How to use PPC for your small business

When someone is looking for something, whether it’s a product, service, promotion, or just information, they’re probably going to search for it on Google. For a small business, AdWords can be a great way to drive traffic, market your product – and ultimately increase sales. There are two different ways to appear in search results, one is organic search (which is achieved by your SEO), the other is paid ads or PPC (Pay Per Click) using Google Adwords. Bing has PPC advertising called Adsense.

So how does this PPC Stuff work anyway?

Search engines make billions selling online advertising – mostly PPC or pay-per-click (also called CPC or cost-per-click). It pretty simple – every time someone clicks on an ad, they charge for that click. When you start your PPC campaign – you bid on keywords that users search for, and when they do – your ad gets displayed somewhere in the results. If you write a good compelling ad, someone will click on it – and they are taken to your landing page. Once there – you want to try to convert them – or get them to perform a call to action (CTA) – maybe purchase something – or get them to fill out a form, which then becomes a lead – Woohoo, mission accomplished!

Google Adwords Google is the biggest of the top three search engine with over a billion visitors a month, followed by Bing at 350 million, and Yahoo with 300 million. Google really revolutionized advertising by providing the first 100 percent measurable advertising platform known as Google Adwords. You can track your ROI (return on investment) and they offer massive search volumes, so Google Adwords has become a very competitive place for online businesses to spend their advertising dollars.

9 ways your business can benefit from PPC:

1. Reach customers when they’re ready to buy – being seen by a customer at the exact time they are looking for your information, products, services, deals or location is extremely important to getting their business. It’ll take a little work to be seen in the top 3 spots, you’re competing with experienced, motivated SEO experts trying to get those coveted top spots – but you can get there.

2. Target local customers – if you’re a locally based business, a regional company, or even an e-commerce site, you can geo-target to get seen by your consumers – and you won’t be wasting dollars on those who aren’t. You can exclude locations – excluding locations brings your ROI up, by lowering costs and targeting more precisely.

3. Show your location – using Google Places, in conjunction with AdWords, you can show a map of your bricks and mortar shop with your ads. The easier you make it for customers to find you, the more likely they’ll walk in, or click through to your website.

4. Show contact information – ad extensions let businesses enhance ads with phone numbers, an address, app downloads, site landing page links, reviews, previous page visits and lots more. They generally show up in blue, just below your ad description. By including more contact information, you make it easier for potential customers to connect with you. Ad extensions don’t cost anything more to include in your ad.

5. Do targeted searches – using the right keywords, that are optimized for high quality scores, and target your customers, products, offers, location and more. The more targeted your keywords (and keyword phrases) are, the better Google will rank your ad. You’ll also reach a lot more consumers, who want exactly what you have – right now.

6. Retargeting – if an interested customer has visited your website, they get a cookie from a code put on the backend of your site. After they leave your site, you can target your ads to follow them on the Google Display Network, or Google search.

7. Mobile customers
– Google AdWords gives you loads of mobile optimization options. You can target both text ads and image ads – where they are.

8. Measure results – you get tons of customizable options to track and measure your campaigns, in one dashboard. You are able to set and track your goals: return on investment (ROI), traffic to your website, brand awareness, conversions, and sales. You can also measure the results: what keywords are performing the best, what headlines get the best click-through rate, the best performing times for your ads.

Control your budget – with Google AdWords, you set your budget for each ad you run – you can change it anytime you want. If an ad is performing really well, you can increase your results by increasing your ad spend.You get to set your daily budget, which is what you’re willing to spend per day per ad.


Start small – and see what you can do

If you’re running a business these days, you’re probably marketing online. It’s a powerful way to reach your customers, drive traffic to your business, and ultimately increase sales. Google AdWords should be a part of your online marketing plan. Many times you get free Google Adword dollars – from web hosting services like Bluehost or Vistaprint – take advantage of these free dollars to try out Google Adwords – and start boosting your visibility.

Learn how to do PPC – and get results

There’s videos and a bunch of really heplful tutorials at Google Adwords Help Center.

Lynda.com also has a really good video tutorial course on Adwords and PPC. And while you’re there – you might as well check out other related topics like; digital marketing, SEO, social media, and tons of other marketing stuff.