Pay-per-click advertising, known as PPC, is one of the most popular digital advertising tools. According to Formstack, 17% of marketers are using PPC to drive conversions. Successful PPC campaigns target a large audience, increase brand visibility, direct traffic to a brand’s website, and boost conversions.
Globally, companies spent approximately $106.5 billion on search advertising in 2019, and these numbers are projected to increase. When you look at the data, it’s no surprise; 33% of people click on a paid search ad when it directly answers their search query.
WordStream defines PPC as “a model of internet marketing in which advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked. Essentially, it’s a way to buying visits to [a] site, rather than attempting to earn [them] organically.”
PPC is incredibly effective because it places your brand and its products directly in front of the types of users who are already searching for what you have to offer. PPC campaigns with the highest ROI target a wider audience as this provides a higher rate of conversions.
PPC campaigns that work have all the bells and whistles associated with digital marketing best practices. They use the appropriate keywords to appeal to different segments of their target market and study their competitor’s ads to finesse their unique selling points and effectively address their consumer’s pain points. A strategic campaign will also have multiple ads that appeal to different stages of a buyer’s journey.
Obviously, audience targeting is crucial. If you’re selling interior wall paint, you won’t market to a customer looking to build wooden shelves. However, campaigns that are too narrow may miss valuable opportunities to convert new leads. In the preceding example, there is a possibility that the customer who wants to make shelves may suddenly think about painting them and click through to your site to see if you stock suitable paint products.
The above is an incredibly rudimentary explanation, so let’s explore why you should take a broad approach to audience targeting.
Today’s markets are saturated, so you need to optimize campaigns around keywords and wider audience targeting options. Only targeting a narrow audience who might already know of your products/services may not persuade them to convert, whereas targeting a wider audience is guaranteed to bring in more traffic, provided your campaign is still somehow relevant to them.
Targeting a broad audience, especially if you’re just starting with PPC, provides direct feedback from users that can be analyzed to tweak future ads. The premise is that you can eventually find your perfect audience and increase conversions by casting a wide net and testing.
While most businesses have a general idea of their target market is, there are cases where assumptions about target markets aren’t accurate. The only way to improve customization is through trial and error and making educated decisions based on data, which improve conversions in the long run.
Google explicitly states that its responsibility is to provide search users with the most relevant results. Good SEO experts know that while you can’t technically pay to rank higher on search engine page results (SERPs), you can improve your rank with SEO. PPC drives traffic to a website through paid advertisements. If your PPC campaign has relevant keywords, your brand will appear ahead of organic search results.
This causes a knock-on effect because Google analyzes click-through rates when ranking websites. The more your website is visited, the faster Google can crawl and index it, meaning its algorithms will automatically optimize your campaign to reach a better converting audience.
Moreover, with Google Ads, you can use Smart Bidding, automated bid strategies that use AI to optimize conversions. Google will automatically set bid amounts based on the likelihood that your ad gets clicked on or causes a conversion.
A high-quality PPC campaign that meets basic benchmark requirements of SEO copy, beautiful visuals, and a strong call to action (CTA) will naturally perform well on Google’s search engine. Now, if you take that a step further and target a wider audience, and include long-tail keywords, you can outperform competitors because your CTR will increase, causing your ad to rank above theirs. This improves your quality score. A high-quality score improves your ad rank and decreases your cost-per-click.
A large component of digital marketing is continuous optimization for maximum ROI. Its results rely heavily on strategic campaigns underpinned by an understanding of an audience’s behavioral psychology. A smart PPC campaign strategy allows search engines to optimize available data. So, the wider your reach, the more datasets are available to you.
Strategy is more likely to increase ROI than budget. When you work with a search engine like Google and play to your combined strengths, your strategy becomes more effective. You naturally increase ROI as you begin to understand where best to place your marketing spend and how to execute performance-driven campaigns. Eventually, you’re able to make accurate adjustments to lower your cost-per-click (CPC) and your cost-per-client acquisition.
WordStream notes that 41% of paid clicks go to the top 3 ads on SERPs. PPC campaigns offer various types of targeting; search, display, inventory, and user. They allow you to grow your customer base exponentially because they connect you with people deliberately seeking products and services like yours.
Even if a user doesn’t click on your ad immediately, they’ve been aware of your brand name and what you offer. With PPC, there’s no minimum spend, so you have complete financial control and can even set the maxim amount per click that you’re prepared to pay for each ad.
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