You have a limited marketing budget to work with and it seems like there are dozens of different tactics you keep hearing you should try.
When choosing to invest in one online marketing channel means you’ll be spending less on others, you need to know if it’s really worth it.
For most businesses, PPC advertising absolutely is.
What is PPC?
Before getting started, it’s important to first review what PPC is and how it can affect your business. PPC stands for pay-per-click marketing. Many of the ads you see around the web—on the search engine results page (SERP), your favorite blog, and the main social media sites—are pay-per-click advertising. . That means that brands don’t pay for you to see the ad, they only pay when someone clicks on it.
Usually when people talk about PPC marketing, they’re referring to Google ads, both those that show up on the Google SERP and in Google’s display network of millions of sites around the web.
But social media sites also use the PPC ad model, so really, most of the time when you see an ad online, you’re seeing a PPC ad. And the reason that you see so many PPC ads around the web is because advertisers know there are a lot of benefits to making PPC a part of your digital marketing strategy.
14 Benefits of PPC Marketing
PPC has a lot to offer brands looking to get noticed and convert leads online. Here are fourteen strong reasons to consider PPC for your business.
1. PPC increases visibility for your brand.
Visibility is step one in online marketing. No one can buy from you if they don’t know you exist. The first hurdle every business has to get over is getting people in your audience to notice you.
That’s a challenge on the web where you’re not only competing against other brands in your space, but also all the other information people in your audience are seeking out on their favorite websites and social media.
PPC gives you a guaranteed way to show up in places where your audience is spending time. Think about how often you use Google in a given day, or pull up Facebook or Twitter—not to mention sites like the New York Times or Buzzfeed that are part of the Google Display Network.
In the BuzzFeed screenshot of the BuzzFeed home page, below, both of the placements for Petco are ads from the Google Display Network:
PPC is a valuable tool for achieving the awareness phase of the marketing funnel—getting people to notice you.
2. PPC increases traffic to your website.
Your website is the main place your business lives online. If the first step of getting customers is awareness, the second step is getting people to your website. The only way for your website to do its job is for people to visit it.
If you don’t get as much traffic as you’d like (and for businesses more traffic is pretty much always better), PPC is a good way to change that.
And because of the billing model used with PPC, you only pay when your ads translate into actual traffic. PPC ads get people to your site, where you can work on convincing them to stick around, sign up for your list, and just maybe buy something.
3. With PPC ads, you always know your message is relevant to the audience.
You don’t just want people to find your business. You want the right people to find you at the right moment. With PPC, you can bid on specific keywords, ensuring that your ads show up for people actively searching for what you sell.
If you sell bathing suits, you want people to see you right when they’re gearing up for summer and looking for a good suit to buy. You can buy ads for keywords like “bathing suits” or “bikinis” and know that the people that see your ad are at the precise moment of looking for products like yours.
4. PPC networks have a huge reach.
Does your audience use the internet? Then they see PPC ads (and if they don’t, well, then you won’t have much luck getting them to your website anyways).
The vast majority of people use search engines on a regular basis. A huge number also visit social media sites every day. And when you add in the sites on the Google Display Network, you end up with a list of pretty much everybody that sees PPC ads on a regular basis.
Where advertisers in the past had to count on Super Bowl ads or billboards in Times Square to reach a large number of people, now anyone with a PPC account can tap into a massive audience of consumers.
5. PPC produces faster results than many other marketing tactics.
A lot of online marketing tactics require playing the long game. You put the work in now in the hopes that it will pay off weeks, months, or even years down the line. Those tactics are often well worth the effort, even if they require patience. This is definitely the case with PPC’s brother in search engine marketing, search engine optimization (SEO).
You don’t have to put in months of hard work to get to the first page of Google for your target keyword, you can get there tomorrow. As with other marketing tactics, you can expect to get better results over time as you gain more data and get better at PPC. But you can start gaining visibility and traffic on day one.
6. PPC can take your other marketing tactics further.
For many of the online marketing tactics that require playing the long game, like content marketing and SEO, PPC can speed up the process of starting to get results. A big part of success in content marketing is promoting your content so people can find it, and PPC is a smart promotion tactic.
While PPC doesn’t have a direct effect on SEO, it influences factors that do, such as website traffic and time spent on page. If your ads get more people to visit you website, read your content, share it, and potentially link to on their own sites, then your PPC campaigns will pay off in better SEO results as well.
And your social media marketing efforts will go further if you use social PPC ads to grow your following and raise the visibility of your best social posts.
7. PPC is cost effective.
There are a lot of reasons on this list to do PPC, but the main holdup business owners are likely to have is concern about cost. You may think, sure, it would be nice to get all these benefits, but can you really afford it?
Good news: you don’t have to spend a fortune to start seeing PPC results.
If you only have a little money to put toward it, you may not be able to claim the top spot for a competitive keyword all day long, but you can still make the budget you have work for you by getting the placements and clicks you can afford.
8. PPC produces proven ROI.
Building on that last point, the money you spend will be well worth it since PPC generally delivers a sizeable return on investment (ROI). Google says advertisers on their platform usually earn back $2 for every $1 spent.
Getting that kind of ROI depends on factors like the quality of your ads and targeting. But if you learn to do PPC well, or hire a skilled expert to do it for you, the money you spend will likely pay off in new customers and higher profits.
9. You can control your budget.
Even if you’re now convinced of the value of using PPC for your business, you know you can only afford to invest so much in it.
That’s okay. PPC platforms make it easy to control how much you spend by letting you set a maximum daily spend for your ad campaigns, as well as the maximum cost per click (CPC) you’re willing to pay for an ad. You don’t have to worry about any unpleasant surprises when you get your bill.
PPC platforms use a bidding model for the ads. So how much you pay per click and where your ad shows up are both determined by how much you’re willing to spend in comparison to your competitors.
That means paying more often produces better results, but even with a small budget your ads will be seen and, remember, you only pay when someone who sees it clicks.
10. PPC offers extensive targeting options.
While one of the great things about PPC is that you can theoretically reach just about everybody, you probably don’t need to. Very few products are something that everybody wants or needs.
You likely have a particular type of person that’s most likely to buy your products. Whether you offer a cloth diaper cleaning service and your target audience is frazzled parents of toddlers who live in Boise, Idaho, or you sell homebrew supplies and target young middle-class people into making their own beer, your ads will perform better if you can get them in front of the specific people most likely to respond to them.
Both the search engines and the social media platforms offer targeting options you can use to make sure your ads reach the right people. On the different platforms, you can limit who sees your ads based on factors such as:
- Device type
- Geographic location
- Job title
- Recent browsing history
- Purchasing intent
Ad platforms like Google and Facebook have a lot of data on who their users are and what they do online. Whether or not you consider that creepy as a consumer, as an advertiser it can translate to better results.
11. You have lots of ad format options.
With PPC, you’re not limited to one type of ad. With SERP ads alone, you can use a number of ad extensions to change up how your ad looks and what information is included. For the display network, you can use image ads, text ads, animated ads, video ads, and email ads.
- Facebook offers a long list of ad types you can choose from, including video ads, ads for promoting your page or particular updates, carousel ads, retargeted ads, and ads that include a signup form.
- Instagram has photo ads, video ads, carousel ads, and Instagram Stories ads.
- Twitter advertising options include promoted tweets, promoted accounts, and promoted trends.
- LinkedIn offers sponsored content, sponsored inMail, and text ads.
Every brand that uses PPC can figure out which ad formats make the most sense for you and your audience. And over time, you can test out different formats to see which ones get the best results.
12. Remarketing helps you maintain connections with leads.
Gaining a new visitor to your website is exciting. But once they leave, how do you make sure they don’t forget you entirely? Few visitors are ready to convert to customers the first time they encounter a new brand, they usually need a few reminders to get to that point.
PPC makes that easy with remarketing.
You can serve up ads specifically to the people who have already visited your website. Even better, you can tailor those ads to their interests, based on their behavior on your website. If they checked out a particular shirt, you can remind them of that shirt, along with other items that customers who bought it also liked. Remarketing is a good way to turn one-time visitors into actual customers.
13. The better you get at PPC, the more you save.
As you learn how PPC works, you’ll get better at creating the kind of ads your audience responds to and refine your targeting to the people most likely to respond.
But on top of that, search engines want to provide useful results to consumers, so they provide ads a quality score based on how they perform. When your ads perform well, you get a better score, and you gain better ad placements for a lower CPC.
Any company doing PPC that pays attention to their ad results can take advantage of this by continually working to tweak their campaigns for better results.
14. PPC produces valuable analytics.
PPC campaigns provide comprehensive data that’s valuable for helping you improve your campaigns for better results over time. Not only that, but you can also use PPC analytics to gain a better understanding of your audience and what they respond to, which will help you improve results across your marketing strategy.
For example, the text that performs best in your PPC ads can help you create better headlines for you content. The calls to action (CTA) you test out using PPC can inform the ones you use across your website. And the results you get when targeting different audiences with PPC can be useful in refining your buyer personas.
So much of marketing success relies on analytics, and some marketing tactics produce more data you can use than others. PPC is one of the best options for gaining valuable data that helps you strengthen your overall marketing approach.
25 Powerful PPC Statistics That Prove Its Value
That’s a long list of benefits, but where’s the proof? Don’t worry, we’ve got it. A lot of research has gone into determining the effectiveness of PPC as an advertising strategy. As a result, we have a long list of PPC statistics that back up the benefits described above.
Statistics on the Reach of PPC
- Over 40,000 searches occur on Google every second. That adds up to 3.5 billion searches a day, and 1.2 trillion a year.
- 68% of people in the U.S. are on Facebook.
- 36% use Instagram.
- 73% are on YouTube.
- 25% have accounts on LinkedIn.
- 24% are on Twitter.
- 74% of Facebook users visit the site at least once a day.
- 60% of Instagram users are on there daily as well.
- As are 46% of Twitter users.
- The Google Display network includes 2 million websites.
- It reaches over 90% of the people on the internet.
PPC Statistics About Results
12. Businesses make an average of $2 back for every $1 they spend on Google PPC ads.
13. 63% of people say they knowingly click on Google PPC ads.
14. Another 57% can’t tell the difference between PPC ads and organic results.
15. For local search results, ads claim over a quarter of all clicks.
16. Local businesses that use geographic targeting in their Google ads increase in-store visits by 107%.
17. The average click-through rate for Google ads is 3.17%.
18. Google’s conversion rates are 2.7% on search, and .89% on the Google display network.
PPC Statistics Showing Trends
19. 7 million advertisers used PPC advertising in 2017
20. They invested over $10 billion in PPC total.
21. $1 out of every $10 spent on advertising now goes to Google, making Google’s ad revenue more than twice what brands now spend on newspaper advertising.
22. 87% of businesses now invest in social advertising.
23. 88% advertise on Facebook.
24. 15% have ads on LinkedIn.
25. 11% advertise on Twitter.
PPC Is a Powerful Way to Reach Potential Customers
The evidence is clear. PPC advertising enables you to get the right message to the right people at the right time for your business to gain visibility, get more website traffic, and earn more customers.
PPC provides real, tangible results you can measure and track. And it allows you to meet potential customers in the main places they spend their time online. This also helps create brand awareness and brand recognition, helping to further support your business goals.
If you find the world of PPC intimidating—there are so many channels, ad types, and best practices to learn—you don’t have to become an expert yourself. You can hire skilled professionals with extensive PPC experience to create and monitor your campaigns. You get all the results, with none of the work.
But you can’t get those results until you get started. Set up a free consultation with HostGator’s PPC experts today.
Kristen Hicks is an Austin-based freelance content writer and lifelong learner with an ongoing curiosity to learn new things. She uses that curiosity, combined with her experience as a freelance business owner, to write about subjects valuable to small business owners on the HostGator blog. You can find her on Twitter at @atxcopywriter.