At Ignition Search we tend to start most new clients with some level of Paid Search. Of course, it has to fit a brief, and goals for the campaign and so on, but we tend to get the best results short term through this channel and it allows us to drive the strategy forward based on knowledge as opposed to guess work.
Resistance to Paid Search
We often meet resistance to Paid Search.
Sometimes this will be because the company has previously experimented with Paid Search themselves and lost money with no tangible return. Google makes it very easy for anyone to sign up and encourages them to ‘have a go’, but mistakes can be costly even during a learning process and this can put people off quite quickly.
Other times they will have enlisted the help of a firm who has sold the dream of a top spot page 1 ranking; but in reality been bidding on a ridiculously long tail search term that is never typed but sits there in all its glory at the top of the SERP’s for all to see, never generating a single click. This is mis-sold and just plain wrong in our opinion!
Whatever the reason this resistance is understandable but is a great shame as Paid Search delivered properly can transform a business very quickly.
Why is Paid Search so Good?
In simple terms AdWords can deliver targeted traffic direct to the most relevant page on a website based on what keywords are typed into Google. This traffic can be tracked from the initial click right through to sale or completion of a call to action.
This offers extremely valuable data that can be compiled quickly and tweaked, honed and evolved to get better and better.
If this is done correctly it offers tremendous Return on Investment and is completely transparent.
Taking Paid Search Forward
Once a base level campaign is established and working there are many aspects that can be added in to further improve results.
1) Landing Page Split Testing – these are slightly different versions of a page that you drive some of the usual traffic to in order to monitor and compare different results and behaviour. The goal here is to gradually improve the performance of traffic and generate more conversions.
2) E-Commerce Tracking – this should be standard for any e-commerce website but often is not installed! This enables all revenue amounts to be registered against the Source of traffic, Campaign and Ad Group; data can be drilled down to individual keyphrases.
3) Experimenting with new Keyphrases.
4) Identifying long tail searches.
Rolling Paid Search into Other Services
This is where starting with Paid Search makes so much sense.
Search Engine Optimisation is a big investment in time and money so it is critical that the correct keyphrases are being targeted. The webmaster has no way of knowing what works for their website. Of course, keyphrase research can be conducted to establish traffic volume etc but this does not offer any information on CONVERTING traffic. This is trial and error; and organic trial and error takes a long time.
PPC offers an identical route to entry onto the website insofar as a person will type a search into Google, select an entry that takes them to a website, and then navigate through the site. It is dangerous to assume which keyphrases will bring sales, especially when you can establish this information so quickly via AdWords.
Then you can deliver a meaningful and focussed organic strategy based on RESULTS.