The Basics of Online Advertising

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How can online advertising help your local business grow?

Digital advertising increases awareness—it’s that simple. Digital advertising can involve a range of services, including paid ads on Search and Social.

More and more businesses are increasing the amount that they spend on digital advertising, and experts like Jamie Turner suggest digital advertising on social platforms is well worth the spend.

“If I were to provide one tip to people who are using social media, it would be this — don’t be afraid of paying for social media reach and clicks.”

Jamie Turner,

The best part about digital advertising, specifically Facebook Ads, is that results can be easily monitored and ROI can be easily tracked. You probably don’t want to be spending lots of money without some proof of performance right?

With traditional media channels, there is typically no way of tracking the effectiveness of an advertisement in terms of advanced data analytics. With digital advertising, companies like Google and Facebook allow advertisers access to advanced analytics. This way local businesses know that their money is being well spent and that the digital advertisements are positively impacting their bottom line.

When determining the success of a digital advertising campaign, the important factors will differ case-by-case. However for the most part, the success of a campaign lies in the indicators listed below.

ROI indicators/measures of a successful campaign:

  • Impressions: the actual # of views on an advertisement
  • Reach: the # of people who viewed an advertisement
  • Link Clicks: the actual # of direct clicks on the advertisement’s destination link
  • Results: There are dozens of possible results depending on the objective and CTA of your campaign. In-Store Visits, Online Sales, Phone Calls, Lead Form Fills, and Messaging Conversations Started – just to name a few

The Best Places to Advertise

Having worked with over 500 local businesses in the last three years, we have come to the same conclusion as pretty much every digital advertising company. The best places to spend money on digital advertising are Google & Facebook.

Digital advertising on Search and Social helps increase a local business’ visibility online by local people in their exact target audiences. Platforms like Facebook and Google allow for advanced targeting, which puts a local business in front of consumers who are the most likely to convert.

It is all about finding the right people at the right time with the right message, and that is possible on both of these platforms.

Why advertise on Google?

Reach: Google Ads are the best form of permission-based marketing in the world. Utilizing Google’s massive network capabilities, businesses are able to find the highest intent prospects who are searching for exactly what they are selling. Google is the largest search network in the world, and consumers are using it every single day to discover local businesses.

In the age of digital, people are not looking at TV commercials or listening to radio ads to find a local business. Instead your customers are searching for products and services and making their decisions online.

With over 6 Billion Google searches conducted every single day, local businesses should want to be on Google.

Flexibility: Google allows the local advertiser to spend whatever they want, whenever they want. With flexible options for ad spend, advertisers are able to test what works and what doesn’t work for a business.

Test Test Test.. Keywords, Competitors, Service Areas, and Audiences

Why advertise on Facebook?

Audience: Facebook (and Instagram) Ads are the best form of interruption-based marketing. The audience on Facebook includes 1.66 billion daily active users (DAUs) on average, at an increase of 23% year-over-year. As a local business, you simply cannot ignore the fact that Facebook is an intersection in which you can find prospective customers.

In the US alone 223M Americans are on Facebook. If you ever catch yourself thinking: “My customers just aren’t on Facebook.” Yes, Nancy.. They are.

If there is one take away it’s that the audience on Facebook is MASSIVE, and the users are on Facebook (and Instagram) a LOT. Every time the user engages on the platform he/she is giving Facebook more information as to who that person is and what they are most interested in. Since the average internet user spends 2 hours and 22 minutes on Social Media each day – it’s safe to say Facebook knows quite a bit about you.

Targeting: Facebook Ad targeting is a marketer’s dream. Facebook allows the ability to focus on users so microscopically that you can basically become a bit of a digital stalker (in a good way?). Target users by their interests, behaviors, age, gender, location, and really anything that their Facebook profile may reveal about them including job title.

At Shopfuel, one of our favorite features of Facebook Advertising platform is their Lookalike Audiences. We are able to find our local business clients new customers who are a 99% characteristic match to their current customers.


By leveraging digital ads on Search and Social, every local business can easily take their advertising game to the next level and begin to rake in new revenue. Best part is unlike the print, radio or TV digital advertising provides the results data to back their investment.

P.S. If you’re ready to start advertising on Facebook or Google but don’t know where to begin, get in touch with our team. We’ve helped hundreds of businesses with their local digital advertising and if we aren’t a fit for your needs we’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.

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