Paid Search

Paid search, often referred to as AdWords, is most commonly seen on the top of search engine results before organic results.

Unlike proactive marketing, paid search relies on people already looking for a topic, and brands are able to bid for clicks on certain “keywords” that are typed in. Every time a search is performed that matches a brand’s keywords, an auction occurs, something called an “ad rank” is assigned, and finally the brands with the highest ad rank get their ads shown first.

How do we win in paid search?

We’ll get to that after a short introduction on how paid search really works. If the paid search auction system just relied on how much competitors were willing to pay for each click, the system would be simple and have razor thin profit margins, but just like in ​Paid Social​, search engines prioritize brands with better strategies.

The thing to know is that search engine’s make money ​only​ when people click on ads; if there are no clicks on the ad, the search engine makes no money. If search engines didn’t take measures, a brand selling sunscreen could bid on the keywords for something unrelated, like “restaurant near me,” to show up in front of millions and increase their brand awareness without ever paying for a click. This would be negative on two fronts. First, the search engine wouldn’t make any money. Secondly, the searcher would be unhappy because they got an irrelevant search result. Most dangerously, they could begin to use the search engine less because of frequent irrelevant results.

Due to this, search engines combine a brand’s “bid,” or how much they are willing to pay for a click, and a “quality score,” which assesses how relevant an ad is. The quality score and bid are multiplied to get something called an “ad rank” and the bidder with the highest “ad rank” gets the highest position on the auction. For example, a poor ad with quality score of 1 out of 10 with a bid for $10, would be under an ad with a quality score of 10 out of 10 and a bid of $1.01. A high quality score is the foundation to a successful, profitable campaign.

We look at two main factors to keep quality scores high and cost per acquisitions low: keyword strategy and landing page experience.

People search for products in two main ways: for consideration and to buy. In fact, the amount of people searching for the “best” product on mobile has increased 80% in the last two years on Google showing searches for “consideration” are increasing. . For example, even searches for “best toothbrush” have increased by 100% in the last two years. Clearly, consumers aren’t searching for products in the same way that they used to, and brands need to adapt.

Paid search needs to incorporate these new “consideration” trends to be successful. A brand needs to have relevant ads with relevant content to take advantage of the new trends. Content and landing pages that address searches that are related to consideration and purchasing are both very necessary. Let’s take a look at an example.

Home security companies face some of the most intense competition on paid search out of every industry. With clicks averaging near $40 across the industry and low search volume, every single click counts. What Equipo Media has done to compete successfully in this vertical is separate our strategy into two tiers: awareness and high buyer intent keywords. For awareness, we have video content designed to inform users about the benefits of the specific system. We catered to the high “buyer intent” keywords with a special offer designed to entice people to convert right away. By being an early mover and catering to awareness and education, we have significantly lowered Cost Per Acquisition.

This strategy puts relevant results in front of relevant people and was rewarded by search engines and users alike. Our content strategy leveraged the most engaging form of media: video, and served to educate rather than be a hard sale like competitors.

Find out how we can put solutions like these to work for you.