Google Ads for Your Fitness Business: How to Get Started
Posted by Nolie MacDonald

For those that are newly venturing into pay-per-click advertising it can feel like a daunting task. Google Ads has an extensive platform which can take some getting use to. In addition, before creating any campaigns, adgroups, ads, or keywords you need to understand what each of these are thoroughly so you set up your account appropriately and optimize for the highest possible quality score, which will save you money! Before you do anything to your account setting up Google Ads for your fitness business, it is important to have a thorough understanding of the account structure and terminology.

Account Structure & Terminology

google ads for fitness business


A campaign in Google AdWords is the bucket that all other subcategories may fall into. The naming convention should incorporate a keyword. For example, if you are a gym owner that offers a variety of classes, the campaign could be the name of one of your classes. This is important to split up campaigns with granularity because it gives you more control as the budget is split up at the campaign level. So if you want to push a pilates class, you can easily increase budget for the pilates campaign.


An AdGroup is a subcategory or incorporate a more granulated keyword that falls under a campaign. For example, if the campaign is pilates then the AdGroup might be pilates studio in Seattle. The adgroups are important to have a wide variety built out based on desired keywords. By having more adgroups that contain fewer keywords within each you will improve your quality score. We will get into the quality score a bit later.


Keywords can be a short-tail or long tail keyword; one words or a string of words that you think people may type into Google to find your business. The number one mishap that happens with GoogleAd newcomers, is bidding on every keyword suggested. This will lead to a lot of wasted ad spend and typically a low quality score. Every keyword should be listed in only one AdGroup. That AdGroup it falls under should incorporate the same name or close of the keyword. For example, if the AdGroup is pilates studios in Seattle, you may also have a keyword created for pilates studios in Seattle.

When building out keywords you should create an exact, phrase and modified broad match for every keyword you create. You can have different maximum bids on each type of keyword. 

Exact Match: This is the most desired keyword match. Therefore, the maximum bid is typically a bit higher than phrase or modified broad. When someone types in this keyword in Google exactly as the keyword appears than you are willing to pay the maximum bid amount when it is clicked.

Phrase: The phrase match provides a bit more flexibility for the searcher to find you. This means they typed in the keyword but it also includes additional words. For example, if keyword is pilates studio in Seattle, a phrase match that a searcher may have used would be new pilates studio in Seattle. This would be considered a phrase match because of the additional word 'new.'

Modified Broad: This keyword type will provide the most opportunity for searchers to find you but for that reason you must watch these more carefully to make sure the people clicking are actually searching for terms that you would want to be found by. For example, if the keyword is pilates studio in Seattle, a searcher may type in pilates studio instructor training in Seattle. This would be a modified broad match because it contains all of the keywords but with the instructor training inserted. By keeping an eye on any that don't fit what you want to be searched by you can expand your negative keywords.

Negative Keywords

Negative keywords are keywords you add that will block your ad from showing up when they are used by the searcher. For example, in the previous example, if instructor had been added as a negative keyword then your ad would've been excluded from the search results. This will save you a lot of money for searchers that are looking for something not relevant to what you are offering.


When you have your campaign, the AdGroup, keywords and negative keywords all created it is time to make the ad. The headline, url and description should all incorporate the targeted keyword. If the AdGroup is pilates studio in Seattle, then make sure you use that exact verbiage in the ad. This will improve your quality score.

Landing Pages

The ad when clicked, will direct to a landing page. This landing page should also have an H1 header that incorporates the keyword. This is often overlooked by small business owners that do not understand Google Ads. Many make the mistake of linking back to your business homepage. This is a no no. The landing page needs to have that keyword as an H1 header and also incorporate landing page best practices to increase quality score and likelihood for conversion. 

Landing page best practices are evolving all the time. The main points to bring up are having pertinent information above the fold, top of screen without scrolling. You need to have a clear call-to-action (CTA). There ideally will be reviews, or some form of social proof from other customer experiences and a form that when filled out will take the user to a thank-you page. When the user has made it from the ad, to the landing page, to the thank you page this is considered a conversion.

Quality Score

Quality Score is Google's rating of the quality and relevance based on the user experience. It is used to determine your cost per click (CPC) and multiplied by your maximum bid to determine your ad rank in the ad auction process. Quality Score is an estimate of the quality of your ads, keywords, and landing pages. Higher quality ads can lead to lower prices and better ad positions.

  • You can see your Quality Score (Quality Score is reported on a 1-10 scale and its components (expected clickthrough rate, ad relevance, and landing page experience) in your keywords’ “Status” column.
  • The more relevant your ads and landing pages are to what the searcher typed in, the more likely it is that you'll see higher Quality Scores. New call-to-action