What is PPC (pay-per-click) marketing? Pay-per-click marketing is a way of using search engine advertising to generate clicks to your website, rather than “earning” those clicks organically. You know those sponsored ads you often see at the top of Google’s search results page, marked with a yellow label? That’s pay-per-click advertising (specifically Google Ads PPC, which we’ll talk about below).
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Here’s how it works: Every time your ad is clicked, sending a visitor to your website, you pay the search engine a small fee. (That’s why it’s called “pay per click.”) When your PPC campaign is well-designed and running smoothly, that fee will be trivial, because the visit is worth more to your business than what you pay for it. For example, if you pay $10 for a click, but the click results in a $300 sale, then using PPC is a no-brainer.

Google Ads for Pay-Per-Click Marketing

Google Ads, formerly known as Google AdWords – by far the most popular PPC platform – operates on a pay-per-click model, in which users bid on keywords and pay for each click on their advertisements.

Every time a search is initiated, Google digs into the pool of bidding advertisers and chooses a set of winners to appear in the ad space on its search results page. The “winners” are chosen based on a combination of factors, including the quality and relevance of their keywords and ad text, as well as the size of their keyword bids. For example, if WordStream bid on the keyword “PPC software,” our ad might show up in the very top spot on the Google results page.

More specifically, who gets to appear on the page and where is based on an advertiser’s Ad Rank, a metric calculated by multiplying two key factors – CPC Bid (the highest amount an advertiser is willing to spend) and Quality Score (a value that takes into account your click-through rate, relevance, and landing page quality, among other factors). In turn, your Quality Score affects your actual cost per click or CPC.

This system allows winning advertisers to reach potential customers at a cost that fits their budget.

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Pay-Per-Click Advertising: What Is PPC & How Does It Work?

If you have ever noticed the advertisements that appear alongside search results on Google and other search engines, you are already familiar with pay-per-click, or PPC advertising.

What Is Pay-Per-Click Advertising?

PPC is an online advertising model in which advertisers pay each time a user clicks on one of their online ads.