Localise your keywords, ads and landing pages

When expanding your Google Ads campaigns to overseas markets, there are a few key things to keep in mind in order to be successful. First and foremost, understand that the tone and approach you take in your ads may need to be adjusted depending on the culture of the country or region you’re targeting. In some cases, a more formal and serious tone may be necessary, while in others a more light-hearted and friendly one may be more effective.

It’s also important to keep in mind that certain keywords and phrases that work well domestically may not translate well overseas. This is why it’s crucial to do your research and understand the nuances of the language(s) you’ll be targeting. A good way to get started is by using Google’s Keyword Planner tool, which allows you to see how popular certain keywords are in different countries.

Finally, remember that although Google is the most popular search engine globally, there are other search engines that are popular in specific countries or regions. For example, Yandex is the largest search engine in Russia, while Baidu is the most popular one in China. So if you’re planning on running campaigns in these countries, it’s important to set up your campaigns accordingly.

By keeping these key tips in mind, you can ensure that your Google Ads campaigns will be successful in any overseas market you target.

Localise your website

Your keywords, ads and landing pages aside, you’ll also need to localise your website based on cultural nuances and preferences. Here are some examples:

  1. The colour of your website: Is the existing colour well-received in the new market?
  2. Calls-to-action on your website: Are your existing CTAs phrased appropriately? If you’re entering a market where politeness is prized, such as Japan, you might want to reword your CTAs to be more deferential.
  3. Videos on your website: If you house videos on your website, but you’re expanding into a market where internet speeds are slow, consider using static images or animated GIFs instead.

Make the most of Market Finder’s free tool and guides

Market Finder is a free Google service for businesses interested in expanding abroad. It provides detailed insights into which markets are best suited to your product or service, plus useful guides on how to prepare your business and market it online.

Finally, read up on how consumers in your target market browse the internet and make purchases online, so that you can fine-tune your digital strategy in time to come.

To do this, check out Market Finder’s free reports and data. If you want to do a deep dive, you may use Market Finder to create customised reports detailing online access and device usage in the countries you’re targeting. Market Finder also gives you insights into each country’s online purchase behaviour, purchase breakdown by product, use of smartphones in online purchases, and more.

Get your international Google Ads campaign up and running

When setting up a new Google Ads campaign, the two most important things to consider are:

  1. What are your campaign goals?
  2. What type of campaign do you want to run?

Firstly, decide on your campaign goals. Do you want to sell more products? Grow customer loyalty? Engage with more customers? Think about what makes sense for your company, and brand.

Next, choose whether you want to run Search or Display ads. Go with Search if you want to reach people searching for specific goods or services, or choose Display if you’d like to capture attention earlier in the buying cycle with a variety of ad formats. If you’re not keen on both Search and Display, there are other campaigns that you can choose from, including Video, Shopping, and App campaigns.

Organise your account

The more ads, ad groups and campaigns you have, the more complex your account gets. Here, it’s important to organise your account, so that you can keep track of your ads and ensure that your campaigns are running smoothly.

Enhance and improve your campaign

Naming conventions

Even if your naming feels simple, this might get tricky as you expand to new countries. Try using standard abbreviations in names, and things like country, language and targeting method should be in your labels wherever possible.


The more you expand, the more ads and activity you’ll have to manage. Google’s automated tools can come in handy here. These include:

  • Automated bidding, which automatically optimises your bids based on your goals
  • Ad customisers, which adapt your text ads to what someone is searching for, taking into account their device, location, and even the date, time, and day of the week

Key Takeaways

When entering a new market, you’ll need to adapt your keywords, ads, and landing pages to the market. First, use the free Market Finder tool to ensure that your marketing messages resonate with your overseas audiences. Once you’ve got your campaign up and running, organise your account and use the same naming conventions throughout, and consider using automated bidding and ad customisers to reduce your workload.

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