For our latest iteration of the iNoobs series we’ll be discussing marketing. Specifically paid search marketing, aka “pay per click marketing” (PPC) aka AdWords.

First, let’s take a step back and take a look at the market. I recently wrote about how Yahoo and Bing are dead.

If you can believe it, Google has captured the ENTIRE search engine market. The searches that Yahoo and Bing (and the other minor contributors are sending) are so insignificant that, from a search engine marketing perspective, they can safely be ignored. For now…

(Google has come under fire recently, being called to testify before the Senate Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights for some alleged minor anti-trust violations. Nothing major. Just the closest thing to controlling the world’s information that mankind has ever witnessed.)

But, I digress.

So, there are essentially two ways to get your website and IMPORTANT CONTENT in front of your readers, clients, and customers (and we’ll get back to social media in a minute – but I don’t generally count it as a 3rd).

The first is what is referred to as being “organically” ranked in Google’s Search Engine (and even this is split between normal, local, shopping, and now social results). In this scenario, Google has indexed billions (if not more) of pages and content on the Internet. You do a search, and, using its algorithms Google returns to you (1-10) the results it feels best match your search.

The second way to get your site in front of visitors’ is with AdWords (aka Pay Per Click). In this scenario you become an advertiser and say “screw you google, I know what you think… that searcher is STILL valuable, and my site SHOULD be up there… I’m willing to pay to be seen!”

(Maybe that was a little violent.)

Anyway, in the pay per click scenario – you use Google’s AdWords interface/product to purchase ad space for given keywords.   The kicker is you (the advertiser) ONLY PAY when someone clicks through to your website (hence the name “pay per click”).

Here’s a scenario. Let’s look at the screen shot below:

iNoobs: Google AdWords – What it Takes and What it Means

I did a search for “paper mate inkjoy pens” and received a bunch of stuff. It’s a mixture of organic web pages, google shopping content, and finally the pay per click ads (at the very top of the screen).

More on Organic Ranking

To organically rank means that your original content can be found when Google “crawls” your website. Your site is scanned by one of the million plus (estimate) servers. The site results are returned and Google categorizes the features of your site with a top-secret algorithm.

A bit of advice here: BE ORIGINAL! Do not steal; do not reuse the same phrase; do not use crappy content.

Google knows, oh yes, IT KNOWS!

If you want to drive traffic to your site by optimizing key words, use the keyword tool in AdWords (you can use it even if you don’t have adwords!) and wrap your thoughts around the keywords that make the most sense for the kind of traffic you want delivered to your site…

Back to AdWords & Pay Per Click Marketing

AdWords is one of my primary tools for advertising sites. And it should be yours too!

Much like Google’s organic algorithm, AdWords too has a way for advertisers to compete – and it’s not simply price.

Google looks at you as an advertiser in many different ways – it looks at your keywords, your ads, your website, and your bid amount and assembles all of this into a “Quality Score”.

All things being equal if you have a good score you can pay a fraction of what a competitor does to have your ad for the same keyword – so it definitely pays to be knowledgeable.

Remember it’s important to:

  1. Become proficient in AdWords advertising, should you use it personally; or,
  2. Hire a firm that has the experience (and good reputation) for finding the sweet spot where the cost and the advertisement result in the biggest bang for your buck.

The result of an effective AdWords advertisement campaign is more money. And, who wouldn’t want their business to make more of that!?