What to Expect From Your PPC Campaign

If you are thinking of working with a PPC company like Dotwise, to help advertise your business online, it’s worth understanding what to expect from your new supplier and PPC campaign.

PPC servicesFirst things first: the research

Great! You’ve got in touch with us for a quote.

Now, to create your quote, the first thing we need to do is understand your business.

We will ask questions such as: how long you have been in business, whether you are in startup, growth or established phase.

We will ask how many employees you have, what you sell, and how much profit you make on each sale, what other marketing activity is ongoing, where have you had success before.

We’re not prying into your private information, we  need this data in order to understand what kind of PPC campaign you should adopt (there are more than you think), how much you should spend on your PPC campaign, how much you should bid for a click and finally what success looks like to you.

Auditing your website

When you first make contact with Dotwise, the first thing we do is examine your website. This is a first pass, not a forensic technical audit, but we will look at elements such as:

  • Home page layout
  • Structure (menus, navigation, headers and footers)
  • Internal pages
  • Fitness for purpose
  • Usability
  • Speed
  • Product/service landing pages

We are doing this to see how ready your website environment is for running PPC campaigns and to gauge how much work your website may need to improve the environment and therefore the conversion rate.

The conversion rate is the rate at which people take the actions you want them to take, which typically include actions such as:

  • Filling in an enquiry form
  • Using your chat facility to talk to you
  • Clicking an email address
  • Clicking a phone number
  • Watching a video
  • Signing up to a newsletter
  • Purchasing a product
  • Purchasing/downloading an App

Or any other action relevant to your business.

Auditing your PPC campaigns

The next step we take is to audit your PPC campaigns – if you have any. We will therefore usually ask you to allow our email address access to your ads login (for example, Google Ads, Bing and Facebook). This will tell us what has worked and what we can improve on against your success criteria.

Sharing your logins and access to your ads portals

You can be assured that we take your security extremely seriously and store any passwords shared with us in a secure password vault (LastPass).

We are also more than happy to sign your Non-Disclosure Agreement or if you prefer, we can provide a Non-Disclosure Agreement that is suitable for this level of access to your systems.

Your PPC quoteYour PPC quotation

Having thoroughly understood your needs, we’ll then start doing our own research. We are looking at:

  • Which of your competitors are paying for clicks
  • How much your competitors are paying for their campaigns
  • What the average click prices are in your industry
  • What the average conversion rates are in your industry

How long before you get your quote?

Gathering all the information we need about your business, your website and your existing campaigns can take a few days but usually less than one week. To be on the safe side, budget five working days before you receive your quotation.

Your quotation will come in the form of a PDF document and will contain information about:

  • what we have learned about your business and conversions
  • a proposed budget for what you will need to spend on PPC and our service
  • what additional changes and improvements we feel we can make (both to your PPC accounts and your website)
  • what kind of conversion figures to expect and over what time period – we usually set these as our Key Performance Indicators so you can see how much value your campaign is adding to your business

By the way, if we assess that we cannot make substantial improvements to your PPC campaign then we will let you know that we feel you’re already well on the way to success, and let you know any tweaks we would recommend.

Starting your PPC campaign

How long before from quotation to starting work?

This is up to you but typically we can get started within a couple of working weeks. Occasionally we may be able to start in a few days.

How long before the campaign starts?

From starting work we would expect that your campaign would be ready within about one week to three weeks, depending on the level of complexity. We may need to make changes to your website and build landing pages for your ads.

Here are some typical durations:

Type of campaignTime to build
Simple search campaign with one to three sub-campaignsOne to two weeks
More complex search campaign within multiple sub-campaigns and many different adsTwo to four weeks
Display campaign using existing photography or creativesOne to two weeks
Display campaign where we create your creativesTwo to four weeks
Google Shopping campaign where Google feed already existsOne to two weeks
Google shopping campaign where existing feed does not exist and custom programming requireedThree to five weeks

There are other things that can add time to build your campaign. This includes whether new imagery is needed, photography, creatives, sign-offs on your side required, etc.

Mobile phone adsHow long before you start making profit from PPC?

This question is a little harder to answer as not all PPC campaigns are starting from the same place. For example, one business might not have any PPC campaigns set up at all whereas another may already have campaigns that need optimisation.

Realistic expectations in the first few months

If your campaign is brand new, you should expect not to make profit from day one. There are many adjustments, refinements and optimisations that go into a great campaign but they all require data. This data we are interested in will include:

  • Quantity of impressions (the amount of times of your ad appears)
  • Quantity of clicks (how many times the searcher clicked your ad)
  • Click Through Rate (CTR:  the percentage of clicks compared to the impressions)
  • Conversion rate (CVR:  the percentage of conversions compared to the clicks)

Because of this, we strongly recommend that almost all PPC campaigns be run for three months to give them time to accrue enough data to see where the optimisations are required and indeed whether it is worth using PPC at all. We also feel our performance should be recorded after the first three months – to establish a realistic benchmark.

We say that if you cannot afford to consider the first three months’ worth of PPC spend as an experiment, then perhaps you are not ready to make money from PPC and should consider other forms of digital marketing such as SEO or social media.

Measuring progress

During these first weeks and months we will be keeping a very close eye on your campaigns. One great thing about PPC is that you set a budget cap, so you cannot exceed your desired spend. But even so, you definitely do not want to be over-bidding or bidding on keywords which are not relevant to your business. We monitor continuously to pick up these keywords and exclude them from your campaign bidding.

We also stay in very regular contact with you to give you continual progress updates as to what is happening with your campaigns.

Getting your PPC campaign into profitGetting your PPC campaign into profit

Clearly the goal of any PPC campaign is to drive conversions (or make money). This is done through getting users to take the actions you want them to take (see the section above on conversions).

We hope that your campaign will come into profit before the three months is up, but this may not be the case – there may be other factors preventing the campaign from performing and these will need to be considered.

You will be kept informed at all times throughout the first few weeks, as well as having your own direct access to your campaigns.

We may advise you to increase or decrease budgets, increase your bids, focus on fewer campaigns, move your budget around between campaigns. Whatever the right course of action is, we’ll advise you and take the appropriate actions.

Keeping your PPC campaign in profit

PPC work doesn’t stop once your campaign is in profit. Competitors will be arriving all the time, and we monitor who you are bidding against, how much you are bidding, opportunities to save money, etc.

This advice comes in two forms: reports and discussions.

PPC reportingPPC reports

You will be sent reports periodically. As PPC campaigns run from month to month we usually report once per month. We may build a dashboard for your project if you are a long-term customer and value this form of reporting.

Discussions

Reports are great, and fun to read. But the real value comes in our discussions with you. Unlike other digital marketing agencies, we are not an arms-length team, we like to talk to you as often as possible. This will be by phone, email, Skype or if you are close by, face-to-face.

These discussions are invaluable because they are our opportunity to learn:

  • What new leads are coming into your business from the PPC campaign
  • The quality and relevance of those leads for your business
  • Whether you are converting those leads into sales
  • Your current and near-term business focus

Conclusion

In short here is what you can expect from your PPC campaign:

  • From initial contact to quotation: about one week
  • From signing up with Dotwise to campaign launch: between one and four weeks, depending on the complexity of your campaigns and your web environment.
  • From campaign launch to conversions (or profit): be prepared to wait at least three months. We will of course be doing everything we can to bring this time down.
Member of Kingston Chamber of Commerce
Winner, Kingston Business Excellence Awards 2018, Customer Service category