How Does Adwords Work?
Google Adwords allows you to effectively buy your way to the top of the page for certain search results. You’ve probably seen the “Sponsored Result” links at the top of the list of search results. Those results are placed there by webmasters that have purchased placement for the key word or phrase that you searched on. If you click on the sponsored result, then the webmaster will have to pay Google for that click.
Google AdWords campaigns, if well managed, are a great way to get targeted visitors. Learning the intricacies of Adwords can be challenging, however, so many people opt to hire an Adwords consultant, instead of attempting the task themselves. The initial outlay of hiring an Adwords consultant may look like just “another expense”, but it is a good investment if you are not confident in the world of PPC.
AdWords vs SEO
Using AdWords can provide similar results to SEO, in that you will see an increase in traffic from a well-run AdWords campaign, however AdWords is not the same as SEO. An AdWords campaign is a short term measure – when you stop funding your AdWords account, the traffic will stop. SEO is a long-term investment. SEO involves building links and improving the quality of your website so that it ranks highly in the search engines for organic search results – ones that you aren’t paying for. The work that a good SEO agency does should continue to serve you, in a subtle way at least, for a fair while after the campaign ends.
It’s easy to get started with both SEO and Adwords. The first thing any serious webmaster should do is set up a Google Webmaster Tools account. This can be used to track a lot of different things to do with your website, and is invaluable for both SEO and PPC marketing.
Tracking and testing are vital parts of PPC marketing, and AdWords. Before you can judge the effectiveness of your campaigns, you need to have a baseline idea of your traffic and your conversion rate. It’s a good idea to keep a spreadsheet with information about your traffic, conversion rates, incoming links, keywords, and other details on a month-by-month basis so that you can see how your campaigns are going.
You can test the waters with a small budget, but you should be prepared to invest a steady amount over a period of a few weeks or months to see how well a campaign is going to perform.
If you have the time and inclination, you can achieve a lot doing SEO yourself. However, SEO work can be time consuming. Hiring an SEO agency can save you a lot of time. Working together with an adwords consultant will allow you to build sustainable long-term traffic, whilst also running seasonal or topical short term PPC campaigns to take advantage of openings in the market.