Adwords (Pay-Per-Click) Advertising: Basics for Beginners
Pay-Per-Click (or PPC advertising) is a form of paid digital marketing where advertisers pay a fee each time their ad is clicked. The term PPC can apply to paid ads on social media networks, like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. First, let’s focus on Google Adwords, which helps your ads stand out to search engine users, displaying them at the top and right-hand side of Google’s search engines. To decide if Adwords and PPC is a good fit for your business, you will need to assess whether you can afford to be involved. Do you have a budget for paid advertising or do you need to focus on amplifying your organic reach? If you do have a paid budget is it best to spend the entire sum on PPC or are there other paid tactics you have to account for?
Benefits of Adwords & PPC Advertising
PPC is an effective option if you want to reach people who are actively searching for terms related to your business. If you decide to create a PPC campaign your budget will be determined by your audience, competition and the types of products/services you wish to drive awareness of.
Adwords and PPC is what’s responsible for those little text ads that appear when you search for something on a search engine (let’s be honest, it’s probably Google). PPC marketing is one of the best ways to reach the best prospects, at a moment that’s pivotal in their purchasing cycle. Whether or not you’re planning on running PPC ads yourself, understanding the basics of how PPC works is critical to being a great marketer.
Getting Started with PPC
If you’re running PPC ads, they’re probably part of a larger marketing campaign, which is basically a series of marketing activities working towards a common goal. It’s important to note that when using Adwords, the word “campaign” is repurposed to mean something slightly different. An AdWords campaign contains all of your ad groups, and those ad groups themselves contain your ads. When you adjust the settings for a campaign, those settings affect every ad contained within. Take particular note of the budgetsetting. Ad groups don’t have individual budgets, but instead all pull funds directly from the shared campaign budget.
While you can also adjust other settings like language, schedule and which display networks the ads will appear on at the campaign level, the real fun begins when we get to ad groups. Ad groups contain all of the ads that are targeted at a shared set of keywords, which are essentially a user’s search queries.
Using Keywords in Adwords
Because the way keywords are targeted is so important to the success of a PPC campaign, AdWords gives you a few ways to customize how your ads match up with users’ search queries. Broad match is the default keyword matching option, and will target your ads at any queries with words that are synonymous, similar, or otherwise deemed relevant by Google’s algorithms. While broad match can be tempting due to the wider reach, you lose a lot of control over who sees your ads, meaning you could end up paying for clicks that aren’t right for your offer.
Luckily, AdWords also includes broad match modifiers, which allow you to target your ads only at queries that contain your broad match keywords or extremely close variations of them. Such as plural forms and misspellings. Modified keywords will also be targeted no matter the order they appear in the query.
Phrase match is more exact in that it will only target queries that contain a specific phrase or a close variant thereof, in the order specified. And exact match is even more, um, exact, in that it only targets queries that are identical to the keyword, barring exceptions for misspellings and pluralizations.
There are tons of great keyword research tools out there, but for beginners, AdWords’ built-in Keyword Planner does a great job. Not only will it suggest keywords to target based on terms relevant to your business, it will even give you historical search data and forecast estimated traffic and suggested bid amounts.
Learn More about Adwords and PPC Advertising
Now that you understand the terminology at the heart of PPC marketing, you’re primed to keep learning more. For additional help with Google Adwords and PPC advertising in general, don’t hesitate to contact our Marketing Gurus at Revved Business.