Five Ways To Save Money on Pay-Per-Click Advertising Campaigns at Google, Yahoo and Beyond in 2009
I am fortunate in that I get to speak to many Internet marketers of differing experience levels. From those that manage $20K daily ad spends and have done so for many years to those that just got started with daily limits of $20 and even those that have outsourced their PPC campaigns to agencies. What is unique about each type of PPC advertiser, however, is that each wants to save money wherever they can (especially in this economic climate) and for each doing so is a priority in 2009.
Rethink the Use of Broad Match Several months ago, Website Magazine addressed the different types of Adwords Match Types, and the feedback I received personally was slightly disheartening. Most advertisers new to PPC simply had no idea that by default, their Adwords campaign was set as a "broad match" campaign. For example, if WebsiteMagazine.com were to bid on the on the keyword "Website Magazine" on a broad match level, we'd receive a lot of unrelated traffic from queries related to "magazines" - which is not what we want. So if you have done the required keyword research (check out these keyword research tools
Restructure Your Campaign: If you have ever had the opportunity to look inside the PPC advertising account of another, you might be surprised at how that account is structured. The most efficient PPC campaigns that I have seen have a few things in common; they group similar keywords together in individual ad groups, develop sets of ads for those individual groups and point those keyword focused ad groups (and often times on a keyword level) to designated landing pages. In a world wherein every first tier PPC ad provider has some degree of quality score, restructuring your campaign along these lines does improve click-through rate but also, and more importantly, improves overall conversion. Structuring a campaign based on your objectives is imperative to your success, so once complete, focus on basic and advanced PPC budgeting and PPC bidding techniques.
Use Ad Scheduling: Use Ad Scheduling to time your ads to match your requirements. Ad scheduling lets you control the days and times your AdWords campaigns appear. So if you are running "Special offers" for Fridays, you can use Ad Scheduling to only show ads (a specific one) on Fridays. Try to think of a time when your ad would actually matter to your customer. By default, your ads will run for 24 hours in a day by trial and error you might be able to find out that running ads on a specific time of the day gives you more conversion! (e.g. People would search for "morning headache" usually in the morning after getting up from bed..)
Consider Vertical and 2nd Tier PPC Providers: Many advertisers are hesitant to start pay-per-click advertising campaigns with vertical (industry specific) PPC networks like Kayak.com or what are known as second-tier PPC providers. Many second-tier PPC providers (such as Miva, Marchex, ABCSearch, 7Search and the hundreds of others) do not receive the attention they deserve. The argument (from the first tier providers and unfortunately the second tier engines themselves when speaking of one another) is that traffic and quality is low, and that it's simply too time consuming to manage multiple sources of paid traffic. The counter-argument (and one that I hold to be true) is that these smaller ad networks and traffic providers have closer relationships with their publishing partners, are more nimble in response to advertiser questions and concerns and across the board offer a lower bid price and provide a higher return on investment (should quality traffic originate from there). There is without a shadow of a doubt, life beyond Google and other top tier providers and it's high time advertisers take these opportunities seriously.
Digital marketing executive with proven experience in all aspects of search engine optimization (SEO), performance-based advertising, consumer-generated/social media, email marketing, lead generation, Web design, usability, and analytics. - 20-year Internet marketing veteran, currently serving as the Digital Marketing Campaign Manager at Antenna Group (formerly Chicago Digital). - Former Editor-In-Chief of Website Magazine, and a regular speaker on Web technology digital marketing strategy - Author of several books on digital marketing Including Web 360: The Fundamentals of Web Success; Affiliate 360: The Fundamentals of Performance Marketing; Domains 360: The Fundamentals of Buying & Selling Domain Names, and SEO 360: The Fundamentals of Search Engine Optimization.