Google Ads or Facebook Ads, Which Works for Small Businesses?

Google Ads or Facebook Ads

As a small business owner going into 2018, you must have an online marketing plan. When it comes to advertising, you have two incredible options, Facebook Ads or Google Ads, which one will you pick? Your choice depends on what you’re marketing and what your goals are.

If you want to get new leads for your business fast, this article will help you make an informed choice.  

Google Ads vs. Facebook Ads

Where are the Ads displayed?

Google AdWords ads are displayed at the top or bottom of Google’s search results. If your Google My Business account is connected to your ads, you’ll see your ad at the top of Map results in Google.

With Facebook Ads, you have more options of where your ads are displayed. For example, if you add a location to your business, your ads will appear on Facebook news feed where most users spend their time. Ads can also be displayed on:

  • Right-hand sidebar
  • Inside the messenger

Who Views Your Ads?

Google is straightforward with the ads, just pick the words you want to advertise on, the area you’re targeting (including postal codes), and when a user looks up any of those words, your ad will appear.

This is great because you get to know the value of that user as a prospective new customer before you spend any money on them.

For example, if someone looks up “house renovations Montreal” we expect that the person has decided to remodel their house or they are at some stage of deciding.

Since the person is looking for a solution, presenting them with an ad at this point is a good idea.

Facebook ads are a bit complicated.

Small businesses owners who want to place Facebook ads must choose:

  • The demographics to be targeted
  • The geographical area you’re focusing on
  • The interests (if any) you’re targeting

With Facebook, you must understand that no one logs in to view ads, people log in for other reasons.

Your ad must be chosen well.

If your business has a product or service that is appealing to the masses such as a restaurant, you’ll have an easier time to see quick returns on Facebook advertising.

If you run a niche business, Facebook ads will get your message, brand or offer in front of the right people.

If you sell products or services with a long sales cycle or ones that aren’t needed all the time such as plumbing services, lawyer, accountant etc. Facebook ads can be a success but it will take longer. You must, therefore, take a different approach than marketing for appealing businesses such as restaurants and the like.

The Cost

With Google Ads, you pay when someone clicks on your ad. You can control the amount you want to spend by setting a daily, weekly or monthly limit.

What determines the amount that you pay for Google Ads?

The number of businesses that want to advertise for the same word

The number (percentage) of people who search and click on your ad

The page quality of where you’re sending the visitors

The amount you can make from the new customer

Most clients pay between $1.50 and $5.00 per click. The super competitive cities and industries click costs grow to $20. High click costs always relate to the value of a customer in your industry.

For instance, if you run a food or pizza shop, your cost per click will be less than that of a person advertising legal services.

Facebook will charge you for the type of campaign that you pick. Common options for Facebook ads are:

  • Impressions: this is charged as people see your advertisement
  • Clicks and visits to your site: charged when a person clicks your ad and visits your website.
  • Video views: charged when someone watches 3 or more seconds of your posted video.

Just like Google Ads, there are variations to what is paid. The cost is usually between $0.30 and $1 when someone visits your site and between $0.03 and $0.05 when someone checks out your 3 seconds or longer video.

You can also set the amount of money you’re willing to spend each day, week or month.

How Long Does it Take to Get Results

You can get immediate results with both Google and Facebook ads but it depends on the following:

The type of product or service you’re selling

Your offer to get new customers

To explain this further, let’s look at two examples:

Plumbing contractor

A local Chinese restaurant

Plumbing Contractor

Let’s start with Google Ads:

People are constantly looking for plumbing contractors in North America. If you place your ads in front of these people, you stand a big chance to get success.

Reason? Because people are looking for a plumber. Connect this with a great landing page, good ad copy and a good offer, you will generate leads from the get-go.


If you make a Facebook ad or video of someone carrying out plumbing works and run the advertisement to everyone in your targeted city, you will get leads.

Facebook is different because you’re hoping for someone who is already thinking of searching on Google for a plumber sees your ad.

This is not the way to go. While there are ways to make good use of Facebook ads when you’re the owner of a business that people don’t always need, a straight ad with a contact now offer won’t give you the success you expect.

In this case, Google AdWords will give you the best results.


Google AdWords

If you run a restaurant, your AdWords campaign will give you better results if you specify the type of restaurant (Chinese in this case) to people in your area. You will get some clicks but people won’t flood in – you will also spend less because the clicks on your ad will not be many.


The good thing about placing restaurant ads on Facebook is people make impulsive decisions to go out and grab a bite all the time. If you have a good offer for them, you might get them into your eating place tonight.

To get the best results, you need to:

  • Create an enticing offer such as free appetizers with two entrees, BOGOF etc.
  • Create a beautiful advert with your main entrees on the image.
  • Target the right people (age, sex etc.)

The best strategy is to get the customers to request the offer via email and display it on their mobile devices when coming into the restaurant. This will allow you to track results and create an email list.

People will stop scrolling once they see an ad with a picture of great food and click on it. The users will make an impulse decision and this will get you more seats.

No one makes an impulse decision to order plumbing services, but they will order some Chinese food. ;-)

Businesses That Work with Google AdWords

Professional services

Home services

Health services

Businesses That Work with Facebook Advertising

Basically, businesses that appeal to everyone, those that invoke an impulse reaction or low price purchases. Facebook ads also work for niche audience businesses.


Some businesses work well with Facebook ads while others need some thinking outside the box type of approach.

The same can be said about Google AdWords but this is a bit tough. On Google, people are looking for specific goods, services, and solutions to particular problems.

Local businesses can be successful with Google Ads by choosing words that people are actively searching for when looking for a business like yours.

If people aren’t looking up for the type of business you run, then Google AdWords won’t work for you. You must be creative in this case.

We help local and small businesses use Google AdWords and Facebook Advertising effectively to get new customers.