Pay-per-click advertising has the potential to be one of a business’ biggest money-making resource, but it must be used properly. All too often, people simply assume that their adherence to certain keyword and contextual links will bring interested customers to their company’s website, and the company’s products will practically sell themselves.
After all, the person was searching for just this kind of website and just this kind of product. But that kind of thinking will lead to disappointing pay per click conversion rates, and even worse customer retention rates.
Making the most of those clicks requires good design, unique selling strategies, and smart advertising approaches.
Create Landing Pages for Pay Per Click Ads
It’s a huge mistake to allow a ppc advertisement take an interested customer directly to the company’s homepage. Those small advertisements barely have room to fit an effective marketing message, and the company’s main homepage isn’t going to do a very good job at introducing a fresh customer to the products and services the company offers.
Instead, a custom page should be made for ppc ads; in fact, companies which advertise to several different styles and types of keywords should make several different landing pages that cater to each type of potential new customers.
It is the job of these websites to pull customers in with an exciting title, a unique marketing approach, and an interesting explanation of the company’s products and services. Think of PPC landing pages as re-marketing the first impression that your AdWords initially made. Customers should know what the company does, and why they’re the best at it, but they shouldn’t be bored while they figure that out.
Different pages for different types of ads will ensure even greater sales numbers and return visitor rates. Customers are always looking for a personal approach from a company that “gets it.” Don’t try to make one page which caters to every kind of customer; this is a recipe for wasted pay-per-click advertising dollars.
Offer a Free Product as a Gateway to Sales
The average customer is not inclined to purchase a product from a company they just discovered five minutes prior. It’s nice that you’ve created a landing page which helps explain just why your company exists, but now customers must begin to build a relationship with you and assess your credibility in the field. This can only be done through the use of a free product that introduces them to your product, service, or authoritative information.
Consider developing informational videos or an electronic book that consumers can use as proof that your company has the experience and credibility to back up its products and services. Explain to customers what they need to be successful in your industry, and then show them how you can give that to them. Once this free product establishes a solid relationship, their initial click will turn into return trips, purchases, and great company profits over the long-term.
Pair Free Products with Methods of Communication
Obtaining a “free” product from your company via a custom-created landing page should always come with a few strings attached. Mainly, these strings should be in the form of an RSS subscription or email address. The key to developing clients, whether online or offline, is good communication and adequate contact after a transaction has been made. Obtaining a new customer’s email address allows you to follow up with questions like, “how did you enjoy our free introductory eBook?”
A company can then invite the customer to check out many more of their products and services if, indeed, they did enjoy the free information they were granted during their search engine click-through. This is the key to turning one free product into many future, paid sales.
Don’t Surprise the Customer with Follow-Up Contact
The key to keeping a click-through user is to keep them free of big surprises that might frustrate them or turn them off to your company’s message. While follow-up contact is the key to turning an advertising click into a long-term relationship, it must be announced in the beginning.
The customer must be expecting this email, or they’ll immediately consider your company to be a spammer. That’s no good for business and, if word gets around, it could lead to even bigger problems for the company’s image.
Make sure the customer knows, when signing up for your company’s free product that is offered via a click-through landing page, that they will be contacted following the sale.
Let them know how much you value customer satisfaction, and that you’ll ensure theirs by following up with them in the coming days. Display your company as one which cares, not one which spams.
Focus on Search Results, Not Contextual Advertising
There is a huge difference between pay-per-click ads displayed among search results and those contextually placed on third-party websites: advertisements in search results are presented to people seeking information, while contextual advertisements are presented to people who have already found that information.
Your company should never be considered the “second click” or the “last resort.” This is why advertising among search results is so much more effective. People conducting a search are looking for answers to questions, solutions to problems, and reputable ways of performing a task or service.
A company who advertises to those who are actively in pursuit of its services will naturally have more success than a company which tries to steal customers from the competition on every page of that competitor’s website.
AdWords provides the unique ability to specify in what searches your ads will be seen, allowing you to specify exactly what type of customer you want to market to.
For example, advertising for car insurance on any of the competitor’s websites will just be a second option for the customer after the initial find, but advertising in the search results for the more specific “compare car insurance companies” will give the customer a more specific find for their specific needs.
Relationships are the Key to Success
As in all other aspects of business, online or offline, relationships are the key to healthy profits and client development. Teach the customer about your brand from the moment they click through to your website, and educate them on your quality using a free product.
Follow up with them and ensure their satisfaction, invite them to do business with your company, and enjoy the success of your pay per click advertising strategy.