Over the next several weeks and months, we’ll be running a series of pay-per-click advertising tips to help you get your first pay-per-click campaign up and running or make modifications to improve an existing campaign.
After getting your pay-per-click advertising account setup, the first step to a successful campaign is proper keyword selection. So, how can you find information on the keywords that are going to be the focus of your advertising campaign? Google, of course!
Google provides a great, free resource to get all of the relevant information on the keywords that will form the basis of your campaign – the Google Keyword Tool.
The tool is very easy to jump in and use. Let’s say you’re in the business of selling hooded sweatshirts online. By typing the phrase “hooded sweatshirt” into the Word or Phrase box, you’ll be provided with all of the relevant information on the search term. Here’s what you’ll find:
Competition: This measures, on a relative scale, how many other advertisers are competing for this same keyword. More competition can often mean a higher cost-per-click for your ads.
Global Monthly Searches: Number of searches, worldwide, occurring each month for this term.
Local Monthly Searches: This defaults to number of U.S. searches, but you can customize to other geographic regions with the “Locations” option on the page.
Google will not only give you information on your selected keyword, but also information on related keywords. In this case, there are more than 800 keyword ideas for the search term “hooded sweatshirt”.
Sorting this list by Competition or Local Monthly Searches can help you find additional keywords for your campaign that you may not have initially considered. Sorting this particular list by Local Monthly Searches will quickly reveal that the term “hoodie” is actually searched more often than “hooded sweatshirt”, yet it has a lower competition factor. This may make a good keyword to target instead of “hooded sweatshirt.”
Sorting the list by Competition (lowest to highest) reveals that the term “sweats” receives over 1,000,000 searches in the US, yet has relatively low advertising competition. This may be an opportunity lower your cost-per-click.
Reviewing this list and spotting opportunities (the list can be downloaded into Excel to help with sorting) is a key tactic to start your pay-per-click advertising campaign.
In our next installment, we’ll take a look at estimating traffic and costs from a pay-per-click advertising campaign.