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Tips for PPC ad relevance

Great Article from Kevin Lee. Kevin says that to be successful in Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising, your PPC ads should strive to be as relevant as, if not more so than your competitors, and you should endeavor to make your ads more relevant than the organic/algorithmic results in every engine.

Kevin believes that over time, paid search results should and would become more relevant than organic results for search queries that have commercial intent or relate to researching a purchase.

He also believes that PPC ads should have more relevance to the search results than organic results, because Search Engine spammers don’t care how relevant they are as long as they get clicks, while PPC buyers pay for every click so they have to be as precise as they can be.

According to Kevin, here are the elements that will float your ad to the top of the PPC results:

  • Copy highly relevant to the search query.
  • Highly relevant landing pages (the engines now look for this).
  • A recognizable brand or a domain name that’s highly descriptive and reassures the searcher that clicking on the ad isn’t a mistake.
  • The ability to fulfill searchers’ needs (there would be no reason to bid aggressively on a keyword if you were unable to fulfill a searcher’s need and a competitor also bidding could fulfill that need better than you).
  • An efficient company infrastructure that doesn’t put them at a significant disadvantage with regard to gross margin and customer retention.
  • A strong company with the financial resources to be a going concern.

With improved relevance comes improved conversion and improved position (or the same position for less money).

Here are some tactics that should be revisited regularly by search engine marketers who strive to improve both relevance and efficiency:

  • Moderate your use of broad match listings. Lazy search marketers overuse broad match and neglect to break down their listings into more specific phrase and exact matches.
  • Review ad creative to make sure it has “scent,” meaning the searcher sees keywords and concepts that are a strong fit with her search query. Using the keyword in the ad is part of that process.
  • Tune landing page selection based on the exact or phrase searches that were entered. This means testing more specific landing pages than a typical category page.
  • Use negative match on any broad or phrase match listings. When you use broad match as a net to capture long tail searches that were difficult to predict or didn’t have sufficient volume, think about which negative match keywords would prevent a non-relevant result from occurring.
  • Use log files or campaign management software to determine which new keyword phrases or exact matches in a PPC campaign can be built out of existing listings (both paid and organic).

PPC is critical to the success of any campaign and any site.

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