4. Pay Per Click Advertising
What is PPC Advertising?
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, also referred to as cost-per-click (CPC), is a digital advertising model used to bring traffic to your website. The advertiser pays a publisher (website owner or network of websites), whenever their ad is clicked. (Search engine advertising is one of the most popular types of PPC advertising.)
What is Content Marketing and how it will help your business?
Advertisers bid on ad placement on search engines when someone searches for a particular keyword that is highly specific to their business products and services. If you bid on “best PPC networks”, your ad might show up at the top of the Google search engine page, like the four ads shown below:
Every time your ad is clicked, sending a visitor to your website, you pay a small fee to the search engine. If you are doing PPC advertising correctly, the fee becomes less important, because the visit is worth more than what you pay for it. If you pay $2 for a click on your ad, but it results in a $200 sale, then you made a huge profit.
The Most Popular PPC Advertising Networks
Google AdWords is the most popular PPC advertising network on the planet, followed by Yahoo! Bing Network (we will show you how to set up a campaign for both), Infolinks, Bidvertiser, Chitika, Media Net, and more (listed below). Google is popular, because it gets a massive amount of traffic and, therefore, is most likely to deliver the most impressions and clicks to your ads.
Every time a search is performed, Google looks into their pool of advertisers and selects only a handful of winners to appear in their search engine page space. The “winners” are chosen based on several factors, including relevance and quality of the keywords, ad campaigns, and the keyword bid size.
How to Start a Campaign in Google AdWords
Step by step instructions:
Step #1: Tell a little bit about your business: First sign into Google AdWords (if you don’t have one, sign up for a new), and then enter information about your business – i.e. your business email address and your business website URL.
Step #2. Set Daily Budget – Specify, on average, how much you would like to spend each day. Remember, you are not charged unless someone clicks your ad. Set the currency type and the amount per day for your ad. (You can always change the amount later.)
Step #3: Choose the location to target your ads: Next, choose the location you want your ads to be shown. You can display ad to all countries or to any specific number of countries. You can even choose to display your ads to another country than yours.
For example, if you are living in Croatia but have your targeted audience in France, you can enter France as your location. You can enter a country, city, region, or postal code in the location field.
Step #4: Choose network type: Choose the recommended “Search Network” option.
Step #5: Select your keywords: Select search terms, around 15-20 keywords, that will cause your Google ads to display next to search results. You can enter more keywords separated by a comma, in the keyword search box. Then, hit the “Save” button and continue.
Step #6: Set your bid:
Next, you will specify how much you are willing to pay for a click on your ad. To have more control, we highly suggest that you change the default selection “Bid strategy” to “I’ll manually set my bids for clicks.” (You can always change to one of these default options later.)
Then, click the “Save” button.
Step #7: Write your ad:
Finally, you will write your ad copy.
There are four sections in your Google AdWords ads: the headlines (up to 25 chars), 2nd line (up to 35 chars), 3rd line (up to 35 chars), and finally, the 4th line (displays your URL).
In your headlines, use your keywords (people are more likely to click on it when they see their search terms). The headline is limited to 25 characters, so for some search phrases, use shorter synonyms or abbreviations.
The 2nd and the 3rd lines are limited to 35 characters of text each. Usually, you will be more successful if you use a benefit on the 2nd line, followed by a feature of an offer on the 3rd. Then, you can always test which order converts the best.
Hit the “Save” button to save your ad copy.
Then, click the “Save and continue” button.
Step #8: Set your billing preferences
In this step, you will set your preferences on how you will pay for your ads.
- Choose your country
- Enter VAT ID (optional)
- Enter the name and address of your business. Also, enter the contact information of the primary contact person. That contact person could be you.
- Next, mention how you would like to pay Google Adwords. By default, automatic payments option is selected. With this option selected, you will pay Google only after your ad runs. Your ad will display automatically and you will pay only after you accrue PPC advertising costs. You will be charged once you have reached your maximum threshold or 30 days after your last automatic payment.
- Then, select with what you will pay them – bank account or credit or debit card.
- If you have access to Adwords promotional offers (Google to find some free coupons), enter them here to receive some kind of discounts. If this was your first Google ad, your credits will be used for future payments, not this time. Select the checkbox underneath the box to allow Google Adwords to send your promotional offers.
- Finally, select the time zone, and hit “Save and continue” button.
Step #9: Review your campaign: For best results, double check your ad two times and ensure keywords are placed properly. Also, check your cost-per-click to ensure you get the positions on the page you desire. Lastly, double check your daily ad budget to ensure you are not draining your bank account unknowingly.
Scroll down to the page and select the checkbox to agree to Google Adwords terms and condition. If everything looks fine, click “Finish and create campaign” button.
Once you fill up your payment information and is confirmed, your ad will start to display in Google search engine result page.
5 Advanced Google AdWords Strategies
Tip #1: Use “In-Market Audiences” feature
Do you know what Google does with all that data they collect about all of us as we browse through the Google store and Google-tracking-infused websites? Google recently released an AdWords feature, called “in-market audiences”, to make use of all that valuable information.
Because Google knows when a visitor is on the website researching and comparing products or clicking on various ads on the page and converting, the “in-market audiences” can use this data to allow advertisers to reach potential customers at different sites across the web.
The screenshot below shows some of the in-market audiences:
The in-market audiences feature allows you to use data collected by Google to target customers who have shown they are in the market for your product.
Let’s say you are a real estate broker and you want to advertise to people whose web behavior indicates they will buy real estate soon. The “in-market audiences” feature allows you to target those audiences, using Google’s rich volume of data.
In your search campaigns, try to use in marketing audiences on top of the keywords you are targeting.
Tip #2: Use AdWords Dynamic ads to display tailored ads to your customers
If you have keen eyes, you must have noticed that ‘standard re-marketing’ displays ads, without having a clue which specific product a visitor viewed on your website.
Recently, Google launched a new feature that allows advertisers to perform product specific remarketing. This is great news for marketers, especially for retailers.
With the help of Google, you can find out which products your people looked at on your website, and then display remarketing ads, featuring those same products.
This way, you can give your people exactly what they want.
Here is an example of how a dynamic ad looks:
You might have gone to Amazon to check out a product, let’ says socks, but never bought it. Now, when you are browsing the web elsewhere, they will show this ad to you, reminding that you viewed this item, but never bought it. This remarketing tactic generates highly relevant ads that convert well.
If you want to learn how to use this remarketing tactic, check out this article.
Tip #3: Use real-time updates to customize ads
One of the most important components of high performing ad is urgency. But very few people have time to run promotions, update coupon codes, and change their ad text regularly.
Google recently launched another new feature, called ad customizers, which allows you to create ads, based on real-time user information.
You can adapt your ad text by informing Google, “My sale starts from July 10 and ends in 30 days, so update my ad respectively every time you show it to people.”
There are other dynamic elements in your ad you can adapt. Look at the example below, where everything highlighted in yellow is dynamic text:
Now, you can encode your product details, such as its name (ProWhip 300), size (5 quarts), price ($199), and promotion end date (5 days).
Before this feature was available, retailers had to set up a huge excel spreadsheet, where inventory was cataloged and updated. And then, Google could pull in product sale parameters to customize ads.
Now, you just have to grab a tiny bit of code and paste it within the AdWords interface.
If you want to learn how to create real-time updates for your ads, check out this article.
Tip #4: Use ad scheduling to maximize on ad spend
It is very disappointing to pay for leads that have gone cold. So, why do marketers, like you and me, run ads that drive leads at 4 am, when there is no one to respond.
In some businesses, those leads will wait for your response, but others are different. When the lead is hot, it is hot, and after several hours have passed, that hot lead can easily become passive.
So, to gain the most out of ad spending, some businesses use ad scheduling. If you are unsure, check out how a PPC advertising ad scheduling strategy drove a 69% improvement in cost per acquisition.
Ad scheduling looks like this and is found under the advanced campaign settings:
This is very useful if, let’s say, your office is in Italy and most of your prospects are from the US or if you found that your audiences are most likely to purchase at a certain time of day.
This simple tip will help you ensure that you pay only for leads that are “hot.”
Tip #5: Use IP exclusions to prevent draining ad budget
Your competitors are most likely clicking on your ads. Here is a golden tip you can implement to keep from paying for those ads.
The golden tip? Use IP exclusions.
For this, you will need to determine the IP address of your competitor. Here are a few different tactics for you to try:
- Search for an email from the company. You can find the IP address by looking at the email header content. Check out this article.
- Or, you could use the company domain name to find its IP address. Check out this eHow article on how to do this.
Once you have found the IP addresses, in your AdWords settings, scroll down to the “IP address exclusion” and paste them. Here is how the screen looks:
And then, their IPs will be blocked as long as you want.
The Yahoo! Bing Network
Google AdWords has become a very competitive place for online businesses to spend their dollars on PPC advertising because you can know your exact ROI and Google’s huge search volume. But there is also a slightly less competitive, friendlier, and cheaper network available for you: The Yahoo! Bing Network.
Why it is called The Yahoo! Bing Network?
The biggest reason was Yahoo! (particularly Bing) could not drive the volume of traffic that Google was doing. Bing and Yahoo! formed a partnership to compete with Google. That’s why the hybrid name.
Here are steps for you to get started with Yahoo Bing network:
Step #1: Signing Up
Visit this link to sign up for Yahoo! Bing Network. You will need a credit card with you. You might also have received a discount code from your web hosting company you still have access to. Use that to get discounts. Also, perform a quick Google search for “Bing PCC Advertising” and “Yahoo PCC Advertising” starter credit.
Step #2: Choosing keywords for your PPC advertising campaign
The first thing you will most likely do is come up with a list of 100 keywords to bid on. We do not recommend you do this, particularly, if this is your first time. Instead, choose about 5 keywords that represent the most popular products or services you are selling or promoting, and pick another 5 keywords for more obscure terms.
If you were selling iPhone cases, you could sort your keyword list like this:
Popular keyword phrases:
- Red Hot Kitty iPhone case
- Red iPhone case
- Strong iPhone case
- Scratch-proof iPhone case
- Unbreakable iPhone case
Obscure keyword phrases:
- Orange Box iPhone case
- Orange box
- Apple Head iPhone case
- iBig case
- Mango iPhone case
Making these two types of keyword groups allows you to:
- Keep your PPC advertising costs down, when you are most likely going to get a meager result out of it.
- You will see what works for you: a) Highly competitive keywords that bring tons of traffic (more expensive, but produce more sales), and b) Less volume, but highly specific clicks that might bring you better ROI.
Step #3: Building your ads
Instead of making one generic ad that serves all your keywords, try making specific ads for each keyword you will bid on. The more specific your ads, the more click-through it will produce.
When crafting the headline of your ad copy, consider this:
- Your headline (the first line of your ad) must include keywords you are bidding on. This tactic helps you convert casual visitors into customers because it matches the searcher’s intention.
- For your ad copy, include your unique selling points and key points that other advertisers are not saying. This way, you will attract even more clicks because of what your competitors are lacking!
Step #4: Select where to send your PPC advertising traffic
Most people send their traffic to the homepage of their website. We recommend you send them directly to your product page related to the keyword they searched for.
If they searched for “Orange Hello Kitty iPhone Case”, rather than sending them to the http://yourmobileshop.com , send them to http://www.youmobileshop.com/orange-hello-kitty-iPhone-case.html. This will require fewer clicks for the person to arrive at a purchase point, which will boost your website conversion rate.
Once you have determined the landing page, paste the URL into the “destination URL” field.
Step #5: Test
The next step is to implement conversion tracking (or goal tracking). Every time someone from Yahoo! Bing network purchases a product, Yahoo! Bing is credited for that sale. This is how you keep track of your ROI.
Conversion tracking allows you to know which keywords make the most sales, what product people like the most, what ads drive the most traffic, and so many other things. With all this vital information, you can easily and quickly optimize your campaign to earn more profits.
To implement conversion tracking, you will need to paste a code in your “Thank You” page, the page where customers go after they complete a sale.
Tip: Remember to log in to your account at least once a day to monitor the progress of your PPC advertising campaign.
Other Top 20 Pay-Per-Click/PPC Advertising Networks
- Advertise: Advertise claims to deliver 180 million people per month and 10 billion monthly ad impressions. Your ads will appear on content, in the text, mobile, domain parking, email, search, and toolbar on publisher websites.
- Media: Boasts of 151 million searchers in the US. They target by keyword search terms. Your contextual ads are displayed on Yahoo and Bing.
- 7search: Offers a search engine for smaller niche website partners. The traffic that comes to your landing pages is from the people searching for the particularly targeted keywords you define.
- TLVMedia: TLVMedia boasts of 20 billion global impressions per month. You can even optimize your campaign – automatic and manual real-time campaign.
- Bidvertiser: You can target your ads by keywords, channels, and geographic location. You have the option to select the categories of sites you would like to place your ads on. Your ads are displayed on websites with the Bidvertiser network.
- Chitika: Chitika has many publisher websites (over 300,000) to advertise on. Target traffic, based on their recent searches on the search engines.
- AdEngage: AdEngage allows you to split test 10,000 ad combinations within just 1 minute. Nowhere else will you find unique ad They boast of over 7 billion ad impressions per month. You also gain real-time traffic data.
- 50OnRed: Your ads are displayed as inline text ads. You have the option to bid on specific keywords that get converted into relevant links on Publisher’s pages. Your ads activate and expand to display more details when a visitor hovers his/her mouse over your
- LookSmart: They get over 2 billion searches per month. You can create PPC advertising ads through their platform.
- DynamicOxygen: Offers you self-service real-time CPC keyword platform. Allows you to reach potential customers, based on their searched keywords on major search engines, such as Google, Yahoo, Bing, and others.
- AOL Advertising: This PPC advertising network allows you to target a range of influential and dynamic audiences.
- IndustryBrains: You can target your ads for pay-per-click or display your ads to premium branded websites or a specific category of your choice.
- AdManage: The PPC advertising network serves over 4.5 billion impressions every month. Their ad unit types include CPC banner ads, text ads with thumbnails, interstitials, sponsored listings, and domain parking.
- Matomy: This PPC advertising network boasts of serving over 60 billion impressions per month. It’s a great place for retargeting and audience-based buying. They offer campaign optimization tools and automatic trading facilities.
- InfoLinks: Ads are targeted to people, based on their search keywords, tag clouds, and context of the publisher page.
- eZanga: If you are having a difficult time reaching new audiences, niche markets, and specific verticals on major search engines, eZanga can save the day. Using an intuitive algorithm, based on website content, relevancy, and keywords, eZanga will place your ads in front of people looking for your type of product or service.
- Affinity: The network provides domain, audience, geographical, and contextual targeting options. They have over 30,000+ premium publishers and syndication channels.
- Clicksor: The PPC advertising network places ads on websites that relate to your products, services, and any other types of offers.
- Taggify: A contextual ad platform creates ads, based on the content of your website. If your website has tons of pictures, their Photofy product is what you should go after. For videos, Vidiofy is for you. For text, go for Textify, and for links, try Linkify. And for everything else, use their Layerfy.
- Pulse360: You can target your ads, based on demographics and interests of your audience. Target your audience by visiting hundreds of partner sites, such as Weather.com, NBCNews.com, USAToday.com, Gannett Digital, CBS Television Stations, Newsweek.com, and Comcast.net.
In the next chapter, we will talk about one of the oldest and most effective techniques in internet marketing – Email Marketing. You will also learn about the concept of drip marketing and why this is important.