July 13, 2017 / PPC 101

Pay-per-click (PPC) marketing is often disregarded by small businesses. Many believe that the returns simply aren’t worth the risk. While national PPC is costly, local PPC gives you the ability to run AdWords listings that will only target people in your local vicinity. While it can still take time to find the right keywords and refine a campaign, it can be extremely lucrative.

While big companies have the capital to out-spend smaller companies and win the national war with ease, they don’t have the infrastructure to win the local battles. And even if they do run localized PPC campaigns, you will always have one major advantage over them: insider knowledge.

If you’re on a quest to dominate your local PPC listings, the following tips, compiled with the help of Clicteq, will set you off on the right track.

Look at Your Books

As a small, local business your PPC budget will no doubt be limited. Instead of promoting your brand as a whole, select a few very specific products or services. Find out which ones sell the most and will generate the highest profit. While you should cross reference these results with Google Search Console to determine how many impressions you might get, use this information as a guideline rather than a hard fact. Sometimes you’ll find that the keywords you least expect to perform will end up being the most successful.

Use Your Insider Knowledge

As a local you will know exactly what makes other locals tick. From cultural traditions to common areas of employment, your own insider knowledge will help you devise the execute a PPC campaign that’s far more targeted than simply adding *town name* to a pre-written template. Don’t let this precious asset go to waste.

Let’s say you’re a wetsuit store targeting a well-known surfing town, like Newquay in Cornwall. Instead of simply adding the keywords “Newquay” or “Wetsuits” to your ads, hone in on the specific local market. For example, name drop an area of the town, such as “Fistral Beach,” or perhaps an upcoming event in the ad copy: “Gear up for Boardmasters Festival!”

Use Negative Keywords

By adding negative keywords you’ll prevent Google AdWords from listing your ad for any search term containing that word – many businesses choose to omit search terms containing the word “Free” (for obvious reasons). On a local level this can be extremely powerful as you could omit the names of nearby towns that you don’t service. For example, if you’re a contractor working in London, but don’t work in the nearby town of Guildford, you could simply stops ads from showing up when terms containing “Guildford” are used.

Add Local Google Extensions

Having a local extension is probably the most important element of any local PPC campaign. This additional part of your ad will allow you to list your address, telephone number, opening and closing times, and any other important details. Additionally, when the ad extension is set to “on”, this information will show up alongside Google Maps. Remember to also make sure your Google My Business account is up-to-date as well.

Add Call Extensions

Over half of all Internet searches are conducted on smartphones. Therefore, enabling call extensions can be extremely beneficial as the customer can simply press the “Call” button next to your ad, rather than having to find and type in your number. Again, this is extremely important as recent studies suggest that around 42% of smartphone users have used the Click-to-Call feature.

PPC advertising may sound risky, but providing you set your budget at a responsible level and take the above points into consideration, you have nothing to fear. In addition, Google AdWords will never take more than you can afford, and from the second you start a new campaign you’ll have the option to amend, remove or pause it at will.

Fundamentally, PPC can be an extremely powerful, cost effective weapon. So providing you get it right from the start, there’s really no reason why you shouldn’t embrace it!

Adam Manuel (author)

Adam Manuel is a freelance writer and Internet entrepreneur. For more information, visit his blog: adammanuel.com

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