Small Advertising Budget? Pay-Per-Click is the Answer

Your average small business, especially if it’s young, doesn’t have a lot of cash on hand for a marketing budget. With pay per click or PPC however, they can still run a successful, highly measured advertising program that delivers an excellent ROI.

The first thing to do before starting any new PPC campaign is simply to figure out exactly what one customer is worth to your business and, more importantly, how much you’re willing to spend to get that customer. Knowing, for example, that each customer is worth approximately $100, and that you are willing to spend $50 to get them, is vitally important.

Of course there’s no business on earth that can convert every lead into a customer, and so you’ll need to use a formula based on conversion rate to determine exactly how much you can actually afford to pay for leads.  Using the example above, you would pay $5. per lead if you converted 1 in 10 of them into a paying customer.

Here are another few reasons why PPC for small businesses is an excellent idea.

First, using PPC to target visitors at every stage of the buying funnel is possible if you focus on keywords that your potential customers use when they are getting ready to purchase. By adding geography, language and time you get an excellent way to pinpoint qualified customers.

With PPC you want to avoid broad matching so that you don’t pay for unqualified clicks that drain your budget. In order to get a higher relevance you should start with a broad match and, since PPC is an auction format, your price will be driven by demand/value.

Remember that there’s actually no direct correlation between the budget you have and the results you’ll get. For example, tripling your PPC budget won’t necessarily mean that you triple the volume of quality leads you’re going to get.

Another great feature that comes with PPC is the ability to test many messages. Testing content and combinations of words and messages is a great way to find out if the keywords you’re using, and their relevance to your ad copy and landing pages, is increasing leads and sales.

For example, you might find that rearranging the copy you have in the headline, or changing the description line to a customer quote, can increase your CTR.

PPC also allows you to test lots of markets using their collaboration tool because it’s used in 165 countries and eight different languages. Keep in mind that it’s a good idea to have native language speakers review your content and not rely on Google translate to do it.

Lastly, especially when your funds are tight and every single lead counts, don’t rely on your opinion to make decisions but data instead. In almost all situations numbers will trump any opinion or emotion that you might have. Any PPC campaigns that you have that are performing you should ramped up and those that aren’t should be turned off.

At the end of the day a carefully planned, highly detailed PPC campaign used in conjunction with a metrics program can generate excellent results without the need to spend a huge amount of money.

Author and businessman Jack Welch put it best when he said “An organization’s ability to learn, and translate that learning into action rapidly, is the ultimate competitive advantage.”

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