PPC (pay-per-click), is an online marketing concept every advertiser ought to know if they want to remain competitive in the cut-throat game of online advertising. Essententially, PPC enables advertisers to direct traffic back to their own websites by paying for each click browsers make on their advertisements. These advertisements pop up on relevant sites while browsers continue trawling through the world’s biggest shopping mall that is the World Wide Web. This allows advertisers to tap into larger markets, drawing in customers who would otherwise have remained unreachable to them.

If tapping into a large market is what’s kept you reading, then this next bit is for you. There are a few ways in which PPC can be arranged. The first, and most popular way, is to set up your advertisement through a search engine results page (SERP). This will generate that large market access most advertisers only dream about. Ideally, Google, with its current 58% share of the global search engine market, should be your first port of call. Baidu, Bing and Yahoo are next in line when it comes to dipping your toes into the largest pools of internet browsers.

The second way in which one might set up a PPC marketing campaign is to set it up through a content network. They are called this because the ad spots they offer are linked to keywords and the context of the page on which they are found. Content networks include mediums such as websites, newsletters and emails. However, these mediums do not attract as broad of a market as SERPs do and so are seen as less valuable on the online marketing score-board.

Email PPC, also known as “solo ads” can be a very profitable marketing method for 2 reasons:

The first; You are marketing to a subscribed user base that has already shown they are interested in a specific niche.

The second; You can collect these emails yourself, providing you are sending these email clicks to your own landing page that has the ability to capture user emails.

The third way one might set up a PPC campaign is via social media networks, most notably, Facebook. Facebook PPC can be used to promote a website URL, a Facebook page itself, or even a single Facebook post. You can easily target niche specific users with a relatively low CPC (cost-per-click) rate. There is also an option to advertise in a PPV fashion (pay-per-view), where you pay a set amount per every 1000 impressions. Something like this can work wonders on visual advertisements.

In order to set up a PPC, advertisers need to think long and hard about which keywords they will use to link up to their advertisement. These keywords, after all, are what will direct audiences towards their ads. A good way to make the optimal choices for your keywords is to check out what your competitors are doing. Find out what their keywords are, how their landing pages look and what the copy of their advertisements read.

Also, remember that you are paying for each click browsers make on your advertisement. You do not want to be paying for clicks somebody makes while browsing for protein shakes, when you’re advertising waterproof mascara. There’s a fine line between keeping your keywords broad enough to attract a large audience, and keeping your keywords relevant enough to attract the right audience. Find that line and your profit margins have the potential to soar.

Finally, keep in mind what you are able to afford spending in order to bring in one customer. If your PPC amount exceeds this, then you need to reconsider your options. PPC campaigns can be easy to get wrong, and can quickly become one of the most expensive mistakes your business can make. However, they can also be hugely beneficial if done right. Tread cautiously and your PPC venture could be your pathway to success.