Just like those who design them, websites come in all shapes and sizes. Some exist to sell products or services, while others aim to be educational or to share insights. And yet, whether their purpose is professional, social or philanthropic, they all want people to visit them. Maintaining and increasing the flow of traffic to their site is, therefore, a primary aim.
There are lots of different ways to work towards that aim. Search engine optimisation (SEO) helps to boost traffic from Google searches, while social media marketing can persuade users of social networks to visit a site. And one of the most effective ways for any site to boost traffic is through a PPC ad campaign.
Pay and display
PPC stands for ‘pay-per-click’, and is a form of digital advertising where sites place an advert online. That typically means that the ads are located on search engine results pages. A site owner chooses a keyword or a search phrase to focus an ad on, which then appears towards the top of search engine results pages (SERPs) for that keyword. The ad’s owner pays the search engine a set amount for every time someone clicks on the ad. The amount varies according to a number of factors, generally relating to how much search volume a keyword gets and how many competing ads there are.
A PPC ad campaign can achieve some serious returns for sites. As evidence of this, almost two-thirds of consumers click on Google Ads when shopping, providing the campaign has been designed effectively…
1. Do your research
The best PPC ad campaign always starts with good research. Your aim is to run ads that as many potential customers as possible both see and click. That means knowing what they’re searching for, why, and what they want from their search. To gain those insights involves talking to existing customers as well as checking out Google Analytics, which produces reports about the searches current site visitors carried out to find you.
However you gather the information, you need an accurate idea of what prospective customers want. This helps to target your ads at keywords they’re really using, crafting the copy of those ads to best appeal to them.
2. Choose keywords carefully
Research should help you develop a long list of possible keywords to target for your ads. These final ads will appear on SERPs for people who enter those keywords in their search engine. It’s then crucial to eliminate any keywords from your list that aren’t worth targeting.
There are a few factors that determine whether a keyword is worth targeting, including healthy search volumes. Look at how competitive the ad landscape is for the keywords: if lots of high-authority sites are already running a PPC ad campaign for a preferred keyword, the competition may mean the cost per click is too high for a campaign to be worthwhile.
3. Create killer ads
Now you’re ready to start crafting the ads themselves. How you word a PPC ad is critical in persuading searchers to click them – they have to be convinced your site is worth choosing over any other option. Research should help to establish a good understanding of what customers want, and why they’re searching for specific things. Use that to personalise your ad copy so that the ads meet a need or answer a question. Look to explain why your site is best placed to give them what they want, outlining any USPs in terms of how it makes you stand out from your competitors.