Pay-Per-Click (PPC) is a great way to draw massive amounts of potential customers to your website. It is one of the most powerful tools in online marketing. However, using this tool is quite risky if you don’t have a proper marketing strategy in place.
What is Pay-Per-Click Advertising?
PPC is both a form of online advertisement to drive traffic to your site and a formula that is used to price clicks.
Sponsored ads are placed within websites or within search engines. Any clicks on the ad incur a fee that the company who placed the advertisement has to pay.
There are variations of PPC like banner exchange, Paid-Per-Click and PPC revenue sharing.
The ads you usually see in search engines like Google are sponsored listings in the search results. These are the highlighted search results you see in the upper portion of search engine listings. They appear together with other non-paid regular or organic search results.
The PPC spaces at the top of Google rankings are for AdWords and they are auctioned. Whoever bids the highest will have the chance to rank at the top of the search results. However, this is just a mere chance. Besides the cost per click, there is another factor that affects the ranking known as quality score.
Quality score ensures that the ad is relevant to the user’s search queries. So if you multiply the cost per click with the quality score you will come up with the ad rank.
Small businesses can therefore compete with big companies even with their smaller budgets as long as they can come up with keywords that are relevant and are able to optimise the ad.
Google AdSense is a classic example of Pay-Per-Click revenue sharing. This platform allows Google to place an AdWords ad on a website. Google pays the website owner for displaying the ad. These are the ads you see on websites that are displayed as carry banner ads or ad widgets. These ads have to have relevance to the content of the website.
The ads placed on websites are required to combine the same factors as AdWords. However, Adsense ads require another factor, which is the click-through-rate. Click-through-rate is the number of times the ad has been clicked divided by the number of times the ad has been shown (impressions).
The higher the click through rate combined with the cost per click and quality score, the better the rank and the number of times that your ad will appear.
Why is all of this so important?
PPC is a very powerful advertising tool but you have to be very careful when using it. It is low-cost but when done correctly it is extremely effective in driving instant traffic to your website. It is an efficient way to create a strong web presence but it is also highly competitive. Most search engines’ algorithms, especially Google’s, constantly change and at a very fast pace which may affect your rank erratically. For Pay-Per-Click advertising to be effective you need to keep on top of keyword search terms and up to date with best practice or you are wasting your money.
Many companies make the mistake of spending money to drive traffic to their website but make no attempt at keeping potential customers in their website. To really feel the benefits of PPC you need to build relationships and a community around your website. This way all your new visitors will want to stay and look around.
So if you plan on using Pay-Per-Click for your business, get a very good PPC strategist who can help with relevant keywords and highly optimised ads.