How the Google Ad Auction WorksYou can both learn about how Google has structured its AdWords search advertising program, and see a good (but not flashy) teacher in action, by watching the ten-minute video below. The teacher is Hal Varian chief economist at Google (on leave from his professorship at Berkeley).
The video explains how the price of an ad is determined, how ad quality figures into the ranking of ads, and, in overview, how ad quality is measured.
Google provides detailed guidance to people interested in the AdWords program at adwords.google.com/support/. Google also offers online training here. Some of the topics covered in the tutorials are presented in videos on YouTube here.
Al Roth, an economics and business administration professor at Harvard, has put together an informative post linking to further sources of information on Google's ad auctions and on Hal Varian's work.
Taking a look at the support Google provides to AdWords users not only helps you get up-to-speed on a method of reaching prospective customers that may be suitable for your own business, but also offers a model of how to build sales by helping customers make optimum use of your services. You may very well see things you would do differently in your own approach to providing customers with online support, but Google's set-up serves as a benchmark.