Introduction To Pay Per Click Advertising

Pay per click advertising (also know as PPC advertising) is a form of advertisement where you only pay if your prospects click on it.

That’s right. If your prospects see your ad but do NOT click on it, you don’t pay.

These ads can usually be seen on search engines like Google, MSN and Yahoo. The ads are called “Sponsored links” or “Sponsored ads” depending on which search engine you are using. They will appear next to or above the results of the original search.

Obviously, the higher the ad’s placement on the results page, the higher the chances of it being seen and clicked on.

So, to determine the ranking of the ads, advertisers have to bid on the “keywords” that they think their prospects would type in search engines when they are looking for a specific product or service.

There are currently more than 500 pay per click search engines. However, the top ten search engines produce over 85% of pay per click searches. Bidding for ad space on these search engines is extremely competitive resulting in higher advertising costs. The top three pay per click search engines that you should focus on are:

  1. Google AdWords
  2. Yahoo! Search Marketing
  3. Microsoft adCenter

Types Of Pay Per Click Advertising

There are several types of pay per click advertising.

1. The most popular form of PPC advertising is keyword advertising. The keywords that are bid on can be words, phrases, or even model numbers. The advertisements will appear in the order of the bid amount, from highest to lowest.

2. Product pay per click advertising lets advertisers provide “feeds” of their product databases to search engines. When users search for a product, advertisers’ links will appear with the highest bidder appearing most prominently. The user is able to sort by price and then click on a feed to make a purchase.,, Nextag, and are popular product comparison engines, also known as price comparison engines.

3. Service pay per click advertising is very similar to product PPC ads. “Service engines”, such as Nextag, SideStep and TripAdvisor, offer advertisers the opportunity to provide feeds of their service databases which will appear when users search for that particular service. As usual, advertisers who pay more are given better ad placement. However, users can sort their results by price or other methods.

4. Pay per call advertising is similar to pay per click advertising. Ads are listed in search engines and directories. Publishers charge local advertisers for each call they receive as a result of their listing. This form of advertising is not just limited to local advertisers as many of the pay per call search engines allow nationwide companies to create advertisements with local telephone numbers.

Advantages Of PPC Advertising

  1. Pay per click can generate traffic immediately.
  2. Pay per click ads can be adjusted within hours or days in response to market behavior.
  3. Pay per click advertising can be a bargain if you choose your keywords wisely.
  4. Pay per click can guarantee ad placement for a relatively small portion of your marketing budget.

Disadvantages Of PPC Advertising

  1. It is very easy to get caught up in a bidding war over keywords and spend way more than you could ever recoup.
  2. The return on your investment can be very hard to measure. Some PPC search engines provide customers with measurement tools but they aren’t always accurate. Most of the smaller PPC companies don’t even provide tracking methods.
  3. You can spend advertising dollars just to generate junk traffic. PPC services distribute some of their results to other search engines allowing your listing to show up in the nether regions of the Internet.
  4. PPC advertising requires you to pay more money when more traffic is generated. On the other hand, natural search engine optimization allows you to invest a set amount of time and money to achieve a better rank and your cost will go down as you attract more traffic.


Comments are closed.