After creating a website, you may wonder what the best strategy is to bring visitors to it. Many other routes may be explored, such as search engine optimization (SEO) and social media, but pay-per-click (PPC) is one of the easiest methods to acquire more customers for your website.
In this post, we’ll cover the fundamentals of PPC advertising and how it works, from the best platforms to utilize and how to do keyword research to optimize your campaigns.
What exactly is PPC?
PPC is an internet advertising approach in which marketers pay each time someone clicks on their adverts via a search engine. Unlike organic techniques of boosting traffic to a website or webpage, such as SEO, PPC focuses on paid possibilities to attract more hits.
When visitors enter a search engine query, the search engine results page (SERP) displays a list of links. The links at the top of the list are normally PPC advertising, and if you click on one of them, the advertiser pays a charge for that click.
Pay-per-click advertising is used by advertisers to generate more leads, enhance sales, or just raise awareness about their brand’s products or services. Because the purpose of PPC advertisements differs, the ads themselves can either target a certain demographic or budget or rank based on specified keywords.
How does pay-per-click advertising work?
Because so many organizations and brands compete for clicks from the same customers, PPC advertising isn’t as simple as clicking and paying. There is a strategy.
When a consumer searches for a query on a search engine like Google, an auction is launched for marketers like you to bid on ad placement. This auction is based on predetermined keywords and a budget. The winning ad shows on the user’s search engine results page (SERP), and only if the user clicks on it does the advertiser pay their bid.
This entire process happens quickly on every search, so you must have campaigns ready to join ad auctions, which involves writing ad content and selecting a budget for the utmost you’re prepared to spend per click. You will also select relevant keywords during the process, which will assist determine how high the ad is placed.
Running PPC advertisements entails more than just developing visually appealing ads that visitors will click on. You must also guarantee that when they get to the appropriate page, they remain and take action.
What is the difference between SEO and PPC?
While both SEO and PPC advertising employ comparable methods to increase traffic (e.g., keywords), they are not the same. As previously said, SEO employs a free method to drive each click, such as optimizing content so that it appears naturally in a SERP. Pay-per-click, on the other hand, relies on sponsored clicks to display advertisements to consumers.
The pricing isn’t the only distinction between SEO and PPC. The length of time it takes for the advertising approach to take effect varies greatly. Because SEO is an organic method, it will take time to develop, and it may take months to see traffic to your site. PPC results are depending on how much you’re prepared to pay, so you’ll see them much faster.
However, businesses should not pick between paid and organic advertisements but rather incorporate both into their marketing approach. If you’ve previously done keyword research for your SEO strategy, you may use it in your PPC campaign to improve your chances of ranking on the SERP. SEO advertising converts at a rate of 2.4% on average, compared to 1.3% for PPC, thus employing both strategies will help you raise your conversion rate even more.
Top PPC platforms
There are other PPC systems available, however, when we talk about PPC, we usually mean Google Ads or Microsoft Advertising (Bing).
Google advertising needs no introduction; it is the platform of choice for advertisers looking to reach the biggest potential audience. However, because 86.6% of people use Google to look for answers and to run their advertising, it’s very competitive, and Google ads might cost more than other platforms.
While “Let me Bing that” doesn’t have the same ring to it, Microsoft controls about 3% of the search engine industry. The audience isn’t as large here, but it also means you’ll pay less for clicks. Many advertisers use Microsoft Advertising as a secondary platform for their PPC campaign to cover additional areas.
While we don’t typically think of Facebook as a search engine, Facebook Ads allow you to conduct sponsored ads in the same way that you would on Google or Bing. Facebook, like Google advertisements, allows you to target a certain audience, and the advertisements are displayed in users’ newsfeeds. Because Facebook owns Instagram, you may use this ad platform to launch sponsored ads on both platforms.
Other PPC platforms
Aside from the three ad platforms mentioned above, you may wish to try bidding on platforms such as:
- Amazon Ads
Best practices for PPC campaign management
Below are some crucial guidelines and approaches to keep in mind while launching your own PPC campaign.
Perform keyword research
Keyword research is arguably the most crucial aspect of developing your first PPC campaign. To begin, concentrate on key phrases relevant to your area. Then, gradually begin to extend to include less frequent phrases that consumers may still look for. Tools like Google Keywords Planner, Ahrefs, and SEMRush can help you save time at this stage.
Look for short-tail, long-tail, and relevant keywords. You want to come up with a long list of relevant keywords to target in your campaign. It’s typical to have a list of hundreds of people to deal with.
Investigate negative keywords as well, or ones that you do not want to rank for. Excluding negative keywords from your PPC campaign guarantees that you do not waste your ad money on clicks that will not deliver you, high-intent consumers. For example, if you operate a small business that sells women’s shoes, a negative term may be “men’s shoes,” because you don’t want to pay for hits that aren’t essential.
Create a list of branded keywords that users could search for. Branded keywords are search phrases that incorporate your brand’s name, a competitor’s brand name, or something similar (including frequent misspellings). Branded keywords for Nike, for example, maybe “Nike sneakers,” “where to buy Nike,” or even “Nik shoes.”
Set a reasonable budget
Set a budget for each keyword to begin the ad auction process. Your budget can impact whether or not your ad has a decent chance of winning an auction, so do your homework to ensure you’re paying for keywords that will most likely result in clicks.
When you’ve determined which keywords to target, you’ll provide a budget for each keyword or ad group. This is the highest possible cost-per-click (CPC) for each bid. So, just because you set your budget for a single term at $1.00 doesn’t imply, you’ll pay that amount for every hit. The majority of the time, you’ll pay $0.50, but the most you’ll ever pay is $1.00.
Make high-quality advertisements
Target the proper keywords and ensure your content is relevant to the inquiry when executing a PPC campaign. Aside from your maximum CPC, quality score and ad rank are two more elements that influence whether your ad appears on a SERP.
The quality score of your ad is determined by how helpful visitors find it. The score is derived from a number of variables, including an ad’s predicted click-through rate (CTR), relevancy to the user’s initial search query, and landing page quality.
The greater your quality score, the less likely you are to spend per click. Similarly, an ad with a low-quality score will cost more. Because search engines frequently penalize low-quality advertisers, your adverts may not even appear on a SERP if you have a low score.
How to Target Your Audience Using PPC Advertising
Pay-per-click advertising may help you reach your target consumers with the correct research and plan. Keywords are not the only approach to target your audience in PPC advertising. You may also target additional factors to further define your campaign, such as:
- Day and time
- Previous online activity
By tailoring your advertising to be incredibly particular, you increase the likelihood of someone seeing your ad at precisely the correct time. For example, if you know your audience purchases online from their phones in the evenings and is between the ages of 25 and 45, you may configure certain ad specifications to target those clients precisely.
You can also utilize this method for retargeted advertising. This implies that if a consumer clicks on your paid ad but does not complete a purchase, you may offer them another ad content or use another sort of advertising, such as display advertisements, to capture their attention.
How to run and optimize PPC campaigns
Running PPC campaigns as a “set it and forget it” strategy will not work; you must monitor and change your campaign on a frequent basis to attain the desired results. When developing your goals, use key performance indicators (KPIs) to determine whether your campaign is producing the anticipated outcomes.
Determine your goals in advance to determine the effectiveness of your marketing campaign. The metrics you use to measure the effectiveness of your campaign will change depending on whether you’re increasing brand recognition, marketing a new product, or driving more website visitors. If your campaign isn’t doing as well as you expected, consider changing the keywords, adjusting your CPC budget, targeting different consumers, or creating new ad groups.
Optimizing your campaign entails trial and error to determine which keywords consumers engage with, what time of week or day they are most active, what advertisements cost you the most, and which ones get you the most traffic. Overall, every advertiser’s aim with a PPC campaign is to deliver the best outcomes at the lowest cost per click. Optimize your campaign using the following methods:
- Make sure your ad groups are organized so you can determine if they are focusing on the relevant keywords adequately.
- Display items, contact information, or anything else that engages audiences with ad extensions.
- Re-evaluate your landing page on a regular basis to ensure that it is relevant, loads quickly, and delivers an ideal visitor experience.
- A/B testing should be conducted using various landing pages for the same ad or varied ad content for the same landing page.
- Always look for fresh keywords or versions that have less competition.
- Regularly study and add negative keywords to prevent squandering ad spend.
Update your match types to include more wide terms, which may have a lower CPC than exact keywords.