In this blog post I’m going to show you how to sell Udemy courses using Google AdWords. The first step is to have your conversion tracking set up and then create a simple Google AdWords campaign from scratch, and the second step is to wait a day and review your results.
Sell Udemy courses with Google AdWords
When you have completed all of the steps to get started with your conversion tracking on your website and AdWords account, you are probably really excited to make your first campaign.
Getting this started is really quick and easy because I don’t know anything so far about what I’m going into. This means that I don’t want to put a ton of time and effort into trying to figure it out before I have any data.
What I want to start with is a quick ultra-simple campaign that allows me to advertise one of my new products to a very specific audience. I’m going to try the one that’s the easiest to set up in terms of keywords. I can put one exact keyword on the ad. The idea is you don’t want to put a bunch of work into making an ad campaign until you verify it is going to work a little bit. I just want to make a campaign real fast and then see that my URL and everything gets approved. I figure it probably will, because I have done a lot to sell Udemy courses before without much in the way of problems.
However, especially advertising your own product for the first time from your website, just do this real fast. It shouldn’t take you more than five or ten minutes. Make your ad campaign, then sit and wait. I know at this point that there is a temptation to dump a ton of time and energy doing a ton of keyword research, but you can’t do it all right at once. If you do a little bit all the time, you will get something amazing.
Let me show you how I make my first campaign here and what you can do to repeat it.
What I have to begin is a landing page and if you don’t have yours for your offer, then you need one to start.
You will have to go do whatever it takes to get your landing page set up and to get your offer ready. I’m assuming for this blog post that you have got the knowledge to have a product online and sell it. You will need a landing page to send your Google AdWords traffic to. You will need to be aware of the Google AdWords policies before you start or otherwise you may have some problems getting your ads approved.
Once you have got your Google landing page ready, then all you need to do is copy that link and click on the campaign button right here.
What I want to start with is “Search Network only” because “Display Network” ads often don’t work very well, although they usually do get cheap website clicks.
What I want to start with is Search Network only so I can do a very specific type of campaign. What I want to do is a Wireshark campaign and I’m just going to call this “Wireshark” to start, and I’m going with the “Standard” ad here.
I’m going for “all devices” by default, but what I will do is lower my bid on mobile devices later because it doesn’t seem that mobile conversion is very good, and that’s simple to do.
Now I use the settings Google AdWords gives me, which is United States and Canada, and “English” for the language.
I will let AdWords set the bid for me because this is a very first getting started campaign. I don’t want to waste much time and energy figuring out how to do it. I just want to make sure it gets approved and then I can put more work in based on what I see to sell Udemy courses.
You can see the potential here to waste a lot of time before you actually know anything. I will start off with $10 a day and that’s a decent budget to get started for a $99 offer.
I don’t need to select “Ad extensions” so I click “Save and continue.”
In the “Ad groups” section I put in my landing page and then I will see what Google thinks about it.
Google is going to try to make this easy for me and will suggest these keywords you see at the right, but what I want to do is just start with something ultra-simple. I’m not even going to change any of the names right now.
I’m typing in just “Wireshark” and you can see that I’m actually going against what Google says to do. It says, “Avoid one word keywords and start with 10 to 20.”
What I want to do is just do something fairly specific to start. Wireshark is a very exact term and it is not something a lot of people are searching for. I’m using Wireshark as a keyword regardless of what Google says to do. An important thing to know is that you don’t always really need to pay attention to what Google says and what I’m sharing with you here should work pretty well.
I now click on “Continue to ads” at the bottom of the page.
One issue you may have with very long URL, and especially when you want to sell Udemy courses specifically, is that Google AdWords sometimes strips off the coupon code going to Udemy.
What I’m going to do in order to be safe is put a short URL here and that way I am less concerned that Google will strip my coupon code off. If I don’t have this coupon code to sell Udemy courses, the person is going to have to pay full price for the course and they are not going to be happy with that.
Now that I just put my destination URL, which is where the person will actually land, I have to add the website address that appears in the ad. I have got “udemy.com/wireshark” showing up in green in the ad.
So you have two parts, one is the URL of the landing page, and the other the website address that is shown. Now I just want a simple headline, and I often can pull straight from the title of my course if needed. I can use “Complete Wireshark Course” and it actually fits very well.
I just keep it ultra-simple for the first ad.
The next step is to write the ad so I’m looking at my course to pull some of the key value points into the ad.
I already have my title “Complete Wireshark Course,” which matches my course title and then I have a question in the ad, “Want to learn Wireshark?” because I don’t need anyone to click this ad if they don’t want to learn Wireshark. I just ask a question because questions tend to get good engagement.
Then I have a clear call to action, “Use this 6 hour HD video course to learn fast.” I like exclamation points, but Google is not big into exclamation points.
That’s a very simple ad and it is what I need to get started, see what Google says about it, then go from there.
I click “Save.”
Now I have one ad and what I can do is copy it. Then I click on the new ad and edit it.
It is nice to have at least two ads in the Ad group.
So now I use “Wireshark Complete Course” for the ad title and I can quickly save that.
Now I have got two ads to sell Udemy courses and I can copy it again to make one more ad.
In this ad I change the title to “Want to learn Wireshark?” and I make some slight adjustments.
Now I have three different ads that are basically the same. Again, not very much work and all I do now is click “Save and finish.”
That’s incredibly simple and I put very little effort into it. What I want to make sure at this point is that my ad URL and ads get approved.
These all say, “Eligible” so that’s good.
What I ultimately need to do now is wait. I know you might hate waiting, but if you want to do well with AdWords, it takes a little bit of effort every day. I know that when I started I just wanted to pour energy into it all in one day.
Just take five to ten minutes to make your first campaign and then come back the next day. I’m going to come back tomorrow after making this campaign with you, look at it and then show you my results in the next section.
The key to making an exceptional AdWords campaign is how you continue to follow up, analyze and create new campaigns, ad groups, keywords and ads based on what your data shows you.
So here’s a day later, after I created the first “Wireshark” campaign. If you have created your campaign to sell Udemy courses and you have taken a day to wait for the data, here’s what you can do with the day that you have got.
Based on how the data comes out, you will sit and make different campaigns, different ad groups, different keywords and different ads.
What I’m showing you is generally what you want to do anyway no matter what the data says unless you have already cleaned up on conversions on your very first ad group. Now, if you have done that, congratulations, because the odds of doing that are really low.
As you can see I have got a couple of clicks yesterday, the click-through rate and the average position are not that great, but the only thing that really matters in this data is this zero cost per conversion.
That means it is not working. Now, I have got a $99 offer, and I have only spent $2.48 for yesterday. If I take a look at it for today I see that I have got a click for $1.91, and the click-through rate is even lower.
When I put it on this week, then I can see everything all together.
What you can see is that I don’t have enough data yet to see exactly what I’m working with, but starting with what I do know helps me a lot.
This is the first thing I know now: my ad got approved.
Then, I also know that people will click on it and that gives me a lot of important things I can do stuff with.
Now I can go on creating new ad groups and making new ads. If my ad or my landing page would have got rejected, then I would know that I need to try something else, but since I have got this approved, I know that I can go forward.
What you want to learn on the second day of doing your Google ads is: Did your ad get approved? Did any actual clicks come through and did you get any conversions?
Now more than likely you didn’t get conversions and that’s okay because it tends to be hard to get conversions and sell Udemy courses right away. If you get anything out of this section, take those little wins you have got already and then build on them.
With what I know I can click on my “Wireshark” campaign.
Then, I go to the “Ads” tab and I can already see that I have got little wins.
An interesting thing is that the first ad has actually got all the clicks. Google hasn’t even tried to serve these other ads that much, but again if I’m not getting conversions, it doesn’t really matter about all these other stats.
So what I want to do now is go to the “Keywords” tab, and I see that I have got a thousand impressions. That’s not a whole lot of impressions considering that the cost per click and the bid is decently low.
That probably means that I don’t have a whole lot more depth I can go into with the keywords. What you don’t want to do is waste a whole bunch of time trying to get niche keywords where there is not enough search traffic.
However, given my low click-through rate and my impressions, I probably want to try some more niche keywords and I probably want to do more than a one word keyword.
The next thing you often do is go to the “Tools” and take a look at the “Keyword Planner.”
That’s one thing I can do, but there is actually an easier thing I’m going to do immediately, which is start replicating some of what I have done. I want to test this campaign worldwide to see how the clicks are. I go to the “Campaigns” tab, select my campaign, “Edit” and click “Copy.”
I’m now going to paste it.
I want to see what my worldwide clicks look like vs just US and Canada. I know that there is a lot of other countries based on my data on existing sales, that I can make sales on. So what I want to do is try this “Wireshark Global” and then make this other one a “Wireshark US-Canada.”
So what I have to do is go to the “Wireshark Global” campaign I just created and edit the targeting.
I want to exclude the US and Canada because I don’t want to have overlap.
I have got the same campaign set up now, except that this new one is worldwide so I can see the difference in cost per click, and I can see if the Wireshark ads work better in different locations.
That’s the easiest thing I can do to try and immediately do something else. In AdWords you always want to do whatever is easier first. The keyword research often will take a lot more effort, and you may get not as many results.
I know that immediately copying this into a global campaign gives me a very good shot at seeing some more clicks and more impressions and hopefully sell Udemy courses.
I want ultimately to see where I can get a conversion so what I’m doing to start with is casting a broad net. Wireshark on the one keyword globally will give me much more data to work with than just trying to do it in a US and Canada narrow campaign.
Once you have looked at your first ad group, campaign and ads, then you just want to scale a little bit as easy as possible. Then you can go deeper into trying to do keyword research.
I hope you enjoyed this blog post and if you are interested to see in detail how this first campaign turned out and how I started to get conversions to sell Udemy courses, I invite you to learn more about AdWords advertising with me in my book:
Available both in Kindle and Paperback format.