(Ping! Zine Web Tech Magazine) – For most businesses, a prominent ranking in search engines is a significant source of website traffic. Business owners spend a tremendous amount of effort on making sure their website is easily found and visited from the widest audience possible on the internet. This is why techniques such as search engine optimization (SEO) are important to learn before you even start thinking of your website. But after you have optimized your site to the best of your ability (and we have articles and a webinar on that very topic), what can you do to take your search engine presence a step further?
The answer is Search engine marketing (SEM). In this article we will discuss the most important avenue for SEM,Google AdWords, and how it can benefit your business.
How does it work?
AdWords lets you purchase listings on search engine result pages that display for a user when they search a pre-determined keyword. For example, if you are unable to be among the top results for an important keyword relating to your business, you can pay for a listing on the results for that word instead.
To do this, a business owner must first determine keywords that they wish to associate with their business website. You should think how your customers think: what would they search for in Google, if they had a need for your product or service? Would your website provide an appropriate answer to their question?
Once you have your keywords in mind, the next step is to bid for them. Some keywords have a high demand, which may require you to make a higher investment to secure a placement when that term is searched. For AdWords, youpay per click (PPC), meaning that you may appear as a sponsored result on Google results pages multiple times, but you are only charged when someone actually clicks on the link. For example, you could expect to spend between $0.80 and $1.25 per click for a keyword, depending on its popularity.
The more money that you bid, the more likely you will be placed high on the list, however there is never a guarantee. There is no average amount of investment for a single AdWords campaign, as it is dependent on a number of factors, such as:
- Size of geographic area
- Popularity and demand of keywords
- How many visitors you target
The next step is scheduling. You can schedule when you wish certain advertisements should run. For example, if the statistics show that your visitors are only visiting your website Monday through Friday from 9am – 5pm, you can specify those times to maximize relevant exposure and increase your return on investment.
Check back for part 2 of this article to learn more about the benefits for these advertising campaigns.
Photo Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/ardaguldogan
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