“Never let ads write checks your website can’t cash.”

Avinash Kaushik

Google Digital Marketing Evangelist

Google Ads will always try and spend your money, it’s their business! Our goal as marketers is to bring the most qualified paid search traffic to our community. It’s extremely important to pre-qualify clicks to bring the the best traffic to your community. Think of optimizing a campaign as making your house both inviting, yet manageable to host a party. You want to invite make it inviting for the right prospects (i.e. your target audience), but you are also limited to enough space in your home (i.e. your budget).


  • Manual CPC Bidding. Use different strategies for bidding

Google has several different strategies for bidding, including “maximizing clicks,” “maximizing conversions,” “maximizing impressions,” and “auto CPC.” A less popular strategy is “manual CPC.” Setting your campaigns to “manual CPC” to start a campaign will allow you to see the different bid levels for your keywords and make adjustments overtime. I suggest to start your bids very low (i.e. $.25-$.50) and adjust the bid amounts overtime as you learn the current bids and see the conversion by keyword. You may feel that you need start with a high bid (i.e. $2-5/click) to top placement to help your lease up or stabilize your community, but starting with high bids is like overpaying for a designer dress at Nordstrom’s without visiting The Rack to see if the same dress is available. Be patient and start with lower bid amounts to increase your ROI.  

  • Broad Match Modifiers or Phrase Match Search

If an important keyword for your community is “luxury apartments in Dallas,” you may consider adding quotations around the keyword phrase (i.e. “luxury apartments in Dallas”) or adding a (+) symbol in front of the keywords (i.e. +luxury +apartments in +Dallas) to make sure your Google ads are being delivered to the most relevant searches. Adding quotations around a keyword phrase makes sure that your ads are served on that particular phrase. Adding a (+) symbol in front of certain keywords modifies your broad match and makes sure that your ads are delivered for those keywords. It’s recommended to use at least one of these strategies to start. However, if a particular keyword phrase is important and you only want to have your ads served for a particular phrase, use a bracket around the keyword phrase (i.e. [luxury apartments in Dallas]) to make sure your ads are only delivered for that particular phrase.

To learn more keyword strategies, check out 5 Google Paid Search Campaigns for Apartments.      

  • Bid adjustments

In addition to bidding on particular keywords, Google Ads also allows you to make bid adjustments based on a variety of categories, including demographics, location and device. For example, your apartment community may be tailored for students or senior living and you can increase the bids to have your ads served more frequently towards this target audience. Additionally, you can adjust your ads to serve more frequently towards a particular city or device, if you notice more conversions from a particular region or device (i.e. mobile device). Before you start to adjust the bids based on demographics, location or device, give your campaign time to gather initial data (typically 2-4 weeks). This way you are optimizing based on a larger subset of data compared to make adjustments over just a handful of days.

Did you find these tips helpful? Subscribe to our newsletter to receive more multi-family apartment strategies.

Did you find these tips helpful? Subscribe to our newsletter to receive more multi-family apartment strategies.