PPC Keyword Tips: Convert Clicks to Sales

Pay per click (PPC) is a common online marketing tool. Online advertisers bid for the keywords they want and their PPC ad appears next to the top searches that correspond to their keywords. Advertisers are charged depending on how many users click the ad.

The good, the bad
The great thing about PPC is that it charges according to the number of people who clicked your ad and were consequently directed to your website. This online advertising tool could be cost effective if it is able to attract the right customers—those who are genuinely interested in what you have to say and offer.

On the other hand, bad keyword choices and poor copywriting for your PPC ads are disastrous for your overall campaign and could eat through your marketing budget. Imagine paying for all the clicks made by people who are interested only in freebies and bargains—worse, people who click ads just for fun.

The best way to make PPC ads work for you is to make sure you own the correct keyword associations, so that you can limit clicks to those who are genuinely interested and who make good candidates as clients. Below are 4 tips that deal with keyword choices so that you can maximize your marketing budget and assure ROI.

For the following keyword tips, let’s pretend that you’re selling eco-friendly, athletic shoes for women.

1.    Know the generic keywords and avoid bidding for them
Generic keywords are what people use to search for a category without knowing what information they need exactly. Based on our sample product, a generic keyword could be shoes or women’s shoes and its variations like shoes for women.

To the PPC neophyte, generic keywords might seem to be the way to go. However, consider how many people who search for women’s shoes would really be interested in your type of product.

Avoid generic keywords to avoid paying for random clicks by a generic market. Niche is the key.

2.    Add modifiers, track and adjust
Modifiers are words you add to the generic keyword that your product belongs to. Going back to our example, if your generic keyword is women’s shoes, the modifier could be athletic. So, your set of PPC keywords become women’s athletic shoes and its variations, including athletic shoes for women.

Adding modifiers to your keyword set automatically narrows down searches where your ad will appear next to, thereby cutting down the number of random clicks.

3.    Use long tail keywords
As the name suggests, going “long tail” adds more market-specific words that only your niche market will bother searching for. Adding eco friendly to athletic shoes for women limits the appearance of your PPC ad to a very specific search.

This kind of focus significantly lessens site visits from random clicks. You spend less as you increase your ROI by attracting only your niche market who are interested enough to end up making purchases.

4.    Say no to negative keywords
Words like “free”, “bargain” and “discount” may look attractive, but you don’t want them in your PPC ad copy. These words will effectively encourage clicks, but you’ll be inviting freebie and bargain hunters, neither of whom will give you profit.

Remember that you want quality clicks that will come from niche customers who are interested in what you have to say and offer.