| 8 min read

Meta ads vs Google ads: which is better for your business?

Written by Georgina Croasdale

There are many similarities between Meta ads and Google ads, but they’re also very unique platforms. They are especially useful tools in accelerating growth for direct to consumer eCommerce brands.

In this article, we’ll be explaining the differences between using both platforms for growth and discussing which is the right platform for your business.


What’s the difference between Meta ads and Google ads?

It’s important to understand what these two platforms are and what they can do in order to decide which may be right for your business. So, what’s the difference?


What are Meta Ads?

Meta ads, formerly Facebook ads, help users find businesses based on the things they’re interested in and the ways in which they behave online. The great thing about Meta ads is that they can help new customers discover you and your product who may not have found you otherwise.

Meta ads are not just shown on Facebook, but across different apps and sites including Instagram, the Audience Network, and Messenger. 


What are Google Ads?

Google ads, or PPC advertising, focuses on the targeting of keywords to help new customers find you. Google Ads help us connect with customers that are ready to buy and are actively searching for your product or brand.

A big part of Google ads involves Google search ads which will show within the search engine results pages (SERPs). There are other Google campaign types which will allow you to advertise your product listings through multi-channel marketing across various sites. We go into more detail on this in the benefits of Google ads section.

A big difference between Google and Meta ads is how the ad auction works. For Google you pay per click whereas Meta charges you on the number of impressions your ad gets. So, for Google you won’t get charged until someone clicks on your ad, but you will spend your entire daily budget on Meta as your ad gets shown to a certain number of people.


Benefits of Meta Ads

What are the benefits of using Meta ads for your business?


1.Reach a wide audience

With over 2.9 billion monthly active users on Facebook alone, Meta is the ideal platform to reach a large number of people. 

With a wide range of ages and demographics on Facebook, it’s highly likely your future customers are using this platform. Through the use of Meta ads, you can reach customers who are interested in products that you sell, but may not have discovered you otherwise. Meta allows you to proactively spend your ad budget on big audiences without having to wait for someone to search for something relevant.

This makes Meta a very scalable channel and suited to virtually any business, but it is particularly helpful to those who sell a niche product in a new category.


2. Build brand awareness

As Meta allows you to reach a wide audience, it’s also a great tool for building brand awareness.

Brand awareness campaigns show your ads to potential customers with the aim of making them recall your brand, your product and also why they should be buying from you over your competitors. Our clients who run brand awareness campaigns alongside their conversion optimised campaigns see cheaper CPMs which allow them to boost reach and awareness at a lower cost. Ultimately, this leads to acquiring more customers at a lower cost in the long term. 


3. Variety of ad placements

As mentioned above, Meta allows you to advertise across seven different areas. The seven Meta ad placements available are:

  1. Feeds
  2. Stories & Reels
  3. In-stream
  4. Search
  5. Messages
  6. In-article
  7. Apps & Sites

These can be manually selected, allowing you control to choose where your ads are shown, or you can allow Meta’s delivery system to decide where your ad is likely to perform best. The variety of placements also allows you to use different ad creatives to help you stand apart from your competitors.


4. Nurture your current customers

Another advantage of Meta ads is the ability to nurture your current customers. Not only can you reach a large new audience, you can use your customer lists to advertise specific offers to your past customers.

Do you have a subscription service that they didn’t take advantage of? Do you have a sale coming up they may be interested in? Meta ads can help you let your customers know what more you have to offer and keep them coming back for more.

You’re also able to promote your organic posts from Facebook and Instagram through Meta, which can help you to stay at the front of your customers’ minds.


Benefits of Google Ads

Now that we’ve discussed the advantages of Meta ads, let’s explore some of the benefits of Google ads:


1. Appear alongside your competitors

One of the key benefits to Google ads is that you also show up alongside your competitors. You may be thinking “Doesn’t it only matter who has the largest budget who will appear at the top of the SERPs?”. The answer: absolutely not.

The key thing that determines who wins the auction on Google is what the quality score of your ad is. 


What is Quality Score?

Quality score is a number calculated to help show you how well your ad quality compares to other advertisers. So, an ad with a higher quality score than other competing ads means that your ad and your landing page are more relevant and useful to the person that’s searching for that particular keyword.

Quality score is calculated using three key factors:

  1. Expected CTR
  2. Ad relevance
  3. Landing page experience

So with strong ads, you can expect to appear above your competitors or even bump them out of the SERPs.


2. Variety of ad placements

Similar to Meta, Google also has a large variety of ad placements and different campaign types to help you achieve your goals:

  • Search campaigns – text ads on search engine results pages
  • Performance max campaigns – automated optimisation across all channels.
  • Display campaigns – image ads on websites
  • Video campaigns – video ads on YouTube
  • App campaigns – promote your app across multiple channels
  • Local campaigns – promote location across multiple channels
  • Shopping campaigns – promote retail products through product listings

Performance max is another campaign type that allows you to access all channels from a single campaign. So, there’s more that Google ads can do to help you reach a wide audience across several placements.


3. Get results faster than SEO

SEO is incredibly important for a good website. However, it can take a long time to develop a site with well-written content and a large number of backlinks to help you climb to the top of the SERPs. Google search ads will massively increase your chances of your site reaching those with the right search intention.

With the right ad account set-up, you’ll increase the chances of your site appearing above organic search results for highly relevant search terms, which will help you boost your CTRs, CVRs and ultimately lead to new customers.


4. Reach people with the right intentions

Another benefit to Google ads is the ability to reach those who are further down the funnel and are ready to buy your product.

Google Search Ads help you to connect with those who are ready to buy and are actively searching for your product or brand. This is quite different to paid social where you’re advertising to those who may show an interest in your business. Therefore, Google ads make it easier to reach the audience with the right buying intentions.


Conclusion: Which platform should I use?

As explained in this article, there are many benefits to both platforms and knowing their strengths and weaknesses is key to getting the best results for your business. At BARK, we always see the businesses that experience the fastest growth use Meta and Google ads together to build awareness in new audiences and then drive conversion at the bottom of the funnel

To find out more how Bark.London could help your business, take a look at our case studies and how we helped a range of businesses accelerate their growth through paid social and search.

Meta ads vs Google ads: which is better for your business?


Wrong format
Wrong format