The adult population in developed countries spend around 18 hours a week online1. Everyday, around 1.9 billion people are online searching for what they need2 and guess what? You kind of already know that and that’s the reason why you have an online presence.
But how is that presence performing? Are you achieving your desired goals?
This short piece aims to tell you an anecdotal idea of how PPC can help you reach those digital marketing goals that you dreamed of when you started off without delving into case studies.
Firstly, what is PPC if you’re not familiar with it. PPC is an acronym for Pay Per Click. The most well known form of Pay Per Click is marketing on search engines such as Google and paying them an amount (set by you) each time someone clicks on your text advert that was placed on the search engine’s results page. The most famous platform for PPC marketing is Google’s Adwords.
So what exactly are the 5 signs you should be investing in PPC as the title claims? We shall elaborate…
You’ve been banking on SEO (search engine optimisation) to take you to the promised land – top of The Google (not The Pop’s). But it has not happened quite just yet. You may be lingering at the bottom of the top page like a sunken ship at the bottom of the sea or your website may not be anywhere near it and some time has passed with a lot sweat and blood split.
PPC is a very quick way to reach the top of Google’s search pages and place your business offering in front of thousands if not millions of potential customers. It can literally happen within minutes providing you get the details right such as a bid amount and quality ad text. That turnover will almost certainly never happen with SEO.
You need to quickly judge the effectiveness of your website or new product page in the real world but don’t know how.
Testing is an absolute must, no doubt about it, but even the giant Apple discovers errors post product launch. Using PPC can drive qualified traffic to the desired page/site based on the users intent and willingness to click on your ad that they found relevant. That might not happen if you think posting on a social network would be sufficient. A visitor from a social network who clicked on a link to the page you posted is in a different mental state to one that is searching for a product with the intent to buy.
Using conversion tracking and heat maps (if it’s available to you) can allow you to develop an understanding of how visitors are responding to the page setup, all in a short space of time as PPC drives quick traffic.
You want to target your business offering to people according interests and topics but you’re wary of the effectiveness of traditional advertising.
The phenomenon that is the social web is still very much an erupting volcano. A figure from Statistic Brain states that 1 million links are shared on Facebook every 20 minutes, ‘every 20 minutes’ – a staggering number.
An awful lot of sharing means an awful lot of reading which in turn means an awful lot of ad space. Using display advertising is another form of PPC marketing that places ads on websites that are related to your business offering. It’s like a digital billboard put targeted at a more granular audience instead of passers by on a High Street.
You need to expand your keyword list and want to base it on actual traffic to your website.
Using search based advertising allows advertisers to see which keywords triggered their ads and lead to visits to their site. Using this over a period of time (1-3 months) will give you a data set worthy of acting upon. If keyword X is generating meaningful traffic to your site it can be implemented in an SEO strategy or even open up a new sector of business.
You’re a local based business seeking to expand across the country or internationally
Google Adwords lets advertisers regionally target adverts. As Google is such an extensive search engine, advertisers are able to target almost all developed regions across the globe. Let’s say you’re based in Newquay and sell surfing equipment to buddying surfers who come to town. Acquiring data on where those surfers are coming from across the UK can allow you to target ads according to the most popular regions and at times of year. Successful results may even lead to new stores opening across the country.
If the 5 signs explained above are ringing bells then it’s high time you invested in PPC. Okay, I said I won’t delve into case studies because I didn’t want to screen drop data charts but I will provide a link to a very nice British Adwords success story which is quite timely as it’s Friday evening (time of writing) Let’s Have A Party.
- eMarketer blog, December 15th 2010
- eMarketer March 2011