Although there are other lower tier pay-per-click platforms, the phrase “PPC marketing” is usually used interchangeably with “Google AdWords marketing.” Google is the overwhelming leader because it has the largest audience of highly targeted visitors and has stood the test of time with the reliable AdWords platform.
While AdWords can be a very powerful marketing channel, it’s not a silver bullet. To decide if PPC marketing is right for your business, it’s important to understand the strengths as well as weaknesses:
Get Seen Immediately
SEO is a strategy that requires time. Reaching the first page of results for competitive keywords and phrases generally takes between six and twelve months, or even longer. If you plan on pursuing SEO but don’t want to wait a minimum of six months to start bringing new leads to your website, pay-per-click marketing is a great complement to SEO. With PPC, you can set up a campaign and start bringing in targeted traffic in less than 48 hours.
Control the Visitor Experience
With Google’s normal search results, you never know exactly what page on your website may show up as the first result for specific searches. This can make it difficult to optimize the path you want new visitors to follow. One of the great things about AdWords is you can choose the exact page you want to link to specific queries.
Visibility Doesn’t Mean Conversions
Many businesses get very excited when they set up their first AdWords campaign, only to become discouraged when they realize their ads aren’t generating any traffic. In order for a PPC campaign to drive results, every piece of the campaign has to work together. The campaign must target a set of keywords that people actually search for and that are a good match with your business. Then the ads have to be optimized to grab searchers’ attention and compel them to click.
Every Single Visit Costs
Even when you do manage to get searchers to click, you may still be frustrated if only a few of those visitors convert into leads or customers—and since every click costs, it doesn’t take long for a steady stream of visitors who don’t convert to get very expensive. That reality is why PPC success requires a combination of keyword management, compelling ads and optimized landing pages that persuade visitors to submit their contact information or make a purchase.
If you like that PPC marketing allows you to get seen immediately and control your visitors’ experience but are worried about not getting the ROI you want, call us at (888) 427-2178 to learn how we can use our expertise to optimize and manage your AdWords campaigns.
Today I needed a tailor to fix a seam in one of my suits for a wedding we need to attend to tomorrow. Naturally, I turned to Google to see what I can find. I normally don’t click on the first paid ad, or even map listing for that matter. I also tend to steer clear of any Yelp listings as well (that’s just me). Today I clicked on SewChic, a small boutique on my way to other errands I had to run.
So I gave them a call, and they graciously took care of me same-day, and in fact, I was done within ten minutes after walking through the door. The bill? A whopping $5.00. She could have charged me $20.00 for the rush, and I would have been OK with it. But I got to thinking, “gee, a $5 sale barely paid for the click on Adwords, let alone any management fees” – which would inflate the cost per click, if in fact they has someone running their campaigns for them.
But this is the kind of flawed thinking that, in my opinion, can distort the true Google Adwords ROI, or any online advertising for that matter.
What I mean by that is, sure, if you compare the direct impact of the sale associated with the cost of the click, then the ROI in this case doesn’t look all that great. After all, I probably wasn’t their “ideal customer.” But there are other things that could generate revenue off that first click, that are not only likely to be untrackable, but that we’re not even aware of; such as:
- Future Sales/Visits – you have to consider the true lifetime value of a customer to look at ROI correctly. I may have spent $5 today, but next week I may bring in my whole wardrobe and spend $200.
- Social Sharing/Referrals – what if after my positive experience today at SewChic, I call a couple of friends and refer them? Or I post it to Facebook, and one of my friends stops in next week? This goes back to the issue of first click/last click attribution – which should get the credit? I wrote about PPC attribution a while back.
- Direct Hits/SEO – many times when we search, we click on the paid ad, then go back out looking for the main website in the natural listings and then click on that looking for more information. If a sale or lead is generated, then Adwords is given the “assist” in the conversion funnel if you look at Multi-Channel Funnel metrics in Google Analytics, also part of my prior post on attribution.
The moral of the story is to consider how Adwords or other advertising may have “assisted” in other leads or sales for your business, rather than just focusing on direct impact. You may find a pleasant surprise.