One of the fastest ways to get traffic to your site and see some sales is through pay-per-click or PPC.  All 3 top search engines have pay-per-click programmes.  Google is the best and you see instant results.  It is very easy to open an account with Google. I cover the basics in the article Google AdWords.

What is pay-per-click?

PPC ads are the ones you see on the right side of the page when you type a keyword in Google or Yahoo  and the search results come up. Every time someone clicks on those ads you pay a certain amount of money to Google or Yahoo. This may vary from 10 cents per click to $20 a click depending on the niche you are in.

Step 1

Go to www.google.com

click on Advertising Programs – Google AdWords and set up an account. It is very straightforward

Step 2

If you are a small business owner you will know your business inside out.  You will have an idea how people will search for you online.  Do some keyword research based on the niche you are in. Google has an excellent keyword tool and it is free. 

Google external keyword tool.

Come up with a few lists of keywords. Look for related keywords and synonyms. Use plurals. Use present continuous tense like buying, looking, losing. Keep the keywords organized in spreadsheets.

Step 3

Type in some of the keywords into Google or Yahoo and observer the ads that come up on the right. They are your competition. Try to copy the top 3-4. Watch those ads for 4-5 days. If they are still there they are making money.

A few tips

  • Try to have the keyword in the headline. Google/Yahoo will make it bold
  • State a benefit of the product.
  • Clear call to action.

Example ad

Suffering from Back Pain?
XYZ Mattress Will Help You Lessen Pain.
%50 Off This Week. Buy Now!

See how I have capitalised each word? It helps to improve readability. Try Questions in the headline or sympols, dashes. Have comma for a pause. Anything that will help you attract attention to your ad.

Step 3

Create groups of keywords that are tightly knit together.

Buy mattress
Buying mattress
Queen mattress
Firm mattress etc.

Each group will be counted as one adgroup. Write two ads per adgroup.

Step 4

Make a list of negative keywords. This is very important to keep your costs down. If you are bidding on broad match. Google will display your ad for even a single keyword in your phrase. example If you  are bidding on “Handmade beeswax candles”, on broad match. Google will display your ad for the word candle which is too broad for your niche. Negatives will stop Google from displaying your ad for unwanted terms.

Step 5

Download Google Adwords Editor. It is a local hard drive based editor. It is free. You will enter the groups of keywords & ads and set a daily budget, then bulk upload to your Google account.

Step 6

Enter your campaigns into Google Adwords Editor. Set a low daily budget till your are confident. Something like $20 a day will be a good starter.

Step 7

After a week log into your cpanel in your hosting account and look at the keywords that have been used.  You will be able to get a longet negative keyword list from these keywords. Tweak your campaign as you go along.

I have only given you the basic information. You can start with this info and get traffic to your website in a short period. With so many variable in play, it is a fine game. Keep watching for the next instalment in PPC later.