Around 80 percent of businesses spend a quarter or more of their marketing budget on digital ads. There are many ways to incorporate digital marketing into a strategy. Most of them are affordable.

The bottom line is clear. People are investing in digital marketing.

As we said, there are quite a few different options if you want to include digital marketing in your plan. One of the best-known is pay-per-click, or PPC advertising.

If you haven’t explored this option yet, we’re here to help. Think of this guide as a sort of PPC 101.

We’ll introduce you to the concept of PPC and how it works. Then we’ll go over why PPC matters and how it works with your other marketing initiatives.

PPC 101: Defining the Term

What is the PPC meaning anyway? This abbreviation stands for “pay-per-click.” It’s one of the oldest forms of online advertising.

PPC should be familiar to most marketers. Like older, print forms of advertising, you’ll rely on ads to use this method of marketing. You’ve likely seen banner ads and pop-ups on any number of websites you visit.

The difference is that, with PPC, you only pay when the ad gets clicked. That’s where the name comes from.

The system of purchasing is also a little different. You’ll bid on different keywords. If your bid is successful, your ad will be shown when someone searches a particular term on Google or Bing.

This is why PPC is also sometimes called “search engine marketing.” Search engine PPC is one form of this advertising.

Search engines aren’t the only pay per click sites though. Facebook, for example, has a PPC ad system.

Once you’ve won your bid, your ad will be displayed to users searching particular terms. If those users then click your ad, you’ll pay what you bid. The price is set per click.

How to Use PPC

Adding PPC marketing to your digital marketing strategy is easy. You can sign up for an ad network like Google Ads (formerly Adwords). Then you’ll bid on various keywords. When you win the bid, your ad will display for that search term.

Seems simple, right? It is, in theory. Using PPC in practice can become a little more complex.

The first thing you need to do is set a budget. It’s also important to pick the right keywords. Bidding for common keywords can become quite fierce, so you might end up overpaying.

Another issue is picking poor keywords. While you may not end up paying much, you also won’t drive much traffic to your website. Those visitors who do arrive on your site might not be the potential customers you’re looking for.

Finally, you’ll want to pay attention to the quality of your ads. Ad text is important in convincing people to click on the ad. Ads with images outperform pure text ads as well.

You should aim to create quality ads, just the same as you would for any other advertising campaign. There are a few rules to make digital ads more effective, so be sure to follow them.

Why You Need PPC

The next question you likely have is about the benefits of PPC for your business. Many people feel PPC is outmoded or doesn’t drive the results they want. Some think it’s too expensive for how much they get out of it.

When done right, PPC can be an effective part of your marketing.

Some people will tell you that it’s more important to invest in SEO or content marketing. They might tell you PPC isn’t a good choice.

They’re forgetting that SEO and PPC actually go hand in hand. When you use only one or the other, you only have half a marketing strategy. A holistic marketing plan uses both and lets them support each other.

SEO makes your website more visible during organic searches. PPC, by contrast, can put your website front and center when competition for the top spot is stiff.

PPC is also a better choice for time-limited offers, like sales. SEO takes time to work, whereas PPC can drive instant results.

The ROI of PPC

How effective is PPC? Google reports that businesses make $2 for every $1 they spend in Adwords.

PPC’s effectiveness can be seen in other ways. For example, PPC visitors are more likely to buy something from you.

The intent is also clear. Ads receive more clicks than even the top-ranked result when the search term starts with buying keywords.

From these figures, it should be clear PPC can be an effective and important part of your campaign. Using PPC gives you total control of your campaign, something you can’t achieve with SEO alone.

Building Great PPC Campaigns

As we’ve stressed, the success of your PPC efforts hinges on your ability to create great campaigns.

The quality of your ads is one key component. You’ll want to be sure you’re using catchy, attractive ad text. Images help too.

Selecting the right target market is also important. If your ads are reaching the wrong people, you’re less likely to find success.

Keywords and budgeting are two other important factors in a PPC campaign. The right keywords will help you reach the right people and stay on budget. A good budget will help you control costs so your campaign can achieve a higher ROI.

Finally, make sure you’re testing your ads. Try out a few variants and see which ones perform best.

If you’re still hesitant about building a PPC ad campaign, you can reach out to an experienced PPC company. Their expert team can help you do keyword research or test out variants of ads.

Start a PPC Campaign Today

That concludes our PPC 101 lesson. Now that you know the basics, you should be ready to get started with your very first PPC campaign.

Remember that help is always close at hand. If you need expert advice, don’t hesitate to get in touch. We’re here to help you build successful PPC campaigns for your business.