- Posted by Nigel Edelshain
- On April 12, 2016
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is a way of purchasing targeted online advertising based on a pre-determined rate for each time your ad is clicked.
This is a great alternative to buying ad space because you are only paying for clicks. At the same time, as with all approaches, there are some drawbacks as well.
The Benefits of PPC Advertising
Simplicity: Creating a PPC ad is simple and quick. You pick the keywords you want to target, choose your wording (or you can use an ad with a graphic as well), and bid on how much you want to spend per click.
Targeted advertising: PPC ads are great for targeting specific groups because they are based on keywords. If you choose the right keywords that your target customer is searching for, you will be able to easily reach the exact people you want to reach.
Reach: Because you are not advertising on one specific website but on keywords, your ad will appear across many search results and websites. This allows you to reach far more people than you would by purchasing ad space on one specific site.
Trackable: PPC ad networks offer a lot of analytics which allow you to truly see the return on investment that you are getting for the money you spend on each click.
Great for testing: You can use the analytics available from PPC providers (like Google) to find the best advertisement to use. In The 4-Hour-Workweek, best-selling author, Tim Ferriss says he split tests everything using PPC ads because it allows you to set a limit on each campaign and then use the analytics to see which one got more clicks. Once you see the results, you know exactly which ad worked best and there is no more guess work.
Drawbacks of PPC Advertising
Cost per click (CPC): Depending on the keywords you target, the price per click may be quite high. You always want to be one of the top bids for your targeted keywords which means highly competitive keywords will require a very high bid per click.
Short-term: When looking at your return on investment for online advertising and marketing, there are long-term and short-term returns. PPC ads will only generate traffic as long as you keep paying for the clicks while other methods like social media or SEO are long-term strategies that can bring in users for months or years into the future.
What Makes a Good PPC Campaign
Targeted keywords: Selecting the right keywords is the most important part of a PPC campaign. This will determine how much you have to pay per click, how well your campaign is targeted to specific users, how much competition you have, and how often users will come across your ads.
Good analytics: Luckily, all major PPC providers like Google Adwords or Microsoft all allow you to research keywords before you buy and see how many searches keywords are getting and what kind of competition there is.
Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising can be very effective for local businesses but it needs to be well planned, executed and closely monitored or costs can quickly run out-of-control.