What is PPC? An Introduction to Paid Advertising

“What is PPC?” If only we had a pound for every time we’ve been asked this question! Pay-per-Click (PPC) advertising – sometimes referred to as ‘Online Advertising’ and ‘Search Engine Marketing (SEM)’ – does exactly what it says on the tin. Advertisers, such as Google, Bing and Facebook, auction off ad placements and you pay for every click your advert receives. So rather than waiting to ‘earn’ visits organically, which can be a somewhat lengthy process, you can pay for high quality visitors to your site. Paid advertising helps you get your brand noticed by potential customers. You can beat your competitors to the top of the search results on Google and Bing, or even have your advert appear on your target audience’s Facebook feed. The best news of all – you only pay for the people who your ads appeal to and it results in a click. Ads can be used to drive a variety of different actions – whether your goal is to encourage the user to make a purchase, sign up to a newsletter, call your business directly or even download an app, you can set up adverts that align with these goals. What is PPC?

Types of PPC ads

There are several different types of pay-per-click advert types for you to explore: Search Advertising – Search engines such as Google and Bing, have sponsored ad placements available at the top, bottom and side of search results. On Google, these are identified by their small ‘Ad’ logo. This is a proven method to bypass organic rankings and gain valuable clicks. Social Advertising  Place ads in front of your target demographic, via social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and more. Display Network Ads – This channel displays your advert across all of Google partner websites, including YouTube, Gmail and more. Google Shopping – Google Shopping campaigns are particularly useful for ecommerce websites. Display products, pricing and details in a simple carousel, alongside other products related to a search term. Remarketing – Remarketing is a super effective method of re-engaging people who left your site without completing the desired goal (e.g. a purchase). By dropping a ‘cookie’ on the user’s browser, you can serve relevant adverts to the user as they continue to browse online. With so many options available, determining how best to spend your advertising, to some extent may be about trial and error. However, thanks to real-time tracking, this can be achieved quickly and with a relatively small budget.

How much does a PPC advert cost?

The cost-per-click (CPC) varies depending on several factors: Your Maximum Bid It may seem obvious, but the key influence on how much an advert will cost is based on how high you set your maximum bid for a click. If you bid high, the cost will be high. To set your maximum bid, you’ll need to work out your breakeven cost-per-click. To do this, simply multiply your websites conversion rate, by your average profit from a sale. For example, if your conversion rate is 5% and your average profit from a sale is £10, multiply 0.05 by £10. This gives you a £0.50 breakeven CPC. Your Quality Score Google uses your quality score, alongside your maximum bid, to decide if and where your advert is placed. Your quality score is ranked on three factors – expected click through rate, ad relevance and landing page experience. Google aims to provide the best user experience, where adverts and landing pages are highly relevant to the search. Therefore, it’s possible to rank higher and with a lower CPC if your quality score is better than your competition. Competition The level of competition for the keywords you’re bidding on also affects the price you’ll pay for a click. However, as I touched upon earlier, by increasing your ad and landing page relevancy, you may be able to pay less for a higher spot.

Why Use PPC Advertising?

Paid advertising can generate traffic from the get-go, attracting visitors to your site fast. With well-written and appealing adverts, paid media can be a real gold-mine for your business and help turn interest into action. For start-ups and businesses with little brand awareness or businesses operating in high competition sectors, it’s also a great way to kick-start online traffic. Particularly while waiting for any SEO efforts to pay off. Plus, unlike traditional advertising, paid advertising allows you to quickly assess your return on investment and easily evaluate where’s best to place your advertising budget. If you’re looking for help managing your pay-per-click campaign or learn more about our PPC Services, feel free to get in touch with our friendly Digital Marketing team on 01604 696385 or email info@star-digital.co.uk Sign up to our newsletter below to receive our latest news and insider tips, to help your business thrive in today’s digital arena.

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