First Published: 15 August, 2022
A high-quality score can save you much more while delivering significantly better results. With that in mind, read on to discover what strategic steps you can take to maintain a healthy conversion rate.
Let’s begin by understanding what CPC means. According to Google’s official resource, Cost Per Click (CPC) is the amount you pay for each click on your ad. While setting up your ads, you can set a maximum Cost Per Click bid that you are willing to pay for a click on your ad.
The ‘Max CPC’ is the maximum amount you are willing to pay for a click. You won’t spend any more than your set Max CPC limit. You will most likely spend close to your Max CPC limit for a click on your ad. The final amount paid for a click is your ‘Actual CPC’, which can vary from click to click.
However, we’d argue that focusing on CPC as a measure of success has become less relevant, with smart bidding now taking care of most of that.
Google calculates your CPC using Ad Rank, which multiple factors can influence, including:
Google aims to present top-notch ads to its audience and has built a system that ranks high-quality ad experiences. As a result, advertisers with quality ads pay lower CPCs. Google measures ad quality by Quality Score, which consists of three factors:
You could lower your CPC by creating landing pages and ads relevant to your audience’s search intent that cater to your customers’ needs. Now that you understand how Google measures Quality Score and how it relates to CPC, let’s check out proven tips and tricks to improve your CPC.
Match types are parameters that control which search terms trigger your ads. Match types allow you to mitigate the chance your ad will trigger due to a related search term or a function word. In short, match types are tools that minimise the possibility of targeting the wrong audience.
There are three types of match types:
1. Broad Match: Broad Match will trigger your ad for the broadest possible searches relevant to your keyword, including synonyms, related searches, relevant variations, misspellings, etc.
2. Phrase Match: Phrase Match includes your main keyword and similar variations (having similar meanings). It triggers your ad when the search query contains your keyword phrase or a phrase with the same intent. It will also display your ad if the user adds additional words before or after the main keyword.
3. Exact Match: Exact Match will trigger your ad if the query precisely matches your keyword phrase’s meaning and intent. This option gives you maximum relevancy but limited reach.
Choosing the type of match determine how wide you can throw your net to reach your search audience and how relevant your audience will be. To understand this better, let’s consider an example:
It’s important to note that broad match types attract massive traffic but have low conversion. On the other hand, an exact match catches a small number of fish, but it’s the fish you seek. Meanwhile, phrase match lies in-between broad match and exact match (kind of a balanced approach).
As you can see, each match type serves a different purpose and has its pros and cons. So, if you are not an expert, you can experiment with different match types to analyse which match type performs better and scale up on it. Don’t panic when you hear the word experiment; you don’t have to run the ads to analyse the CPC.
Upload your keywords into Google Ads, pause your campaign, and you will see the first page and top page bid estimates recommended by Google. Doing so will not only give you a reasonable idea of the average CPC of your targeted keywords, but it will also save you from overspending.
We have already discussed Quality Score, how Google measures it, and how it is relevant to your CPC. The Quality Score measures the relevancy of your landing page, ads, and keywords.
Improving your overall quality score can significantly impact the position of your ads and how much they will cost per click. The higher the quality score, the higher your ad rank will be, and the lower your cost per click will be. To improve your Quality Score, create highly targeted ads that match the intent of the search queries.
Improving your Quality Score means creating the right ads and targeting them to the right people. It involves connecting these ads to message-matched post-click landing pages, which ultimately attracts your target audience, thus, increasing your conversion rate.
Keyword Research is the foundation of any successful ad campaign. The more time and effort you put into your keyword research, the better will be your CPC results, which, in turn, will increase your ROI while keeping your cost low.
Let’s assume you’re running a company that sells grain-free cat food and want it to be as successful as possible. With the increasing number of companies selling grain-free cat food within the market, the competition seems challenging. Furthermore, popular keywords have a higher CPC rate.
Businesses with a small ad campaign budget can often feel intimidated, thinking it is not enough to beat the competitors in the market. Knowing this, you don’t want to bankrupt your business through your ad campaign, and you don’t want to fall behind your competitors.
To avoid this, make your keyword research as robust and comprehensive as possible. Instead of the obvious keywords that will be highly competitive, try to find new keywords that are relevant to your search and have low difficulty scores and competition.
For instance, you can try incorporating long-tail keywords as they are cheaper than more competitive short-tail keywords. Similarly, you can find many shorter keyword phrases with low competition that can also drive better traffic and higher conversion. The key is staying on the lookout and continuously updating your regular research. It’s always good to experiment and try out different keywords!
Google Dynamic Search Ads (DSAs) is a powerful ad campaign type to expand your search query coverage and drive traffic to your website. DSAs resemble traditional text campaigns; however, it offers one major upgrade. Google Dynamic Ads don’t use typical keywords. Instead, DSA uses your website or product feed to create dynamic and personalised ads.
When a user types a query, Google matches the user’s query to your website feed and products/services to generate an ad (using the content on your website) tailored to that user. The campaign is still visible in Google’s search results, and it’s difficult to tell them apart from conventional text advertising. These ads are a fantastic way to provide dynamic content to targeted search users. Plus, it’s highly effective and typically yields more conversions.
Google Dynamic Search Ads (DSAs) allow businesses to:
Whenever your ad comes up for an irrelevant search, it ultimately lowers your Quality Score and CTR. This drop, in turn, increases your CPC, which damages your campaign in the long run. This is where negative keywords play their role. When you use negative keywords, it causes your ads to only show up for relevant searches.
Let’s understand this with the help of an example. Let’s assume you sell skis. You may want to broadly target the search engine using the keyword ‘ski’. However, searches with the keywords ‘ski kill’, ‘ski lounge’, or ‘ski pass’ are irrelevant to your business. Therefore, to avoid this, adding these terms to your negative keywords list can quickly help you avoid escalating CPC.
Relevancy is the secret key to curating successful ad campaigns and improving your CPC. Relevancy is one of the major factors that Google measures to determine the Quality Score of your ads and keywords. So, it’s crucial to focus on relevancy when building ad campaigns for your business.
Relevancy directly impacts your conversion rate as well. Bringing uninterested people to your site through irrelevant keywords might boost your traffic. Still, it won’t help convert visitors to consumers. Indifferent users will balloon your bounce rate, provide no value for money and, eventually, damage your Ads campaign.
To find out the relevancy of your ads, go to the Keywords tab, and hover over the speech bubble on each keyword to find the ad relevance level. To improve your ads’ relevance, include keywords from the ad group in your ad heading and description. This will ensure that your landing page is relevant to the keyword.
In digital marketing, a tried and tested approach is to broaden your funnel to drive more traffic. Using a Search Engine is merely one part of the picture. If you want to improve your CPC, try experimenting with alternatives that provide cheaper and better ways to advertise, i.e., Discovery, Local, Shopping Videos, etc. If search ads are becoming costly for your business, look for other ways to advertise that are cheaper but offer almost the same results. So, all in all, don’t limit yourself to only one platform for running ad campaigns. Be smart and save wherever you can.
When it comes down to it, nothing beats the expertise and knowledge of a professional Search Engine Marketing Consultant. So, suppose you lack digital marketing experience and struggling to keep your CPC at a nominal price. In that case, it’s a good idea to hire a highly experienced SEM individual or agency to help you out.
Professionals have knowledge and experience with proven techniques and strategies that help you increase your ROI by lowering your average CPC for Google Ads. An expert marketing team can help you implement effective strategies to fit your unique advertising needs, raising your CTR and reducing Cost Per Click.
Experienced CPC experts offer a wide range of services, including in-depth keyword research, bid management, analysis, engaging ad copies, and reporting. In short, the main objective of working with a marketing agency is to maximise your ROI and lower your CPC to get effective results in the lowest possible budget.
Search Engine Marketing is a powerful strategy to help businesses generate quick sales and boost their ROI. When running ad campaigns, high CPC can present a significant challenge for companies. The tips mentioned in this article can help you tackle this issue to improve your CPC and ultimately gain traffic with a higher conversion rate.
Lowering and controlling the CPC of your ad campaigns is just one of the many challenges you would face while running ad campaigns. Running effective ad campaigns requires a particular skill set, experience, proper strategy, and most importantly, a deep understanding of how ads work. If you lack any of these, you will find it challenging to get effective results without spending a fortune. That’s where we come in.
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