Tools and Techniques for Beginning Your Paid Search / PPC Campaign
Launching a paid search campaign, also known as a pay-per-click campaign, can be daunting. But if you are in a commoditized or competitive industry, you may not have time to wait for SEO and a good content marketing plan to do their jobs. That’s where investing time and resources into paid search comes in. Google is, of course, the biggest and most well-known search engine, but you can also invest in PPC on Yahoo and Bing as well.
What are Pay-Per-Click Ads?
Pay-per-click ads are the ones that you see to the right of search results and at the top of the page. If you bid more than your competitors for the right keywords, you will remain at the top of the first page of the search results and will maximize the likelihood of getting traffic to your site.
How Do You Create a Successful Paid Search Campaign?
Pay-per-click advertising requires choosing your keywords well, setting good goals, writing great ads that really convert, and budgeting wisely. Here are a few tips to help you build a successful PPC campaign:
- Choose Keywords Well – Paid search is all about the right keywords. We’ll dig into this in more detail in a future article on keyword research, but to start, you can begin thinking about terms that relate to your products. Then, get specific. One- and two-word keywords are very competitive, and will cost much more. For example, you probably shouldn’t invest in a general term like “baseball caps,” where you are going to be outbid by a larger and/or many companies. However, trying a keyword that gets less traffic—and therefore fewer bids—in a search query a shopper might use, such as, “boys’ green baseball cap,” will likely yield better results.
- Set Good Goals – Your conversion goals might include completing lead capture forms, gaining newsletter subscribers, receiving phone calls, or completing an online purchase. If you know what your desired end result is, you will write better copy for the strongest keyword choices.
- Write Ads That Convert – Google Ad Words allows you 95 characters: 25 characters for the heading, and 35 characters for each of the next two lines. Successful ads include the keyword or words for which you’re paying, a call to action, what makes you unique, symbols, like %, $ or #, which stand out more than text, or even product ratings. Remember, your ad needs to stand out from all the others. The best way to learn about writing strong ads is to study ads of your competitors or maybe even your favorite products.
- Budget Wisely – Paid search campaigns can be expensive. Make sure you calculate what you are willing to spend for each lead and conversion, and budget accordingly. A good first step is to find out what a new customer is worth to you (average order value, average number of orders, etc.), and base your calculations on that.
Test and Learn
PPC campaigns require testing and tweaking. As you gain insights from your first campaigns and learn more about the process, you will need to revise your ads, budgets and keywords. Trust us, your competitors will be doing the same. While it might seem like a great deal of work, PPC campaigns can be critically important to your product sales.
Let us know where you are in your PPC journey. Your story can help others!