The Ultimate PPC FAQ for the PPCurious


What is PPC?

PPC, also known as Pay Per Click, receives its namesake from the billing model for running paid advertising on Google AdWords, Bing Ads and Yahoo Gemini. Unlike traditional marketing channels such as television, radio and billboards, advertisers receive granular data on individual user behavior and tie these to performance in real-time rather than after the advertising effort is over. Thus, an advertiser gets what he or she pays for; nothing more and nothing less.


How do I get started with a ppc account?

Surprisingly, the first step of running a PPC advertising account is to start with business value questions: what are my business needs? Is the goal to get as many leads as possible with a set budget? Create a strong brand presence and generate awareness? Understanding the goal for a business helps to lead the discussion about how best to setup and run a Pay Per Click account.


how do i choose the right ppc agency for me?

There are 1000's of well trained, certified Google Partner agencies across the United States and around the world. It can be daunting to determine who is the "top" or "best" agency, but it is not necessarily based upon who manages the largest customers' accounts. Consider answering the following questions: how much budget can I dedicate to PPC on a monthly basis? How much interaction do I want with my agency: infrequently or more often? Do I want to let the agency handle the account or do I want to request a lot of projects or changes?

If you tended to answer the former over the latter, working with a SMB partner may be your best bet. These agencies are scaled for high volume, low budget clients who want infrequent contact and a hands-off approach to the process. These "plug-and-play" type agencies are geared for quick setup and a templated format. If you are looking for a boutique service that offers higher-level implementation and personalization an agency that requires a set budget or higher is a better bet. Look for agencies that require a minimum monthly budget of about $5,000 or $10,000 and higher, as these agencies are more experienced with providing boutique PPC services.


Why should i choose your ppc agency?

As with all industries, there are many businesses that can do what we do, at least on the surface. 1000's of agencies are certified Google Partners with staff that have earned their certificates and have experience working with clients on their paid advertising accounts. What we believe sets SalesX apart is the specialization model we apply to our clients. Traditional agencies use a horizontal approach, giving a few clients to a singular individual to handle all aspects of said account. This allows for dedication to a few clients, but does not allow the agency expert to narrow and enhance their specialization. SalesX uses a vertical approach: each client receives a team of individuals that specializes in niche aspects of the advertising process including a CRO graphic design specialist, product specialist, relationship manager, and senior AdWords strategist.


Why are my ads not showing?

PPC advertising accounts give account managers a lot of control over the variables that dictate whether or not your ad will show when a user searches. The account allows an advertiser to choose for what searches they would, and would not like to show for, known as keyword matching. Other reasons could be the time of day a user is searching or from which location. It could be that it is not due to a targeting option, rather it is due to a policy or account violation, such as using a trademarked name in the ad copy. A thorough account troubleshoot of a PPC account should determine the cause and a solution can be applied to correct the problem. 


It is because your competitors have learned that there is potential for market share grab, by potentially stealing your customers looking for you on the search engines including Google and Bing. Thanks to the increase in ads showing above the normal or organic search results, users who would normally see your listing and select it, may be drawn away by enticing PPC ads listed by your competitors. Users are likely to click on the first thing they see. Thus, if your competition is out-listing you on the search results, it may be worth considering bidding on your own brand name and branded terms (see next question).

Why do i see my competitor's listing when i search for my own business?


Should i bid on my brand name?

Bidding on a brand name is a common practice. It accomplishes three things: controls the message of what a user sees when they search the brand name, takes up more real estate on the Search Results Page (SERP) leading to a higher likelihood for a click, and pushes down your competitors who may also be bidding on your brand name. Because your website is the brand and owns it, the relevance is higher, leading to a traditional cheap advertising cost for branded keywords. With a low cost, and high opportunity to capture users searching for your business, brand name bidding is a good practice to consider.

However, if your business does not have any competition on the branded keywords, an advertiser could get a pass from having to bid on their branded name. But for the low barrier to entry with a cheap click price, there really is not a downside to doing so.


Traditionally, agencies and businesses looked at Bing as the smaller brother of Google, a tinier platform under its big brother's shadow. Not anymore. Bing has come into its own right handling 20% of online search traffic. This does not necessarily equate to 20% of the results of Google either. Bing's traffic demographics makes up a different population segment, tending to favor businesses that cater to an older, more wealthier (higher disposable income) audience. Businesses that offer medical supplies, senior care, and service based businesses fare very well on Bing. Technology companies tend to do more poorly, likely due to Bing users tending to be later adopters. 

Advertisers should not be asking the question should I advertise on Bing instead of Google. Rather Bing Ads is another tool in the arsenal to gain a larger market share by showing ad listings to a new audience, and protecting their brand on this ever-growing search engine (see question: Should I bid on my brand name above). Bing Ads also has other nuances not available on Google's AdWords platform including remarketing for all businesses (Google restricts companies that deal with personal information such as medical and debt relief companies), allows for bidding on demographics such as age and gender and runs native ads. The good news is setup can be easy, especially if you already run Google AdWords: simply import the setup into Bing ads and modify as necessary.







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