How would you define a successful PPC campaign? Do you measure success in the number of clicks your ad gets? Or, would you say it’s in the number conversions?
Well, the answer might surprise you. It all ultimately boils down to your PPC marketing ROI. That’s the bottom line.
If you want to grow your business you have to strike the perfect balance between what it costs to acquire new customers vs. how much business that customer brings in. That’s why effective PPC campaign management is so important.
You need to establish what kind of ROI you want from your PPC campaign. On average, businesses spend $116 million on PPC campaigns each year. The real question is, how much are these businesses actually recouping from their campaigns?
This article compiles 13 expert affiliate marketing tips for effective pay per click campaign management. Read on.
1. Research on Keywords
Every successful PPC strategy begins with a brainstorming session. At the heart of it lies choosing the right keywords that target the right audience. Getting the best keyword is a 3 step process:
First, you need to build a seed list. Use your knowledge of your customers, industry, and experience to come up with some words off the top of your head.
If you’re currently running a marketing campaign, that’s even better. You’re better placed to build a seed list.
Next, you’ll have to apply some research tools. These will help you understand what words and techniques your competition is using. You can also use keyword planners to either expand or water down your seed list.
The third step is the refinement phase. This is the most important part of the 3-step process. You’ll have to keep refining your list both at the initial stage and throughout the duration of your PPC campaigns.
You might find that some keywords are more effective than others, or others might be more appropriate for an entirely different campaign altogether. Don’t weed them out completely though. If you find that you won’t need them in this campaign, move them to a different ad group for the future.
2. Formulate Your Campaign Keywords
An SEO keyword is a phrase of 3 to 6 words that users use to run searches on search engines. As a rule of thumb, you should never use a one-word keyword. The competition for that would be too high which would make it impossible for you to make a decent ROI.
Long-tail keywords have since replaced them. The idea here is for your keyword to generate a decent amount of traffic to your site without being too competitive. Ensure you align your keywords to what your customers’ goals are.
3. Structure and Organize Your PPC Keywords
Now that you know which keywords you want to target you need to structure and organized them further. Put them into more targeted groups that are related to each other.
The best way to measure the performance of your keywords during the duration of your ad campaign is to make them very specific for every group you’re targeting. Bear in mind that search intent normally changes form very broad keywords to very specific long-tail search terms.
4. Add Negative Keywords to Your PPC Campaign
As you put manage your campaign the question you should always have at the back of your mind is: What is the search intent here? Search intent is everything!
A keyword may appear attractive based on the search volume it generates and even based on the CPC. But, it may not be ideal for your PPC campaign.
The intent of certain keywords may end up being quite different from what you want. Take for instance someone searches using the keyword “Chevrolet truck parts diagram”. This indicates that the user has a general interest in learning about the parts of the vehicle.
This keyword has a low level of intent. If someone searched instead for “Chevrolet Silverado seat covers” that is referred to as a high-intent keyword since the visitor is very specific and knows exactly what they’re looking for.
That way you avoid getting immediate bounces that don’t convert, or, impressions that don’t result in any clicks. Prevent this from plaguing your campaign by, flagging keywords that target the wrong audience as “negative keywords”.
5. PPC Campaign Management: Have a Budget for Your Ads
First, you should know that the average CPC varies based on industry. Before settling on the keywords you’ll use for your campaign, you need to determine if you can afford to advertise for that keyword.
That’s why it’s super important that your audience is searching for your target keywords, and that you know what the intent behind the search is. Ultimately you’ll need them to click on your ad and buy what you’re selling.
6. A Little Competitive Research Never Hurt Anyone
By the time you’re running a PPC campaign, you should already be acquainted with who your competition is and what they’re doing. If they’re running PPC campaigns as well you need to strip them down and see what keywords they’re targeting.
Your competition isn't only limited to businesses that are selling similar products to yours. Use Google Adwords to provide you with Auction Insights to see if there are unrelated domains bidding for the same keywords you are. If so you might want to consider using different keywords to reach your audience.
7. Create an Awesome Ad Copy
Once you have your keywords in the bag you need to come up with some killer ads. The time you spend doing this will make or break your ROI.
The words you choose to use in your ad copy need to highly target your audience. It’s the only way they’ll pay attention to your ad, click on it and eventually convert.
You need to make the ad personal. It needs to offer a solution to their specific problem.
Play to your audiences’ needs and interests. Understanding their psychology makes all the difference.
8. Create a Compelling Call-To-Action
Don’t be afraid to use actionable keywords like “Get” and “Now”. When coming up with a powerful call-to-action, you need to pay close attention to the specific action you want your visitor to do.
Do you want them to “Buy”, “Shop”, “Try”, or “Learn” something? Using the right CTA will do wonders for your conversion rate.
9. Use Ad Extensions to Enhance Your PPC Campaign
Ad extensions make your ads more attention-grabbing. It’s a direct way to interact with your audience.
However, it all depends on what the goal of your ads is in the first place. Some extensions you can use include: Sitelink extensions and call extensions.
10. Spruce up Your Landing Page
Sending traffic to your homepage is a rookie mistake in internet marketing. The page your visitors get sent to when they click on your ad needs to be relevant to the actual ad.
It has to meet the needs, intent, and interest of the visitor. Otherwise, they’ll get out of there faster than a bat out of hell. Your ad and your landing page need to create a seamless experience that ultimately leads to the conversion of that visitor.
11. Optimize for Mobile Platforms
In today’s world, people are always checking their smartphones. Therefore, you have to optimize your PPC campaign for mobile viewing.
Ensure that the ad is short, concise and clearly written. Your website’s landing pages also need to be mobile friendly. Try not to send your mobile visitors to a page that’s designed for desktop leads.
12. Your Quality Score Matters
As you review and optimize your campaigns, your Quality Score should be the focal point of the entire process. It basically measures how relevant your ads are in relation to your keywords and landing pages.
Google looks at the Expected CTR, the Ad Relevancy and your visitors’ Landing Page experience to come up with the score. The higher your Quality Score is, the lower the overall CPC.
13. Review, Rinse, and Repeat
Keep track of your PPC campaign data, review it regularly and pivot as much as you need to. As you run your campaign and the real data flows in, you’ll have to make some edits.
Your Quality Score will shift constantly. You’ll find CPCs going up and keywords changing as well.
You might even find that you’re getting massive amounts of clicks but no conversions. That’s a sign that you’re attracting the wrong audience. It means you have to go back to the drawing board and make some changes.
Experiment with different ad copy, landing pages, and modified keywords. Eventually, you’ll start getting the reaction you want from your audience.
The Parting Shot
PPC campaign management never ends. You have to continuously monitor your ads and use that data to tweak certain aspects of your campaign to improve conversions. Remember, it’s all about maximizing your ROI, so it’s important to make sure that your PPC campaign targets the right audience for your business.
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