Paid-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising

Pay-per-click advertising (PPC) has become a vastly popular way for online businesses to generate traffic to their website. PPC are ads that show up as sponsored links in the top three to four spots and along the right-hand side of the search engine page. An advertiser pays the search engine company every time a searcher clicks on their ad.

There are approximately 3,600 different search engines listed, with three main high-traffic search engines making up 75% of the searches worldwide; Google (47.4%), Yahoo (16%), MSN (11.5%). With these three main search engines there are many affiliate search engines that reproduce the same search results.

Googles Affiliates

  • AOL
  • CompuServe
  • Netscape
  • Ask.com
  • AT&T Worldnet
  • Earthlink
  • Excite

Yahoo Affiliates

  • Infospace
  • AltaVista
  • CNN.com
  • Disney.com

MSN Affiliates

  • MSN Only

Ranking high with PPC in a given keyword is based on how much you are willing to pay per click versus your competing advertisers. The more competitive the keyword the higher the cost per click to rank high.

Setting up an Account – To set up an advertising account with the three top search engines, go to the following addresses:

Google: http://www.google.com/intl/en/ads/

Yahoo: http://searchmarketing.yahoo.com/

MSN: http://advertising.microsoft.com/microsoft-adcenter?s_int=277

Tips for a successful PPC Campaign

  1. Your Ad – For your ad copy, you are allowed a title line and two lines of advertising text under the title. Put a lot of thought into your word selection and positioning. Remember, you are competing with other advertisers doing the same thing. You should experiment with a lot of different ads, determining which ones bring you more converting traffic. Your ad should include the keyword or phrase that people are searching on. The search engine bolds those keywords in your ad, thus drawing more attention.
  2. Landing Page – This is the page that people will land on when they click your ad. This page could be your home page. The page needs to be very sales oriented and allow the visitor to find what they are looking for and contact you.
  3. Keywords – It is important to use as many relevant keywords and phrases which relate to your product or service. Try not to use keywords that are not relevant. It will just end up costing you money with no results.
  4. Types of Keywords – There are three different ways of listing your keywords:

    • Broad Match Keywords. That means that anytime that keyword or phrase is typed into a search phrase in any order, it will pull up your ad.
    • Phrase Match Keywords – By putting quotation marks around your keyword phrase it will only pull up your ad if the phrase is typed in exactly as it is within the quotation marks.
    • Exact Match Keywords – If you surround your keywords in brackets [], your ads will appear when a searcher types in the exact bracketed phrase.
    • Negative Keywords – You can list negative keywords that you do not want your ad to appear under.

For more information on Keyword tips you can go to: https://adwords.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=6100&topic=78

  1. Ad Positioning – You’ll want to experiment with the ranking of your ads with various keywords. You might think that being in the 1st position is what you would want every time. That can be an expensive assumption. The 1st position will almost always get the “auto clickers.” That means that people will automatically click on it, even if it is not what they are looking for. So you’ll end up paying for a lot of irrelevant clicks. Positions 3 and 4 are usually good places, and sometimes even 5 through 8 is good. Keep in mind that if you are in the top 4 places, your ad will also show with the search engine’s extended network of search engines, so you’ll get more exposure. It is important to play around with different rankings for different keywords to determine the optimum rank for conversions.
  2. Keyword Clean Up – You’ll want to review the performance of your keywords and delete those keywords that are not producing results over time.

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