February 6, 2013 | Article | Advertising
Paid Search Marketing Requires More Attention Than You Might Think
The following is a post from Kevin Hofmaenner, our Search Engine Marketing Manager at RepEquity.
Last month we discussed Why Online Reputation Management is Never Complete. The same concept holds true for pay-per-click (PPC) search marketing. For many companies, PPC can easily become set it and forget it, but by doing so you may leave money on the table. Continuous analysis and optimization leads to better results and can save you on media costs.
Make sure your account structure has the correct hierarchal flow so the search engines can efficiently understand and rate your account content. This serves multiple purposes, but the most direct is a higher quality score. In recent years, all major search engines have implemented quality score initiatives that measure how relevant your keywords, ads and landing pages are to a person seeing your ad. The higher the quality score, the lower the cost per click (CPC) and higher the average position of the ad. Optimizing your account structure can effectively reduce your cost to obtain traffic.
Keyword Buckets (Ad Groups)
Correctly organize keywords into appropriate buckets (ad groups). By having tightly themed ad groups filled with very similar keywords, the ads become much more targeted, which leads to higher click through rates (CTR). CTR is a major factor in determining quality score and ultimately CPC. Optimizing ad groups also ensures more accurate reporting and prevents keyword cannibalization, where similar keywords in different ad groups compete for impressions.
Keyword Match Types
Implementing the right match type can make a difference in both performance and cost. Search engines provide multiple of match types, ranging from broad to highly specific. Ensure that the keywords in your ad groups are using the best match type for the job. In addition, continually analyze the actual search queries used to trigger your ads and adjust your negative keyword strategy to prevent your ads from showing for irrelevant search queries.
Ad copy is often overlooked or neglected in PPC accounts, because it is time consuming and requires copy writing expertise. Continually A/B test different ad copy to determine which version yields the best success. We also recommend refreshing your ad copy as necessary to include any, seasonal specials, campaigns or promotions.
Bids & Placements
Since the PPC marketplace is an auction where you bid against other advertisers, bids can fluctuate greatly. Bid management requires daily attention and analysis. A solid bid strategy enables you to receive the optimal impression exposure and average ad position for your account to be successful.
It might be relatively easy to get up and running in PPC advertising, but your PPC account requires active management throughout the life of the campaign. Make the most of your PPC investment with ongoing analysis and optimization.