PPC campaigns like AdWords can be powerful tools to drive traffic to your site. The top position on a SERP can get you an 8 percent clickthrough rate–more than double the average of 3.16 percent.
But if they’re unmanaged, or executed poorly, PPC campaigns can become a financial drain that fails to convert clicks into sales. So if you’re using AdWords or a similar PPC product, be sure to make it count. These are the stages of crafting an outstanding set of PPC ads. If you and your team go through each stage carefully, with flexibility and attention to detail, you will arrive at a winning and lucrative campaign.
Run Intensive Keyword Research
For the first and most important step, unfortunately, there are no shortcuts. The right set of target keywords will connect you directly to the customers already searching for your services. But the wrong keywords will lead you on a time consuming and expensive goose chase, only for you to circle back around to doing this step over again.
So take your time with this! Make it count. There’s no way to be sure you’ve chosen the perfect keywords until you test drive them, but the more research you do, the more likely you are to hit your target.
Use Those Long Tail Keywords
Your keyword research will probably turn up some obvious terms. If you’re a translation services provider, for example, the obvious keywords will be translation, interpretation, subtitling, and so forth. These terms are broad, but they generally describe what you offer (and what the customer is looking for).
Long tail keywords are more specific. In some cases, much more specific: translate medical documents from Farsi to Arabic, for example. The person running this through a search engine knows exactly what they want, and they are ready to buy. So even though each long tail keyword turns up rarely as a search, when it does turn up, it converts more easily into a sale.
Craft the Perfect Headlines
Working within the character limit to find the perfect headline is the mark of a great PPC marketer. Headlines more than anything drive clicks, so this is where the magic happens. Your user has already run a search for your keyword–how do you want to greet them?
The character limits can be difficult. But use them to your advantage, and make every word count! The same thing goes for your copy. It should support your headline and offer a call to action.
Choose Your Extensions Wisely
If you’re using AdWords, it’s easy to get carried away with extensions. With each extension you add, you expand your ad. While this is enticing, you don’t want to clutter up your ad with unnecessary information. If you don’t do a lot of business by phone, don’t add a phone number. If you are online only, don’t add a location.
Use the extensions that highlight who you are, and what is meaningful to users who are searching for you. If your translation company handles sensitive medical or legal documents, you might add positive Trustpilot reviews, for example, to lend authority to your ad.
Optimize Your Landing Pages
Your keywords are focused, your copy is enticing, and now you need to be ready to receive the customer to your website. Specific ads should link to corresponding pages–don’t send everyone to the home page! A user who searched for medical document translation should land on your /services/medical-translation page.
All of the information they need, including a call to action and a clickable next step, should appear above the fold. Make in depth details available by scrolling down. It should be immediately clear upon arrival what you are all about, what you can do for the customer, and what they can do next to get started.
Focus on the Customer’s End Goal
This speaks to an important point to keep in mind all throughout the previous steps. Remember what the customer wants, and show them that. More often than not, the customer isn’t immediately interested in how great you are or how many amazing translators you have all over the world. They want to see their documents translated. They want the job already done.
This makes the words you and your infinitely more powerful than we and our. When you’re choosing your keywords, focus on the customer’s end goal. When you’re writing copy, the customer’s end goal. When you’re optimizing your landing pages, end goal. End goal end goal end goal. Help the customer envision their problem already solved.
Try and Adjust
You can tinker with your ads ad infinitum, but at some point, you’ve got to see if they’ve got wings. Run the campaign, and keep a close eye on your analytics. Even though it’s exciting to watch the results, this is just the beginning of the revision process.
You’ll see which ads are working, and which aren’t. Double down on the good ones, and go back to the drawing board with keyword research to replace those that aren’t turning up results. Don’t forget that you’re paying for clicks, but clicks don’t necessarily mean sales. Aim to double your money.
Click Click Cash!
This process is essentially a loop, and it never really stops. By continuing to hone your PPC campaign, you make it more efficient and streamlined, bringing in a return on the dollars that you spend for clicks. Don’t worry if it’s a slog in the research stage–once you have that momentum going, you’ll be so busy with all your new customers that you won’t even remember!
Brian Oaster is a Content Writer at translation services provider Day Translations. He has worked all over the world as an arts educator, English teacher, basket exporter, rare book dealer, fortune teller, and as the first mate of a private sailing yacht. Educated in the visual arts and an avid reader of news and literature, his focus is on international arts and culture, world religions and global politics. Follow him on Twitter @brianoaster.