Growing Your Local Business: Should You Use Facebook or Google Ads?

Local Business

As the owner of a local business, you know how important it is to connect with customers in your area to drive sales and growth. And in today’s digital world, that means having an online and social media presence. Two of the biggest platforms you’ve probably considered for local marketing are Facebook and Google Ads. But how do you know which one is better for promoting your business? 

Let’s take a look at how each platform works for local marketing and the pros and cons of Facebook and Google Ads for local businesses.

Promoting Your Business Locally With Facebook Ads

With over 2.8 billion monthly users, Facebook is where everyone is hanging out these days. So it presents a huge opportunity to get your business in front of local audiences. 

Facebook Ads allow you to show your ads to people within a certain radius of your business location. You can target people who live in your city or state. This helps you connect with locals who are most likely to actually visit your store or use your services.

Beyond location, you can zero in on specific demographics and interests. Want to reach young moms? Working professionals? Foodies? Facebook’s depth of user data lets you get very precise with your targeting.

You can create eye-catching images and video ads to showcase your products, services, or brand story. Use beautiful photos, attention-grabbing graphics, and tempting offers to capture interest. 

Retargeting pixels are a neat tool to re-engage people who have already interacted with your business. For example, you can show ads to people who visit your website or Facebook page to remind them about your brand.

One of the best things about Facebook Ads is the ability to set a daily budget and bid for ad placement. This gives you control over what you spend while Facebook automatically optimizes to get you the most clicks and conversions within your budget.

Read More- What is Remarketing and How Can it Skyrocket Your Conversions?

The Pros:

– Huge local audience to tap into

– Detailed targeting options beyond just location

– Creative visual ad formats 

– Retarget past customers & website visitors

– Flexible budget and bidding options

The Cons:

– More time is needed to manage advanced targeting

– Steeper learning curve to master Facebook Ads

Using Google Ads to Connect Locally

Google processes over 3.5 billion searches per day. So it’s a powerful platform to leverage to drive local business.

Google Ads allow you to promote your website, products, services, and phone number on Google Search and Maps. Location extensions display your address, phone number, and link to driving directions right in the ad.

You can target your ads to users searching for things in your city, zip code, or within a certain mileage radius of your business. Be there the moment someone searches for a “plumber in Omaha”.  

Make sure to claim and optimize your free Google My Business listing too. This gets you prominent placement in local search, Google Business Profile Optimization and maps. 

Call extensions add a clickable phone number to your ads, so you can capture calls directly from Google. 

Google also offers automated Smart Bidding designed to optimize your ads for conversions and return on ad spend. This removes some of the manual work of managing bids over time.

The Pros:

– Appear on high-intent local searches

– Drive calls, store visits, and directions

– Flexible location targeting 

– Optimized Google Business listing  

– Automated bidding to maximize conversions

The Cons: 

– Text-heavy ads less visually appealing 

– Limited targeting beyond location

– Takes time to optimize listings and bids

So Should You Use Facebook or Google Ads?

Both platforms offer compelling benefits for connecting locally and driving in-store sales and leads. Here are a few key differences about Facebook and Google Ads to consider:

  • Facebook excels at building awareness through interests and behaviors. Google catches high-intent searchers ready to buy.
  • Facebook offers flexible bidding options while Google uses automated bidding. 
  • Facebook has eye-catching visual ad formats while Google search ads are functional but text-heavy.
  • Facebook allows broad targeting beyond location while Google focuses mostly on search behaviors.

Read More- Navigating the Debate Around AI Content & Google Rankings

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