What is a PPC (Pay Per Click) campaign and how to run it?

PPC (Pay Per Click) is a campaign settled in the model of payment for clicks on ads. Great flexibility of this form, as well as extremely favorable way of accounting, makes this model is considered one of the most beneficial in the case of promoting websites. The advertiser pays for the service only at the moment when the user clicks on the advertisement, and not for displaying it.

What is PPC (Pay Per Click)? 

In fact, all of us have encountered the PPC model in our lives. Most often it appeared in the form of a sponsored link, at the beginning of Google search results, but not only.

Payments in PPC advertising are collected only after the customer’s action of clicking. So you are paid for the effect, not just for running a campaign for your business. Hence the name of the service, PPC- Pay Per Click or CPC or Cost Per Click. One of the most popular examples of PPC advertising is none other than the well-known and already appreciated Google Ads. Similar advertising systems can also be seen on popular social media outlets like Facebook Ads, Tik Tok Ads, and LinkedIn Ads.

In addition to Google’s results page, PPC ads can be displayed not only on Google’s search engine, but also on Google’s partners’ websites (most of these are large and well-known sites) in the form of display ads. Display ads are considered one of the most effective forms of support for traditional search engine advertising.

In the case of PPC, we have the ability to adjust the form of ads to user preferences. The banners will appear only to selected people and will serve to encourage them to visit our website and display it. It is worth mentioning that advertisements in the PPC model also appear before search results in the form of store products – with a photo and the product price. These actions help to increase brand awareness and reach the desired audience. The effects of the campaign can be astonishing.

How much does PPC advertising cost?

The costs associated with PPC advertising are based on auction systems. The way it works is that you have to set the maximum cost that you can spend per click, then you have to take into account the bidding and cost per click with your competitors who have also launched their sites in exactly the same industry. In fact, the cost depends on many factors in this case, including:

  • the popularity of the words affecting the positioning,
  • competitiveness of the industry,
  • our previous results in Google,
  • quality of the page to which the advertising link will direct,
  • the level of relevance of our words to the content of the ad and the website.

The ads that perform best will appear first in the search results. If we do not set a maximum rate, Google will determine it automatically, taking into account factors such as location, time of day, devices and more. For this reason, it is a good idea to use the Keyword Planner or Google Phrases. Additionally, you should take care of the positioning of your website and not rely solely on PPC.

Unfortunately, these advertisements, despite the fee, will not relieve us of the task of positioning the website. In case of a badly run and positioned website, such a solution may turn out to be not only expensive but also effective only for a short period of time. Standard positioning and PPC are not alternatives, but it is worth taking care that they complement each other. However, the quality of advertising is important.

When is it worth using PPC advertising?

Now that we know what PPC campaigns are and how the cost of such solution is calculated, let’s move on to the issues related to when it is worthwhile to opt for this type of advertising. Launching uninterrupted, permanent Google Ads campaign with a link that leads to your company website seems to be the most obvious use of PPC advertising.

However, it is a relatively expensive solution that does not always turn out to be effective. When is it especially worth using PPC and how to increase the quality of advertising?

Google Ads is the most popular solution, which is based on PPC models. Different forms are used for ads, such as:

  • sponsored links – they are located at the very top of the search results, just above the organic results. This is one of the most popular and also the most effective methods. Sponsored links generate a lot of clicks, so this form of PPC campaign is considered one of the most popular,
  • display ads and advertising network – in this case the ads are displayed on the websites of the Google platform partners in the form of graphic ads or banners, which can be selected on the basis of linking topics or words relevant to SEO,
  • product ads – recently Google has also made it possible to use product advertising, thanks to which products from a given online store can be visible at the very top of search results. Then both the image and the price of the product are shown,
  • Discovery Ads – these are ads visible in Discover service, which – thanks to artificial intelligence – are displayed only to those Internet users who are most likely to be interested in them. They are not treated as spam by recipients, because they appear right next to content of similar subject matter,
  • YouTube Ads – these are ads appearing as an interlude while watching videos on YouTube or during video searches. The payment takes place only after the user watches at least 30 seconds of the ad or clicks on it.

When we enter the market and want to “stand out”.

PPC advertising proves to be extremely effective when we have established a business, but are just entering the market and want to stand out among the competition. We can then decide on PPC campaigns for our industry or specific product. Even if we do not get many hits, we will be visible in the search results for some time, which will allow us to build our brand identity.

Local activities

If you operate locally and your product or service is only in a specific area, such as a specific city and its immediate vicinity (not including the largest cities in Poland), PPC ads can be a very beneficial solution.

In fact, companies that do not have much competition in the area can benefit a lot from using PPC campaigns. If we have a better site, we can get more clicks (and a lower cost per click) because the competition will not drive the price up. However, you need to be sure that you are operating in such conditions first, because if you are running a guesthouse in a seaside or mountain town, even though you live in a small area, an excess of competition can hurt your search engine position.

Sale and seasonal offers

Although PPC activities should be carried out on a regular basis, paid PPC advertising in Google Ads will also intensify traffic to your site if you run it for a short period of time to promote a seasonal offer. A very good example is advertising Christmas or Valentine’s Day gifts. In the first case, the ad should be launched at the beginning of December, while in the second case – at the beginning of February. Such actions should also be taken into consideration before the start of sales related to e.g. Black Friday.

Advertising before you start positioning your website

An interesting and at the same time beneficial solution is to start PPC advertising before the website positioning activities begin. PPC campaigns can be easily and quickly verified and improved. This allows you to quickly check whether the keywords you have chosen are bringing benefits and traffic to your site.

If we notice that the keywords are not effective, we can quickly improve them. Although such tests are relatively expensive, they give us information about the keywords that are worth choosing to position our site. Standard SEO steps would give us such information in a much longer interval.

Where are PPC ads located?

Until 2016, sponsored links in Google Ads campaigns appeared on the right side of Google search results. They were mostly in the nature of sponsored boxes. They were also located above the natural results. It is worth noting, however, that the structure of that time allowed only 11 ads to appear, 3 of which were marketing messages above the organic results.

The rest of the results appeared on the right hand side or under the search engine suggestions. After the introduction of changes in Google Ads, all PPC ads now appear only below and above the organic results. There have also been changes to the number of ads on a given page. The number has been reduced from 11 to 7.

Such a reconstruction influenced the fact that internet users may now see more ads above the organic results. However, advertisers may gain a chance to reach such users to whom the advertisement will be perfectly matched. If the ad is tailored to the customer’s needs, they are much more likely to enter the site and convert.

Interestingly, the changes also improved the readability of the site when browsing on mobile devices. However, the block related to Google shopping remained unchanged. By removing the boxes containing ads, they have become more visible. All the changes made to Google Ads meant that ads will both open and close the listing. In fact, time will tell if these changes will increase CPC (Cost Per Click) rates.

Quick results

PPC advertising allows us to obtain quick and visible effects. Very well prepared in terms of content and rich in keywords advertisement can increase interest in given services offered by us. Many entrepreneurs, especially those who are just entering the market, want their services to quickly reach a group of potential customers. Additionally, at the beginning of their journey, it is important to limit the budget, that is why PPC advertising can turn out to be a real shot in the arm, which affects the flexibility of advertising.

Payments only for the effect

Another advantage of PPC campaigns is that it is a solution where you spend money only for the effect. We do not pay for the page display but for the user clicks. It is a fair solution because the increase of traffic on the website will also result in greater interest in our offer and profits. We do not pay here for the mere display of advertising, but the real reception of the site and services by interested people.

Defining the target group

When we enter the market with some product or service, we very much want the advertisement to be directed only to a specific group of users, since other people will certainly not use our service due to lack of interest. The ability to precisely define such a group enables us to reach those customers who will certainly make some traffic to our website, increasing its recognition and boosting our profits. For example, SEMSTORM can be a useful tool in keyword analysis.

Possibility to verify the effects

The measurability of effects is possible right after the campaign starts. Thanks to that, in a quick and easy way we can see if the actions introduced by us have a positive influence on the website traffic.

High flexibility

Literally at any time we have a chance to moderate the keywords and modify the price per click. Thanks to this everyone can have a sense of control over their actions and the effects of advertising. Additionally, it is worth mentioning that we pay for the PPC campaign as much as we have previously agreed on at the planning stage. When conducting SEO activities, we should additionally take care of page positioning by choosing the right keywords. We may be surprised by the effects of combining these two actions, aimed at improving the visibility of our website in search results.

Disadvantages of PPC campaign

The first and most serious disadvantage of PPC campaign is the short duration of its actions. Unfortunately, relying solely on these actions can have a negative impact on our results if we do not decide to position the website at the same time. Unfortunately, ranking high in the Google search engine is possible only for some time and with a limited budget allocated for the campaign.

Additionally, calculating the whole, we can see higher costs than traditional SEO. So if we do not decide to delegate these activities to a professional agency, we may find out after some time that the costs of the campaign were actually high.

Another significant disadvantage is the risk of the so-called “click-through”, when the competition, by clicking on our ad, causes the budget to run out. The competition can work against us by offering a higher rate while raising the position of their ad. This is because the system operates on an auction model.

Another disadvantage is the necessity of daily control of activities, which may be too absorbing for many entrepreneurs. Quick reaction to any changes is extremely important here, so it is worth considering the help of a professional positioning company.

How to increase the effectiveness of PPC (Pay Per Click)?

We have already cleared the most important doubts related to how to stand out in a given industry by introducing PPC campaigns. We have also found out what Google adwords are and how online stores are gaining popularity nowadays. So now it’s time to dispel other doubts that many marketers face. First of all, before introducing this form of advertising, we should clearly and precisely define the goals that are most important for us.

It is also worth having access to Google Analytics, so that at any possible time we know what is happening with the site and what actions can benefit its positioning. The owner of the account should be an email on the company domain. Thanks to Google Analytics we can set further goals, check effectiveness of given sources or make decisions about budget allocation.

In case of SEO activities it turns out to be very important to choose appropriate keywords that will positively influence the position of our website in the network. Of course, these activities should be carried out with the help of the Keyword Planner in Google Ads. The keyword phrases are chosen strictly according to the type of our profession.

Since numbers are the most important in PPC, it is necessary to clearly and specifically determine which products are key for us and which we want to promote first. At this point it is worth evaluating the profits and identify those products that will generate the most income. It may happen that although the campaign brings fewer conversions, it becomes more profitable for our business.

The most important advice, however, is to trust the SEO specialist. You should rely on the experience of a professional and entrust him with positioning your website. Each campaign has clearly and precisely defined goals that you need to stick to, so that your website, thanks to PPC model, has more chances to appear on the top of the web page. By choosing the right key phrases, we can be surprised how SEO affects the position of our website and the number of visitors.

To make the campaign work even better, you need to tell the specialist about what your business is all about and what results you would like to get after introducing the PPC model. Additionally, you should also indicate how your business works and what is most important to you. The PPC model does produce results, but all activities must be clearly and precisely defined. PPC advertising is becoming an increasingly popular form of business advertising. Running a PPC campaign under the guidance of a specialist will give even better results.

PPC campaigns in LinkedIn Ads

Actually, Google Ads is not the only advertising system where we can apply PPC campaigns. Another extremely interesting and at the same time constantly developing service turns out to be LinkedIn Ads. LinkedIn is a very interesting social network, which allows us to obtain extremely interesting information about users.

People who have registered with the service provide very detailed information regarding their education, professional experience or skills. Such data enables very effective occupational targeting. However, what does it mean in practice? In this way, you will be able to target your advertisement to people in different positions, from different industries, to a specific gender, interests, age or other specific areas of the target group. LindedIn Ads will work well for B2B contracts, recruiters and employers.

What kind of advertising can you create on LinkedIn? Available formats

As already mentioned, LinkedIn is an ever-growing, thriving social network that allows you to get information about other people’s education, skills or offers. However, there are currently four basic types of PPC (Pay Per Click) ads that can be listed there.

Text ads

These ads can be seen on both mobile devices and computer. They are usually displayed on the right side of the screen or at the top in Google. This kind of ad will definitely be seen by anyone browsing online clothing or car stores.

Graphic advertisements

A very interesting relationship is the fact that ads in the form of graphics very attract potential customers. This is one of the most popular and effective forms of advertising available. A big advantage in this case is that they are visible both for people who use mobile devices, and for those who prefer to work on a computer. Graphics can take the form of static, standard graphics or a video or carousel format.

Advertising in messages

This form of advertising also has another name – “InMail”. Its characteristic feature is that it is sent directly to people using LinkedIn.

Dynamic advertising

With this form of advertising, it is possible to place an advertisement in the information channel in a graphic and text format. The main assumption here is to reach a specific group.

PPC campaigns in Facebook Ads

Every day millions of people scour Facebook for inspiration, connections or information. You should take advantage of this fact by placing your content there as well. In a very quick and easy way, you can also create PPC campaigns that will increase interest around your fanpage, but also increase awareness of your company.

Facebook Ads vs PPC campaigns

More and more companies are recognizing the prospects of social marketing and are willing to use the services offered by the most popular social network, Facebook, to promote their company. Facebook Ads campaigns is a Facebook advertising system that resembles a list of Google Ads sponsored links. With ads on the social profile we can reach specific groups of customers potentially interested in the services offered by our company. There are two billing models of Facebook ads available here:

  • CPC – the cost arises as a result of clicking on the ad and going to the website,
  • CPM – the cost arises as a result of displaying ads on Facebook.

What are the benefits of Facebook Ads campaign?

PPC advertising on Facebook gives you the possibility of personalizing your ads, choosing graphics or text and specifying the group of recipients to whom you want to reach with your product or service. Using the models mentioned above allows you to increase the number of visits to your website, as well as to increase brand awareness among potential consumers.

PPC campaigns in TikTok Ads

TikTok is a platform that allows users to record short videos of up to 15 seconds. This is where you direct new trends that users can repeat. So it’s becoming increasingly popular to use a solution like TikTok Ads, which can be added from both your phone and computer.

TikTok campaigns are a great opportunity for those brands looking to expand their reach. In fact, it doesn’t matter if one is a small or large business, TikTok Ads Manager will help us to achieve our business goals effectively. In this case, we can distinguish campaigns that aim for:

  • traffic – directing users to a specific application or website,
  • reach – to reach a new group of people in our target group,
  • video views – to maximise the number of video views,
  • lead generation,
  • increase conversions.

When to Avoid PPC (Pay Per Click) Campaigns?

While PPC advertising is a valuable part of our company’s marketing campaign, there are a few exceptions when this solution probably won’t yield as high a return on investment as we thought.

As the name suggests, PPC advertising is and certainly always will be paid. The moment the budget is exhausted or the ad is removed, our website will disappear from the Internet. For this purpose apart from PPC it is necessary to take care of implementing beneficial SEO actions that will allow us to build admittedly slow but long-lasting effects. SEO will protect our site from suddenly disappearing from the web when we stop engaging in advertising activities.

Most PPC models work on an auction and bidding basis. This means that our success on the web depends not only on our budget, but also on the ads of our competitors. Before implementing such actions, it is worth checking who else is using this form of advertising their services.

Although platforms such as Google and Facebook have done their best to make PPC marketing user-friendly, managing campaigns requires time. Although it is possible to manage campaigns automatically, such a solution does not guarantee the highest return on investment. Customizing your ads and monitoring your campaigns will allow you to enjoy the satisfaction of a more profitable PPC model.

Summary

PPC marketing is a popular form of advertising in which you pay only per click. The final cost depends on the CPC rate which can be from a few cents to even several dozen PLN. PPC model is profitable in most cases on auction systems. The advertiser with the highest rate and the best ad wins the first position, which enables him to enjoy (and profit) from the highest click-through rate of the website.