Pay-Per-Click Ad Management Tips

A well-managed pay-per-click (PPC) campaign will help your ad attract clicks, and potential clients.

A well-managed pay-per-click (PPC) campaign will help your ad attract clicks, and potential clients.

Some things are really great if done right, or really awful if done wrong—breakfast sandwiches, Tim Burton movies, or —most importantly— your pay-per-click (PPC) campaign. Here are five tips to improving your PPC.

1. Use negative keywords

Negative keywords refers to when you want to omit a keyword from triggering your PPC ad to display. For example, if you sell men’s dress shoes but not men’s running shoes, you’d want to include “running” as a negative keyword. This will save you money and increase the likelihood that people who do click on your ad will genuinely be interested in what you’re selling.

2. Know How to Use Broad, Exact and Phrase Matches

Broad matches refer to when a user searches and uses synonyms or other relevant words. Although this can be helpful for certain synonym matches depending on what you offer, it can also cause bad matches if not managed properly, which wastes your advertising budget.

Broad matches may have the most room for misuse of any kind of matches. If your broad matches are applied too broadly, you’ll show up for irrelevant or nearly irrelevant searches that are unlikely to result in a conversion. If your PPC is set to broad matches and isn’t managed well, you’re losing money and risk hurting your reputation. For example, if someone searches “dog bite attorney,” a mismanaged PPC campaign could cause the term “attorney” to trigger showing your PPC ad even if your firm doesn’t handle dog bite injury cases. Your advertising budget is being wasted if the user clicks on your ad.

In some cases, your PPC ad may not direct users to the appropriate page. Continuing our “dog bite attorney” example, if your PPC ad sends people to a specific page, such as your medical defects practice area page, then the user searching for a dog bite attorney will have a bad impression of your business, hurting more than your PPC budget.

Exact match for your PPC ads will make your ads only show when someone uses the exact keyword as the keyword you’ve bid on. For example, if someone searches “beef jerky store,” your ad will only come up if you’ve bid on “beef jerky store.” Generally, if a user searches a specific keyword and your ad matches that specific keyword, then your ad is more likely to result in the desired action.

Phrase matches make your PPC ads display when someone searches using a phrase that includes your keyword. For example, if your PPC targeted keyword is “tennis shoes,” and someone searches “where can I buy tennis shoes,” your PPC ad will show. Phrase matches can help account for the different ways people search.

3. Group Your Keywords

A good PPC campaign will have keywords grouped with similar keywords to ensure the right PPC ad is displayed. Grouping keywords makes it more likely that people who click on your ads are a good match for your products or services. In turn, this increases the likelihood that the people who do click on your ads will actually do what you want them to do. Grouping keywords makes your PPC spending more efficient.

4. React

What’s great about Internet marketing is that if an ad doesn’t produce good results then the strategy and copy can be changed relatively quickly. If your targeted keyword hasn’t been successful, try changing your match settings to allow for more or less specific keyword matches, or try targeting different keywords. Of course, you shouldn’t be too hasty to make changes, and your changes should be supported by data analysis.

5. Pair PPC With SEO

Having a strong presence on Google’s organic search results, which refers to the unpaid Google listings, coupled with a PPC presence gives users the impression that you’re a trusted and quality company. Simply by occupying more space on Google’s first page you increase your chances of converting visitors into clients or customers. Also, some search users are more likely to click on paid listings, whereas others are skeptical of PPC listings. A comprehensive, effective marketing strategy includes a well-managed PPC campaign and a company site that’s designed with search engine optimization (SEO) considerations.

What to Do to Improve Your PPC Advertising

ACS, Inc.’s PPC campaign experts have helped clients significantly increase leads and site traffic. Contact us today to get the most out of your advertising budget with our internet marketing services.

Google’s Search Engine Update Affects Small Businesses

On July 24, Google released Pigeon, which affects local search engine results. With 4 out of 5 consumers using local search, it’s near impossible to have success and ignore local search engine optimization (SEO).

What is Google Pigeon?

Pigeon is an update to the way Google determines what local businesses show up on the first page in search. Pigeon’s greatest impact has been on local packs and Google Carousel.

What is a Google local pack?

The local packs are a small list that’s produced when someone searches for a good or service specific to their location. Local packs include physical location addresses and one-click access to Google Maps to get directions. An example of a local pack is below.

Google local listings improve local business SEO

Google local packs can be very valuable for local business.

Pigeon also affected Carousel. Similar to the local pack, Google Carousel provides ratings, general price range, a related picture and distance from the user’s location. Below is an example, circled in red.

Google Carousel example.

Google Carousel makes finding local businesses easier.

How Has Pigeon Affected Your Business

Pigeon’s biggest change was improved proximity and local search results. For example, Pigeon tries to provide search results nearest the user’s location. Although this has always been the case for Google local search, Pigeon tries improving location accuracy.

Pigeon also attempts to take some general Google search ranking considerations and apply them to local search. Pigeon also improves local search by utilizing spelling correction.

In some cases, Pigeon has reduced the number of listings in a local pack, providing less opportunity for small businesses to be found and more opportunity for directory sites like Yelp. Pigeon also caused upward or downward movement for businesses that were previously prominent or obscured in the Carousel or local pack.

A Flawed Flock

Pigeon’s release was soon followed by haywire local results. Expedia, a national online travel agency, was listed as a Carousel result for “New York hotels,” including an incorrect physical New York City address. However, this has been corrected and no further similar problems have been reported.

mobile Google searches influence consumer behavior

Google local search, especially on phones, often leads to same-day purchases. Image: Pixabay

How Google Local Listings Help Your Business

Google local search influences consumer behavior greatly, especially when the local search is done on a smartphone. For example, 50 percent of mobile Google local searchers visited the store within the same day of searching, and 34 percent of computer users did the same. Also, with nearly 80 percent of consumers using local search, businesses take a major risk by ignoring a large portion of the market.

How to Improve Your Local Google Listings

Local SEO is a must to ensure a high ranking in local search. As previously mentioned, Pigeon now makes local search results affected by web-wide ranking factors. In order to make your site show up on Google local search, your site must be up to Google’s ranking standards. Google Panda, which ACS, Inc.’s blog covered in depth, is one of the many ways Google determines what shows up higher on search. ACS, Inc. also provides SEO services that consider local and general search ranking factors.

Also affecting local search ranking is a business’s Google+ page. A good, accurate Google+ page is one of, if not the, greatest local search ranking factor. For example, pictures on a Google+ page are used for a business’s Carousel image. A complete, verified Google+ page for your business is a must to stand a chance in local search. Your Google+ page should be categorized correctly and include the correct area code, name, phone number and address, all of which should be matching on your website, Google+ page and directory listings. Positive reviews on Google+ and elsewhere also improves your local search ranking.

How We Can Help You Move Up on Google

Ignoring local SEO is ignoring a major potential customer base. ACS, Inc. includes on-staff SEO experts who have improved businesses local and general search rankings. Contact us today to handle your Pigeon problems.