How Google Ads Work and When to Expect Results?

by | Oct 18, 2023

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Featured Image - Google Ads Work and When to Expect Results

Indeed, explaining when Google Ads will start showing results can be tricky for a marketing agency. Clients often hope to see quick results & returns on their investment. Having worked in digital marketing, I’ve faced this challenge many times, and I know how important it is to be clear about what to expect. 

In this blog, we’ll discuss how long it usually takes for Google Ads to produce results and how this advertising system functions.

Before you get started, it’s important to understand the time it takes for this effective advertising platform to show results.

Here’s what you can expect: Achieving success with a Google Ads Campaign usually involves a minimum of 3 months (90 days) to reach its full potential.

Yes, it might seem like a lengthy period.

long process

But why does it take so long? In straightforward terms, Google requires a lot of time to gather substantial data that enables your ad to be efficiently delivered to the most suitable audience.This process can take up to 2-3 months.

1. What You Can Expect During the Initial Week of Google Ads Campaigns

Upon activating your Google Ads account, there’s a standard waiting period. It usually takes about 24-48 hours for Google to review and give the green light to your account. 

Once approval is granted, Google embarks on a 7-day journey, during which it accomplishes the following:

  • Collects crucial information about your business 
  • Understands the subject matter you’re interested in 
  • Analyses your intended audience

New campaigns need time to settle and gain momentum, regardless of where you advertise. So, for Google Ads, you must wait a few weeks before your campaign gets going and your business starts getting new customers. In the beginning, getting new customers may be slow, but if you keep trying and have some patience, you’ll succeed.

2. How to Determine If Your Ads Are Likely to Be Successful

Here’s a crucial consideration to bear in mind during the initial onboarding or ramp-up phase: you won’t immediately receive the full number of impressions and clicks you’re aiming for with your daily budget when you start advertising on Google. Google typically doesn’t exhaust your entire daily budget right from the start.

Collecting data is one of the very first steps when a business plans an ad campaign. For online ad networks like Google Ads, data is super important. Sometimes, advertising campaigns don’t do as well because they lack enough data. 

When you’re just starting a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign, you don’t have any past ad performance or data. And getting this data takes a good amount of time. 

The best way to get this valuable data is through ad campaigns, but it does take time, especially if you’re targeting a small audience. You can only make changes and improvements to these campaigns if you’ve already collected the necessary data.

When you have the right advertising data, you can improve  your landing page design to get more people to take action. As the platform gathers more data about your ads, your ad performance will get better. This data can also help you improve who sees your ads, how much you bid, and which keywords you choose.

As you get more clicks and your ads are seen more often, the advertising networks can figure out how well your ads are doing. This can make your ads do better in auctions where ads are picked to show. Many businesses rely on ad agencies for this because they have experts in pay-per-click (PPC) advertising who know about ads, data, and making campaigns work better.

Once you’ve adjusted and improved your campaign based on the data you collected, your business will start getting more leads faster.

3. Getting Familiar with the Google Ads Learning Period/Phase

When you’re starting a new campaign or making big changes to an existing one, your account status will say “learning.”


Here are some other things that can also make your campaign go into “learning” mode:

  • Trying different bidding strategies.
  • Making big changes to your campaign’s setup.
  • Changing your budget or how much you’re willing to pay for ads. 
  • Try not to change your budget by more than 20% at once.
  • Turning campaigns or groups of ads on and off.
  • For example, if you stop and then start a campaign for just one day because of a holiday, it might take 5 days for things to get back to normal. Changing how you’re bidding for ads. Change to the conversion action.

Usually, if you change things like keywords, groups of ads, or the ads themselves, it won’t trigger the “learning” period. But if you make lots of changes to many of these things all at once, then your campaign might go into learning mode.

So, you might be wondering, what exactly happens during this learning phase in Google Ads? How much time does Google Ads spend in this learning phase? And most importantly, why does this learning period take place?

A. How much time does Google Ads spend in this learning phase?

  • With Google Ads, the learning period typically spans over a duration of 7 days from the time of the last significant edit made to that specific campaign.

B. What exactly happens during this learning phase in Google Ads?

  • When you’re using Google Ads, it’s important to understand that during the learning period, your campaign’s delivery and efficiency might not be at their best. This means you might notice a decrease in your campaign’s daily spending, an increase in the cost per acquisition (CPA), and a drop in the conversion rate. 
  • I know it’s not the ideal situation, but here’s the thing—you can’t just sit back and avoid optimizing your campaigns because of the learning period. Instead, you need to learn how to manage these effects and give your campaign the time it needs to adapt and improve based on the changes you’ve made.

C. Why does this learning period take place?

As we all know, Google Ads relies on algorithms powered by machine learning technology to manage its ad auctions. Just like Google uses your Quality Score and bid to decide when and where your ads appear, it also needs to grasp what actions lead to the results (like conversions) you want to achieve. In short, the algorithm needs time to figure out what strategies are effective and drive the outcomes you desire.

Now, think of this learning period as a time when the algorithm is learning. It’s taking in new information and trying to understand how it can achieve the results you’ve set as your goals. 

During this period, the algorithm is learning from every ad it displays. As more and more people see your ads, the algorithm collects valuable data that helps it make better decisions and figure out how to deliver results more efficiently based on your chosen objectives.

4. What comes after the Google Ads learning period?

So, Once the algorithm has gathered sufficient data, your status will shift to “eligible.” At this stage, you gain the flexibility to fine-tune your Google ad campaign with optimization changes, which can include:

  • Tweaking ad copy. 
  • Adjusting target keywords. 
  • Refining negative keywords. 
  • Optimizing target audiences. 
  • Modifying geographic targeting.

It’s important to make these essential changes to ensure you make the most of your ad campaign and don’t end up wasting valuable clicks.

5. How to Boost Your Google Ads Performance During the First 3 Months?

1st Month: Generation Data

In the first month of your ad campaign, data is your best friend. This means it’s a good idea to start with a broad strategy. If you collect data from a wide range of people, you can figure out which groups of people end up becoming your new clients. 

Here’s a helpful tip for a broad strategy: don’t be too strict with your targeting; consider using modified broad or phrase matches. One way to do this is by focusing on a specific location. 

If your business is in one place, try targeting people in your nearby area. Once you see how well this targeting works, you can make it more specific and aim for particular groups of people.

2nd Month: Time To Make Changes

In the second month, you can fine-tune your ad strategy based on what worked in the first month. This means making your targeting more specific if the broad approach was successful. 

You can also experiment with different words and phrases in your ads to see what resonates best with your audience. Use data and Google Ads tools to refine your keywords for better results.

3rd Month: Increase your Outcome

After working hard and making changes to your ad campaign, in the third month, you can start seeing results. 

When you find a successful ad, consider expanding it. By adjusting and monitoring your campaign, you can learn what your potential customers want and how they find your business. This helps you plan future campaigns and understand your market better.

Points to Takeaways

In the Google Ads, patience is essential. It’s crucial to set realistic expectations when starting a campaign. Google Ads is potent but requires time to yield results. 

In this blog, we’ve discussed the usual timeline: it takes a minimum of 3 months for a campaign to develop fully. The initial learning phase might be tough, but don’t let it discourage you from improving your campaigns.

Data collection is foundational. Without sufficient data, campaigns may struggle. So, gather data, even if it takes time, as it informs changes like refining keywords, ad copy, and targeting.

The learning period allows Google Ads algorithms to adapt to your goals, despite temporary setbacks. 

After this, you can optimize your campaign, from ad copy to keywords and targeting. 

In the first three months, you’ll go from data generation to adjustments and results. 

Success takes time, but with the right strategy and patience, it’s achievable in Google Ads.

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