For newcomers to the world of online commerce it can be a bit daunting when looking at how to attract the right prospects to your site, whether they be buyers, subscribers, or contributors.
Many are seduced by the seeming ease of the world of Pay Per Click, or PPC, advertising. It seems like such a simple premise, right? You set aside a budget, decide what you want people to be looking for and the brilliant thing is you only pay money out if your adverts receive any clicks, so that must be from interested people right? Wrong on so many levels! Should you wish to venture into the world of PPC unguided there are a number of things that you should be aware of. The best option is always to engage specialists to do this for you, more information here for example, while you get on with the heart of your business. However, if you wish to proceed on your own, we have listed five top ‘gotchas’ to consider.
- Failure to plan
- Poor search terms and wording
- Irrelevant landing page
- Lack of proper measurement
- Fire and forget
While it is true, as quoted by the BBC news itself, Google and Facebook account for the bulk of all web traffic it is not as simple as just setting up a PPC campaign on one of those and waiting for the riches to roll in. We will give a bit more detail on the five points below:
Failure to plan
As the saying goes ‘if you do not know where you are going do not be surprised if you do not get there’.
It is essential to know just what it is you want out of your advertising campaign. Are you looking to capture interested buyers who have already made a decision to purchase and are just looking for the right product? It is greater brand awareness that you are trying to build. You should also have a clear idea of what you are willing to spend and what return you expect for that whether financial or in other terms. This is an absolutely critical first step.
Poor search terms and wording
Now many of us are aware of the importance of long tail search terms. For example if we had a dog grooming salon in Croydon we would not simply bid on the term “dog” as that would show for searches like “what to feed my dog” which are nothing to do with the business. We would be better served by using a long tail such as “dog grooming salons in Croydon”. We would also need to be aware of terms that signal buyer intent or stage in the buying journey.
The reason we include poor wording is to cover the advert text itself. As this is short there are only seconds to catch people’s attention with relevant and punchy phrases.
Irrelevant Landing Page
This relates to the planning of the campaign. It is vital that the page people land on after clicking your advert matches their expectations. Too many people simply send visitors to the home page of the site rather than a more specific option with a call to action on it.
Lack of proper measurement
Once more tied into your planning. You need to know what you want to measure and then measure it assiduously. Are you looking for subscriptions, visitors, sales? What is the current cost of sale or acquisition of a subscriber? Bluntly, is it doing what you want it to do.
Fire and forget
This last one can be a real business killer. Many people treat PPC the way they treat a gym membership. Set it up once and forget about it. The costs of a PPC campaign can ramp up frighteningly fast. Even with a budget of £10 a day, forget about it and that is approaching four thousand pounds a year.