There is some controversy around pay per click advertising. Some people believe it to be a waste of money and too expensive, while others swear by it and have used pay per click to make their website a success. The key difference is learning how to use this kind of advertising properly. As a result, you can bring a lot more customers to your website. This walkthrough will guide you through what PPC is, the benefits and the right way to utilize it.
What is PPC Advertising?
The principle of PPC advertising is pretty simple. You will bid for an ad that will be displayed in the sponsored results when a keyword is searched, alongside natural results. The entire system is based on an auction principle, where the highest bidder has the most chance of getting a number 1 ranking. The more popular a word is, the more in-demand the ad is and the higher the bids will go. There is another aspect that can influence your ranking, as search engines will also take into account your quality score, which we will cover below. The best, and riskiest, part is that only when someone clicks on your advertisement and ends up on your website, will you have to pay the bid you placed.
Even though PPC advertising might be a good way to get more traffic to your website, it can be extremely expensive. Some keywords can cost you a lot of money, and generate a lot of click-throughs, which gets expensive. Then there is also the fact that every person clicking on your advertisement, does not necessarily mean a sale. Sometimes the cost of your campaign can even outweigh your revenue, so using PPC wisely and taking into account your yield is necessary for a substantial return on your investment.
PPC is a quick way to acquire traffic. People immediately end up on your website, so you do not have to wait months until your website climbs into the search rankings. Your advertising campaign can also be adjusted quickly through PPC, because you will get all types of tools at your disposal. One of such tools is Google AdWords, where you can discover the most effective keywords for your target audience. People who have a niche market can definitely benefit from PPC advertising as well, because they will not have to make big bids for their advertisements to be effective.
Fact of the matter is, you cannot run a successful website with PPC alone. PPC advertising can be extremely expensive if you do not have any other plans in place. So let us take a look at the PPC applications that can be valuable to you. Campaign and Issue Based Traffic PPC advertising is perfect for a short-term campaign. Are you offering a new product or service? Than a pay per click advertisement may be just what you need. A short-term campaign usually lasts 24 to 48 hours, so you will not have to spend an insane amount of money on it. Direct Response If you are trying to sell a product or service from the moment people arrive on your site, then you should also use pay per click advertising. This is because every click on your advertising, could translate to a potential sale. In this case, clicks have a higher chance of becoming actual valuable conversions. Niche Terms Businesses covering a niche market can definitely benefit from PPC advertising. Niche keywords are often cheaper, because there is simply less competition for your keywords.
Choose a PPC Platform
There are quite a few PPC platforms out there, so which one is right for you? The best known pay per click platform is without a doubt Google AdWords and it is probably the most effective platform as well. Google is one of the world’s most popular search engines, so this means that you will reach a huge amount of people. The only downside to using Google AdWords, is that the PPC platform is slightly more expensive than alternatives available. However, when you use Google AdWords, you are paying for quality and access to a huge market.
Get Started by Identifying Goals
Before you start using PPC advertising, you will need to set some goals for yourself. Some important questions you should ask yourself are:
- Is my site ready to convert the traffic that arrives?
- What conversion rate do I want to achieve?
- What words will be most effective?
These questions can be used to determine your tactics for the PPC campaign, so it is essential to ask them before you begin.
Prepare Landing Pages
When you have a PPC campaign in place, you are going to need an excellent landing page, so that your clicks can convert into sales or leads. Landing pages are therefore a lot more important than most people think. It is important to optimize them before you implement the PPC campaign.
Find Your Keywords
In order to make your website effective, you will have to incorporate search engine optimization in combination with your PPC campaign. Choose your keywords carefully and try to avoid keywords that have a lot of competition. Get specific using long tail keywords that you have used for SEO on your other content. You want to brainstorm and test to find which keywords bring the most customers that are actually interested in your project and end up converting. It will take continuous trial and error and optimization.
Track Your Success
No matter the PPC advertising type you use, it is essential to regularly check the success of your campaign. If a campaign is not as successful as you thought, it may be needed to adjust your current keywords or your website. The following statistics will help you to determine the success of your campaign.
CTR Your click-through rate (CTR) is the metric to check to see the amount of traffic your campaign is generating. It is calculate by the amount of clicks received from an online campaign, where people actually end up on your website.
Conversions Are your clicks actually turning into more customers? In other words are the people who end up on your website buying something, using your services or downloading valuable information? The amount of successful conversions is a clear indicator of your success.
CPC (Cost per Click) How much are you paying for each click? Find out by checking this metric. You will want to find a balance between the highly demanded words which have an expensive price tag, and the cheap words that people don’t search for.
Cost per Conversion Checking your cost per conversion is also a must when it comes down to the effectiveness of your campaign. To calculate your cost per conversion, take the total cost of generating traffic and divide it by your conversions. This number will give you a better idea of valuable traffic, instead of just the clicks you are getting.
Quality Scores How effective is your website in dealing with the traffic generated by the customers who click through your ads? Are you getting a lot of interested people on your website, but not converting them? The quality score will reflect this. There are many tools that can provide you with a detailed quality score of your site, including the AdWords quality score.
A successful PPC campaign also depends on the optimization level of your campaign, as well as your website. Testing the performance of both is therefore an essential part of your advertising campaign. Follow the tips below to optimize your campaign properly.
Continuously Manage Campaigns In order to make your campaign effective, you will have to check it regularly to ensure that everything is up-to-date and working the way it should be. How much are you spending on keywords? What is the conversion rate? Could it be better?
Split Test A split test can make your campaign more effective. Test out different ads regularly, so that you can use the best advertisement. In order to check the performance of your ads, check your analytics and see which one works the best.
Retarget Sometimes you will have to reconsider your target audience. Is your website attracting different users than the ones you need? Adjust your ads and website to suit your desired audience and retarget your campaign.
Mistakes to Avoid
One of the most common mistakes in PPC advertising is the use of expensive keywords. Try to find keywords that are less expensive, but still effective for the services and products you offer. Another mistake you should avoid is letting a campaign run for too long. Some campaigns might be extremely effective in the beginning, but bids can become more expensive and your campaign less effective. Therefore you need to stay on top of every aspect of your PPC advertising.
We can conclude that PPC advertising can be really effective, as long as it is implemented correctly. Take into account everything that was mentioned here and you will be on the right path to maximize the return on your PPC advertising campaigns. Also, do not forget to pay the necessary attention to your website, because this is the part where you will actually make the sale!