The Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising model is still prevalent almost three decades after the launch of the first PPC advertisement space.
As of 2020, 74% of global brands stated that PPC advertising had a massive impact on their growth and sales. Moreover, the model continues to evolve into a flexible and cost-efficient advertising model for businesses.
PPC campaigns allow advertising businesses to bid on keywords for space on different advertising platforms. The advertisers then pay for the user clicks generated from the ads. As a result, this model is more efficient and profitable than traditional advertising.
The potential of PPC advertisements is promising. However, you can only see and benefit from them if you manage your eCommerce PPC campaigns properly. Good eCommerce PPC management makes it easy to track your KPIs and boost your eCommerce business awareness, site traffic, and conversion rates. You could either do it in-house or hire an e-commerce management agency.
Are you looking to learn more about effective eCommerce PPC management practices?
1. Run A/B tests
A/B tests help you compare different variables in your PPC strategy, making it easy to identify the best options. This is why you need to run A/B tests for various factors and features of your PPC campaign. That may include elements like the ad headline, landing page text, graphics, and the CTA in your advert.
For instance, you may try two separate value propositions on your landing page. You can then track the conversions over a given period. Doing so will give you insights into what value proposition resonates with your audience. You can then use that information to build an effective landing page that will convert more leads from your PPC ads.
Besides that, A/B testing will also help you learn a lot about your target audience, especially their online shopping patterns and specific interests. You can then use the information to develop strategies to ensure each customer's positive user experience.
You should run A/B tests regularly to ensure the company's PPC campaigns are constantly optimized. Also, avoid multivariate testing on different elements simultaneously. This could make it harder to identify the aspects influencing the results. Instead, try to test one or two features for each round.
2. Target long-tail keywords
PPC campaigns run on a keywords bidding system. So you should choose relevant keywords to make your ads visible in the search results. Keyword research will help you find these keywords that match your industry. Long-tail keywords are one of those keyword categories.
Long-tail keywords are key phrases that are more specific and have more words than other keywords. They often range between 3-5 words. Here is a visual breakdown of how to create long-tail keywords and how they work:
Long-tail keywords can be used in natural language phrases. Like the example above, instead of “law firm,” you could use ‘how do I hire a law firm in Utah.” The latter is more specific and attracts target customers more likely to make purchases.
To achieve success with long-tail keywords, include details like your physical location. For instance, if you own a sportswear store, you could use the keyword “women’s sportswear store in Seattle” instead of “sportswear store.”
Also, if you have an internal search feature, you could use the search data to guide you on what is currently popular with your users. Then you can include the phrases in your long-tail keywords to attract qualified traffic.
3. Add negative keywords
The success of a PPC campaign is highly dependent on getting the right potential customers to your eCommerce platform. This is why part of your eCommerce PPC management plan should focus on identifying negative keywords.
Negative keywords are words you do not want to rank for. So if a user’s search query includes the terms, your advertisement will not pop up. You will also not have to pay for clicks from uninterested users.
The example below shows how adding negative keywords works. The negative keyword “running shoes” prevents an ad from showing when a query has the two words. This is the reason the ad will not popup in the last three search queries below:
You can easily add negative keywords to your Google Ads account to avoid spending money unnecessarily. Build a negative keywords list and add it to your PPC campaign as shown below:
Finally, for better results, you need to think beyond the obvious irrelevant keywords for your sector. For instance, if you are bidding for the keyword “quality refurbished laptops,” you could add “new laptops” as a negative keyword. This way, you attract buyers looking for refurbished laptops only.
4. Optimize product pages
The state of your product pages determines if the potential customers you have enticed through your PPC advertising will stay and make purchases or not. Even qualified leads will leave your site if your product pages are not appealing or well optimized.
But there are changes you can incorporate into your product feed to boost customer engagement and click-through rate. They include:
- Ensuring you have clear and quality product images and videos
- Sharing customer feedback and testimonials
- Using good product titles
- Adding updated and relevant product information
- Including keywords in the page title tags and product descriptions
- Consistent branding and logo placement
Nike's online store has some well-optimized and appealing product pages. Here’s an example of one:
Nike has well-designed product pages with customer reviews, ratings, and internal links to relevant pages for users. You will also notice they use high-quality images and clear product descriptions, all neatly designed.
If you are looking to achieve similar clean and neat designs on your product pages, you can use the POWR media gallery. The plugin allows you to display articles, images, and videos in a block-style gallery and customize it to ensure brand consistency.
Note, when optimizing your product pages, especially those advertised, ensure they contain similar information. You can use online tools to rephrase some text from the ad and the landing page. However, make sure the brand voice and tone remain consistent.
Users mostly click on advertisements because certain information catches their attention. Therefore, leaving the information out of your product page may make them feel deceived, leading to mistrust.
5. Match with seasonal demands
Good eCommerce PPC management helps track consumer behavior, purchasing patterns, and demand changes. This guides you on when to spend more or less on a specific eCommerce PPC strategy. You can use the POWR Hit Counter app to help you track the number of visits on each webpage.
Besides your customer's data and online behaviors, you also need to understand your industry trends. Understand when business is booming or slow, and identify factors influencing these changes.
For instance, if your eCommerce website sells warm knitted attires, you know your peak period is winter. So you should invest more in PPC advertising during the season to get more profits. But you can also use PPC during low seasons to boost your revenue.
They also make it easy for businesses with multiple locations to know when to increase bids or alter PPC marketing budgets in each area. This makes it easier to boost your lead conversion rates and earn control of a larger market share.
6. Competitor analysis
An eCommerce PPC management plan is not complete without a good competitor analysis. A good analysis will include a look at the competitor’s ads, the type of content used, formats, how they are distributed, and the landing pages.
The analysis will also provide information you could use to adjust your PPC’s strategy and make informed decisions. For example, if they have been bidding on a particular keyword for a long time, they probably get decent returns. So, your brand could try bidding for the same keyword.
The analysis can also help you notice search queries and keyword gaps your competitors overlook. Then you can use them in your PPC advertisements to discover untapped traffic opportunities with a higher probability of bringing future customers. Here is an example of an analysis that focuses on keyword gaps:
A competitor's analysis will also help you discover your competitors’ spending patterns and how much profit they get. This will help you make informed decisions on factors like your PPC campaign budget.
You can use platforms like SE Ranking or SEMRush to run the analysis and generate a custom report that makes it easier to understand and interpret the data. Here is an example:
Another way to spy on your competitors is through the Facebook ads library. To see the ad details, go to the competitor's Facebook profile and scroll down. Click on the “Page transparency” tab, which has the general page and ads’ details.
Click on “Go to Ad Library” for more details about the active ads, including content types and brand landing pages. You can also get the ads report with more details like brands’ spending.
Any business looking to get the best ROI on every dollar they spend on PPC advertisements must practice good eCommerce PPC management. Proper management will help you keep track of each step and guide your decisions throughout the PPC campaign.
So ensure you pay attention to the steps discussed above. Run A/B tests, use long-tail keywords, add negative keywords, optimize product pages, match seasonal demands, and run competitor analysis.
Follow these eCommerce PPC management steps, and you’ll have an easier time managing your campaigns. Most importantly, they’ll help you optimize your ROI from each campaign.
All the best!
Plamen Popov is the content and communications specialist for Writer, an AI writing assistant designed for teams. Plamen has previously worked to develop content marketing strategies for brands like MFG, Kinguin, Acronis and Metrilo.