What’s the formula for PPC success? Columnist Jacob Baadsgaard has tips on how to significantly expand your market share without wasting your ad spend.
Pay-per-click advertising is all about buying online market share. People are searching online for something relevant to your business, and you pay to show up in that search.
It’s a great model, provided that those impressions actually turn into sales.
Unfortunately, even if your PPC efforts are producing profitable sales, most business owners and account managers live with the nagging feeling that their ad spend isn’t producing properly.
The market share is there; you just can’t seem to capture it!
Fortunately, it’s not that tough to induce things rotated. In fact, with some easy changes, I’ve seen several firms double their market share while not increasing their PPC budget.
That means additional clicks, additional conversions and — most significantly — additional sales.
So, however, does one double market share while not increasing ad spend? It’s easier than you think that.
The Problem With Keywords
Most PPC campaigns suffer from keyword inflation. the typical account manager looks to wrestle with the unspoken belief that major segments of their client base square measure mistreatment as-of-yet undiscovered keywords in their on-line searches.
Afraid of missing out on a promoting share goldmine, they bid on any keywords which may be utilized by a possible client.
The problem is, this approach truly reduces market share.
How? to know matters, let’s return to promoting one zero one and take a glance at the definition of “market share.”
market share (n): the share of total sales volume in a very market captured by a whole, product, or company.
It seems that on-line market share doesn’t have something to try and do with what percentage search terms trigger your ads. Instead, your market share is decided by the share of searchers in your market WHO become customers.
Since your budget is finite, any cash you pay on keywords that don’t manufacture conversions or sales pulls money removed from your productive keywords. it’s to return from somewhere, after all.
That means you’ve got less budget to pay on search terms that improve your market share — which suggests you’re losing market share.
Forget the competition; your own search terms square measure cannibalizing your market share!
The High Value Of Keyword Inflation
Awhile back, we have a tendency to audited a PPC account for a future consumer that had spent over $1.3 million on AdWords. Incredibly, despite disbursement over $50,000 a month on their ads, they were losing seventy two % of their potential market share to budget limitations.
At first look, the answer appears obvious — simply increase the budget and you’ll quadruple sales, right?
Well, that works, however provided that you’re creating an affordable profit… that they weren’t.
The problem was that the majority of their budget was being wasted on the incorrect search terms — 98.9 % of their 4,050 keywords were manufacturing < one conversion per month!
As a result, fourteen % of their ad pay was manufacturing sixty two % of their conversions.
And, with all the opposite keywords siphoning off their budget, their productive keywords weren’t showing ads 72 % of the time.
That’s not sensible.
The productive 1.1 % of their keywords were 6.4 times additional possible to convert and had a seventy seven % lower cost-per-acquisition (CPA) — that meant that they had the potential to triple (or more) the company’s conversions.
And however they were solely showing 28 % of the time.
Why? that the company may “increase” their market share by bidding on additional keywords?
Doesn’t very add up, does it?
More Market Share for Your cash
There ar 3 basic steps to up your on-line market share: 1) hunt your prime keywords; 2) get eliminate your useless keywords; and 3) maximize your market share.
Step 1. hunt Your prime Keywords
The funny issue concerning this whole state of affairs is that the majority business house owners and PPC account managers apprehend off the highest of their heads that search terms drive the simplest traffic to their web site.
When I audit accounts, I typically raise, “Which keywords ar your best performers?” The answers ar nearly always in good alignment with the info.
So most of the people apprehend what they ought to be disbursement their budget on… so they pay their budget away.
To see what you’re very disbursement your PPC budget on, you would like to tug a Keywords report. Open AdWords, set the date vary to a few to 6 months and click on the Keywords tab.
Now, click the Filter drop-down menu, then click “Create filter.” Depending on how you measure success, you can then choose which metric you want to screen for.
Here, I’ve set it up to show me all of the keywords with a conversion rate over two percent.
Once you’ve got this data, you can look at a variety of information:
- What percentage of your ad spend do your top keywords account for?
- Are specific campaigns built on your best keywords?
- Which ads are your best keywords linked to?
- Are impressions on your high-performing campaigns limited by budget?
- Should any of your keywords be split off from their existing campaign to form a new, more targeted campaign?
Once you’ve got a good feel for how your keywords are performing, it’s usually a good idea to dive into the search terms report and take a look at which actual queries are driving the best results for your business.
Your search terms (also found under the Keywords tab) can provide a ton of additional insight into how your audience is interacting with your keywords.
This is important, because even keywords that appear to target the right intent may get lots of clicks and impressions for totally irrelevant searches.
However, using your search terms report, you can uncover exactly which queries produce value and turn those queries into keywords for new campaigns!
Additionally, you can filter for things like “Conversions = 0” to see which keywords or search terms are performing badly.
With your best- and worst-performing keywords in hand, it’s time to stop diluting and start improving your market share.
Step 2. Get Rid of Your Useless Keywords
At this point, you’ve probably discovered that a huge percentage of your ad spend is going to waste.
Don’t worry, you’re not alone.
If your PPC campaigns are like most of the 2,000+ AdWords accounts we’ve audited, 12 percent of your keywords are producing 100 percent of your conversions.
To make matters worse, the worthless 88 percent of your search terms are probably consuming 61 percent of your ad spend.
Fortunately, it’s fairly easy to fix this. Just stop wasting money on the wrong keywords.
Simply by eliminating your budget-sucking keywords, you can expect to see your acquisition cost go down and your conversion rate go up — all while actually spending less on PPC!
And… cue the happy dance.
Now, you could stop at this point and just enjoy getting more for less.
However, now that you’ve actually got things working the right way, why not put that newly liberated money towards actually increasing your market share.
Step 3. Maximize Your Market Share
Here’s where things get really exciting. By redirecting your previously wasted ad spend towards your effective keywords, you can finally start using your budget to grow your market share.
Remember that client I mentioned earlier? When they were spending 86 percent of their budget on crummy keywords, their effective keywords never had a chance to shine.
But when we took their wasted budget and used it to fund their killer keywords, here’s what happened:
Within a matter of days, their ads were showing up for twice as many relevant searches.
Extra impressions and clicks are nice, but market share comes from “sales volume,” not “impression volume,” “click volume” or even “conversion volume.”
The real question is, how did this change affect sales?
Within one month, sales increased by 52 percent. After six months, sales nearly tripled!
In addition, cost-per-sale dropped by 78 percent, which meant that they were spending 25 percent less for 3x more sales.
Now that’s how you grow market share!
All of this growth came from a very simple shift in focus. Instead of bidding on every conceivable search term, we focused their budget on the keywords that were producing sales.
As a result, we went from paying for clicks to paying for market share.
Now, the results aren’t always this dramatic, but over the years, we’ve used this approach to help dozens of clients double, triple or even quadruple their market share.
In some cases, you might end up spending $10,000/month on only five exact match keywords, but if those keywords drive the maximum market share for your business, those are the keywords you should be spending most of your budget on.
The secret to improving your online marketing share isn’t finding ways to increase your keyword count. The secret is to fund the keywords that count.
Your top keywords should get your top dollar.
Of course, if you have a brilliant new keyword in mind, it’s always a good idea to test things out. You just want to make sure that your core ad spend is focused on your best keywords.
The formula for PPC success is really quite simple — find your winning keywords, eliminate the losers and put all that extra budget into getting every last click out of your high-performing search terms.
It takes a leap of faith to stop bidding on all those possibly profitable keywords, but if you do, you’ll find that account management is easier, market share will grow, and you’ll finally start to realize the potential of PPC marketing.