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The Best Alternatives to Google AdWords

You probably have heard Google is the best method to advertise online, right?

However, Google sometimes may not be the best consideration, especially when starting your online marketing adventure.  This could be for a couple of reasons, and include:

  1. The level of competition is extremely high for your market, making it very costly to advertise your business’ products and services.
  1. The method in which you need to advertise is not adapted towards how AdWords advertises.  For instance, your buyer may be at a different buying stage within the sales funnel process (fact finding, negotiation, solution evaluation, etc.), thereby not making it feasible for your business to market on this channel.

In either case, there are many different ways you can advertise online over using Google AdWords, especially with all the social media channels available.  This can often widely depend upon the product and service you are offering.

For instance, if you’re selling a small product with low competition that will help fix a problem that someone needs delivered quickly, then Google might be the best consideration, as the customer can be quickly brought towards the buying process.  However, if you’re selling something like a large enterprise software that costs thousands of dollars, then you’re probably aware that there will be more buying decisions the customer will make before deciding. Therefore, always consider what you are selling to determine if Google AdWords is a good advertising medium, or whether you should consider alternative online advertising methods as well.

Consider the Other Methods of marketing

When choosing the best way to advertise, there are many methods you should consider.  These include content marketing, branding your business, generating leads, affiliate networking, and also through direct sales.  We will discuss each of these individually and consider which marketing mediums may be best.

Content Marketing

There are a wide variety of ways you can use content marketing. Probably one of the most known way is through SEO.  For SEO you would establish a blog on your own website and then target keywords to get ranked on the search engines.  However another popular method is through guest blogging. This is where you would write a blog onto another website that has a large amount of traffic.  The guest blog would include your company website, which you would generate traffic from the readers. Guest blogging works effectively, even if your SEO isn’t established very well or you are not generating a lot of traffic to your website.


Google AdWords is generally only considered a method in which you are able to bring visitors to a landing page with the hopes of getting them to make a sale or convert right away.  However, sometimes buyers are weary to do this because they are unfamiliar with your company brand and the products/services it offers.  Therefore, sometimes Branding should be considered instead or as an addition to AdWords.

Facebook is a great method for online branding.  You can target your audience directly through Facebook adverting, which brings them directly to your Facebook business page. If you are able to get them to like your Facebook profile, you have an excellent opportunity to brand your business to them by sending out regular Facebook messages that they will receive.  You can do a similar method through LinkedIn.

YouTube is also another great way to brand and advertise your business, this works great because you only have to pay if they watch the first 5 seconds of your advertisement. Therefore, you can always make sure that you put your most important information during this time.  If your advertisement plays multiple times within YouTube to one potential customer, this can significantly help brand your business.

Lead Generation

Next in line is lead generation.  However, Google Adwords does actually work great for generating leads, because you can remarket towards visitors through its remarketing function within Adwords tools. You can also consider looking into purchasing leads from companies that can provide them.  However, from my own personal experience, the best way to develop lead generation is to get capture the leads yourself. Besides remarketing with AdWords, another couple popular ways you can generate leads is through LinkedIn and Slide share.  Guest blogging works great also, as you can later on help capture their email when they come to your website by providing them something on your site for giving up their email address.

Direct Sales

Direct Sales is probably what Google AdWords is mostly used for.  However, there are other websites you can use as an alternative.  This might be good to consider because often Google bids for your ads can cost a lot more due to the high level of competition it has.  Therefore, you may consider some alternatives towards AdWords, preferably Bing.  Bing still can help generate similar results, but at a substantially less cost per click (CPC).  You can also consider using Google’s Product Listing Advertising (PLA) instead of AdWords as well.  These work great for products because you will be able to include an image and description of the product before they click on it.

Affiliate Networking

Have you ever considered selling your products/services through another business?  You can often consider selling your product/service through another company, and provide them a commission for each sale.  To do this successfully, you want to consider businesses that are already selling alternative products/services, but have customers that would be interested in what you are offering as well.  This works as a win-win situation for everyone, as the customer profits from getting the product/service you are offering, and both partners in the affiliate partnership gain more revenue.


Josh Elizetxe
Josh Elizetxe
Josh Elizetxe is a seasoned marketing professional. He is currently the President of Foresold, a leading independent digital agency headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona. He enjoys writing about the latest trends in digital marketing and how marketers can capitalize on them.  


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