PPC campaigns can be tricky to optimize. Last year’s strategy is not guaranteed to work again for the current year, especially with the shift of consumer buying habits throughout the pandemic. Ad campaigns must be frequently audited and carefully curated so that you and your team can yield the best results. If you’re interested in learning how you and your company can ensure your ad dollars deliver optimal incomes, make sure to read on!

What Is PPC?

You likely already know that PPC stands for pay-per-click, but let’s take it a step further. PPC is a form of online advertising where advertisers pay for each click on their ad. There are different forms of PPC ads, for example, search engine ads, display ads, and remarketing ads.

Search Engine Ads

Search engine ads target users who look up certain keywords in search engines like Google or Bing. In fact, Google reports that these kinds of PPC ads increase brand awareness by as much as 80%. These ads utilize short-tail and long-tail keywords. Generally, longer, less vague keywords, have a better chance of impacting and reaching your target consumer. Our PPC specialists here at Vonazon have also found that question-type keywords and queries work best. Most search engine users are searching for an answer to a specific question. Instead of using a keyword such as “tutoring,” you may want to try something a bit more compelling like, “how to learn online for free.”

Display Ads

Display ads frequently appear in the form of banners on other websites. These types of ads are great for driving brand awareness and increasing the number of eyeballs that see your ad, especially if they show up on a website that is correlated with your own.

Remarketing Ads

Remarketing ads target consumers who have visited a particular webpage. These are the sort of ads you generally see after you’ve visited a website, put something in your online shopping cart, but never checked out. In the process, you were automatically tagged by the company as someone who could potentially become a future buyer.

PPC ads marry together the technical side of ads with the creative side. The technical side deals with the initial setup and maintenance of the campaign. This is where you set up conversion tracking, decide if your keywords are relevant to your target audience, and develop an organized way to analyze important metrics. Once the setup has been initiated, that’s when the creative part begins. At this stage, you’ll need to pinpoint how the consumer will engage with your ad, what the ad will look like, what the ad will say, and so forth.

Tips for Optimizing PPC Campaigns

You may feel like you have a solid understanding of PPC campaigns, but you likely haven’t even scratched the surface. Most of the time, it takes a blend of diverse ads to produce the most optimal results. With increased competition, online overcrowding, and limited ad space, you need to ensure that the money you are investing into your PPC ads is generating a positive ROI.

According to a study conducted by top entrepreneur Neil Patel, 72% of companies haven’t looked at their ad campaigns in over a month. The setup of your PPC ads should not be a “one and done” approach. A successful campaign is one that takes into consideration the trends of today, and the possible trends of tomorrow. According to Forbes, when creating your PPC ad campaign, you want to make sure that you consider these 7 things:

1) Revise Your Current Keyword List

Consider adding adjectives or adverbs to your long-tail keywords and remove filler words from your short-tail keywords. You can even enlist the help of keyword suggestion software such as Moz, SEMrush, or Keyword Planner in Google Ads. However. However, keep in mind that these platforms can be somewhat costly, but many of them offer a limited amount of free keyword lookups each day, so you may want to start there.

2) Identify Keywords Linked to Poor Performance

Even though multiple factors within your PPC campaign can cause poor performance such as low bid value, low search volume, or even high cost per leads of click, keywords can also play a significant part in your downfall. Sometimes when keywords are too broad or too confining, they don’t attract enough clicks. One way you can figure out why your keywords aren’t performing well is by readjusting your bidding strategy to reduce the cost per conversion. If this doesn’t help, try pausing and reassessing your strategy altogether before investing further ad dollars.

3) Expand Your Negative Keyword List

Negative keywords are all the words that you don’t want to trigger your ad. The greatest advantage of having a negative keyword bank is that it lets you cast out any unremarkable leads, primarily leads that will likely not commit to a purchase. Having one of these lists keeps you from wasting time & money on unqualified clicks and ensures that your PPC campaign uses the most targeted approach.

4) Use Customer Reviews

Consumer-generated feedback is often viewed as being a trusted source of advice. If your product, service, or brand has 5-star consumer feedback, don’t be afraid to utilize this within your PPC campaign. Consider using an ad extension to display your top ratings. By leveraging genuine customer testimonials, you’ll be able to establish immense amounts of brand trust.

5) Geotarget Your Ads

Displaying your ads within a specific geographic location is a great strategy for directing your marketing efforts to promising leads. One way you can determine which regions you want to target is by using the geographic reporting feature that’s already integrated within your paid search platform. For example, if you’re using Google Ads, you can access your “Locations and Distance” reports to see performance metrics by location. You can then analyze this data and use the “Location” targeting setting to select specific areas where you want your ad to be seen.

6) Revisit Your Consumer Personas

Consumer tastes are constantly changing along with the world around us. The type of consumer you initially thought your product or service would attract, may not be the kind of consumer that you end up attracting. It may be a wise time to review your client and prospect demographics. If your ad data does not match the initial assumptions you had about your ideal clients, then it’s time to adjust your ad campaign to reach those unprecedented segments you did not account for initially. The last thing you want is to miss out on potential leads because you failed to consider them.

7) Revamp Your Landing Pages

A landing page is a standalone web page, disconnected from a website’s main navigation. It is specifically curated for the sole purpose of persuading a visitor to complete an action. The more relevant the content on your Landing Page is and the more aesthetically pleasing it looks, the higher likelihood your lead will complete the action of your choosing, such as completing a form or signing up for an email newsletter.

If PPC campaigns teach us anything, it’s that you can never really get too comfortable. People change, web features change, and new challenges arise as old ones escalate. You can’t count on the same ad campaign to help you through it all. Sometimes, it’s easy for brands to grow increasingly reliant on numerical data and ad metrics. However, it’s always wise to set away from the number and put yourself in the shoes of the consumer. Whether it’s an outdated webpage or an ad utilizing improper keywords, you’re likely to come to a conclusion that will help you attract more business through PPC ads.