The Secret Sauce of Pay-Per-Click Campaigns

What are great Pay-Per-Click campaigns made of?

The absolute magic formula for PPC success remains unknown to PPC experts. We would like to tell you that we have the magic book of tricks and know what potion combination will give you the perfect PPC campaigns but, we cannot. What we can do however, is recommend a few things to set you up for success as you build out your campaigns. Here are some of our go-to solutions that help us achieve outstanding results for our clients. 

1. Become Close Friends with your Campaign’s Search Terms Report

Once called the Search Query Report in AdWords, now called the Search Terms Report (STR) in both AdWords and Bing Ads, this fantastic tool is one every PPC expert should leverage. The tool is great because it helps advertisers optimize for both visibility and clicks.  One key advantage is that it provides new keyword opportunities to target by presenting a list of words and phrases which users searched to trigger your ad. It is great for expanding your keyword list to include more long-tail keywords and phrases which users are actively searching for.

Not only does this tool help expand your keyword list, it can also help tighten the list to include only keywords or phrases you want to appear for. Such keywords and phrases can be excluded from your campaign and added to the negative keyword list.   A classic example would be seeing a term like “cheap wine glasses” within your search terms report. You know very well that you do not want to be found for the keyword “cheap”, so you include the word cheap into your negative keyword list. 

2. Get Familiar with the Auction Insights Report 

This report you great intelligence that can be used to gain competitive advantage.  It measures up to 20 competitors ranked by some KPIs such as impression share, average position etc. It can reveal who the top advertisers are that are bidding on similar keywords and how often they show up on the search engine results page (SERPs) in the same auction you participated in. This report is great because it helps you familiarize yourself with the competition and can give you a sense of the big spenders. We recommend viewing this at least every month just to determine what your bidding strategy should be.

3. Try out the Dynamic Keyword Insertion feature (DKI)?

Dynamic Keyword Insertion is a feature that assists pay per click managers to increase the CTR for ads. This wonderful tool lets you tailor your ad according to the customer’s search query. DKI is a feature that can automatically place keywords from your ad groups into pay per click ads. The intention is to be able to match keywords with the searchers queries on a search engine. Essentially, the feature modifies the text of the ad with matched keywords and makes the ad more relevant to the target customers. Additionally, it allows you to compose unique and exclusive ads for a large variety of keywords. It functions in such a way that the searched keywords are highlighted to draw a user’s attention to your ad. This eventually leads to more clicks and a higher click through rate.

A key drawback of the feature is that with the slightest of the typos your ad can become inappropriate, irrelevant and violate AdWords Policies. We have also found that the feature works poorly with Broad Match type Keywords as it can make your ad highly irrelevant on most of the searches. Thus, the best match type to combine with this feature is the phrase & exact match types.

4. Test, Test, Test… and Test Again. 

This is something that is reiterated time and time again on various SEO blogs and search engine articles, however it is so important that it bears mentioning again. Creating a successful PPC campaign is a long game that hinges on testing a variety of variables to see what works and what doesn’t. Variables such as ad copy, bid amount, landing pages, call-to-action, offers etc. are usually tested.

Google allows you to create multiple Ads within a single Ad group. These Ads will automatically be rotated. Reports are then generated to show which worked the best in terms of ROI and CTR. Do not hesitate to get rid of the Ads that are not performing well and keep refining the ones that are working. 

Bottom line?

What works for one brand or industry might not exactly work for another. The key is to stay plugged into your PPC campaigns by keeping a keen eye on what works and what needs to be changed. Try out various features and see what effect they have on your campaigns. This, we think is the secret sauce to PPC success. 

Sources

https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/2472708
https://www.en.adwords-community.com/t5/User-Articles/Dynamic-Keyword-Insertion-A-Great-Way-To-Increase-CTR-But-It-s/ba-p/52502#
http://blog.elasticgrid.com/9-tips-for-optimizing-your-adwords-campaign-the-power-of-adwords-part-3/ 
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