Ronak Kothari is the founder of RONKOT, a full-service digital marketing agency.
Local businesses may find it tough to establish good online visibility.
With a tight budget, attracting the right audiences may seem more difficult.
If you can relate to this, local PPC campaigns can help you improve your brand visibility, especially when you are operating with a budget.
Like pay-per-click (PPC), local PPC refers to paid online advertising. What differentiates local PPC from traditional is that it targets local audiences of specific geographic areas.
When done right, local ads can attract quality leads and lead to massive ROI.
Here are a few statistics that affirm the potential of paid ads.
- Around 41 percent of consumers click on the top three paid ads.
- PPC visitors are 50 percent more likely to buy products than organic visitors.
- Almost 80 percent of the local searches that click on a website convert.
Businesses only need to pay when users click on the ad.
In this post, we have shared the top seven strategies that will help you plan a successful PPC campaign for your local business.
#1: Research the Competition
Before you plan a local PPC campaign, you need to understand the local market trends.
The easiest way to achieve this goal is through thorough competitor analysis. This simple exercise will help you gain an edge in your local PPC campaign and boost conversions.
Here are a few questions that will help you get started.
- Who are your local competitors?
- How active are they in running paid ads?
- What platforms do they use the most?
- What is their online visibility?
- How difficult is the competition?
- Did you notice any seasonal trends?
Observe the KPIs of your competitors, such as ad copies, impressions, CTAs, and more. Tools like Woorank, Ahrefs, and Google Ads can help you extract the information.
Compare the insights with your business performance. These dynamics will help you prepare an actionable and effective PPC strategy.
Next, it’s time to decide on the type of paid advertising campaign you want to run.
Here is a list of the most common types of local paid campaigns.
- Search Ads: They refer to the text ads appearing on local SERPs. The following screenshot shows an example of a search ad on Google.
- Display Ads: They signify the image-based ads that appear on external websites. Check out the display ad on the Capital Gazette website.
- Social Ads: They are the ads you see on social media platforms, such as Facebook (Meta), Instagram, and more. Here is a snapshot that depicts Project Repat leveraging social ads.
Select the advertising campaigns that align with your local marketing goals. Use the research information to find the gaps and identify your opportunities.
#2: Frame Your Local PPC Budget and Bid Strategy
How much are you willing to pay for the ad clicks?
The answer to this question will dictate your local PPC campaign budget.
A well-planned budget for the paid campaign will help you achieve the following goals.
- Invest in optimizing your website, such that it ranks higher in the SERPs.
- Boost your brand visibility.
- Ensure your budget is utilized efficiently.
- Generate revenue on the campaign investment.
For Google Ads, you need to set a daily budget, whereas social media platforms allow you to make changes to it.
Consider an example of Google Ads.
If you have a budget of $1,000 and you want to run the campaign for fifteen days, your daily budget would be 66.66/day. You will have to pay a certain amount to the PPC platform from the daily budget when your goals are met.
But, the budget-setting process is not easy. You may have to pay a different amount based on the audience segments and search terms.
Most PPC platforms have auction systems that help you understand the costs. The bidding strategies can help you make the best use of your budget. For instance, on Google Ads, you have the following bidding options.
- Cost-Per-Click (CPC) Bidding: You pay Google for every single click on your ad.
- Cost-Per-Acquisition (CPA) Bidding: You pay Google for conversions.
- Cost-Per-View (CPV) Bidding: You make a payment every time your video ad earns a view or click.
- Cost-Per-Thousand Viewable Impressions (vCPM) Bidding: You pay for every 1,000 times your ad displays to the target audience.
PPC budget goals should be S.M.A.R.T – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound.
Try using tools like Google Performance Planner to achieve S.M.A.R.T goals.
Notice how it can help you predict the performance of your bidding strategy and manage your budgets.
Besides, it offers insights on local seasonal opportunities to ensure the best returns.
#3: Use Local Keywords
The keywords in your PPC ad should be relevant to the target location.
For instance, find out whether people in your target region are more likely to search for ‘sneakers’ or ‘sports shoes.’ You can check out Google Trends to find an accurate answer.
Using local terms and relevant keywords can help you succeed in the local PPC campaign.
Go through your keywords list. Drop the terms that do not align with your campaign theme.
If you are using Google ads, you can set the following keyword match types for which your ad will appear.
- Broad Match: Your ad will show for searches related to your target keywords. But it may not contain the exact keyword terms.
- Phrase Match: Your ad will show for searches that include the meaning of your target keyword. It may contain terms that signify your target keyword.
- Exact Match: Your ad will appear for searches with the same meaning or user intent as the target keyword.
Check out the following screenshot to understand how it works. Observe the keyword match types for the term – ‘lawn mowing service.’
Pro Tip: Few keywords may appear relevant but are not. For such cases, you can mark them as negative keywords.
For instance, if you are a hat seller that doesn’t sell baseball hats, you could mark the term – ‘baseball hats’ as a negative keyword. It will help Google block your ad that targets such negative keywords.
This systematic approach will save your money from getting wasted in clicks with no chances of conversion.
#4: Create a Landing Page
A landing page is the most crucial element of your local PPC campaign.
The PPC ad directs potential leads to the landing page. So, your landing page should be well-optimized.
While designing your landing page, make sure it’s relevant to the ad. It should deliver information that adds value to the user experience.
Why? Because the aim of creating an optimized landing page is to convert as many visitors as possible.
Here’s how you can create the best landing page for your local PPC campaign.
- Add a relevant title that matches the search ad.
- Create a clean design and layout.
- Highlight your products and services.
- Display responsive form and CTA buttons.
- Add local content and keywords.
- Put in attractive images.
- Showcase success stories or clients’ testimonials.
Check out this landing page of Freshdesk. The SaaS giant knows how to engage and convert its users and hence has created an optimized landing page.
#5: Craft and Test Ad Copy
As a local business, you cannot afford to lose money on paid ad campaigns.
The success of your local PPC campaign depends on the response of your target audience. Despite a good strategy, your campaign may fail.
The most practical way to ensure the best results is to test the ad for a few days before running the campaign. Make sure to conduct A/B testing as soon as you craft the ads.
What is A/B testing?
A/B testing or bucket testing is a simple method that helps you compare two versions of your ad to analyze the one that has better chances of success.
For instance, you have crafted two ads for the campaign and are unsure which one can convert better. In such cases, try the A/B testing.
The goal of A/B testing is to enhance your conversion rate. You can perform it by tracking the below-shared parameters.
- Landing page
- Target keywords
You can tweak these elements and run the variations of the ad for a few days.
Tools like Google Analytics, Optimizely, and Zoho PageSense can help you perform the A/B testing with ease.
Keep tracking the improvements or decline in CTR, impressions, traffic, and other metrics. This practice will help you determine the best and poor-performing ads.
Use the best ad copy that gets the most conversions and run your local PPC campaign.
#6: Leverage the Power of Retargeting
Retargeting ads allow marketers to reach potential customers (who have left your website after visiting) and remind them of their offerings. These ads also target prospects who may have filled an inquiry form but didn’t make a purchase.
Since this category of customers is already familiar with your brand, the chances of converting them are high.
Thus, retargeting ads help you run a more personalized campaign.
For instance, consider the following retargeting ad of the famous brand – Nasty Gal.
Their target audience is someone interested in modern clothing. So, the brand has crafted a retargeting ad to engage prospects.
The following are two main types of retargeting ads.
- Pixel-Based Retargeting Ads: These ads appear when visitors leave your website without interaction. These ads use ‘cookies’ to collect the information.
- List-Based Retargeting Ads: These ads use the list of email addresses that users leave while filling forms. These ads use already collected information.
Retargeting ads can work wonders to attract local customers. Choose the type that suits your local business.
#7: Track Important PPC KPIs
KPI or key performance indicator offers insights into your performance over a period. They provide you with actionable, measurable, and quantifiable information about your work.
Analyzing this information will help you understand the local trends and prepare the best strategies.
Here is a list of KPIs you need to keep a tab on from the beginning.
- Search Queries – Google Analytics is a great tool to determine the top search queries in your niche.
- Cost-Per-Click (CPC) – It is a PPC metric calculated by dividing the cost of a paid advertising campaign by the number of clicks.
- Clickthrough Rate (CTR) – It is the number of clicks your ad receives divided by the number of times your ad gets displayed.
- Conversion Rate – It is the total number of conversions divided by the number of visitors.
- Impressions – It is the number of times your ad is visible to the users.
- Ad Spend – It implies the amount of money you spent on advertising.
- ROI of Campaign – It signifies the ratio of your net profit to the total ad costs.
- Quality Score (QS) – Quality Score is Google’s rating of the quality of your PPC ad in comparison to other local competitors.
By tracking these metrics, you can make more informed decisions.
Check out the list of the top SEO tools that can help you track these KPIs. This tactic can skyrocket the ROI of your local PPC campaign within no time.
To Sum Up
As a local business owner, running a PPC campaign may feel overwhelming. But with proper planning and knowledge, you can improve your brand visibility and earn qualified leads.
We are sure that the shared tips will help you scale up your local PPC performance without breaking the bank.
So, go ahead and achieve massive conversions.