Paid Search Marketing is probably the most popular form of online advertising in use today. It refers to any form of advertising which is produced based upon a related search in a search engine. Paid Search Marketing has been around for some time, and different forms of it are in use on Google, Bing, Yahoo, Facebook and other major search engines and portals. Because it is search-generated, it can be very specific and pin-point targeted, making it a very powerful and potentially efficient advertising medium. The most well know version is Google's Adwords, which is a form of Pay Per Click.
Pay Per Click, or PPC is a form of paid advertising on the Internet where the advertiser (ie you) only pays the provider (Google) when someone actually clicks on your advertisement and actually visits your website, hence the term, 'pay per click'. Potentially (and every provider is a little different), every time someone clicks on your ad, you then have to pay the provider whatever the “click-thru” price is at the time. For most providers, the price you pay for each click-thru is largely determined by the competitors advertising for that phrase, with each of them bidding against the rest, on how much they are willing to pay to have their advert display before or above another competitor’s ad.
The amount you pay then is determined by how much everyone is prepared to pay to have their ad displayed before yours, or another competitor’s, ad. So the pricing is entirely market-driven, but the advertisement is potentially able to be extremely specifically targeted. In fact, PPC is probably the most demand-led and targeted form of advertising that has ever existed.
Most Pay Per Click providers also allow you to set budgets for each ad, per day and per month, so you have a lot of control.
Because of this PPC can be a very successful and easy to understand a form of advertising, and principally because the cost v benefit is easy to see, it has become very popular and turned some providers (like Google) into major advertising-income generators.
Pay per click was not invented by Google. In fact, it was invented by a company called Goto.com in 1998, which later changed its name to Overture. The overture was eventually taken over by Yahoo, but originally all the major search engines, including Google, used the Overture PPC service.
Freetimers was using PPC for our clients from 1998, and because we were one of the first to use it, it was very cheap then. Google introduced its version of PPC, Google Adwords in 2000 and Freetimers was a very early user. We, therefore, have loads of experience and are expert users and managers of Google Adwords in particular. We are a qualified Google Partner of many years standing.
Pay Per Click is now sometimes a very sophisticated advertising tool, but it can be very expensive, usually in our experience 5 to 20 times more expensive than using SEO (Search Engine Optimisation). Nevertheless, PPC can be very successful if well managed and properly set up. Also, unlike SEO, PPC is immediately available and can be set up and used in a single day. SEO is an ongoing process that can be much more successful than PPC, with a much better ROI, however the search engines, and Google, in particular, put delays on SEO and the speed by which top rankings can be achieved, specifically to encourage you to use PPC so you can get a more immediate return. Because of this, many digital marketing professionals would agree that there is actually a war between Google and SEO because Google wants you to use PPC so it can make profits for itself, and to enable this it purposely puts barriers in place that have the effect of dissuading people from using SEO, where it doesn’t make any money. For you, as a website owner, you may want to use both.
PPC and primarily in its Google Adwords form should be a consideration in any modern marketing campaign. When it is used, where it is used, and how it is used, is a matter of strategy and budget and could potentially be different for every business.
Freetimers are experts not only in using PPC and Google Adwords, but in determining with you how it should be used in relation to SEO, and in relation to your goals and available budget. We can help you with anything from very limited small local campaigns to great big UK or worldwide campaigns using thousands of keyword phrases. We currently manage campaigns with budget levels of many £k each month very successfully. Facebook PPC advertising has also evolved into a very powerful platform, with potentially even better targeting than Google's.
If you would like to discuss your PPC, Google Adwords or Facebook advertising campaigns, don’t hesitate to contact our digital marketing department on 01604 628429.