10 Key PPC Best Practices

1. Stop Thinking PPC, Start Thinking Consumer-Initiated Marketing

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2. Start with the End in Mind

3. Plan to Measure; then Measure the Plan

4. K.I.S.S Rule Applied to Conversion Path Optimization

Enquiro’s own research on B2B purchase decision behavior provides valuable insight as to what content to place on your site and in your conversion path. Ensure that traffic, once on the site, can convert on landing pages quickly and easily. Ask yourself several questions:

  1. Is the conversion path simple and intuitive?
  2. What is the intention of the users on this page?
  3. What information are they looking for (pricing, competitive comparisons, product specs, company information)?
  4. What goal do you want users to complete?
  5. Are there any distractions or unnecessary information on the pages in the conversion funnel?
  6. Are your calls-to-action conspicuously positioned?
  7. Is your offer (whitepapers, podcasts, eBooks, demos, complimentary trials, etc.) relevant to users’ needs?

5. Don’t Guess… Test

With a PPC campaign, testing is the campaign manager’s best friend. Testing is a constant, iterative process that much be followed to refine the effectiveness of your Search Engine Marketing (SEM) campaigns. Multivariate testing can be as complex as developing a multitude of landing pages and testing multiple aspects (such as images, titles and page copy, to name a few) or as simple as using versions of a landing page or ads in A/B tests and constantly refining the best performing versions.

The key with a testing strategy is to balance the size of the test with the size of the account. The larger the test, the longer the testing process needed to gain statistically-relevant data. No matter what the size of the test, budgeting the necessary time is as important as budgeting the media spend.

6. Don’t Get Punished for Bad Behavior
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7. Get Vertical

Vertical search engines are an effective method of lowering CPC and improving the overall quality of traffic. The quality of the searches with a vertical search engine also tends to be better due to the increased propensity for buyers to use vertical search engines later in the purchase decision process. This presents an opportunity for those with more limited budgets (and those with the budget, too) to more effectively spend online and generate higher ROI.

8. Speak Their Language

There has been constant debate as to what to use for keyword analysis with regards to long-tail versus head phrases and which yields

9. Quality Score Is an Indicator, Not a Destination

There has been lots of debate around quality score and what it means to PPC advertisers. The long and short of a quality score is that it is designed to assist the customer. Google and Yahoo (with MSN just coming on board) have been using quality scoring to increase the quality of ads to improve the user experience. That being said, quality score should not be managed.

10. Stop Measuring Cost Per Click; Start Measuring Cost Per Conversion

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