Pay per click (PPC) advertising (also known as ‘paid search’) is fast becoming one of the most important advertising methods for businesses across the UK and the world. If you want to get the most from an ad campaign it’s usually necessary to contract companies offering professional ppc management services as this can lead to a far higher ROI.
To decide whether PPC management is the right option for your company, it’s important to first understand the sheer scale of the internet marketing industry.
Internet Marketing: An Overview
People are spending more time online than ever before – and they’re also spending more money. A recent issue of the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index stated that shoppers in the UK spent over £5 billion online in July 2010, more than any other month so far this year.
It’s easy to see then why internet advertising is becoming so important. A report this year by the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) and PricewaterhouseCoopers found that online advertising grew 4.2% in 2009 to reach £3.54 billion – a much better performance than the rest of the UK advertising industry. Within online advertising paid search was dominant, growing 9.5% during the year to £2.15 billion, making up 60.7% of all online ad spending.
And things are only getting better. A recent report from eMarketer, UK Online Advertising Spending and Trends, states that online advertising is likely to grow by 7% in 2010, meaning it will overtake both TV and print advertising.
With so much being invested in paid search it may be time for you to start looking into ppc management services for your own company.
Google: The Goliath of Search
Each search engine has its own PPC model, and Google’s is known as AdWords. With the recent merger of two smaller players in the market, Bing and Yahoo!, some internet advertisers will be looking more seriously at Bing’s adCenter. However, for now there is only one serious player in the market.
The most recent figures from Hitwise show Google with a share of 88.17% in the UK search market. The figure is smaller in the US, with the latest comScore figures showing Google’s market share in July 2010 as 65.8%. However, it’s still pretty clear which search engine you should target when considering pay per click management services, especially if you are advertising in the UK.
Benefits of PPC
When it comes to PPC, the figures speak for themselves. But although it’s clear to see how big the market is, why is PPC such a popular way of advertising?
- Fully measurable – you can easily track referrals right from the search page to your landing page and onto the sale. You can also track the effectiveness of individual keywords and alter campaigns immediately for better results.
- Highly targeted – target geographically and demographically, by audience or by keyword. You have much more ability to target your ads with PPC than with a traditional print campaign. Your ads also only appear at the exact time when people are showing an interest in relevant products or services.
- Immediate – when using professional pay per click management services you can be up and running in less than a day for smaller campaigns, with your ads showing in the search pages straight away.
- Cost effective – it’s cheap to get started and you only ever pay when someone clicks through to your website. If you convert a high proportion of visitors it can be a fantastic way to gain new customers and repeat business.
- Take on your bigger competitors – with the proper campaign management, your ads can appear right next to the bigger players in your industry without you having to pay more for the privilege.
- Branding – even if your ads don’t get clicked, the fact that you are appearing at the top of the search engines is an excellent branding exercise.
Benefits of Using an Agency
Newcomers to PPC are sometimes tempted to go it alone. For small companies this can sometimes pay off if a dedicated account administrator is managing the campaign on a daily basis. However, getting the most from your PPC campaign often involves hiring a company offering professional pay per click management services.
Cheaper Campaigns, Increased Sales
AdWords appoints a ‘quality score’ for each keyword. The higher the quality score, the better placed your ads will be in the results pages and the less you will pay every time someone clicks on your add (the ‘cost per click’ or CPC). This essentially means a more cost-effective campaign with the likelihood of increased sales.
There are many factors affecting the quality score, ranging from the arrangement of the keywords into relevant groups to the quality of the landing page for each keyword group. There are too many mistakes to make when starting out with PPC (such as choosing the wrong keywords to start with and bidding too high for each keyword) that you can quickly end up spending a lot of money with very poor ROI. Paying for professional pay per click management services from a specialist firm is a sound investment that will lead to a far more successful campaign.
You may need to target thousands of keywords for your campaign, and you will first need to choose and then bid for each one of these, following which they will all need careful management. To choose, bid and track all your keywords is a lot of work and you can easily get overwhelmed, so pay per click management services are often important for the time savings alone.
Get the Most from Every Part of the Campaign
Ad management alone is a good enough reason to go with a specialist PPC firm, but when you add other factors such as regrouping keywords into more successful groups, testing adverts to ensure the highest conversion rates and optimizing landing pages to improve the quality score, huge savings can be made by paying for pay per click management services from a specialist PPC management agency.