PPC Advertising: The Struggles Newbies and Former Professionals Face
PPC (pay-per-click) advertising, a name commonly applied to Search Network ads, is a great way to reach potential buyers when they are looking for your products or to remind customers that you are still there. If you want to own some of the most valuable real estate on the internet that drives traffic, sales, and conversions, you need to understand how PPC advertising works because this type of advertising is not free. Instead, PPC ads use a mobile cost structure that penalizes users who don’t know what they’re doing through something called a quality score, which we’ll discuss momentarily. Even if you’ve used search ads in the past, platforms change all the time and mistakes are costly. So how do PPC ads work and how do you get around the common mistakes that are holding you back? We will take a look.
Image courtesy of Piyush
What is PPC advertising?
Before delving into an explanation of how to avoid the pitfalls of PPC advertising, it is essential to know how pay-per-click fits into a successful marketing strategy. PPC advertising exists on most search engines, but Google retains the lion’s share of search traffic, so I’m primarily focusing this discussion on this platform. Most other search engines, due to the dominance of Google, share a lot of commonalities.
PPC advertising offers 2 options; search advertising and display advertising. Search Network ads appear when a user enters a query using keywords that match the ones you’ve chosen for your campaign. When a user clicks on your ad, you pay a fee, and I’ll talk about the fee structures in a moment. It is this aspect that gives advertising its name. Search Network ads contain text and limited links or phone numbers that allow users to learn more about the products you are promoting.
Display ads appear on websites and the website owner receives a small fee each time a user clicks on the ad. Display ads are images with limited amounts of text and links to the desired web page.
In addition to these advertising options, some social platforms, like Facebook, offer a PPC option for advertising. These ads are also usually picture ads, although you can use a video or a carousel of images.
The “pay-per-click” model is effective for rush campaigns, for reaching out to competitors, and for finding new markets, but companies quickly jump ship after a few marketing mistakes consume their budget without producing the expected results. Trust us, PPC marketing works; it just takes knowledge and practice to figure out how to make these ads work for your niche.
What contributes to the cost of PPC advertising?
Unlike traditional advertising with fixed costs based on positioning, length, and other factors, the uses of PPC advertising Before launching an ad unit, always consider these costs:
- Target geographic location: You can choose where to show your ad, but some audiences are more expensive than others. Advertising in a large city increases competition, for example, and charges a higher price.
- Target keywords and business sector: Some keywords cost as little as $ 0.08 per click, while others cost $ 50 per click. Popular keywords are generally expensive. For example, advertising in these niches are the most expensive advertising markets:
- business services
- surety obligations
- Planned action: Some platforms make clicks more expensive than likes or shares, while impressions are much cheaper than clicks. Facebook generally makes ads that redirect landing pages more expensive.
Additionally, the quality score has a huge impact on your CPC (cost per click) on search, but not on social media advertising. A website with a good quality score can pay a fraction of the CPC for a website with a poor quality score. You can improve your quality score by:
- closely match the keywords used in your ads with the keywords used on the landing page
- CTR (click-through rate) achieved in previous ads or, over time, the CTR you get with those ads
- Good quality signals such as low bounce rates and longer duration on site
- Organize keywords into logical ad groups
10 Ways To Improve Your PPC Advertising Campaigns
Effective PPC ad management is a dance between lowering your CPC and increasing your conversion rate to produce higher returns – we call this ROI for return on investment. If you find that your ROI isn’t as high as you expected, don’t assume that PPC advertising isn’t working. The problem can be solved and your ROI improves. Try these 10 tactics to improve your advertising return on investment.
1. Monitor results frequently
Startups need to track their PPC results if they want to understand what users want and how well ads match their needs. Without a tool to track those results, a business accidentally stumbles upon success, but it’s more likely to miss the mark altogether.
Google offers analytics as part of its advertising platform (see below) and you can always link your Google Analytics account to your Google Ads account for richer results.
2. Focus on the right keywords
Keywords with high search volume don’t necessarily produce a high conversion rate for your brand. Highly competitive keywords not only cost more, but your ad probably shows up in a worse position, such as on page 2 or 3 of search results where few users are looking.
Instead, focus on targeted keywords specific to your niche, as you’ll likely attract interested customers.
3. Use highly targeted keywords
It is possible to use the right keywords for your projects while being penalized. Vague keywords, such as “jewel,” “jewelry,” and “jeweler,” are all related, but their breadth and lack of uniqueness can result in poor quality scores when used with every project. Rather than using the same keywords over and over, create keywords specific to your campaign for better results.
4. Too many keywords
Using too many keywords can quickly bankrupt your ad spend, but it will also lower your impression rates and effectively prevent you from appearing on search engines. Most experts suggest using no more than 20 keywords per ad group. However, there is not really a magic number since some campaigns require more; don’t exceed Google’s keyword usage limit.
5. Don’t forget about the user experience
When users click on your ad, they expect to see a website that loads quickly and isn’t difficult to navigate. If your landing page takes more than 5 seconds to load or visitors don’t know how to buy or search for products, your bounce rate goes up and your quality score suffers. Paid search won’t fix a bad landing page, so focus on creating a great user experience to keep visitors engaged with your brand.
6. Update ads over time
Maybe your PPC ad has worked in the past, but after a few months you notice that it isn’t pulling the numbers it did before. Even seasoned account managers find it difficult to rotate, delete, or edit previous ad campaigns for fear that new ads won’t match the results of the ads they’re replacing. The solution is to adopt a workflow that includes modifying ads to get the most out of old but functional campaigns.
7. Pay attention to your ads
It is a bad idea to ‘set it and forget it’. Never wait until the end of a campaign to check your stats, because fine-tuning a campaign is the best way to optimize results. Successful online campaigns rarely form by leaving for a month and waiting. The likes, dislikes, and buying power of your customers vary by month depending on trends and available funds, so stay interested in your campaigns after launch.
8. Optimize your landing page
Newbie PPC advertisers link their ads directly to their website and not to a specific page called a landing page. Think of your landing page as your seller. This page should motivate visitors to make a purchase, answer their questions, and easily guide them through the conversion process.
9. Bid on your brand
Bidding on your brand allows you to dominate the search engines. Google any major brand and see how their name appears as a paid ad at the top of the page before the unpaid website link. Keep your brand name all your marketing to market your business, boost your brand reputation, and prevent competition from stealing your customers.
10. Using extensions
Extensions are like super powers when it comes to PPC advertising. Ever seen an extension? Yes you have. Here is an example.
Watch how much extra space you get and all that extra space attracts a bunch of extra clicks and you still only pay once for each click. So, extensions are great for creating awareness. BTW, you don’t pay for clicks beyond the first 3, so users can click without costing you a dime.