Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner advertiser, managing Google Ads campaigns can sometimes seem daunting. There are always optimizations that can be made, data to analyze, and new ideas to test. But PPC (pay-per-click) advertising doesn’t need to be complicated, and definitely shouldn’t feel daunting. PPC is a very effective component of a digital marketing strategy, and it’s important to determine exactly why and how much to use it.
The Basics of PPC
As a quick recap, PPC stands for pay-per-click and can really refer to any digital advertising conducted in a click-based model. In this case, and in most cases, it represents paid search on Google, Bing, or other search engines. PPC is driven by demand, which is one reason why it’s so effective. Search engine users are actively searching for information or answers to their questions. By running PPC, you are offering your business or services as an available option for users to select. Conversely, if you’re not running pay-per-click you are leaving opportunities on the table for your competitors to take advantage of.
Why PPC is essential for your business
There are two main strategies to PPC – branded search and non-branded search. These are aptly named, as one represents keyword variations of your brand’s name, and the other does not. If you had only a few hundred dollars to invest in PPC, branded search would be our recommendation any day of the week. Why? Because search users are looking for YOU. When your ad doesn’t appear at the top of page one in a search engine’s results page, you are allowing your competitors to conquest.
Non-branded search is the opposite, as it includes keyword phrases without the mention of your brand’s name. This strategy is best used for the top or the middle of the conversion funnel, to introduce users to your offerings as they may not have heard of you before. This strategy can sometimes be more expensive than branded search, but is crucial in filling your funnel.
How to plan out your PPC strategy
We’ve established what pay-per-click advertising is and why you need it, but what’s next is the implementation. How do you effectively plan out your strategy, and who should manage it? First, establish your goals – what is your desired result from PPC? Is it brand awareness to expand your reach, or maybe lead generation to acquire more customers? That will help determine the ideal budget you should invest and the types of campaigns to launch – together, ensuring that your goals can be met.
The next question you may ask is the “who” – should you manage PPC internally, or hire an external agency? We may be a little biased as we manage thousands of dollars every month for our PPC clients, but the answer truly lies in you. If your team is extremely lean and already struggles to find bandwidth for existing efforts and responsibilities, keeping PPC in-house will not do your campaigns justice. With so many factors that go into optimization and management of Google or Bing Ads, there needs to be dedicated time on a routine basis for it.
For teams that may already be managing PPC internally, the expansion of the account is sometimes the issue. Your company wants to scale but you might not know how, or cannot find time to do so. That’s when hiring a PPC agency partner is the most effective and strategic option, but make sure that your goals align with their expertise. Partner selection is pretty crucial to the success of your PPC account, and we stand by that 100%.
Managing expectations with your campaigns
Lastly, it is very important to remember that PPC is a fluid channel. Search engines are constantly changing their policies and ad features, the competitive landscape changes sometimes daily, and cost efficiencies can fluctuate. Though it produces a much more immediate result than its counterpart of SEO, you need to be comfortable with testing PPC for the long-term. Results make take time to develop, and testing should be a permanent fixture.
Have questions about whether PPC would be beneficial to your company? Contact us today to discuss your goals and how our team of certified professionals can help!