If you are a struggling small business, nothing could be more tempting than trying to go online to get leads or generate sales. After all, the internet is the fastest growing medium for sales and client recruitment. More and more companies and niches are going online. It used to be that only the big players or recognizable niches are online but now it looks like even micro niches are going online. That’s how powerful online advertising has become. The biggest battlefield of course is targeted search.
When it comes to advertising online, the most powerful and effective way to reach your target customers is through search engines. It beats all other marketing methods hands down. Regardless of you are whether you are trying to gather email addresses or actually trying to drum up sales, you really can’t find a better alternative to search engine traffic. Why? When people use search engines, they are actually in the mind frame where they are looking for a specific set of solutions or specific information. In other words, they are exactly where you want them to be. Their minds are open to your particular value proposition. This is why search engine ads are much better in terms of conversion and actual performance than social network ads or redirect ads. The less targeted the ads, the less valuable it is to your bottom line.
It is no wonder then that many small businesses have been flocking to search engines but unfortunately, they don’t retain outsourced or third party PPC management companies. They try to do their own Pay Per Click campaigns and as a result, according to a recent published study by the software firm WordStream, small businesses blow through twenty five percent of their PPC budget. This is horrible. Considering that every dollar you invest in your business is hard earned money and you want to have that money produce more money, this is just completely unacceptable. Unfortunately, that’s how many small businesses are playing the PPC game. They buy all these targeted key words but they don’t really install any tracking mechanisms on their pages to see how well these words are actually converting.
Tracking is an integral part of a responsible and effective ad campaign. If you don’t track, you don’t figure out where you’re strong and more importantly, you don’t identify where you are weak. The whole key to success in PPC campaigns is to reconfigure your campaign towards your strong spots and minimize your cost while avoiding earlier investments that don’t produce the results that lead to a healthy return on investment. It’s all about ROI and sadly, many of these participants in the WordStream study showed that people would spend all this money on trying to generate phone inquiries and mail leads yet they don’t even have call extensions on their web pages set up— crazy. In other words, you spend all this time saying to people call me but you don’t give them a simple mechanism to call you. It’s one thing to just publish your phone number, it’s another to set up call extensions so calling you is as easy as a click of a button. Very shocking study and it definitely shows that there is a huge need for third party PPC and online ad campaign management.