You Down With PPC?

The world of internet marketing has many acronyms: SEO, SEM, CTA, SERP, SMM, UI, PPC and CPC to name a few.  To many, the primary goal of these acronyms must be to confuse people, however they all stand for marketing elements that have real value.  Today we want to talk about PPC (Pay-per-click) advertising.  We will cover others in future posts, or you can contact us with any questions.

What is PPC?

PPC, or Pay-per-click advertising is a method of advertising in which you create an ad, typically either text or banner, and it is displayed either in search results of search engines like Google, or on targeted sites that are related to the product or service you are offering.  If a user decides to click on your ad, then you are charged whatever the bid was for that ad.  The bid will vary based on a variety of factors, but ultimately you can control what you would like your max bid to be, as well as how much per day you would like to spend.  You are only charged when someone clicks on your ad.

Where can I use PPC?

PPC advertising is available through search engines like Google and Bing, on social media networks, and well as on marketplaces such as Amazon.

Should I be using PPC?

There is a lot of value in PPC and, more often than not, most businesses can benefit from it when done correctly.

One of the benefits of PPC is that you can get your ad at the top of search results if you are still building your organic rank.  This helps get people to your site who otherwise may not ever see it in search results.

Another benefit of PPC is that you can use it to build brand recognition.  For example, there is an option with Google Adwords to build a campaign in which you pay for impressions instead of clicks.  Impressions are when your ad is displayed on someone’s screen, whether they are clicked or not.  This can help expose people to your brand even if they don’t click.

Lastly, PPC ads can be targeted.  Meaning you can choose specific locations and times to display them.  If you run a bakery in downtown Seattle, it would be of no benefit for your ad to show to people searching for a bakery in Dallas.  Similarly, you might not want to show ads for your auto shop outside of your business hours.

One of the times in which PPC might not be wise to use is if your cost per click is exceeding the cost of the product or service you are advertising.  If you are selling watches that cost $30 to make and the average cost per click for your ads are $40 then clearly you’d want to reevaluate and see if your ads can be optimized, if you should be running a different campaign, or if you’d benefit more from not running ads.

How do I get started?

Anyone can setup PPC advertising, but of course we recommend using an expert or certified internet marketer if you’d like to maximize your results.  Contact us if you have any questions and we would be happy to give you more (pressure-free) information!