Let me let you into a secret: You could have the hottest hotshot pay per click manager in the world… and still not be able to compete in your market at PPC.

By “compete”, I mean be one of the top 2-3 advertisers that hoover up the vast majority of clicks.

Why not?

The reason… as the headline suggests… is that the true secret to PPC success has little to do with PPC.

It’s Not Deep Pockets, Either

Fortunately, it’s nothing to do with deep pockets. While there are some large companies who are happy to lose money on their PPC ads – in return for some “branding value” – if you’re an SME, you’re probably not competing with those sorts of advertisers.

So what is the secret?

Before I tell you what it is, let me clarify something…

Professional PPC Management Is Useful

PPC work does matter. Here’s why: At the simplest level, good Adwords management does three things…

#1: It organises your account optimally so you don’t suffer from unnecessarily low quality scores.

Low quality scores are a killer. Imagine trying to compete with someone who has a Quality Score of 8, if your score is only 2. You’d be paying roughly 4 times as much for that click!

Not only that, but low quality scores will throttle how often your ads get shown – so you might only get a fraction of the available ad impressions.

#2: It improves your ads so you get a higher click rate.

#3: It optimises bids so you’re not under-bidding for your most profitable keywords, or over-bidding for less profitable keywords.

Just those three things could easily increase your PPC profits by 200% or 330%.

So, if PPC management can do all of this, why isn’t it enough?

Why Professional PPC Management Isn’t Enough

Because, if you’re playing in the big leagues, everyone has a pro.

Some pros will be better than others, so you can get an advantage by hiring smart.

But that advantage – even if your PPC guy is twice as good as your competitor’s – is dwarfed by something else.

And that “something else” is the real secret to PPC success. Which is…How much you earn from a website visitor.

And that’s decided by what happens after the click.

Which means, the most important thing in PPC is what happens after the PPC.

How to win the post-click battle

There are many things you can do to increase the value of a visitor, but I’ll give you the three easiest:

#1: Improve the copy on your website. Most sites do a poor job of explaining why a visitor should buy from them, rather than from someone else. A good direct response copywriter will be able to fix this and you should see a large increase in your conversion rates.

#2: Add higher value options. What could you add to your product or service that you could bundle together and offer as a “deluxe” version, or a “gold” version. Ideally, create three versions – if you do, most people will pick the middle version.

(For more information about this, check out this article: http://www.inc.com/the-build-network/the-anchoring-effect.html)

#3: Develop a back end to your business. I just read an email by Drayton Bird, where he gave the advice, “If you look for greater profit keeping people longer is the easiest method; these people – assuming you deliver what you promise – are money for jam.”

There are three great things about selling to your own list. First that they’re the people most likely to buy. Second, that they’re more likely to buy higher ticket items. Third, that it’s free (if you’re using email).

If you can double the average number of purchases per client, you’ll (at least) double the value of a customer.

And, if you can do that, you’ll double the value of a website visitor.

It amazes me how many businesses in this day and age, have customer email addresses and do little to nothing with them.

So, let me leave you with two things: A piece of advice and an offer.

The piece of advice is to realise – as we marketers have been saying since the early 2000s – that “the money is in the list.”

And the offer is, if you hate writing emails – or simply don’t have the time – drop me an email and we can talk about you retaining me to write a monthly newsletter for you.

Best wishes,

Steve Gibson

Categories: PPC