CPC – Cost per Click, Why Use It?

precise targeted search engine marketing is highly effective and cost less per 1000 views than other forms of advertising

How much is a click on your Adwords campaign worth in your industry?

There are advertisers that pay over $50 per click in their industry, why?  The answer is that precise targeted search engine marketing is highly effective and cost less per 1000 views than other forms of advertising.  In addition, there is a high probability that whomever is looking at your ad is already interested in your product or something very similar… It’s like selling wood at a bomb-fire.


A little history of online advertising

Before we get into the dollars and sense (pun intended), we should explore some history of online ads and human behaviour.   Since this banner ad appeared in October 1994, we have been inundated with all

kinds of clever schemes by advertisers to get us to “click the link”, from flashing banners, to moving targets and those really annoying popups.  In response to all these diversions the internet community  has developed popup blockers and anti-adware software.  Also viewers have become desensitized to this type of advertising and totally ignore it.

The end result is that untargetted ads are worth next to nothing.


Being Relevant

Targeted ads by Google offer a place to put your ad where the viewer is already looking for what you sell based upon keywords.  So advertisers choose their keywords to be relevant to their product.  Google is also committed to relevancy and either does not display ads that are not relevant to a search or lowers them down the page.

This relevancy earns Google upwards of $50 Billion annually.


Why is it important to be at the top of the page?

This graphic is from an eye-tracking study done by Google showing that viewers concentrate on the top left hand corner of the screen.

We see the most activity in the area that corresponds to the top 2 or 3 ads with a second area focused on the right corresponding to the to 2 ads in the side bar.  After these two areas the viewing diminishes rapidly.  From this we can deduce that having your ad in the 3-5 positions for a keyword is greatly advantageous.


How to get keywords data

To get really good data you have to open up a Google AdWords account.  Currently it costs $5 that you can put toward advertising.  Alternately you can use one of those $100 coupons you get in the mail.  Also your hosting company probably offers some sort of Google Adwords coupon if you look in your control panel.  If all else fails just google “how to get free adwords coupons” and lots of folks are willing to tell you how.  You will need a Gmail account to open up an AdWords account, so go get one of those first.

Start your first campaign, choose some keywords about 5 to start, write an ad and see what they are worth.  Google has lots of help for advertisers to start or improve their AdWords Campaign and if you get lost, just call Google. It is worth calling Google just to have the experience of knowing where all the good customer service professionals are employed!

Getting all the data

So once in your AdWords account click on Campaigns across the top and your campaign name down the side.  Below your ad click on Keywords and in the next row click on Columns and Customize Columns.  In the dialogue box there are Performance and Attributes  columns, click on Attributes.  In the list presented add Est. Top Page Bid and Est. First Page Bid and click Apply at the bottom.

So how much will your keywords cost per click (CPC).

If you look at the table presented for any keyword(s) there are a  bunch of statistical numbers.  The third column should be Max CPC which is the maximum you are willing to pay for a click.  About midway across you should see columns titled with the 2 you added above.

So now you know what it will cost you to get on the first page and how much it will cost you to get to the top of the page.  So set your  Max CPC bid accordingly.

After the campaign runs for a week you can also look at clicks vs. impression and Average Position and adjust your bid as you see fit.


Its not always about how much you pay.

There are two other things to consider: Qualtity score, which could get you a higher position without having to pay more.  You can read about that here

And sometimes it is just about how appealing your website is to real people.  If your position is high and you are getting lots of clicks, which means you are spending lots of money with Google, and your phone is not ringing, maybe it is your website that customers just are not finding appealing, consider getting a face-lift  for your site.

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