Are you interested in Internet marketing in Northern Colorado?

For the past couple days we’ve been talking specifically about low cost marketing techniques for Northern Colorado businesses.  Yesterday as I was talking about how search engine optimization offers the highest ROI of any Internet marketing tactic or any marketing tactic for that matter because it can place your site in front of the world for a relatively small cost.   However, it can take time to push your site to the top of Google so pay-per-click ads may be the best alternative for you until your site is naturally ranked in the free or organic listings on Google.

So what is pay-per-click advertising and why are so many businesses in Northern Colorado using it?

First of all, pay-per-click is a form of advertising or Internet marketing where you get to place your ad on Google and a number of other search engines for free.  You know, it’s the “sponsored links” at the top of the Google search results and in the right hand side bar.  Your ad can be displayed to thousands of people and you only pay each time someone clicks on your ads and is directed to your site.  It’s pretty sweet.

Any why are so many Northern Colorado businesses using it?  Because it’s cheap, it can be set up in minutes, there are no advertising contracts and because it works.  Let’s hit on each one of those benefits briefly.

Northern Colorado businesses love pay-per-click advertising because it’s cheap.

It’s literally just a couple cents per click.  Sure, some industries are more competitive so they may cost more, but many industries are still cheap.  Imagine developing a post card campaign.  That could cost thousands by the time you pay for writing, design, printing and postage.  Let’s say you’d feel like the postcard campaign were successful if you got 100 people to visit your site.  That figures out to more than $10 per visitor.  But with pay-per-click, you’d be looking at less than $10 to get 100 people to visit your site.  You can’t beat that!  Internet marketing offers serious bang for your buck.

Northern Colorado businesses love pay-per-click advertising because it can be set up in minutes.

It’s easy to set up an account.  Go to adwords.google.com and you can be up and running in just a couple minutes.  But beware, there are a lot of tricks to setting up your account so that you get the most out of your investment.  Be sure to do your homework before funding your account or you could lose a lot of money quickly.  By no means is this blog post intended to be the definitive answer to Google Adwords so please don’t move forward until you’re confident that you know what you’re doing.  Here are just a couple tips to keep in mind when you set up your account.

Choose your keyword phrases carefully.  If you choose very narrow, specific terms, you’re more likely to get highly qualified traffic to your site.  If you choose broad, generic terms, you may be competing with the big boys and may find yourself having to pay several dollars per click.  When you choose lots of less popular phrases, you can dominate each one for less money.  The popular phrases get so much traffic that they are very competitive and that can make anyone feel like Internet marketing isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be.  Do your homeword and Internet marketing can prove to be your most reliable weapon in your marketing toolbox.

Write your ads so that they are compelling.  If your ads are displayed to lots of people but no one clicks on them, Google will actually raise the amount that you have to pay to have your ads displayed.  On the other hand, if you write such an attractive ad that everyone clicks on it, you may wind up getting unqualified people to visit your site, wasting your marketing dollars.  It’s a fine line.

Test several different ads at the same time.   You can create multiple ads and see which ones are getting the most clicks.  You can even tie them to your Google Analytics account so you can see which ads are attracting people who eventually convert into paying customers.   That’s the power of the web.  Use your data and test, test, test.

Northern Colorado businesses love pay-per-click advertising because it requires no contracts.

Are you sick of contracts?  You have one for your cell phone, one for your digital T.V., one for your email, one for your yellow pages ads and the list goes on and on.  But with pay-per-click advertising, you have no contracts.  Google knows that their ad program is so superior to every other form of advertising so they don’t need to trap you in a contract.  Once people try it, they’re hooked, with or without a contract.  You know it’s good when they don’t need to trap you for the next 24 months.  All you have to do is set up your account and enter your credit card number.  You choose how much you want to spend.  Set your budget as low as $50/month and you’re off and running.  If you want to limit your spending, the budget can help with that.  Or maybe you just want to test the waters.  Fund your account with a $50 credit.  Once that money is spent, you can choose to ante up more or give up if you didn’t get any results.  But if you didn’t get any results, assume that you didn’t do your homework before embarking on your pay-per-click campaign.  If you have done your homework, you’ll not only know how to set up your account so it’s optimized to offer the highest possible ROI, you’ll also know if pay-per-click advertising is right for your business model.

Northern Colorado businesses love pay-per-click because it works.

Now that may be a little bit of an over-statement.  It works if your business model can support it.  If you’re selling widgets for $.39 each, you may have a hard time making a profit if you spend more than $.39 to get the visitors to your site in the first place.   But I’ve seen many people who have seen spectacular results.  I have personally sold more than a quarter of a million dollars a year through one simple site by promoting it with Google Adwords.  You don’t have to use it to become rich overnight but a little at a time, with a constant stream of customers, it can happen.   I’ve had clients who have sold millions through their sites with the help of Google Adwords.  Trust me, it works, as long as your margins are sufficient to support the advertising costs and your site is designed to convert at least 1% or 2% of your visitors into paying customers.  Now that’s a totally different matter.  We’ll hit on that on another day.

Hope that helps!

Chadd Bryant

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