Pay per click (PPC) campaigns are a great way to drive traffic to your website. With a few clicks, search engines will begin promoting your ads to millions of people.
While PPC campaigns might save you time and money getting more traffic to your website quickly, it does cost money every time. Every time a user clicks on your ad, you pay a small fee. If you don’t get enough conversions from those clicks, you won’t get a very high return on your investment (ROI).
So how can you increase the ROI of your PPC campaigns and ensure you get the most bang for your marketing buck? Let's find out.
Clicks vs. Conversions
There are dozens of PPC key performance indicators to help you determine how well your ads perform. The most popular is the number of clicks.
Obviously, you want to know how many people click on your ad. Not only does this give you an idea of what you’re going to pay, but more importantly it shows how many people were compelled to click your ad.
While the total number of clicks is an important metric to track, it’s not the most important. The primary goal of any marketing campaign is to make sales. Clicks aren’t sales; they’re just the first part of the process.
To truly understand the ROI of your PPC ads, you need to track the conversion rate (CVR). CVR shows you how many users who clicked on your ad actually followed your website’s call to action (CTA) or completed a sale. The higher your CVR, the higher your PPC ROI—and that’s what you really want.
What Is PPC Ad Targeting?
Ad targeting is all about getting your ads in front of consumers who are most likely to purchase your product. If you can show the right ad to the right person at the right time, your chances of making a conversion skyrocket, boosting your ROI.
The internet is a big place. It’s not always easy to ensure your ads will reach the right people. In many cases, businesses will use run-of-network ads where the search engine manages everything to cut down on time and effort. This PPC method is similar to broadcast marketing efforts: you send your ad to as many people as possible and hope it works.
While standard run-of-network ads are great for maximizing clicks, it doesn’t do much for your conversion rate.
Targeted ads have the exact opposite effect. Because you aim at a specific audience, the total number of clicks go down. There are fewer people seeing your ads. However, since the ad is much more relevant to the consumer, conversion rates increase dramatically.
Let's look at a specific example to further illustrate.
In online studies, companies ran identical ads for a month. The only difference between the two ads was that one used a run-of-network method, and the other used a targeted approach. In one of the trials, targeted ads received 64% fewer clicks but saw a whopping 323% increase in conversions per 1,000 impressions!
The Different Types of PPC Targeting
There are two main types of PPC ad targeting that can help you get more ROI out of your campaigns: audience targeting and content targeting.
1. Audience Targeting
Audience targeting is all about placing your ad based on users’ actions, intentions, interests, or demographics. There are a few ways to harness the power of audience targeting in your PPC campaigns:
- Demographics – Target your audience based on information like age, gender, location, or even device type. Demographic targets are great if you know your product or service is popular with a specific group of people.
- In-market – Show your ads to consumers who have searched for products and services like yours in the past. In-market targeting uses users’ search histories to send them ads that are relevant to previous queries or purchases.
- Remarketing – Target users who have already interacted with your website, apps, or ads. Remarketing, or dynamic retargeting, is a powerful targeting tool. You know these users have an interest in your company; they’ve already consumed your content! Now, you just need to keep your brand front and center in their minds to help seal the deal.
- Similar audiences – As you build a remarketing user database, you can expand your target audience to include other users with similar interests. These users might not be searching for your products or services, but their online actions and interests are so similar to people already on your remarketing target list that your ads will likely be relevant to what they want to see.
Audience targeting is great for getting your PPC ads in front of the right users.
2. Content Targeting
Instead of targeting users, you can also target your PPC ads to certain types of content. This is a great way to boost the ROI of your PPC by placing your ad in the right place at the right time. Here are the different types of content targeting:
- Topics – You can choose which topics are relevant to your ad using keywords. You can select topics related to your ad, and the search engine will place your content on web pages related to those topics.
- Placement – Where do you want your ad to appear on a website? You can choose placement targets like an entire website or a specific part of a website, such as a forum or blog page, to reach a certain group of users. This type of content targeting doesn’t require keywords.
- Content keywords – This is the most common type of PPC targeting. Choose keywords related to your ad, and search engines will target users who search for queries that match or are similar to those keywords.
Content targeting is all about getting your ads in the right place. Coupled with audience targeting, you can show your ads to the right people in the right places, which will give your conversion rate—and thus, ROI—a significant boost.
The Benefits of Targeting on PPC Campaigns
There’s no doubt that thoughtful targeting has a huge impact on the ROI of your PPC campaigns. Getting your ads in front of the right people at the right time is always the key to an effective marketing strategy. While you might not get as many clicks, each click you do receive is more likely to become a conversion. Remember, clicks don’t pay the bills!
If you want some expert help to create or manage an effective PPC campaign, turn to the pros at The Creative Momentum. We’ll help you build a marketing strategy to target the right consumers, so you can get more qualified clicks to your site. Contact us for a free consultation. We’d love to hear about your project!