How Does PPC (Pay Per Click) Work?

Pay-Per-Click advertising has become a dominant marketing strategy thanks to the interactive nature of the internet. Compare it to putting up a billboard for a month, showing it to people who may or may not be part of your target audience, and paying for it, whether you get results or not. When you create a PPC campaign, your ads go in front of the people looking for something related to your business. The audience gets narrowed down to a more receptive grouping, and you only pay when someone clicks on your ad. Not sure how to get started with PPC ads? We’ll cover the basics and let you know how we can help your business.

Google Ads

Google is the most popular search engine, with 63,000 searches every second, and businesses are motivated to get in on that action through Google Ads. With other tools like Google Analytics, there’s a wealth of information at your fingertips to help you optimize your ads and get the most out of them.

PPC Goals

It’s important to start with a specific goal in mind. Without a goal, you’re just throwing darts at a dartboard while blindfolded. There are 3 main categories of advertising goals:

  • Awareness
    • Creating brand awareness or expanding your reach
  • Consideration
    • Increased website traffic, app downloads, video views, or lead generation
  • Conversions
    • Increased sales or store visits

Define Your Product/Service

Even if you offer a variety of different products and/or services, you’ll want your campaigns to be specific. The more relevant your ad is, the more likely you are to connect with a potential customer, and the better your Quality Score will be. Google analyzes the page your ad links to and determines how closely that relates to what people are searching for. This prevents people from making large bids on unrelated keywords to steal traffic, and gives those with smaller budgets a better chance to have their ads seen. This is another instance where quality is better than quantity.

Leveraging Keywords

Keywords can be single words, but most likely groups of a few words, that you can bid on to put your ads in front of the right people. When people search the web, they usually want to know, go, do, or buy, and your goal is to tell, take, show, or sell them. You’ll need to brainstorm about what your customers are thinking, what they’re looking for, and how they’d search for it. It’s also a good idea to take some indirect approaches. If you’re a bankruptcy lawyer, you can create and ad for anyone looking for bankruptcy lawyers and probably get decent results, especially if you focus on your geographical area. What if you also targeted people wanting to know about preventing home foreclosure? You can create an ad letting them know your services can help them keep their home. Here’s where it gets tricky, because you may get people wanting to buy foreclosed homes for cheap. That’s not your target audience, so it’s not doing you any good to have your ads show up for them. To get the best results from your ads, you need to test and optimize.

Realistic Expectations

How much does it cost to run an effective campaign, and how long does it take to see results? PPC campaigns and Google Ads aren’t a silver bullet or get-rich-quick scheme that’ll transform your business overnight. You may want to start with a small budget to test it out, but the truth is, you’re not going to get comparable results. Some industries have higher costs associated with their keywords, and you can also find big cost differences based on intent, whether it’s to buy or informational. A successful Google Ads campaign budget can range from $1,000 to $10,000 per month. The best results can be found after 3 months, generally. During the first month, data is starting to be collected, in month 2 there are improvements and it becomes easier to refine, then in month 3 you’re ready to scale and see greater results.

If you’re ready to get your PPC campaign started, the PPC experts at VantagePoint Marketing can help you. We’re here to help with keyword research, data analysis, testing, optimization, campaign management, and more.

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