Throughout the past few years, business owners have been told that Google Ads offers instantaneous results, while search engine optimization (SEO) and organic methods don’t. So, business owners invest in paid ads while “waiting for SEO to work” — and are inevitably disappointed.
While Google Ads may provide faster results than SEO, the results still take time. So how long does it take for Google Ads to work?
How Long Does It Take for Google Ads to Work?
Google Ads typically takes 60–90 days to produce results. Of course, this range alone doesn’t paint the entire picture.
Consistent ad performance is more critical than an instant boost in ad performance. Consistency is how you’ll keep your doors open year after year. But how do you achieve that consistency?
After the first 30 days of your paid ad campaign, you’ll start to see some results, such as forms coming in. At that time, it’s important to complete an initial assessment and optimization, which are crucial to success. Your system will alert you to any red flags you need to address.
From then on, reassess and optimize accordingly every week. Doing so maximizes your conversions and keeps your system running smoothly. After another month or two, you should begin seeing consistent results.
What Factors Determine Success?
When your ads are well-optimized, it takes 60–90 days for Google Ads to work. A few factors determine where you fall within that range.
Many people approach paid ads with a “set it and forget it” attitude, but this is a mistake. As mentioned above, the system always provides tips on how to improve and optimize your ads. Don’t ignore them.
Note: Optimizations will vary between accounts, so pay close attention and don’t take anything for granted.
Tracking metrics can be confusing, so set up your analytics properly. If something goes wrong later, you must troubleshoot it to both identify and fix the problem.
There are many different tracking systems available (we recommend Google Analytics 4), and navigating a system you don’t quite understand can add to your confusion if something goes awry. Don’t be afraid to ask for an expert’s help if needed.
Trends and Seasonality
Keeping up with industry trends and seasonality is essential for every aspect of your business. For example, the childcare industry has its own seasons (spring break, summer camp, back-to-school).
It’s important to remember that you may experience a drop in traffic in between seasons, like between summer camp and back-to-school. That’s normal.
However, you can still maximize your return on ad spend (ROAS) by optimizing every other aspect of your paid ads. For example, learn which of your local competitors are running paid ads and optimize to overtake them. Also, keep up with your weekly tracking and optimization so you’re always on top of your paid ads’ key performance indicators (KPIs).
Your competitors heavily determine the answer to “How long does it take for Google Ads to work?” If you’re brand new to Google Ads, it’ll take some time to outrank competitors who’ve been running ads for years.
Overtaking competitors who aren’t effectively optimized is fairly simple. We at Rose Marketing Solutions optimize so well that it usually only takes our clients about 90 days to outperform existing but poorly optimized competitors.
How to Get Google Ads Results Faster
The best way to see paid ads results faster is to prepare before running ads.
Verify Your Tracking
Verify your tracking in advance. Like we said above, make sure you set up your analytics correctly and know how to use them to monitor and improve your ads.
Optimize Your Sales Funnel
You must optimize your sales funnel, starting with your landing page(s) and following through to your confirmation page and website. Check your website copy and calls-to-action (CTAs). Every detail matters and should align with your brand and message.
Set your website up for success well before you worry about how long it takes for Google Ads to work. Otherwise, you fight the tide rather than optimize, improve, and grow.
Set Clear Goals
Get clear on your goals for your campaign. Do you want to build brand awareness, or do you want to generate leads (enrollment)? Communicate this to your marketing agency or representative.
Know Your Competitors
Just because there’s another childcare center down the street doesn’t mean they’re running paid ads. Find out which of your competitors are running paid ads and optimize your campaign to compete against those businesses specifically.
Write Clear Ad Copy
When I ask most owners why someone should choose their business over another, they can’t think of an answer. That shocks me. You must understand your differentiators.
What makes you different (better) than your competitors? Get clear on those things, and make sure they’re mentioned in your ad copy.
Remember to talk about benefits, not just features — features tell, benefits sell. As Ruth Ann says, always give the reader a “so that.” “We offer extended hours so that parents who work late or early or need to run errands after work can do so without worry.”
Have a Healthy Ad Spend
A reasonable ad budget is necessary, especially at the beginning of a campaign. Your budget can decrease over time, but starting with too small a budget means poorer results because you won’t optimize as well. We recommend spending $800–$1,000 monthly, at least at the beginning.
Remember, your competitors have bigger budgets. Even if they aren’t optimized as well as you are, you need to have enough of a budget to compete and produce results.
A lower budget means performance expectations must be lower, too. Instead of 60–90 days, a lower budget means waiting four or five months to see results.
Let’s Get to Work!
Undoubtedly, Google Ads work faster than organic methods like SEO. But when people ask us, “How long does it take for Google Ads to work?” we answer honestly. It’s not an instant return — it still takes time.
Fortunately, with a great marketing agency that knows its way around the childcare industry, Google Ads pays off.
There’s some prep work to do beforehand and optimization to keep up with during your campaigns, but when done right, your return can be impressive. In fact, our clients see an average ROAS of 600–1,200%.
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