PPC: A Review of 2010 and Resolutions for 2011

There were several changes in PPC in 2010 that have had big impacts. For example, Twitter started reaching out to companies who want to advertise on their social media platform via through promoted tweets. A company or advertising agency can pay on a cost per impression model to have their Tweets appear at the top of the Twitter search page. The Tweet can stay in this top spot as long as it is considered relevant and interesting by Twitter.

The way Facebook handles advertising changed in 2010. Now we can give advertising dollars directly to Facebook through the use of Facebook Ads. You still only pay when you receive clicks and you can serve image ads to people who you know are interested in your topic of choice.

If you have an eCommerce company the new ad extensions in Google can help you reach more customers. Product extensions and Product Listing Ads allow you to link your Google Merchant Center data feed, and show images, prices, and product names along with, or in addition to ads. Sitelink extensions allow you to show up to ten links along with your ads.

One of the biggest changes in PPC was the Yahoo and Bing merger. Since the merger on October 27, 2010, all Yahoo paid traffic has been delivered through Bing’s interface. Of course, with all the change that 2010 brought, we also have several expectations for PPC in 2011.

One expectation is mobile marketing. With the continued expansion of mobile search volume and mobile device and tablet sales, it will be important to develop a strategy to both leverage and measure the value of mobile searchers, as their capabilities, behavioral patterns, and lead generation paths, become more divergent from those of traditional computer-based search.

This is also the year social media marketing will be included more in small businesses’ online marketing strategies. Watch for social network mobile advertising to improve and for your Facebook keywords to rise in price. If you want to take part in exciting changes in 2011, this is the time you should resolve to get your PPC account in the best possible shape. Start by looking at what you are already doing and then set a reasonable goal that should be achieved by next year. Or you might want to have quarterly goals that build up to the overall annual goal.

Write your goals down.

Here are several other resolutions for your PPC account in 2011:

  • Tighten Up Broad Match Keywords -Tighten up broad match keywords by adding modified broad match keywords to your account. Broad match keywords will trigger an ad if the search query contains even just a part of the keyword. Modified broad match keywords trigger ads only if all marked keywords are contained in the ad. To mark a keyword, put a + in front of it.
  • Cut Out the Junk – Detox your account by weeding out any keywords or ads that are not helping. Utilize Analytics and use data to back your decision. If the keyword has not brought you any leads in a significant amount of time, then get rid of it. If your account is not lead based, look at things like time on site, bounce rate, click through rate and quality score to make your decision.
  • Exercise Judgment – Account maintenance is crucial to the ongoing health of a pay per click account. Run ad performance reports to determine which ads are not performing. Do bid changes in order to maximize spend and leads. Download the search terms that triggered your keywords in order to determine any negatives that you might need to add and find additional keywords that might be beneficial to the account.