PPC 101: What to Do Earlier than Paying for Clicks

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You have a business and you look forward to attracting potential customers over the internet. Where should you start Think of this as your first year college-level pay-per-click (PPC) course – PPC101.

1. Create a website: This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people come to JumpFly to spend money on digital advertising without a website. In order to advertise on the internet, you must have a website to which the traffic for the ads can be directed.

2. Set up conversion tracking: In order to effectively manage PPC efforts, it is important to have some kind of conversion tracking on your website. You can tailor your conversion goals to match your business goals. Whether you want to make calls, make purchases or fill out forms – there is a conversion campaign for that. Paying for clicks and not tracking conversions is not recommended. A recommended way to set up conversion tracking is to use Google Tag Manager. This is an easy way to add and update conversion tracking codes on your website.

3. Create a marketing budget: It is crucial to have a budget before setting up your PPC campaigns. If your company is brand new this can be an uncomfortable subject. How can you spend money on ads if you don’t start making money until you start serving ads? Think of your marketing budget as an investment in your business – we all know the old adage, “You have to spend money to make money”. And that applies to PPC as well as everywhere else.

4th Create your shopping feed: If you’re looking to promote an ecommerce website, make sure your shopping feed is set up before you start serving ads. Having a feed makes it easier to set up shopping campaigns through Google Merchant Center.

5. Determine which products or services you want to focus on: When you think of Paid Search Ads, you want to get the most bang for your buck. Think about which products or services make the most money and focus on those things first. Once you see if your moneymakers can bring the bacon home through conversion, you can expand your efforts to other levels of product or service that you offer.

6th Decide what your USP should look like: Your USP sets you apart from your competitors and makes your ads appear on the search engine results page (SERP). Do you offer free shipping or a free gift when you buy? What about free returns, guaranteed price adjustments, or a money back guarantee? All of these are USPs to highlight in your ads. By making sure these USP messages are in place, your ads can perform better among competing ads on the SERP.

7th Select the location you’d like your ads to be targeted to: If you are a service provider and want to promote your business online, it is important to consider your target business areas before you start running ads. Geotargeting can be useful for keyword research as you may find location-specific keywords when you set up your account.

8. Select your keywords: Having a clear list of dead-on keywords is an excellent place to start. Put yourself in the shoes of your potential customers – what would you type into Google if they searched for a company like yours? Start with this list and build on it with the keyword research tools provided by paid advertising platforms. It’s best to start with a very narrow list of keywords – you can keep growing and adding more. At the beginning of this process, focus on keywords that are exactly what you are offering.

While this is not an exhaustive list of things to do before starting PPC, they are important steps to take before starting your paid search adventure. Making sure these eight steps are complete will give you a head start in creating your advertising campaigns. If you hire an agency to manage your ads, if you’ve already figured it out, they’ll love you!