The Beginners Guide to Pay-Per-Click Marketing – In-Depth Overview

The Beginners Guide to Pay-Per-Click Marketing

Overview of Main Opportunities, Tips and Directions

Robert Grum


Last updated: October 29, 2017

No matter what is being offered – goods or services, it is pertinent for the end users to know of its existence. This is where advertising comes in. People need to get the awareness of the availability with the intent that they make purchases.

Hence, to the advertisers, any activity paid for to convey promotional messages to a set audience with the intent to influence their decision into purchase can rightly be termed as “advertisement”. However, the effect of digital literacy has really impacted the way this is done.

Pay-Per-Click Definition

Pay-Per-Click Marketing process involves the display of ads to a targeted audience – whenever they search for items relevant to the advertiser through search engines.

Paid media, often also referred as online advertising has been around for a while; though it can be rightly termed as rented or purchased traffic through online channels.

Paid ads are displayed to a targeted online community on the tops, bottoms, or sides of web pages for the purpose of increasing traffic to a brand, goods, or services. Today, leveraging this system of ads, marketers pay virtual space owners to lure to place adverts for the promotion of their goods and services through advert placement on such space.

What is the difference between owned and earned media? 

Owned media a is having a control over web properties relevant to your brand – like, websites, social media channels, blogs and similar components. Having the presence of owned media leads to the extension of your brand value and existence in the digital arena.

Earned media is the process of driving your customers/audience towards your owned media properties. Earned media enables your users to connect and engage with your website, social media profiles, blogs and more.

It includes actions that your users take on various web properties – for example, word of the mouth referrals, mentions, likes, shares, reviews, mentions, recommendations and outbound links to other sites and more. Search Engines are the pioneers of earned media.

Different types of paid media

Paid media is close to traditional marketing, but in this context – you as an advertiser have to pay a third party for displaying or broadcasting your message to your target audience.

Below are primary types of paid media

  • Paid Search Ads

Search Engines operate the Paid Search advertisements. Your ads will appear in Google, Yahoo and Bing search results if you choose any one of the platforms.

  • Display Ads

Display ads also appear on search results, but they are banner ads. They involve the use of images and copies.

  • Social Media Ads

Ads that appear on different social media platforms are called social media PPC. They include Facebook Ads, Twitter Ads, Instagram Ads, LinkedIn Ads, YouTube Ads and others. Social Media PPC ads have wider reach and engagement traction, compared to the search and display ads.

  • Native Ads

Native advertising is another type of paid media program. It is predominantly an online entity – matching the function and form of the platform, where the ads appear. It is a manifestation of content that advertisers produce and create for the promotion of brands/products/ business.

  • Video Ads

Video ads or video advertising covers the prospects of online display ads with the integration of videos. The ads occurs prior to – or during – the streaming of online videos.

  • Retargeting Ads

Retargeting ads or advertising is another term for remarketing advertisements. It is a type of online advertising – with the intent to display brands amidst bounced traffic after users leave the site.

Pay-Per-Click Pricing Options

Now talking about pricing, a grant of space for paid media or virtual adverts are often settled with a bidding process between the promoters and the web space owner based on existing categories which include PPC, PPI, display ads, and other alternative bidding systems like the CPM, CPV, and CPA.

Working on an effective PPC bidding strategy is crucial. And you should consider your PPC goals for determining the same.

  • CPM: Cost-Per-Thousand Impressions. This bidding option is based on the price per 1000 impression. So, if you’ve bid for $10/M, then you will have to pay $10 whenever, the ad displayed is covered for 1000 times.
  • CPV: Cost-Per-View is the next bidding option. This is applicable for PPC ads on Adwords – for TrueView Video Ads. You need to pay for per video view.
  • CPA: Cost-Per-Acquisition is the bidding method, where advertisers have to pay for every conversion. Whenever a user acts on your displayed ads (Clicks, Submits form, Impression, Sign-ups, Requests Service, etc.), that’s considered customer acquisition

And talking about its efficacy, it was reported through an estimate sometimes in 2014 that online advertising spending with digital ads hits a value of $138 billion across the globe, making it account for one-quarter of the overall spending on media. This statistics hence should simply portray to us how marketers’ perceived the effectiveness of paid online advertising.

Advertising types usages 2012 vs 2016

In recent development; and according to marketingcharts, there is a paradigm shift in political advertising in 2016.  The infographic below shows sizable channel shifts as digital (online advertising) rises to match print and radio, combined.

US Political Ad Spend Allocations 2016 vs 2012

Efficient marketing tool

We can thus infer from this finding that the acceptability is actually so because online advertising (particularly pay-per-click) has proven beyond reasonable doubt that it is measurably attractive through its sophistication when it comes to the issue of targeting.

Since it is now very possible to directly communicate promotional messages to targeted audience thereby making it an effective marketing tool. The prominent categories are CPM, PPI, PPC, as well as display ads. Depending on how best a marketer might want to customise a campaign.

Owing to this, it will be valid to say that pay-per-click through online advertising is a tremendous tool for viable marketing when targeting short-term website traffic. This is however subjective to which of the existing categories is suitable for the campaign of the marketers.

Integration of Digital Marketing

Many times, the online community seems to attach insignificance to the concept of pay-per-click. This is so because many feel that since the scope of web marketing, as well as social media, will already fill the purpose of curbing pitfalls of paid adverts by exposing your brand to the diverse online community through all manner of engagements.

While this is agreeable, the place of PPC marketing in growing businesses online cannot be overemphasized. 

Use pay-per-click advertising when your business is new

We can hence agree that the concept of digital paid media is a good path to breakthrough business ambitions. For some end-users, it could be the only avenue that could bring your brand to them at the very first time irrespective of their geographical settlements. Therefore, whether or not your business is new, the concept of pay-per-click should be prioritized as a top prospect. Earned clicks might be the outcome of potential clicks or impression on your content when one promotes through this manner of online advertising.

Of course, it may come with a good cost; which is unlike the owned or earned advertising. Paid media remains an effective way to give brands the right exposure to those who will specifically appreciate it. It is also pertinent to mention that while the outcome of activities with paid content is easily managed through available facilities. Provided by various advertising platforms (which records clicks, views, or even shares), getting same relevant data with organic content for statistical analysis can be painstaking.

Concept of Pay-Per-Click Marketing

Most often, when people hear the term digital or online advertising, they seem to quickly translate it to be a Cost-Per-Click advertisement on the Google platform. There are now tons of platforms which offer digital advertising as well as strategies to marketers.

Coincidentally, it will be extremely hard to find one social media platform today that has not incorporated the pay-per-click concept to their platform. Websites like Twitter, Facebook, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn etc; all have succumbed to the concept.

This is, however, possible for them since upon registration, they are able to retrieve both the demographics and geographic of users thereby making them spend more of their time with addictive contents. This is where the marketers gain the advantage by using the opportunity to present their content to the addicted site users.

So, the manner of online advertising tactic suitable for your target audience will, therefore, be a function of how much understanding of the tricks you should deploy at a particular instance. The concept of paid media can be gotten from the below overview:

  • Pay-Per-Click Advertising
  • Social media marketing
  • Content marketing
  • Press Releases (despite the fact that they are in actual fact lagging in share-ability, nonetheless it’s instead a lot easier with blog articles when compared with press announcements!)

Pay-per-click in addition to social platform ads are amongst the most convenient approaches to garner entrance into paid media with your website content.

Therefore, the case of which strategy is suitable for your business; whether PPC or SEO will be determined by how volatile the keyword you are marketing is i.e.

  • The cost implication of the PPC bids for target keyword
  • The geographical settlement of the business being targeted for promotion
  • The nature and price of merchandise or services being targeted for marketing
  • Time being allocated for the paid media task; either PPC or SEO
  • The size of target audience to retain or project for 

Quick and reliable traffic for a fixed cost   

One major advantage of pay-per-click is that it comes with prompt results. The reason is that when adverts are properly channeled by following all the tricks and tactics, the outcome becomes immediately visible on the first page of Search-Engine-Result-Page. This particular factor is unlike the organic system of advertising which may take forever to reach the same status.

Another thing to note is the dynamism in pay-per-click marketing. The functionality is simply top notch because it can be made to run or stop on specific duration or occasion. Let’s create an instance. Assuming you’re a local distributor to a beverage company which just started a TV commercial for a rebranding of their product container-where they also added more nutrients. It is obvious that the interest of the public through the awareness of the TV commercials will begin to soar, and you being affiliated to this brand might want to leverage the public interest and take a swift advantage by creating a PPC advert dedicated to rollout with this TV commercial.

The dynamism of pay-per-click advertising will allow for your PPC campaign to cover the area your shop is located. Channelling your traffic to the specific page on your website which talks about the beverage brand. Eventually, attracted targets begin to form accumulated virtual traffic to your web page, making an impression which might possibly compel them to contact your sales rep.

With pay-per-click through online advertising, it becomes feasible to concentrate promotional contents on individuals depending on their self-identified likes and dislikes at a fixed cost. This particular point will enable marketers to promote their content to those who will appreciate it. Thereby converting them to reliable traffic as well as a loyalist to the promoted brand.

Reliable traffic

One more good side of paid media through the PPC concept is that it promotes loyalty for your business. Of course, when visitors get directed to your web page promotions, you’d expect that this won’t be their last time of visiting. Which is surely the main essence of any goal-oriented marketing campaign.

The search engines complete an inexhaustible volume of searches on the daily and regular basis. Searches are directly concerned with specific products or services relevant to virtually all enterprise. Thus, by deploying the right keyword for the products and services that you provide, there won’t be boundaries as regards reliable traffic influx to your web page.

As an illustration, in cases where you are marketing kitchen utensils, one might exclusively focus a pay-per-click through social media to users who may have identified a passion in kitchen activities. Promoters using this tip oftentimes witness improved CTR and conversion as compared to open advertising campaigns.

Fixed cost   

Nevertheless, it may be too hasty to think or conclude that the paid media PPC marketing strategy will come with fluctuating prices through the period of implementation due to its auction-based dynamism. This is far from the case if rightly planned. Search engines are embedded with the sophistication to set cost-per-click budget limits on a daily basis based on how much an advertiser might have allotted.

By implication, promoters now have the privilege to manually determine cost range for their marketing campaign which will enable them forecast the overall monthly cost implication. Hence, the bidding and placement system of keyword will by automation conform to the set budget by the host PPC platform.

Still, on cost management, a promoter may as well want to explore the many available third-party tools if not comfortable with that of the host PPC ad platform. These bid optimizers software even seem more sophisticated than that PPC ad platforms we have around. Many third-party platforms which optimize bids do so with several merits. Let us take for instance the common practices of keyword bid adjustment in paid media which can most often be a hard nut to crack. Marketers can thus leverage this

Let us take for instance the common practices of keyword bid adjustment in Pay-per-click marketing which can most often be a hard nut to crack. Marketers can thus lever third-party software to savage the task of monitoring bids activities in order to optimize individual keywords competitiveness within budget. Therefore, it becomes more viable for these tools to aid reliable traffic as well as consistent CPA.

Get good positions in Search Engines results – Easily and Fast

Everything about digital online advertising is a process, including keyword research. Even before you get your content up the ladder. There is astute need to understand the right keyword to prioritize and shoot for through knowing the competitive history, which comes through rigorous research. Irrespective of the work input, you can be rest assured that targeting keywords within a suitable range of competitiveness will help place your content on the first page of search engines and thereafter clicked by your target.

Target keywords that are difficult to rank with SEO

So the next major question to ask oneself is which keywords are arguably the most difficult to obtain a first-page listing for? At this juncture, there seem a lot of conditions which determines whether or not a keyword is difficult to rank for.

The blank truth is, coming up with a list of a keyword is not the issue than for one to figure out which of it to prioritize for SEO strategy in order to rank top. One tricky way to do this is by carefully reviewing the websites that are already enjoying what you are anticipating.

Online advertising works with supplied demographics (such as biodata, location, qualification, interest, etc.) via targeted keywords and bids through the host PPC platform settings. Having said this, for a strong ranking in terms of organic search engine which is a big deal, it is somewhat painstaking to gather a multitude of keywords since each keyword will require a highly ranked website with extensive presence.

However, PPC (will through its dynamics) help curb all barricades which seem to impede a number of keywords with the outstanding potential of high-ranking SEM advertisement. This is possible because the technique to deploy will be to use properly optimised landing page which will serve as a funnel for each keyword; plus an adequate budget for the campaign.

Hence, in search marketing, a prominent methodology is to set a priority for just a few numbers of keywords in the case of high organic ranking; after which a PPC ad can be used to supplement it in order to show strong dominance on search engine listings. With this technique, you can be sure to have created a multi-position presence with a search engine for top priority keywords as well as a huge chunk of lower ones.

Techniques to Start Out with PPC Marketing

Deciding on the right digital marketing environment is not an easy adventure, moreover just what exactly works well with a business, would might surprisingly not give a good result on some other. With the intention to identify which network is appropriate and the most effective for you,  you might want to ruminate on the following thoughts for answers to suit your needs:

What Exactly Are The Readily available Targeting Models You Require?

The starting point for determining which advertising campaign network is suitable to you is identifying precisely what are the targeting preferences that will be of most importance most to you.

  • What is most significant to you, demographic focusing or maybe just interest-based targeting? (or possibly both concepts ?)
  • Will this advertising network make it easier to get through to that your focus community and persons with the most appropriate advertising campaign message at the perfect time?
  • Are you networking en route to B2B, B2C or possibly the general public?

Keyword Research

  • Researching for targeted keywords is the first step to starting a PPC campaign. There are many keyword research tools available online that you can use – Google Adwords Keyword Planner, WordTracker, Moz’s Keyword Difficulty Tool, SEMRush.
  • It is crucial to locate both targeted and negative keywords – keeping the three match types intact – Phrase, Exact and Broad Match keywords. If you are resorting to Paid Media Campaign for the first time, try opting for broad matched keywords, along with many negative keywords.
  • Choose long-tail keywords (keywords with more than two words).
  • Analyze the volume of the keywords against the competition level and bid amount.
  • Always select keywords with higher volume and lower competition level. These types of keywords have greater customer acquisition potential.

Bid on the Targeted Keywords only

In paid media campaigns, you need to place bids on keywords against your competitors’ campaigns. Start by bidding on keywords that provide a concrete definition and description to your products/business/services. Doing so, will help you in acquiring higher conversions and Return on Investment or ROI.

Ad Creation Process

Creating engaging and clickable ads – is the next important step for a pay-per-click marketing campaign. The success of a PPC campaign depends on a lot of the ad copies, landing page content and call-to-action copies.

In fact, ad rank and position is determined by the maximum bid and quality score. And ad copies and content define the quality score. To get your ads displayed on the top page or position, you need to work on the following:

  • Creating engaging ad copy
  • Creating an impactful landing page
  • Adding headlines, sub-headings, bullet points and relevant Call-To-Actions in your landing page

How does the advertising platform suit user perception

Precisely how do you choose to be unveiled to those target community? Varying user perception of one’s own advertisements is likely to be a catalyst for diverse measures of profitable results.

Therefore, as an illustration:

  • Search ad provided by Google AdWords as well as Bing works great and targeted, all of which will make it easier to connect to the potential consumers’ depending upon words and phrases they’re finding out about online.
  • Facebook advertising campaigns afford promoters to showcase advertising campaigns that attract concentration regarding brand new business endeavors, services, or even the products.
  • LinkedIn campaigns aim for professional individuals by fascination and even job title considering that they’re surfing via feeds, job entries, and also groups. 

Is the campaign framework fascinating to you?

  • Are the ads concepts most likely going to have some bearing on user perception?
  • Do accessible campaign styles afford your promoting and marketing workforce the effontry to convey its tale in a comprehensible as well as irresistible manner?
  • Do accessible advertising campaign models associated with your actual brand’s demands?

Unattractive campaigns possibly will crank out a hurtful user perception, which is consequential on your time and expenses. Don’t spring yourself into an advertising network for the reason that you feel as though “everyone’s adopting the trend”. Make a decision on advertising campaign products and also functionality that churns out the highest quality user perception conceivable.

Exactly what approach of the bid should you target?

Promoters considering initiating display advertisements explicitly are compelled to develop several different judgments in this endeavor to monetize traffic. Considering the fact that online display ads may very well be tracked as well as reviewed in such a way that it’s not obtainable with traditional promotions. It is possible to as well be billed in a variety of models. Promoters can maintain a record of the instances their campaigns are interacted with and even precisely what actions are accomplished. Opening up the choices for reimbursing publishers from diverse considerations.

One can validly imply that CPM, CPV, CPA are all alternative bidding methods. The implication of this is that publishers are able to target a variety of conditions whenever they bid based on clicks, impressions, conversions, views, or engagements. Outlined by the selected campaign classification. Having mentioned all these, it will be intriguing to know at this juncture which would go for. Let’s give some thought to these ideas further thoroughly.

Give attention to clicks

In the event that your ultimate goal is simply to attract some targeted online community to your landing page, then clicks are an excellent concept, to begin with. Deploying the cost-per-click (CPC) bidding system and consequently make your payments only after a visitor basically clicks on your ad and taken to your website.

In short, CPC bidding system provides you with two dynamic options:

  • Automatic bidding

This is definitely the most convenient way to bid; by scheduling a day-to-day spending budget and allowing for AdWords to adjust with your command and to enable you to get the most part of possible clicks in that spending plan.

  • Manual bidding

In this case, promoters take optimal self-management of their CPC bids. Hand-operated bidding afford you to manually set bids at the advertising campaign group strength, or possibly for unique words and phrases even ad positions, so you have foreknowledge your bids and what you are anticipated clicks which matter most to your campaign.

Give attention to impressions (i.e. CPM)

As opposed to budgeting money on clicks. One might invest in a number of periods of time the campaign is shown and viewed, in the event that the promotion is focusing on solely the Google Display Network. That is generally known as CPM bidding system. Payments are made for just about every single one thousand times the advertising campaign gives an impression as well as being viewed. If perhaps the promoter happens to be chiefly concerned about having a reputation or maybe logo available to a great number of people. This can actually be an ingenious course of action.

Viewable CPM bidding system, such as CPC self-managed bidding allows for bid set at the advert group level. As well as for individual placements.

Focus conversions (i.e. CPA; for Search, Display, and Shopping ads)

This is more or less and advances the system of bidding. Here, through the functionality of AdWords, you set the cost you are happy to incur. Popularly referred to as Pay-Per-Acquisition (CPA). Be it conversion or acquisition, we are talking about the interaction you are willing to see your target audience perform with your sponsored ad on your site.

Most often, we refer to this conversion or acquisition as sales. However, it could be informed of possibly filling a sign-up form or other activities that may be other than sales. While the cost of each click is deducted from your account, the AdWords bidding functionality works as an auto-pilot in ensuring that you there are as many conversion or acquisition as scheduled.

The CPA system can be the right adventure for both intermediaries as well as advanced users of AdWords. As it made available the conversion tracking functionality embedded amongst much other dynamism.

Focus on views (for video ads only)

If your main goal is to evaluate how engaged viewers are with your video content, where they choose to watch your videos, and when they drop off from watching your content, you’ll use cost-per-view (CPV) bidding. With CPV bidding, you’ll pay for video views and other video interactions, such as clicks on the calls-to-action overlay (CTAs), cards, and companion banners. 

To set a CPV offer, a promoter may need to bid the most elevated value being inspired to pay for a view while setting up your True View video promotion. Your offer is called your most extreme CPV offer, or just “max CPV.” This offer applies at the promotion level; however, you can likewise set a CPV offer for every advertisement plan. 

Most used Ad Networks

The following are few adverts network available that are regarded as significant, however, there are several consistent sites too.

Google AdWords

Google AdWords is a noticeable option for numerous business entities. They provide display and text adverts in identification with targeted keywords. AdWords are an obvious preference for every campaign. Key point: Adequate Google AdWords adverts will generate a much better return on investment (ROI) so far the keyword is continually used. Google will certainly reward for long-term consumers with more advantageous “quality scores.

Bing or Yahoo

Bing and Yahoo quite deliver different advert systems that actually work much the same as Google’s. They incorporate display and text adverts with concentrated search keywords. A number of brands realize that, even though some of these options convey less web traffic, the total ROI is considered beneficial.

Facebook or LinkedIn

Marketing Social marketing is continuing to grow tremendously in global recognition over these past years couple of years. Most of these adverts join text and display elements and are concentrated depending on user preferences, demographics, with a specific location. Determined by your business description, both Facebook and LinkedIn are an accurate preference to consider. For Business-to-Business internet mainly and are suits to top-of-funnel marketing.


Severely impressive articles can hijack the customer instantaneously. The social network StumbleUpon features a special paid advertising plan which may be very affordable as well as helps ensure a “click-through” of some brand. Generally well worth looking into; however it is imperative that you monitor your entire conversions, which explains the main weak point on this model.

BuySellAds or Direct Buy is an attractive destination to help come across more display advert alternatives. Some of these normally enable you to “rent” space on a site or a blog for a fixed cost. The additional prospect is much more to exist if you communicate several of your favorite bloggers directly.

In the early stages, it is advisable to attempt a variety of alternatives and make use of challenging data to help to make lasting decisions regarding where you wish to place your money. Sometimes, we easily presume which websites might be preferable without putting a lot effort and time into finding out if we actually are right. Tough data, not guesses, will show you exactly what offers you the preferable giveback. Excellent monitoring capabilities will always make this achievable.

Sometimes, we easily presume which websites might be preferable without putting a lot effort and time into finding out if we actually are right. Tough data, not guesses, will show you exactly what offers you the preferable giveback. Excellent monitoring capabilities will always make this achievable.

Keyword Research – the Cost of PPC Bids for Various Keywords

It makes no difference if it’s Search engine ranking optimization or maybe Pay-per-click advertising and marketing, SEM strategies need start with competition analysis or a keyword research. This due diligence is if anything the primary course of action for the groundwork of every SEM campaigns. It more than just provides promoters some important clues about the psyche of their target audience, yet somehow facilitates as a connector of the gap between prospective buyers together with the offerings most of them are searching to purchase.

Ad placement factors

Although market and keyword research is extremely important to each one of Search Engine Optimisation as well as Pay-Per-Click advertising, you will definitely find seemingly subtle but large differences between the two aspects. With Pay-per-click, you’re for all intents and purposes bidding on keywords and phrases in an auction and so bearing the cost at whatever time an internet user clicks that your advertising campaign.

Your actual adverts placement in the SERP is dependent upon your CPC bid multiplied by your Quality Score, which to some extent comprises of the standard of adverts, keywords, and phrases as well as a landing page on your site. The substantially more relevant your ad group keywords are to one another as well as to your ads and also a web page, the substantially less it is important to PPCs.

PPC marketing price

Promoters frequently inquire, “How much does Pay-per-click cost”? 

The charges for cost per click otherwise Pay-per-click to a great extent will be determined by the proportional competitiveness of the targeted keywords and phrases (and also in regards to social media marketing, the targeted audience). A non-competitive keyword or keyword phrase (could speculatively be as little as $ .30/click, and at the same time others spend even more for quite contentious keywords and phrases that totaled more than $25/click.

Bear in mind that it is only to gain targeted traffic click your ad–not assuredly becomes buyers

Without a doubt, not every single thing behaves as projected. To realize success with PPC marketing, it’s imperative that you be mindful of expenses, activities, and also ROI.

Although you are not able to control the competitive surroundings. It is, however, possible to have power over conditions that can potentially impact your total expense of pay-per-click programs–and success.

The following are fundamental aspects to keeping down costs:

  • Setting a daily budget
  • Organizing your campaigns.
  • Monitor your campaign–(often!)
  • Add Negative keywords
  • Test different ads and features
  • Measure conversions