the resulting URL for AdWords Brasil (keyword mapas (maps) leads to this URL as well.) Other keywords such as musicas (songs) direct to Google Aovivo.

Finally, Australia also has a large 68 thousand keywords that have a diverse focus on Chrome, Apps, Adwords, and Gmail – all within the top 10 keywords. The one that seemed the most noteworthy, or perhaps unique, was the keyword book depository, leading to the Google Play/books section of the site.

The picture largely the same on Bing

While researching a portion of Google’s ad expenditure and promotion efforts globally, curiosity sparked as far as if they are doing any sort of advertising on Bing. So why not take a look into Bing’s dashboard for Google.com:

Google Top Ad Keywords On Bing

Again, there are similarities with the distribution of ad spend globally, as well as the first few keywords – and of course, a focus on Google Mail, Chrome, and Play.

Conclusion

As the PPC data indicates, Google is taking a diversified yet consistent approach when it comes to its international ad spends: a prime emphasis is being placed on a few main aspects of their service globally: Chrome, Mail, and Play. They are using distinctive, attractive keywords and ad texts to entice attention and result in clicks to the areas that they are honing in on, with only a few exceptions such as Canada and the Google Calendar and in Brazil where Google is promoting AdWords a bit more. Nevertheless, Google seemingly has all of their ducks in a row for the most part when it comes to their international PPC tactics, at least for now.

Kerin Foster
Kerin is the Director of Content Development at SEMrush, an industry-leading service in search and PPC competitive analytics. She brings extensive knowledge and experience from the other side of search marketing and strives to provide the broadest perspective possible to achieve business goals. Kerin is a seasoned writer and holds a Master’s Degree in Literacy from Columbia University.

3 Responses to Here's How Google Allocates Its Own Global PPC Ad Spend

  1. Burke says:

    There is certainly a lot to learn about this topic. I like all the points you’ve made.

  2. KerinKerin says:

    You are very welcome! I’m glad it helped you.

  3. Wunschdomain says:

    Thank you very much for that article. I´m from germany but it helped me alot to understand google a little bit more… All the best.

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