SEO vs PPC: Which Is Better For Your Business?
PPC and SEO go together like bagels and bacon, but which one is superior?
Google Ads cost per click prices are on the rise. It’s all marketers seem to be talking about at the moment.
The main reason that costs are increasing is down to more and more advertisers realising how powerful this channel is for their growth.
As Google Ads is an auction, the more and more advertisers that are trying to get a slice of the action, the more the costs are going to increase.
Google Ads management is one of our core services and we’ve seen the increase in cost per click for our clients over the past several years.
Because of that, we have to be on the ball when it comes to managing our campaigns, to make sure that we generate the highest ROI that we can from them.
One way to do this is making sure that your campaigns are not optimised efficiently, including lowering costs where possible.
In this post, I’m going to show you 7 of the best ways to lower your costs in Google Ads.
They are as follows (in no particular order) :
Let’s get started
Bids are one of the foundations of Google Ads. The price you are willing to pay to show one of your ads for a keyword that you are bidding on.
This is where you will be able to see the biggest improvements in campaigns almost overnight.
When making your bid adjustments, you should have an idea of your target Cost Per Conversion or the Return On Ad Spend that you are aiming for.
Once you’re in your campaign dashboard you’ll be able to then focus on areas which are underperforming as well as ones which are performing well.
Falling under the bidding umbrella are the bid modifiers. These are bid adjustments that you can make to several elements of Campaigns and Adgroups in your account.
Doing so gives you more granular control over your performance.
They are as follows :
There are more aspects of your account that you can modify like this, but if you aren’t doing so already, these will be a great place to start.
Google defines Quality Score as follows :
“Quality Score is an estimate of the quality of your ads, keywords, and landing pages. Higher quality ads can lead to lower prices and better ad positions.”
The score is ranked between 1 and 10. 1 being the lowest and 10 being the best.
Your Quality Score is made up of an average of 3 parts that are again ranked between 1 and 10. Your Ad Relevance, Expected Clickthrough Rate and Landing Page Experience.
If you want to find out what your currently Quality Score is, then follow this guide here.
The difference it can make to your costs are dramatic, especially if your average scores move from an average of 1 – 3 to 7 – 10.
This is one of the top ways that you will be able to lower the costs of your Google Ads campaigns.
The best explanation I’ve ever come across of Quality Score was by Hal Varian, who is Google’s Chief Economist.
Here’s the video :
A good area to start with increasing your quality score is finding out which aspect of your score is causing it to be low (Ad Relevance, Expected Clickthrough Rate and Landing Page Experience) and start from there.
The impact that this can make to your costs and performance is probably best explained with a simple overview.
Let’s say that your website receives one thousand visitors a month and you get one hundred sales from those visitors.
From those sales, you generate £10,000 in sales with a £100 average order value.
This would give you a conversion rate of 10%, so for every 100 users that visit your website, usually ten will buy from you (on average).
By increasing your conversion rate, you can increase your sales without having to pay for additional traffic.
If you increased your conversion rate by 20%, that would make your new conversion rate 12%.
Stay with me.
Then if you received those one thousand users to your website throughout the next thirty days, you would receive one hundred and twenty orders rather than one hundred.
This would increase your revenue from £10,000 to £12,000. Therefore by increasing your conversion rate, you’ve made an extra £2,000 without having to pay for more traffic.
That would mean a potential £24,000 increase in revenue annually and you haven’t had to spend a penny more on acquiring more traffic from Google Ads.
That also means you could also reduce your bids in Google Ads, if you were trying to reduce costs and not bring in additional revenue.
If you would like some insights in where to start, have a look at this post on increasing your conversion rate.
Your ads are the first interaction most users will have with your business and this is your way to make a first impression that counts.
Therefore you should always be finding out which ad is performing the best for your business goals.
As a rule of thumb, each ad group should have at least two different ads that are being tested at one time against each other to see which performs the best.
By doing this regularly, you can gradually start to increase your conversion rates which should lead to a lower cost per click.
Some tips for writing great copy for ads :
This is one of the most overlooked aspects of successful Google Ads campaign management.
Your search terms report isn’t just for finding negative keywords. It’s also where you are going to find new keywords to use in your campaigns.
This should be checked regularly to find these opportunities.
We generally add any keyword which has over ten impressions with at least one click over the past 30 days and is relevant to the product or service being sold.
By doing this, we have control over the keywords which are ads are showing for.
If we left them as they are, over time they could negatively affect the campaign’s performance as they aren’t reaching our conversion goals.
We wouldn’t know about them as they haven’t been added as a keyword and if we were just relying on analysing the search term report, they would be easier to miss.
Your keywords can show for a variety of search queries. Some good and some bad.
Your search term report should be consistently checked for negative keywords that your ads may be showing for.
By doing this, you’ll lower the amount of wasted spend in your campaigns.
Don’t think this doesn’t apply to you even if you use exact match keywords exclusively.
In a recent release by Google, if they feel a search query is closely related to your keyword, then you could potentially show for that search term.
Unfortunately, it’s not always accurate and it can have performance issues on campaigns. For full details on that release, have a look at this post.
If you are trying to lower your costs and using broad match keywords, this strategy may need rethinking.
Broad keywords are essentially more generic versions of phrase and exact match keywords.
They open up a range of alternative keywords that you may not be already bidding on, but are well known for showing for irrelevant search terms.
You’ll need to look at the performance of your broad match keywords and see if they are reaching your business goals.
One tip is to regularly check the search terms that are driving the clicks and conversions for your broad match keywords and make sure the search terms are relevant to your product or service and your ad copy also matches what the user is searching for.
With more relevant ad copy you should be able to increase your Quality Score and therefore decrease your cost per click.
It’s always a good idea to keep a close eye on the overall performance of your keyword match types to see how your strategy is working out for you.
I really hope that you have found this blog post useful and that you can apply some or all of these insights to your campaigns to help lower your costs and increase your overall performance.