Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is a mainstay of today's digital marketing world, and the investment seems to be paying off for a lot of sellers. In fact, 74% of brands say PPC is a huge driver for their business, according to Brainlabs' State of PPC 2019-2020 report.
So how can you make this type of marketing work for you? We'll go over the benefits of PPC advertising, plus give you four tips for running a successful PPC campaign.
With PPC ads, there's typically a low barrier to entry in terms of cost. You can start an ad campaign, see what is and isn't working, and then respond accordingly.
Nick Roth, senior product manager at DealNews, puts it this way: "PPC campaigns help the seller minimize and manage the cost in evaluating the performance of a new product, advertising platform, or different creative."
Roth notes that sellers only get charged for clicks that occur, and that campaigns follow configured budget limits. "This empowers the seller to understand what resonates before ramping up spend where it counts," he adds.
Now that we've laid out the perks of PPC ads, let's look at how you can succeed with them. Here are four tips for running a successful PPC campaign:
You'll want to place your PPC ads in front of an audience that's going to buy what you're selling — both literally and figuratively. Aside from this, what other elements should sellers look for when choosing where to run a PPC campaign? Along with a motivated audience, Roth recommends the following:
Keep these factors in mind when you're evaluating a digital advertising platform, whether it's a search engine, social media app, or shopping website.
PPC campaigns put you in control of costs, so make sure to use that to your advantage. Roth recommends setting the rate and number of clicks you're willing to pay, then letting the campaign run.
"By being patient and using budget limits, you can control your budget until you are confident enough to scale up," he says.
Testing is an important part of the PPC process, and A/B testing in particular can clue you in to what does and doesn't work. With A/B tests, you run two ads that are nearly identical, save for one difference. The modified element could be the copy, keyword, call to action, or landing page, for example. You want to see which version of the ad performs better with users and adjust accordingly.
"If something doesn't see the response you are looking for, consider the potential reasons and what you might be able to change about the campaign to answer your hypothesis," Roth says. "Try different variations of the same product ad to assess which is more effective."
It may be tempting to go all-in, but you should avoid investing a lot of cash into PPC campaigns that haven't paid off financially yet.
"Run small tests, then scale your spend when you are comfortable with the return," Roth advises. "Think of PPC campaigns as a way to understand your audience."
—Katie Roberts, Blog Editor, DealNews