For those new to Internet marketing, understanding how pay-per-click ads bring traffic to web pages may be a bit challenging. Pay-per-click ads, also referred to as PPC or cost-per-click ads, are the ads that appear at the top or sidebar of the search results page when you conduct a search using one of the major search engines. Google also displays an “Ad” icon next to paid ads in their search results.
How Does PPC Drive Traffic?
Undoubtedly, the largest and most successful PPC program in existence is Google AdWords. In Google world, PPC ads are also referred to as “paid search” ads. In the PPC environment, the website owner, Google in this case, is considered to be the publisher. An individual or company may promote a product or service by purchasing keyword phrases from a PPC coordinator such as Google’s AdWords program. The advertising company’s ads will then appear on the publisher’s web property when the designated keyword phrase is searched. For Google, this means that the paid ads appear at the top or in the right sidebar of the page of the results page.
The advertiser purchases one or more keyword phrases from the PPC coordinator (AdWords), designates a budget for the campaign, and then pays for the ad only when a user clicks on the ad and the user is directed to the advertiser’s page.
Do PPC Ads Really Work?
According to Web Strategies, 12 percent of searchers actually click on the ads at the top of the results page, and 13 percent click the ads in the right sidebar. By these statistics, you can see that a significant number of users find what they are looking for with these paid ads. However, to successfully market with PPC, advertisers must adopt successful strategies by observing what works for others, using analytic tools to gauge success and altering campaigns as need for maximum ROI.
Successful PPC Advertising
Some companies swear by PPC advertising, however, many small and mid-size businesses new to Internet advertising do not immediately experience a marked uptick in traffic to their site. How can this be? Search engine experts suggest a few pointers for SMB owners considering launching PPC campaigns:
Use Landing Pages – Link your PPC ads to tailored landing pages that incorporate the keyword phrase searched, instead of linking to your site’s home page. Instantly connect the user to what she is searching for.
Employ Negative Keywords – Negative keywords exclude search terms that are not related to the product or service you are advertising. For example, if your e-commerce site specialize in sales of women’s clothing, a negative keyword would be “men’s clothing.” Negative keywords prevent your ads from displaying on search results pages when clearly not pertinent.
Google’s Keyword Planner – Google offers a free tool to assist advertising in selecting keywords that will successfully drive traffic to their sites. Even if you advertise with another search engine, the Keyword Planner is a useful tool when brainstorming for the most relevant keyword phrases.
Related Resource: Web Editor
Web marketing can be mysterious and intimidating to those new to the concept, but now that you understand how pay-per-click ads bring traffic to web pages, you can get to work creating your own successful PPC campaign.