Search Engine Marketing With PPC: Tips for Beginners

Pay per click (PPC) is a quick method of getting your website listed in search engine results pages (SERPs).

Rather than waiting for your optimized web pages to get picked up by Google and the other top engines, you pay to have your website listed in special sections of the SERPs for given keywords.

When you use PPC marketing and get your link placed on the SERPs, it is not the same thing as taking the top spot on the page for a specific keyword.

Since paid links are placed along the top of the page and down the side with special highlighting or background, they are clearly distinguished as paid advertisements to to searchers.

Those who get on that first page through SEO will be listed underneath in order of ranking.

Just because paid links are separated on the page doesn't mean they don't get clicks. In fact, many people click more of those advertised links than others listed below because they are the first ones they see or because they seem to be more official because someone cared enough to pay for them to be listed.

There are some searchers who aren't as likely to click on ads placed by PPC because they feel they are just advertisements, there are many who do feel these links are more likely to give them value and they will click. Once they do place that click, you are on the hook for your bid price on the link.

Just as the name of this marketing strategy implies, you pay for every click that goes through from the search engine pages to your website.

This is why PPC has to be taken very seriously. All of these measures have to be taken before you even start placing bids and spending money with this type of marketing:

1. The website to be listed in the ads must be of very high quality and packed with valuable information.

It must be easy to navigate, well designed, aesthetically pleasing, and stacked with information or products that others will really want to read.

2. Keyword research must be completed to make sure the best keywords are targeted.

Every keyword must be tightly related to your website in some manner. Searchers typing in that keyword should find what they want when they click through to your website. Otherwise you are just wasting your time because people will click through, not find what they need, and click right back out. You still pay for their clicks.

3. Keywords with moderate to high searches but with low competition should be selected.

If you get into a battle with very competitive keywords you will pay a lot more for clicks and will be less likely to make it to the top positions on the SERPs.

4. A clear PPC budget should be drawn out and followed closely.

It is easy for some people to get so swept up in the battle for traffic that they spend way more than they ever stand to make from the traffic coming in. Or, they spend so much on a couple keywords that they cannot afford to continue campaigns with other keywords.

It is easier to keep a level head if there is a clear budget that you are determined to stick to.

When starting out, go through all of these steps before you start spending money with PPC. You will avoid a lot of costly beginner mistakes.

About the Author: Ian Cheow is the co-founder of OOm, an online marketing agency providing sem service. Find out more about sem at OOm Singapore.