“Reduce the costs of your PPC by improving SEO. “
Pay per click (PPC) is an Internet advertising model where advertisers pay the publisher (a website) when the ad is clicked and PPC traffic is directed at the website. With search engines, there is a bidding system where advertisers bid on keyword phrases relevant to their target market. A fixed price per click is also sometimes used (especially by content sites) rather than a bidding system. These PPC advertisements are shown on participating web sites or search engine results with related content. Television and newspapers use a “pay per impression” method and is quite different from this model.
PPC is a version of the affiliate model, which provides purchase opportunities wherever people may be surfing. It offers financial incentives (a percentage of revenue) to affiliated partner sites. If an affiliate does not generate sales, it represents no cost to the merchant so it is a type of pay for performance solution. When a keyword query matches an advertiser’s keyword list, or when a content site displays relevant content ads will display an advertisement. These are called sponsored links or ads, and can be shown adjacent to, above, or beneath organic results on search engine results pages, or anywhere on a content site.
Google AdWords and Adcenter (Yahoo! and Microsoft combined solution) are the two biggest players in this market. Click fraud exists
in the PPC advertising model, although Google and others have implemented automated systems to guard against abuse. The advertiser should look at the potential value of a particular click from a given link. This is determined by looking at the type of visitor to the website, and what the advertiser can gain from that visit in revenue, both short and long term. Like other advertising, forms targeting is very important. PPC campaigns, therefore, look at search term they have entered into a search engine, the content of a page that they are browsing, intent (e.g., to purchase or not), location (for geo-targeting), and the day and time that they are browsing In the flat-rate model. The actual cost that an advertiser pays can depend on many factors such as location on the website and content on the page but also length of term and overall contract value.
An automated auction takes place when the ad is part of a search engine results page (SERP). All bids that match the criteria for the SERP are compared and the winner is determined. On SERPs, there are often multiple ad spots, and in these cases, there are multiple winners whose positions on the page are influenced by the amount of each bidder. There are also other factors influencing results such as the quality score of the keyword landing page which play an important role in SEO efforts to reduce ad word costs.
The advertising networks usually also allow for contextual ads to be placed on the websites of partner 3rd-parties. These host the ads in return for a percentage of the revenues. The click-through rates and conversion on content networks are much lowered than SERP ads and hence are worthless.
Advertisers pay for each click they receive, with the actual amount paid based on the amount bid. A winning bidder is usually charged just slightly more (e.g. one cent) than the next highest bidder to avoids bidders constantly adjusting their bids by very small amounts to see if they can still win the auction.
Automated bid management systems are sometimes used to be able to scale up and achieve maximum benefit. Typically the advertising agencies offer PPC bid management as a service. The system can set each bid based on the specific goal for that keyword. This can maximize profit, maximize traffic at breakeven, etc. These systems rely on data from the web and are not effective for low volume keywords.
Reducing the costs of PPC
The search engine’s main task is to provide its customers with a relevant and prioritized list of search results. The ads which they place should basically also comply with these criteria. Obviously, if the results of the ad deviate from the natural results then the search engines will be seen by its users as not providing a good service. For this reason, they ask their customers to pay more to be shown in the ads part of the search results. So if you are organically ranked 100 you will have to pay more to the search engines than if you are ranked 3 for the same click. The difference can quite stagger. (even up to 100 times) Many companies are not aware of this phenomenon and simply budget for the AdWords campaign. Of course, they should look at how much they should pay for each click and use that as the measurement of efficiency. The amount of competitors thus also plays an important role in determining the price of an ad. The heavier the competition for PPC the more other pages will be ranked highly and the more difficult it is to climb up the rankings.
It also makes sense to combine the landing pages for your organic keywords and Google AdWord keywords. The efforts you do on the organic side will help reduce the costs on the PPC side. Changing AdWords frequently reflecting the flavor of the month also increases costs. There is a kind of memory in the search engine costs for PPC. If you switch on and off a particular keyword the costs per click will be higher than if you left the keyword on for a long time.
Making effective ad campaigns
So how do you make your campaign effective? Well, there are a number of steps you can do to help improve.
1) Be specific in what you say. If you have a large and a small size thing then its probably best to split the campaign into two so that there is one targeting the large and the other targeting the small.
2)What is unique in the thing you are selling as compared to the competitors. This could be free shipping or lasts longer types of claims. Remember to include that in your ad copy.
3) Remember to include your keywords in the text also. Naturally, someone looking at the search results will look for the keywords he has selected. So be sure to include them.
4) Include what you want the customer to do and what benefits he/she should expect. So “book online in under 6 minutes” will work better than “learn about flower pots”.
5) Dare to be different from your competitors. So if everyone is using real butter in their ad then try healthy butter but be different from your competitors.
6) Don’t put in too much text and say what you want to in the first sentence.
7) Put your sites URL in the ad copy.
8) Format the ad copy properly
9) Test and measure the results and improve as you go.