PPC for Business

The saying “There’s no such thing as bad publicity” came to mind when I saw video of a minor league baseball manager going berserk after a bad umpire’s call. After berating the umpire and getting ejected, he turned his frustration toward inanimate objects. Pulling each base out of the ground and flinging them into the outfield. And on his way to the showers he tossed all of his team’s bats onto the field.
The incident made all the sports news shows and the video went viral overnight. So, a previously unknown manager in a one traffic light town in Texas is famous far and wide. And it will be for more than 15 minutes since the video will recycle on sports blooper shows as well as be replayed every time a manager has an epic meltdown.
Some believe that any publicity, even bad publicity, is a good thing. That the manager now has “name recognition” that he wouldn’t have otherwise. But is it really good or is there too high of a cost? When teams are seeking managers at higher levels, will they consider him? Or will they be concerned that he won’t be able to control his emotions on a bigger stage?
Getting traffic to your small business website via pay per click (“PPC”) advertising has similar cost/benefit issues. In this post we’ll review several of the potential downsides of PPC when it is not managed properly.
What is PPC advertising? At its simplest, its paying Search Engines (Google, Bing et al.) to have your business listed on the search engine results page (“SERP”) along with “organic” results for certain keywords (“KW”). You bid an amount for the KW in an “auction” for a chance to be near the top of the PPC list on the SERP (the concept of “quality score” also is a factor for rankings).
When somebody clicks on your PPC ad, for each click you pay the amount that you had bid. If you bid 10 cents for the KW “perambulators”, each time your PPC ad is clicked the Search Engine or PPC service charges you 10 cents. 100 clicks equals 10 dollars.
Sounds like a bargain, huh? 10 dollars to get 100 visitors to your website is a great investment, correct? But that’s assuming that any visit to your website must be a good thing. And like any other investment, the amount you invest is only part of the equation. Finance 101 tells us that your return on investment (“ROI”) is critical as well.
Staying with the investment side for a moment, the drive to be the top ranked PPC listing can be a pitfall. Envision the company president or head marketer at your baby carriage company believing that you just have to be number one for the perambulator KW. It can result in ego based bidding that gets out of hand and inflates what you’re paying beyond the actual market value for the KW.
And only fixating on the KW that your business would like to have a top ranking for on the PPC list ignores an important PPC management tool: “Negative” keywords. They’re used to identify variations of the KW you’re bidding on so that searches for those variations don’t trigger your PPC ad appearing on the list. If you only sell new baby carriages you wouldn’t want your PPC ad to appear if somebody searches for “used” baby carriages. Their click on your ad would be a waste of your PPC budget.
On the ROI side there’s the issue of “junk traffic” to your site. This is especially of concern when doing PPC through a PPC service. It may place part of your PPC ads with lesser search engines or content networks. Such “Partner Network Campaigns” can result in your getting visitors from the far reaches of the world wide web that really have no relation to your business. Great for pumping up your traffic statistics, but not so great for your ROI.
Unlike traffic from search engine optimization (SEO) efforts, PPC doesn’t “scale”. For every additional PPC visitor to your site from a PPC ad, you pay. Compare such to the time (also a cost, but a fixed one) that it takes to post a blog article and promote it via social media. When effective, there will come a point when the benefit equals your fixed cost and each visitor thereafter costs you less and less.
Those are some of the potential downsides to PPC ads when not managed properly. There can be great risk as a result of the amount of money your business can spend to generate website traffic regardless of its quality or potential for return on investment. PPC advertising can be a good online marketing tool for your business just like your SEO efforts. However, properly managing your PPC is the key.
LAD Solutions is a professional Pay-Per-Click Management company based out of Los Angeles that specializes in managing and optimizing Google Adwords Campaigns. Our PPC experts are waiting to help you. To learn more about our pay per click management services, please call (888) 523-2926, or click the button below to submit your request, and one of our representatives will be in touch with you shortly!