Search engine marketing is an important part of drawing new customers into almost any type of business. People look for restaurants, tax professionals, home furnishings — even medical offices and places of worship — through search engines. One half of search engine marketing is search engine optimization, or trying to make your business’ website rank more highly in the organic search results when users search for keywords related to your field. But the other, and perhaps more intimidating, half is paid search engine advertising, or pay per click advertising. Here are answers to the three biggest questions newbies often ask about this marketing method:
- How Does Pay Per Click Work, Exactly?
Pay per click advertising, as its name suggests, is run under a payment model in which you pay only when your ad is clicked on, no matter how many times it is viewed. How much you pay per click depends on the keywords you want to trigger the display of your ad. Obviously, keywords related to a very saturated field — “tax preparation,” for example — can get very expensive. At the same time, you can’t pick keywords that aren’t actually related to your business, since searchers won’t actually want to become your customers if your ads are irrelevant. So most of the mechanics of PPC advertising go into researching those keywords and making sure you’re not paying too much for keywords that don’t end up bringing in business.
- Why Should I Invest in PPC Advertising?
PPC advertising isn’t a replacement for SEO, but it’s a strong complement to it and can help you bring in more overall customers via search engines (making it a better investment, in most cases, than traditional media advertising). PPC can also help you to drive traffic to your website relatively quickly, making it an especially good choice if you’re trying to jumpstart your brand’s visibility or want to alert prospective customers to time-sensitive information such as a seasonal sale.
- What Is Pay Per Click Management Worth?
One of the biggest dilemmas businesses often face is whether or not to outsource their PPC management. This is a question that small businesses in particular are constantly asking in their quest to keep their budgets manageable: What is pay per click management’s value, monetarily? If you’re looking for a dollar amount that’s reasonable, this article can’t give it to you, since that depends on how much money you’re looking on spending on your advertising altogether. But in general, what you should be looking at when considering PPC campaign management services is what kind of return on investment the PPC agency or agencies in question are typically seeing. In almost every case, that ROI will be better than what you could get on your own, completely covering the PPC management fees and then some.
What is pay per click management worth, in your opinion? Share your thoughts on outsourcing vs. DIYing in the comments.