Effective Keywords For Your MSP To Bid On

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    Managed Service Providers (MSPs) understand the value of Google Ads in attracting potential clients actively seeking their services. However, the path to success in this competitive advertising landscape involves not just selecting keywords but honing in on those with strong commercial intent. In this blog post, we’ll explore the strategic selection of keywords that have commercial intent, ensuring that every advertising dollar is well-spent.

    Commercial Intent Keywords In The MSP Space

    Commercial intent keywords are search terms used by individuals who are closer to making a purchasing decision. These keywords indicate that the searcher is actively looking for a service or product and is more likely to convert into a paying customer. For MSPs, commercial-intent keywords often include words like “buy,” “hire,” “services,” “solutions,” “pricing,” “cost,” or even specific brand names associated with your services.

    Identifying Commercial Intent Keywords For Your MSP

    To effectively harness the power of commercial-intent keywords, MSPs must perform thorough keyword research. Tools like Google Keyword Planner can help you identify high-intent keywords in your niche. Look for terms with words that signal intent to take action, such as “managed IT services provider,” “IT support for businesses,” or “cloud computing solutions.”

    Free Download: 30+ MSP Keywords That Convert On Google Ads

    MSP Long-Tail Keywords

    While short and generic keywords can be competitive and expensive, long-tail keywords often have stronger commercial intent and are more cost-effective. Long-tail keywords are specific, detailed phrases that potential clients may use in their search queries. These phrases are excellent for targeting users at the bottom of the sales funnel. For MSPs, long-tail keywords might include “affordable cloud security services for small businesses” or “local IT managed service provider in [your city].” You may need to advertise for a period of time before discovering these long-tail keywords so you can add them to your account. They typically don’t get enough volume to be discoverable in keyword research tools.

    Landing Page Relevance

    Ensure that the landing pages for your Google Ads campaigns are highly relevant to the commercial-intent keywords you’re targeting. A strong alignment between the ad copy, keywords, and landing page content can significantly improve your quality score and ad rank. When users click on your ad and find content that directly addresses their needs, they are more likely to convert. Increasing your quality score can also save you money by lowering your cost per click. You should regularly be building new landing pages to support your MSP marketing efforts.

    Ad Extensions

    Google Ads offers various ad extensions, such as callout extensions, site link extensions, and structured snippet extensions, which can enhance your ad’s visibility and relevance. Use these extensions to highlight unique selling points, such as 24/7 support, competitive pricing, or industry certifications, like a Microsoft or AWS competency or partnership. By doing so, you can make your ad more appealing to users with commercial intent.

    A/B Testing Your MSP Paid Search Ad Copy

    To maximize the effectiveness of commercial-intent keywords, conduct A/B testing of different ad copy variations in your ad groups. Experiment with different ad headlines and descriptions to see which combinations generate the best results. This continuous testing and optimization can help you refine your ads over time, ensuring you’re making the most of your advertising dollars. A/B testing helps you increase your click-through rates and raise your quality scores.

    Bid Strategy

    Managing your bids strategically is crucial when targeting commercial-intent keywords. While these keywords often come at a higher cost-per-click (CPC), their potential for conversion justifies the investment. Consider implementing a bid strategy that focuses on maximizing conversions or return on ad spend (ROAS) to ensure that your advertising budget is used efficiently. You may need to have a more sizeable ad budget to effectively leverage these bidding strategies. Lower budget advertisers may benefit from using maximize clicks or a manual bidding strategy.

    Add Negative Keywords for Quality Clicks

    Just as with general keyword selection, include negative keywords to filter out irrelevant searches. This will help you avoid wasting ad spend on users unlikely to convert, ultimately delivering higher quality leads. At Tortoise and Hare we have almost a dozen negative keyword lists we apply to ad accounts based on our experience managing paid search campaigns for MSPs. These range from terms to exclude job seekers, to vendor names, and many other budget drainers.

    Final Thoughts On Choosing Effective Keywords For Your MSP To Bid On

    In conclusion, commercial-intent keywords are the lifeblood of your Google Ads campaign as an MSP. Focusing your advertising dollars on these keywords is a strategic move that can yield a high return on investment. Through meticulous keyword research, alignment with landing pages, and continuous A/B testing, you can fine-tune your campaign to capture potential clients with a strong intent to engage your MSP services. This approach ensures that every advertising dollar is put to its best use, helping you grow your business successfully. Need help managing ad campaigns for your MSP? Reach out to Tortoise and Hare today to learn more about our ad account management services.

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    Hunter Nelson

    Hunter is the founder and president of Tortoise and Hare Software, a digital marketing agency for managed service providers. Hunter has more than 10 years’ experience building web applications and crafting digital strategies for companies ranging from scrappy startups to Fortune 50 household names. When not on the clock, you'll find him spending time with his family and pups, relaxing on the beach, or playing competitive online video games. See for more.

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