What You Don't Quite Understand About PPC Advertising

Focus Your PPC Efforts

Digital marketing doesn't always come easy. Not only does it take time and concerted effort to see results through content marketing, social media marketing, SEO and the like, but many business leaders simply don't understand the whats, whys and hows of digital marketing strategy. Unfortunately, this means that many business leaders aren't well-equipped to make the right marketing decisions, which can weaken the business or destine it to a slow, agonizing defeat.

One of the weakest areas of digital marketing across business leaders tends to be pay-per-click advertising, or PPC. PPC seems like it should be an outdated tactic not suited to cutting-edge, modern enterprise - but in fact the opposite is true. Before you make the wrong choice to ignore PPC in your digital marketing strategy, you should learn more about what PPC is and how it can help your business flourish online.


They both are acronyms, they both are part of your digital marketing and sales strategy, and they both facilitate conversions - but PPC and SEO aren't the same thing. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization; it is the science of manipulating keywords, metadata and other features on your website and content to gain a better position within search results. PPC, on the other hand, requires that you pay an advertising service to display your clickable ads around the web.

Though you can perform PPC optimization - in fact, you should increase the effectiveness of your online ads, but we'll talk more about that later - this practice and the links contained in the ads do not factor into search rankings.

There are a few other key differences between SEO and PPC to be aware of. One is timing: SEO can take months and even years to pay off; you need to diligently maintain your website and build a network of links to your webpages to see a slow and steady rise in rankings. In contrast, PPC works quickly, even immediately. Because PPC campaigns tend to reach far and wide, you'll see an increase in leads and traffic in a matter of days or even hours.

This isn't to say that SEO isn't valuable - it can accomplish more diverse goals than PPC and cost less over time. However, PPC remains a valuable marketing tactic even if you already have an SEO campaign in progress.

PPC Is Ideal for Experimentation

Unlike other forms of digital marketing, you have complete control over your PPC campaign, which makes PPC an excellent tool for experimentation. You can tinker with budgets or try different channels, platforms and more, tracking engagement to better understand what your audience likes - or even who your audience is.

There are dozens of variables worth testing to determine what drives click-through rates (CTR) as well as conversions. Plus, because PPC works so fast, you don't need to wait months before determining whether an experiment was successful; you can see, almost in real-time, whether a variable has a positive impact on your business and is therefore worthy of continued use.

Next Level PPC

PPC Has Hidden Depths

PPC seems straightforward - and it can be if that's what you need from it. However, as you become more comfortable with PPC campaigns, you should begin to discover that PPC can be more than what it seems. Consider the following relatively unknown PPC campaign features that few businesses take full advantage of:

  • Product audiences. Microsoft Ads offers re-marketing lists of products, so you can target searchers based on the exact products they have interacted with previously.
  • Account notes. In Google Ads, you can find an account notes panel that allows you to add notes - a surprisingly useful feature for documenting your PPC experiments.
  • Search partners. Both Google and Microsoft Ads serve ads on partner search sites, which could impact how your PPC data develops. You can always opt out of search partners if the performance is poor.
  • Multi-image extensions. An image always makes an ad more attractive, and multiple images increase the CTR significantly. You should utilize extensions that permit multiple images.

Pay-per-click advertising often gets a bad rap because it seems disruptive or unnatural - but the truth is that PPC works. The more you learn about PPC, the more likely you are to realize that your business stands to benefit greatly by creating and experimenting with a PPC campaign today.

Guest Author

Jackie Carrillo

Jackie Carrillo is a content coordinator and contributor that creates quality articles for topics like technology, business, home life, and education. She studied business management and is continually building positive relationships with other publishers and the internet community.