Pay Per Click or PPC has been around for a long time, but people are still unclear about how it works and what benefits it brings.
The truth is that there are very few people who can say they understand PPC fully. Even the most experienced professional in this field spends hours every day looking into research reports and monitoring his or her accounts.
So, how can you as a small business owner hope to learn all these tricks and be successful with PPC?
Can you even compete against big businesses without knowing the little secrets that make it work?
The answer is yes – you absolutely can.
We at Atechnocrat want to tell you about some of the basics of PPC and how to get started with it. Pay per click has a bad rep, mostly because businesses see they can’t compete against big companies and give up before trying.
So let’s start off with the basics:
What is pay per click advertising?
There are three types of ads you can place on a search engine. The first one is the search ad that pops up in a search engine when you type in a keyword related to your business. This is pay per click advertising and it will be what we focus on today.
You can also place ads on the right side of the screen, either below or next to organic results (search results that are not paid for). These ads are called Sponsored Links.
The last one would be shopping ads which mostly pops up when you search for a specific product with a prefix of “Buy” or “Buy Online”
Some important PPC campaign metrics are
If you click on a search ad (from Google’s side of things) then it is called an impression; if the person clicks your ad, that is known as a click-through. You can set up your PPC campaign to count impressions or click-throughs.
So, how do you get traffic from the ads?
As I mentioned above, there are three types of ads: search text ads (the majority), image/banner ads, and video ads. These different formats require different strategies to make them work for you. Let’s touch on search text ads for now.
To give you an idea of what a search text ad looks like,
Here is one:
Notice that once you place your ads using Google ads it says “sponsored” and that the platform gives you four options to choose from: Images, Music & Video, Games & Apps, and News. This is because Google wants to place the ad which will get the most clicks from people, so they choose the keywords to target.
The ad provides us with a number of important pieces of information:
The company name so you can visit their website.
The ad’s destination URL (the actual page you will go to when you click on the ad). Further ads can give company address and even phone number.
Now, let’s take a look at the keywords to include in ads:
Let’s look at a Google Shopping ad:
You can see that online stores for the same products for different prices. This is because the advertiser is offering different prices for the same products. Also, notice there is no destination URL listed here. That is because Google has special ads for shopping and it’s not the same as a regular search text ad.
Targeting keywords is one thing, but you can’t forget about your landing page (the actual website people go to when they click on your ad).
What does this have to do with PPC? A lot. As I explained earlier, the most important thing about pay per click is targeting the right keywords; however, if you get all these people to see your ad, but they end up on a page that has nothing to do with what they were looking for (or even worse, your competitor’s website), then it doesn’t matter how many clicks you get – it’s a waste of money.
The landing page must be relevant to your ad and the keyword you are targeting so that people can find exactly what they were looking for. That way, when they land on your website they will be more likely to act (buy something, sign up for an email list, etc.) and you will then get your return on investment.
Another factor to consider is the text and title of your ad, as well as its destination URL.
Some people choose short and snappy titles like “Learn how to make money” or “Great Deals on men’s headphones.” However, there is a case to be made for using numbers in your title. Names and titles can get lost among other search results, but if you use numbers people will know exactly what they will find when they click on it, so it could lead to more clicks.
Keywords are hugely important in PPC.
They determine which ads show up for which queries. It is generally considered more impressive to have an ad show up for a higher number of keywords than your competition, so that’s why it’s important to target as many relevant keywords as you can.
You may have to decide your ad’s location. This is because Google offers different ads in different locations; for example, there is a difference between the search results page on Google.ca vs Google.com.
While keywords are important, don’t forget about including the right metadata (title and description) for your landing page. If you are selling cameras, why not try writing a catchy title like “Find the Perfect Camera in Just Three Easy Steps.”
It doesn’t need to be too long (3-4 sentences is perfect), but it should explain, in simple terms, what the person will find on your website when they click through to it. Also make sure to include the most important keywords in your description, as this will help Google rank your site higher.
So, what types of keywords should you use?
That depends on your product or service as well as your budget and how much traffic (clicks) you want to get from each campaign. I will discuss more keywords later on. So don’t forget to follow our blogs.
And what about competitors?
How can you know who exactly to target? You can do a little research yourself, but for the most part, it is best to use a service such as SpyFu which will tell you exactly how much money your competitors are spending on pay-per-click advertising, as well as some of their keywords.
Pay per click is a very valuable method to help you generate leads for your business because it allows you to target and get in front of the right audience at a relatively low cost.
However, you should always consider quality over quantity when it comes to pay per click and use the strategies I talked about in this article to maximize your return on investment.
I hope that answered some of your questions about pay per click advertising and how it could benefit your business.
If you have any other questions, feel free to comment below! Even if you want to outsource your PPC tasks, check our PPC plan. Hire our team and be assured of the best ROI.