To get the most out of any paid search (PPC) campaign, there needs to be a watertight strategy behind it. There is a distinct difference between strategy and tactics. Strategy isn’t simply ad testing or restructuring accounts it involves assessing the overall wider situation – including the competitive landscape, developing a policy of how paid search advertising can help you reach those goals, then implementing a coordinated action plan in order to hit those targets.
Whatever your goals are though, there are certain basic elements of a paid search strategy that can get you on the right track immediately and pay dividends in the long term.Research Your Keywords.
Focusing on the correct terms is probably the most critical element in any effective paid search campaign. Get the terms wrong, and you’ll have not only wasted time but also wasted advertising budget.
In feeling your way towards the right keywords, there’s a fine balance between the relevancy of words that are specific to your company, compared to how often they’re searched for – along with the competition for those words. AdWord advertisers are continually growing and amending their paid search keyword lists. If you only perform this task once, the chances are you could miss out on numerous long-tail, low-cost keywords that could drive traffic to your site. For this reason, your keyword research should be exhaustive. As well as all the obvious, relevant keywords, you need to be looking at those less common long-tail searches. Although they’re not as popular, they’re far more specific and make up the bulk of search-driven traffic. Plus, because they’re less competitive, they’re less expensive too.
It’s also imperative to consider the motivation behind searches – and to take into account that people may be using different language, depending on which stage of the buying cycle they’re at. Keep on top of things, and monitor the performance of all your keywords over time. While certain words may drive traffic, they may nevertheless actually reduce profits, due to their cost. By improving the quality of your campaign, you may be able to lower your costs while still making each click more profitable.Optimise Your Campaign.
Once you’ve done your research and have your keywords in place, you’ll need to manage them. Experiment with different keywords, add in non-converting terms as negative keywords to help decrease wasted spend, see if particular words are costing too much, and refine your ad groups.Hone Your Landing Page.
As well as making sure your paid search adverts are spot-on, it’s vital that the landing page your ad leads to makes a great first impression. If your page doesn’t pull visitors in immediately, they won’t remain. So you need to ensure there’s a continuity between what people are searching for and what your landing page offers. You may also want to consider a multiple-landing page strategy for A/B testing conversion tactics, according to what paid search ad they’ve responded to.
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