Minding the Pay-Per-Click Gap

Author: Scott Thompson

Mind the Gap. A phrase made famous by the London Underground. It’s used to warn passengers to be careful of the gap between the train door and the station platform when exiting or entering the train. This phrase is also useful to those of us using pay-per-click advertising for our businesses.

When it comes to PPC (pay-per-click), there can and often times is a large ‘gap’ between the ad being clicked and the conversion you’re trying to get. This one click can be the difference between a sale/lead and another visitor contributing to your bounce rate. So how do you mind the gap with PPC?

These are three of my foundation builders for PPC:

  1. Never send a visitor to your home page from a PPC campaign unless it’s part of your brand campaign (the visitor typed the name of your company in the browser). Your site’s home page is the front door to your business. PPC incorporates very specific keywords you’re targeting to drive traffic to your site. If someone is specifically looking for a ‘red, 10-speed, mountain bike’ you don’t show them the front door. You personally escort them to the red, 10-speed, mountain bike page on your website. The home page of your site can be one of the biggest gaps to overcome with PPC.
  2. Minding the gap is also about the consistency you show throughout the click process. Another great tactic is using external landing pages. This way the ad content and the content on the landing page reflect the same message. Consider it a soft sell before the hard sell. Landing pages work very well for B-to-B websites. Once on the page you give the visitor only three calls to action: Contact Us, Download a White Paper/Case Study and More Information. A Contact Us or Download click is the visitor giving your their information. They want to be contacted. Much easier than crossing your fingers and hoping they find that same information 5-clicks deep on your website. In my experience, I’ve seen landing pages lower cost per conversion from $250 to $60.
  3. This final one seems like an obvious one, but also seems counter-intuitive. Never be afraid to cut your spend. That’s right… cut your spend. If it looks like you are wasting money you probably are, and you’re only increasing the gap between spend and revenue. Always aim for quality leads over quantity of leads. Remember the $60 cost per conversion? That was done over a three-year period while decreasing PPC spend by 68% and increasing revenue by 685%. Quality over quantity, no matter the size or type of business, closes that gap to a simple crack in the process.
There are many, many more tips and tricks of the trade for PPC. Much like everything on the web you’re always learning but these three help form a great foundation to build on. So mind the gap and good luck. And watch your step!
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