PPC is typically seen as a short-term investment. You pay money and in return receive traffic to your website. When you stop paying that money to the search engines, the traffic dries up. That being said, if you have retained access to your accounts and if have associated your paid search accounts with your Google Analytics account, then the data left behind can bring some additional value to your paid search efforts. So the truth is that a well-planned and properly executed PPC campaign can provide a lot of value long after the traffic has stopped.
1. PPC testing for SEO
Your PPC campaigns can lead the way the way to longer-term profits by showing you which terms are getting the most interest – both by clicks, but also by impressions, or the amount of people who have seen your ad over time. Both of these data points can help you uncover additional possibilities. It should also be noted that PPC’s speed to market advantage can be used to really help you understand whether a long-term SEO strategy should be implemented in the first place.
2. Search Terms Reports
Take your data a step further. The Search Terms report in Google AdWords can show you which user search queries actually triggered your ads. This can help you uncover additional keywords to target in your SEO campaign that you may have missed. Additionally, it can help illustrate how the people who are actually searching for your goods or services actually think about your business. This kind of insight can help you target better keywords, or even create new web content with the intent purpose of targeting a valuable subset of search traffic.
3. Google Analytics Metrics
A user’s engagement with your site can be of value far beyond what we can measure through traditional PPC tracking. Check out the time on site and pages per visit metrics in your Analytics account and let your AdWords engagement metrics lead your ongoing SEO efforts by showing you which keywords cause the highest rates of user interaction with your site. There may also be additional goals set in analytics that have value beyond the click, such as page view goals or virtual page views – use all the data at your disposal to position your website for success.
4. Ad Copy Approach
You may find over time that a certain ad approach beat out all other contenders. There may be ways to leverage these findings beyond PPC optimization, such as incorporating a winning call to action on your landing pages or using successful PPC ad phrases in your meta descriptions to attempt to boost your organic click through rate.
5. Return Customers
A great deal and solid customer service on an initial purchase can go a long way in ensuring that a new customer comes back for more, whether the visitor finds your business through PPC or not. Add your new PPC customers to an email marketing campaign to ensure you stay in contact and reinforce your brand awareness. Beef up the consumer experience, and you should be able to reap the rewards for many interactions to come. By leveraging your PPC advertising in these ways you should be able to gain an advantage that overcomes the short term returns of a typical pay per click campaign. While many of these tips may not have been leveraged in your marketing efforts in the past, as long as you have retained your historical data, you can still mine it for all its worth.