Pay-per-click advertising (PPC) is an amazing tool grow your business and is a unique way to target users who are actively looking to purchase. Google started search engine advertising in 1999 and in October 2000 the AdWords interface was introduced (Now know as Google ads). The platform itself has developed massively and PPC itself has evolved. Whilst PPC is quite different to what it once was with the introduction of new match types, audiences, new ad formats, automated bid strategies to name a few, I believe the fundamentals still remain the same. What surprises me is there is still a lot of bad PPC practises being deployed. Only recently I have taken over accounts where match types have been used in the wrong way, less effective keywords have been selected or the wrong ad format is being used. So here is a list of some top line do’s and don’ts.
- Take time to understand your customers and competitors
- Understand how much you would be willing to spend per lead/sale
- Define a budget
- Know what you want to achieve short, medium and long term. Set targets!
- Thoroughly research keywords, explore the keywords which are more likely to result in a sale/ lead within your target CPA.
- Build a good account structure!
- Understand your mobile journey and whether you can realistically convert users on all devices.
- Make sure you can track results.
- Explore audiences
- Don’t let the basics slip. These are normally the tasks which are mundane and time heavy. By combining automation with manual checks, this can save a lot of time. This allows you to focus on testing and doing the tasks which are going to have a big impact i.e. ad testing and conversion optimisation.
- Test, learn, implement, repeat! Testing never ends and the opinion should always be we can do better!
- Monitor your competitors! If you don’t know what your competitors are doing then how can you compete?
- Understand the relationship between SEO and PPC – you don’t have to bid to position 1 for every keyword!
- Don’t forget about Bing, a combination of AdWords PPC and Bing can broaden your reach. Whilst Bing has lower search volume compared to AdWords, Bing also tends to drive cheaper CPC’s.
- Go in blind, do your research. You need to know who your competitors are and the keywords which are most likely to drive results. Most of all you need to be able to measure results.
- Start sending traffic to a website which is unlikely to convert customers
- Assume what will appeal to your customers
- Set and forget
I am sure there is plenty more to add here so feel free to add anything I have missed into the comments section.