What is PPC?

How to run effective PPC campaigns

In the ever-evolving business landscape, understanding core digital marketing concepts and strategies is vital. One such element is PPC, or Pay-Per-Click advertising. If you've ever wondered, What is PPC? or how to harness its potential, read on. In this guide, we'll delve into PPC’s significance and share valuable insights on running effective PPC campaigns.

What is PPC and what does it mean?

PPC stands for Pay-Per-Click, a digital advertising model where advertisers bid on keywords to make their ads appear at the top of the search results on search engines, like Google.

How does pay-per-click advertising work?

PPC advertising is a bid-based system. Advertisers bid on keywords relevant to their business. When a user enters a search query matching those keywords, an auction determines which ad appears in the prime position. Factors such as bid amount, ad quality, and relevance influence the outcome.

Each time a user clicks on an ad, the advertiser pays the bid amount. The goal is to display your ad to the right audience at the right time, maximising your chances of cost-effectively converting them into customers.

What is PPC in Google Ads?

Google Ads, formerly known as Google AdWords, is one of the top PPC platforms. It allows businesses to display ads on Google's search engine and partner networks. When users search for keywords related to your business, your ads can appear prominently in search results, driving traffic to your website.

Are GoogleAds and PPC the Same Thing?

No. Google Ads is Google's PPC advertising platform, whereas PPC includes advertising on various platforms, including Google Ads, Microsoft and Meta.

Tips for Creating a PPC Strategy

Now that we've covered the basics of what PPC is, let's dig into creating an effective PPC strategy:

  • Set Clear Objectives: Define your goals. Are you looking to increase website traffic, boost conversions, or raise brand awareness? Once you have considered the goals you want to achieve, creating your PPC campaigns becomes easy, so it’s important to create clear PPC objectives that you can measure and report on throughout the strategy.

  • Keyword Research: Use tools like Google Keyword Planner to identify the most relevant and high-performing keywords for your business. When you know what your audience is searching for through keyword research, you can include these search queries within your ad copy and website content to make them as targeted as possible.

  • Budget Allocation: Determine your ad budget and allocate it strategically. Your keyword research will give you an idea of how much you need to spend, and calculating your ad spend will help you determine your monthly PPC budget.

  • Ad Copy Creation: Craft compelling copy that speaks directly to your target audience while highlighting your unique selling points. Encourage your audience to click through to your website from your PPC ad in the SERPs by making sure your ad copy includes relevant keywords and as much helpful information as possible. Don’t forget to include a CTA (call to action) and keep your copy concise.

  • Landing Page Optimisation: Your landing pages must align with the ad's message to provide a seamless user experience. Once a user has clicked your ad and is taken to your landing page, you want to make sure they find all the information they need on your webpage and continue their journey throughout your website to conversion. This is where SEO can help support your PPC activity and to find out more, take a look at our guide to creating an SEO content strategy.

  • Ad Testing: Regularly A/B test your ads’ headlines, descriptions, and visuals to discover which variations perform best. You can quickly identify what’s working and what needs to be tweaked to improve your PPC results by testing your campaigns.

  • Monitoring and Optimisation: Adjust bids, keywords, and targeting based on performance data. Ensure you have a robust measurement strategy in place to understand how your campaigns are performing. Consider the KPIs and PPC metrics you want to measure, like ROAS (return on ad spend), click-through rate and conversions. Throughout your campaign, continue to monitor performance to understand areas of improvement. Below, we discuss measurement in more detail to help you set up for success.

How to Measure PPC Success

If you don’t measure your PPC campaigns’ success, you can’t make data-driven decisions in order to improve performance. It’s important to define your measurement metrics and KPIs at the beginning of your PPC strategy, as part of your overall objectives and goals. Consider the following key metrics:

  • Click-Through Rate (CTR): The percentage of users who click on your ad after seeing it. A higher CTR indicates that your ad is relevant and engaging.

  • Conversion Rate: The percentage of users who complete a desired action, such as making a purchase or filling out a contact form.

  • Quality Score: A Google Ads metric used to evaluate the quality and relevance of your keywords, ads, and landing pages.

  • Return on Ad Spend (ROAS): The revenue generated for every dollar spent on advertising.

  • Cost Per Click (CPC): CPC measures the cost of each click on your ad.

  • Ad Position: Monitor where your ads appear in search results – higher ad positions increase your visibility and click-through rates.

Top Advertising Platforms

Now you know the PPC fundamentals, let's explore the top platforms to help you understand how to implement ad campaigns across the likes of Google, YouTube and social channels.

  1. YouTube

  2. Meta Ads

  3. Instagram Ads

  4. Microsoft Advertising

  5. LinkedIn

  6. TikTok:

  7. Twitter / X

So, explore the various ad platforms, and remember that a robust PPC strategy, alongside continuous optimisation, is the key to PPC success.

If you need help with PPC ads, or any other aspect of your business, get 1-2-1 support by speaking to one of our V-Hub Digital Advisors.

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