Date: 07 October 2016
The small business guide to Pay Per Click advertising
You’ve got your business website search engine optimised, but you’re not ranking in the first few search results of Google for your keywords. Sound familiar? In order to compete with large companies in search results, you should think about pay per click advertising!
Pay Per Click advertising (also called PPC) is a marketing model where you create adverts for your business website, and you pay a small fee each time your ad is clicked on. These advertisements are shown at the top and bottom of search engine results or on social media platforms.
One of the most attractive aspects of PPC advertising is that your ads are always relevant to the search query. They are only shown when the potential customer is searching for the keyword phrase you're advertising for. Another benefit is that pay per click search adverts are free to place, so when a visitor just views your advert, you don’t pay a thing. You only paywhen the potential customer clicks on the advert and is visiting your site.
In this guide, we’ll focus on the most popular PPC platform out there, Google AdWords. As most people in the UK use Google to search, it’s the logical choice. You set up a free account using your Google login details and create an advert using AdWords. You can also let an agency or
Trendzer do your PPC advertising for you.
If you’re not quite sure what a Google AdWords advert looks like, see the example below. Both the ‘Shop’ results and the top result in the normal search results are advertisements.
First steps: Your objective and landing page
The first thing you need to do is decide on your objective. What is the action you want visitors to take? The action could be something like “buy jewellery on sale” or “book initial consultation”.
Before setting up a campaign, you should set up a “landing page”. Rather than directing visitors to your homepage, you should create a page that visitors will land on once they click on the advert. This landing page should be tailored to the campaign and its keywords, as its sole purpose will be to entice people to take that specific action. So if the action is “book an intake appointment”, the landing page should just consist of a booking calendar and a short bit of text that urges the visitor to take action.
Setting up your campaign in AdWords
Now you know your objective and you have your landing page, it’s time to create the campaign in
Google AdWords. Take a look at the AdWords basics on how to set up a campaign.
Setting budget and bids
Start with a healthy budget from day 1, and slowly increase it when you get conversions. The budget is your total monthly spend, and the bid is how much you are willing to pay for each click. If your maximum bid is £2 per click, Google will only show it to people if other companies aren’t bidding more on average. If other companies are paying less, Google won’t spend your maximum bid and you might end up paying less than £2 per click.
Next up is targeting the right area, because you only want to target the area you work in. For online shops, this might be the UK, but if you have a brick-and-mortar shop or service area, you should target a specific area. In this example, we’ve targeted Edinburgh.
Research the right keywords
As an example, we’ll take the action “book initial consultation” for a personal trainer. The first thing you’d do is put yourself in your customers’ shoes. What kind of words and sentences would they type into the search box to find your page?
- Personal Trainer
- Personal Training
- Fitness Trainer
- Certified Personal Trainer
Add these terms to the
Keyword Planner and find out how many people search for these terms, and how expensive they would be to target per click.
You can also add negative keywords, which will help prevent your ads being displayed for a different target audience. For this example, we have added “jobs” and “vacancies” as negative keywords, as we don’t want to target people looking for personal trainer jobs.
Refine your keywords
Now it’s time to choose the right keywords to use in your ads and add them to your plan. You need to find the sweet spot between higher average monthly searches and low competition. In this case, we would probably target “personal trainer”, as it has many searches and medium competition. For a second ad we could target “certified personal trainer”, as it has a lower average searches but also low competition.
Writing your ad
Lastly, you write your ad. Make sure that it’s short, it includes your unique selling point and has a great call to action.
“Sign up now for a free 1-hour initial consultation with a Certified Personal Trainer in Edinburgh.”
Managing and optimising your campaign
Unlike with some other marketing efforts, with PPC advertising you can measure the results by using the reporting tools in Google AdWords. Look at your campaign results regularly and analyse the findings. You might find you need to change your budget because your over- or underspending or you might need to tailor your keywords.
So how can small businesses compete?
Basically every small business can benefit from creating pay-per-click adverts to build their web presence, but it does require some effort to do it right! There is a reason that SEO specialists are constantly researching the field and learning new things! The difficulties lie in identifying the right keywords, understanding your target market and constant management and optimisation.
If doing all of this sounds way too complicated, we can help you out! Your Dedicated Digital Expert can set up your paid search campaigns for you! Trendzer is one of the UK’s few Google Premier Partners, and with our know-how, we will help grow your business through pay per click advertising.
Read more information about our Paid Search bolt on!