The 10 Commandments of PPC


If you remember “Glengarry Glen Ross”, you’ll know that coffee is for closers. Well in PPC coffee is for testers. It is simply vital that you test, test and test again. You should be testing different ads, bids and landing pages to see what works best for your campaigns and the traffic that you are driving. This can be simply done through what is known as an Adwords Campaign Experiment (ACE) where Adwords creates a simple A/B test in order to see, for example, what ad has a better click through rate (CTR).

This testing is very useful when optimising your campaigns and improving Keyword Quality Score. Also in terms of Conversion Rate Optimisation there are some fantastic products that can be used to test different landing pages with different calls to action and content. These come mainly in the form of Optimizely and Unbounce.


Ad Extensions are really important when creating a top class campaign. These are little additions to your campaign. It must be said that the use of Ad Extensions are now taken into account when determining Ad Rank. Ad Extensions come in the form of, but are not limited to;

Site-Links – Here we can add other links to your ad that go to different areas of your site. We can also put descriptions on these site-links which give your ad more prominence within the search engine result page.

Call Extension – This is where we add your phone number to the campaign allowing it to be seen on the ad. This extension is very good for mobile preferred ads as Google will put a call button on the ad which allows people to call your company straight from the ad.

Location Extension – This is a great extension should your company have a physical location. Here we connect the campaign with your Google Places for Business account in order to show your location on the ad. It is also possible to manually enter a location within Adwords.

Review Extension – This is where you can show reviews from third party sites on your ads.

Google also has a number of other ad extensions including offer extensions and social extensions.


It is vital that you cover all the different types of traffic that is searching using the keywords within your campaigns. This means that you must include Phrase, Exact and Broad Modifier Keywords. Phrase keywords will trigger an ad when someone uses a keyword within a phrase or a sentence. Exact is when they use the exact keyword that you are bidding on. Broad Modifier is similar to Broad match but you put a “+” before the word that must be included within the search term to trigger your ad. These match types have been proven to attract warmer traffic to your site which has a higher conversion rate.


It is also very important to understand that keywords, mainly broad match, can migrate into other keywords that Google deems to be relevant. For example, if you have “apples” in as broad match it could show for “oranges”. This means that it is super important that you exclude traffic from your campaign that is completely irrelevant and will never convert. This is done by adding negative keywords to your campaign. You can look for these keywords through the search term report.


I always like to think of PPC as a horse race where traffic has to jump over several different obstacles before a sale or lead is made. You’ve got someone to click on your ad now you must get them to convert. After all we just don’t only send traffic to a website, we want that traffic to be profitable. In-order to get your traffic to convert, it is important that you send it to the most relevant landing page for the keywords within the adgroup.

For example if you are bidding on “apples” send that traffic to a page about “apples”. Google will crawl your landing page and will take this content into account when determining keyword quality score. Simply put the more relevant the landing page to your traffic the better your conversion rate.


Google has an interesting little feature that allows you to bid more or less on traffic at different times, days, locations and on mobile devices. This feature came in last year with the introduction of enhanced campaigns. You are able to see within your campaign, for example, what days are more profitable over other days. You can then enter in a % amount telling the system to bid more for this traffic. However, we at Vroom Digital don’t like to guess the correct % amount to enter. It is possible to calculate the correct bid adjustment through excel.


It is vitally important that you make your campaigns as granular as possible by building your adgroups out by theme. This will allow you to create ads that are custom to the theme within your adgroup. This means that it is possible to have your keywords within your ad copy which has been shown to work quite well.


As much as Google are our lords and over masters, it is not all about them. Don’t forget about Bing, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and the Google Display Network.

Bing will not get the same amount of traffic as Google but the costs per clicks (CPCs) are lower and the traffic is just as relevant. It is also possible to import your campaigns from Adwords.

Facebook has some brilliant advertising products such as Facebook Remarketing and Custom Audiences.

Twitter has also brought out similar products but also has Lead Generation Cards.

Further to this, there is the Google Display Network which allows you to show banner ads on third party sites.

These methods of advertising have been proven to send relevant traffic to websites that converts.


PPC is a very fast moving industry with Google and other companies constantly bring out new features and products. It is very important that you use these products as they have been shown as ways of attracting traffic better or in fact attaching completely new traffic to your site. We at Vroom are, for instance, very excited about Product Listing Ads which are set to be launched in Ireland soon. They are already in place in other countries. These are used on ecommerce sites, where a Google Merchant / Shopping account is linked to your Adwords Account allowing you to show your products on the search engine results page. Also there are other features such as Remarketing for Search and Dynamic Search Ads which have been shown to work really well.


They say that an education is the best thing you can give someone. As PPC is constantly changing it is vital that you stay up to date on what is going on. This means that you must read the different blogs and news outlets (PPC Hero, Search Engine Land, Search Engine Watch). These news sources also have great webinars with are fantastic for ideas. Also don’t forget the official Adwords Blog (Inside Adwords) which contains information on launches etc. Try and go to the different Digital Marketing and Tech conferences, DMX and The Summit, here in Ireland but also SMX which is being held in London.

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