Search engine advertising is very effective for those who know how to run them properly. Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is among the top three traffic generators for on-page conversions, and 65% of customers will click on these paid ads.
However, despite the array of evidence that supports how effective PPC ads are, many businesses are still confused as to what they are, how they work, and how to set them up. Search engine ads offer many benefits, like letting you target specific keywords and audiences. Let's cover the basics of what paid search campaigns are.
What is Pay-Per-Click Advertising?
Marketing a business is essential in helping to make it grow and prosper. PPC is a form of internet marketing where the advertisers pay a fee when their ads are clicked on. It's essentially a way of driving traffic to a website instead of simply relying on internet browsers to stumble on them. Advertising through search engines is one of the most commonly used forms of pay per click advertising. An example of this would be the results found on a Google search. When the chosen result is clicked on, that website gets a visit, and the ad is paid for by the source doing the advertising.
How Do PPC Campaigns Work?
When an organization decides to create a PPC campaign, it must perform the following:
- Identify and target their desired audiences
- Set a budget
- Write ad copy and choose these appropriate keywords
- Select how long the campaign should last for
- Choose the landing page or sales page that the visitor will land on once they click on the ad
Each time a visitor clicks on the ad, the agreed-upon amount is subtracted from the total budget until it runs out. If the budget runs out, the campaign stops unless the advertiser adds more budget to the campaign.
Why are PPC Campaigns Important?
Despite the rising number of marketing methods, PPC is still one of the most proven and effective strategies to quickly attract visitors and gain customers. That's because paid ads provide immediate results and provide advertisers with many targeting options to improve your chances of success.
Delivers Immediate Results
This is probably the biggest attraction of using PPC. Unlike SEO, which focuses on "organic" traffic growth, pay per click advertising can deliver results to marketers as soon as an ad is placed—almost overnight. This is why paid advertising is important for any business particularly interested in generating revenue quickly or using very short marketing windows such as special events, new product launches, holidays, or seasonal sales. In fact, for large-scale advertising strategies, paid advertising is very important as a core part of both short- and long-term digital marketing strategies.
The process is very quick to set up. Advertisers go through each platform's portal to set up ads ad groups, set budgets, and define ad parameters. Once the ads are launched, they start appearing in search results immediately, and you can start driving clicks and conversions right away.
However, it's important to note that paid search ads can perform better if they offer enough feedback data about campaign performance. These data points can be used to optimize campaign scale, improve keyword targeting, focus on high-value audience segments, and increase strategy usage. Advertisers can optimize budgets for underperforming campaign attributes and focus on high-value campaign attributes, thus improving their ROI on ad spend.
Advertisers Can Control Their Budget
Pay-per-click advertising is built entirely on budget, so it offers a much greater level of control than traditional paid advertising strategies. One of the main reasons for using PPC advertising is that companies get very granular control over their budget. Also, there aren't any entry barriers or minimum advertising budget. Businesses can choose to spend as little or as much as they want.
In this way, marketers can break down and customize their budgets as needed, with precise control over how the budget is used for any given campaign, group, or ad. Unlike traditional paid advertising, search engine advertising offers an extremely high level of control. Companies can increase ad spend in various areas, demographics, or search queries and decrease ad spend in ineffective areas. This may seem daunting to many businesses, but it's a big reason why many choose to hire a content management specialist, especially when the benefits of a professional ROI are so enticing.
Businesses Can Target Their Ideal Audience
PPC ads can be designed to target audiences. In Google Ad Network as well as other platforms, marketers have very precise control over which ads are shown and where. Search engine marketing allows marketers to control how, when, and where their ads appear. For PPC on social media platforms, it may be more specific to check the target demographic of the ad rather than focusing on keywords though most platforms contain elements of each.
Platforms can allow advertisers to target the following data points:
- age, language, household income, gender, and other demographic data
- Local, national, and global locations
- Life events
- Education level and income
- Interest, careers, and hobbies
- Shopping hobbies and web browsing
Steps for Creating a PPC Campaign Strategy
From advertising on various platforms to developing mobile-optimized landing pages, there are many ways you can improve your PPC strategy, including working with marketing agencies. Whether you have a new business or just want to bring more network traffic to your existing business, paid media activities can get the job done.
1. Define Your Goal
If an organization subscribes to this marketing method for their business growth, a campaign strategy is recommended to see it through effectively. Whatever the purpose of your PPC ad campaigns, it should align with your overall digital marketing strategy. If your overall marketing goal for the quarter is to increase website traffic, then your paid strategy goal should be to get a high click-through rate on your website, for instance. However, keep a close eye on conversions to ensure you’re driving the right audience to products and services that are relevant to them.
Your PPC ad objectives could be:
- Lead generation
- Increase brand awareness
- Boost the number of email subscribers
- Increase sales
- Increase site traffic
It's important to identify your goal before starting your campaign. That's because not having a goal or choosing the wrong goal could set your campaign in the wrong direction, meaning wasted money.
Now it's time to choose a search engine ad platform that can serve them your ads and help you launch a profitable campaign.
Pay per click is a versatile and effective internet marketing strategy that can help you achieve various goals, from raising awareness to increasing website visits and acquiring new customers. It can be competitive and costly for small businesses, but with the right paid advertising strategy, you can acquire new customers and increase your revenues.
2. Choose a Platform to Run Your Campaign
Google Ads is a system that allows users to bid on keywords that they deem would be relevant for their websites, as they pay for each click of their advertisement. Winners get the best ad space and are chosen by several factors, including keywords, relevance, and the overall quality of their ad campaigns. While Google is a powerful tool for managing PPC campaigns, other noteworthy platforms can deliver positive results for your business.
Remember that there are other search engines such as Bing and Yahoo. These other platforms cost much less, but the potential for high returns or high traffic numbers is also much lower because Google’s search market share is so dominant. It could be worth experimenting with. Google can provide very high returns. However, some keywords are very expensive to bid for due to the higher level of competition for search users on that platform.
But the best way to find out what works for your audience is to test different campaigns. Put your search engine advertising strategy to the test and try to find the best-performing keywords, headlines, and ads that generate the most traffic. Pay per click management is about researching, budgeting, testing, reporting, and executing until you get the results you want.
3. Optimal Targeting
After setting your PPC campaign goals, you'll want to plan your targeting. Make sure to choose the most relevant target audience for your ads. You may target your audience for geographic location, wireless networks, device type, and operating systems.
Local businesses can really benefit from geo-targeting. It lets your ad appear in specific areas like countries, states, regions, cities, and even towns. Users can even set a radius around a location for a more granular approach. This helps you narrow down your ads to a location where you can find the exact prospective customers you're looking for.
4. Choose Keywords
One of the crucial aspects of PPC ads is the keyword research process. Start by creating a list of keywords that accurately describe your product or service. You may want to consider using various tools to help you find popular keywords such as Wordtracker, SEMRush, and Google Keyword tools. You'll want to continuously expand and refine your keyword list. Experiment with long-tail keywords, low cost, and even highly relevant keywords until you find an effective combination that gives you the best results. If you notice certain keywords aren't driving much traffic or not converting into leads or sales, you'll want to refine the list of keywords and only keep the most effective ones.
5. Write Exceptional Ad Copy
Ad copy plays a critical role in the overall success of your ad campaign. It starts with understanding your customer. You can write ad copy that directly speaks to their problems and desires when you know your audience. Make sure to write an attention-grabbing headline that gets them curious to want to learn more. For example, a headline like "8 reasons why your business lost five figures last year" is a powerful headline that plays on the fear of missing out. Many people hate to lose more than they wish to gain. In this instance, people are curious about the reasons or potential mistakes they're making that are costing them money.
Additionally, make sure to use the keywords naturally in your ad copy as well. A call to action should always be included, so your readers know what to do next. Do you want them to subscribe, buy, or call you? Be clear with your call to action.
6. Create an Effective Schedule
With PPC ads, you'll also have the option to select the timing of when the ads will appear. Advertisers can choose between certain hours and days, so think about the different times you want them to appear. For example, if you're selling a consumer product, it's best to avoid business hours since most people are likely at work. In this case, consider having them appear during evenings or weekends. With Google Analytics, you'll be able to test different times and see which times work the best for your audience.
7. Launch Your Ads
Once you've set up the targeting, keywords, landing pages, ad copy, and schedule, you're ready to launch. Before you launch, make sure that the ad clearly illustrates your unique selling proposition. You may want to experiment with different copies, landing pages, and offers. Sometimes tweaking the headline or call to action can make a significant difference.
8. Analyze and Optimize Your Strategy
There are many metrics you should familiarize yourself with. Knowing these key metrics lets, you understand the data to gauge how effective your ad campaigns are. Here are the most common metrics to consider:
- Click-through rate (CTR): This is the ratio at which people click on the ad link compared to the total number of people who've seen it.
- Conversion rate: How well your ads are converting based on the objective you've set. So if your objective is to receive traffic and you get one visitor for every ten views, you have a conversion rate of 10%.
- Cost per click (CPC): This is the cost that you're willing to bid to have your ad appear on search engines for a particular keyword.
- Cost per acquisition (CPA): This is how much it costs to acquire a lead or sale. A high cost could indicate poor keyword or audience targeting. However, it could also mean the product-market fit isn't good as well.
- Quality Score: This calculates the relevancy of your entire ad, including landing page relevance, ad relevance, and click-through rate.
- Return on ad spends (ROAS): The profit of your ads. This is usually the ratio between sales and ad spend. For example, a 100% ROAS means you've earned double in revenue compared to how much you spent.
The goal is to track these metrics and make tweaks to improve their numbers.
Primary Factors to a Successful PPC Ad Campaign
The most successful ad campaigns focus on a few elements: good keyword research, logical structure, and efficient management. Working smart is a key factor in getting the best results. As keywords are the basis for what determines a good campaign, organizing how they are structured is vital. There are four factors that make up account structure and can assure great performance in the end. They are Ad groups, Ad text, Keywords, and Landing Pages.
1. Ad Group
The campaign represents the launch of the project. Each campaign should contain an Ad group. That's the foundation of the marketing content and includes the Landing Pages and Ad Text. This is where demographics come into play. An ad group determines the scope of the project and emphasizes the goods being delivered. If you're running a seasonal ad on summer sandals, you wouldn't have an ad group running text that talks about winter parkas.
2. Ad Copy or Add Text
Ad text speaks about the product details and/or its benefits. It works in conjunction with Keywords and Landing Pages. Keywords are chosen based on their relevance to the specific ad. Of course, unique ad text catered to the product or service garners the best results.
3. Landing Pages
Landing Pages bring it all together and showcase the result. It should be visually appealing, cohesive, and easy to navigate. However, the highly targeted nature of these ads requires you to work with professional pay-per-click advertising companies to get help with keyword research and campaign settings. Although you can create remarketing campaigns on other ad networks such as Bing Ads, Google Ads is often the most common choice for businesses. With Google Ads, your business can benefit from responsive display advertising and responsive search advertising.
In addition, you can use Responsive Search Ads (RSA) in your campaigns to show more targeted ads to each user. You can create separate ads for each keyword group and track the performance of each keyword to analyze what works best for your brand. With PPC ads, you can target your ads to users looking for specific terms (keywords) related to your products and services.
Let Universal Creative Solutions Help You with PPC Advertising
With search engine ads, successful campaigns lead to an immediate increase in your website traffic and sales. The main focus of building a successful pay per click ad campaign is attracting conversions from a channel other than regular search and various referral sources.
The problem is that many marketers are plagued by poorly managed PPC activities, which ultimately causes their costs to be much higher than they should and results in disappointing lead generation. However, all of this success depends on whether you or your advertising manager understand the search engine campaign management strategies, especially considering the huge competition facing businesses today. If you are just starting to use PPC advertising, no matter how fierce the competition in your industry or market segment is, taking an open and proactive approach to new strategies will help your business stay ahead.
Tired of throwing money down the drain? Or unsure about how to properly set up an effective search engine advertising campaign? At Universal Creative Solutions, we can help you set up and manage your PPC ads. As your marketing partner, we don't simply "set it and forget it." Our client's success is our success. That's why we stay proactive by continuously monitoring the ads, researching keywords, and finding new ways to improve them with metrics. Book a consultation call with us today and learn how we can help you with paid advertising.