Pay Per Click (PPC) Advertising is a dynamic and exciting medium for advertising and marketing. Unlike organic SEO, PPC can generate immediate results in many cases, and that means money in the bank.
However, it’s also an extremely competitive auction, especially if you want to be at the top of the first page consistently. It’s well worth it, by the way. The top 3 ad spots on Google will generally take 40% of all clicks. Even still, there’s several moving parts and pieces to understand that may prove daunting to many business owners. For that reason, many never take the plunge and eventually pay the consequences. Don’t let your competition pass you by. Get started with these quick tips.
Building a Successful Pay Per Click Campaign
PPC Advertising is your opportunity to get your products and services in front of potential clients at the moment they search for them. It’s essential to national and local search marketing. There’s never been anything quite like it in the history of advertising. It can produce results like you’ve never imagined, but you can also lose a lot of money if you’re not careful. As you generate and run your PPC ads, keep the following 5 essential tips in mind:
- Be Specific
- Utilize Extensions
- Track Conversions
- Make it Easy
- Review, Revise, & Repeat
1) Be Specific
If you offer a wide assortment of products or services, it’s tempting to make general ads that cover as much ground as possible. As much as you may not want to leave anything out, fight the temptation! For the most part, ads that are very general or broad in scope tend to perform poorly with consumers. It makes sense if you think about it.
Consumers who are executing extremely general search queries are typically just gathering information. They’re far away from making a purchase. The closer they get to making a decision, the more specific their search becomes. If you know you’re in the market for an outdoor kitchen, for example, you’re probably not going to search for outdoor living or backyard upgrades. You’ll likely search for outdoor kitchen or backyard kitchen or something similar. The closer you get to making a purchasing decision, the more specific your search becomes. Knowing this, organize your keywords into small, tightly organized groups. Generate AdGroups and ads as granular and specific as possible. Give consumers who are ready to buy ads specific to their queries.
2) Utilize Extensions
Google provides an assortment of ad extensions that not only give you more real estate but an opportunity to showcase more of who you are and what you have to offer. You don’t have to include extensions to get your ads to show at the top of the page. However, consumers’ eyes are always drawn to the ads that take up the most space. It’s natural.
Explore all the extensions Google offers and make good use of the ones that make sense for you. Almost all ad campaigns should include the following extensions: location, call, callout, structured snippet, and site link. Many could benefit from other extensions as well. There are many, many payoffs for taking advantage of ad extensions. In the least, your ads will take up more real estate and people will be more likely to click.
Explore each extension and its associated benefits to understand how to best use them. It’s important to note that none of your extensions will necessarily show every time your ad runs. However, many will show up a good amount of the time and it’s just plain senseless not to use them.
3) Track Conversions
Unless you’re running strictly a brand awareness campaign, it doesn’t matter how many people see your ads or even click on your ads if they’re not turning into conversions. Most ads are intended to generate sales and make money. For that reason, it’s imperative you have conversion tracking set up and you’re tracking and monitoring all meaningful conversions.Regardless of all other metrics, PPC optimization without conversion tracking is just guesswork. Click To Tweet
Again, you can create ads and even run them without utilizing conversion tracking, but you will have no way of ever knowing how well they’re actually doing. You cannot improve what you don’t measure and, for most campaigns, the only measurement that matters is conversions.
4) Make It Easy
Once a user clicks on your ad, you want to make it as easy as possible to complete the specific action you want them to take. It should be easy and intuitive, not confusing, hard to find, or overly complicated. This is all about your landing pages.
A landing page is a page your user lands on directly after clicking on your ad. It will typically include ad copy and a call to action(CTA) and may include other information as well. The ad copy at the top of the landing page should mirror the content in the ads. It should be concise, catchy, and compelling. The CTA should be immediately accessible and intuitive. Below the main ad copy and CTA, you can also include other information for users who aren’t quite ready to make a decision. Keep it simple and focused.
5) Review, Revise, & Repeat
Running paid search campaigns is an art and a science. Your goal is to find the language that will resonate with your target audience and get your ads in front of them when they search. This requires a process of research and experimentation, analysis, and revision. Create your ads and run them long enough to gather meaningful data. Monitor your click-through rates(CTR), cost per click(CPC), impressions, impression share, conversion rates, budgets, etc. Maximize your bidding strategies.
Run at least 4 ads with slight variations in each AdGroup to test what resonates and refine your ads over time. Keep an eye on the quality score and aim for at least a 7. Anything less than that and you’re paying a lot more for your clicks than you should be. Don’t forget- let your conversion rate guide your optimizations more than any other metric. Otherwise, it’s just guesswork. Overall, there is no set-it-and-forget-it approach to successful PPC management. It requires diligence, patience, and constant careful attention.
Killing It in the Google Search Network
Pay Per Click advertising offers the most efficient and effective forms of advertising available. You don’t have to pay to run ads. You don’t even have to pay to have people see your ads. You only pay for clicks. However, it is no fly by night endeavor. You can’t haphazardly throw some ads up and expect amazing results.
You may not have the time it takes to keep your paid advertising optimized and producing the results you need. You really can’t afford to neglect this powerful sales and marketing tool, however. Your competition is ripe for a beating- crush or be crushed. Your time is now.
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