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Wish you had a bigger pay-per-click budget? Join the crowd. Since wishing is not a marketing strategy, I’m going to give you a simple strategy you can use to double your pay-per-click leads and cut your cost-per-conversion in half.
Let’s start by debunking the myth that you can only have one website.
I don’t know where this thinking started, but it’s seriously flawed. While it’s a mistake to view your website as if it were a brochure (you should think of your website as if it were a sales funnel), like you can have more than one brochure to represent your various lines of business, you can (and should) have more than one website.
There are many different types of visitors coming to your website and (arguably) some of these visitor segments should be treated individually. When you have only one website, you force your website to be all things to all people (read: jack of all trades, master of none).
Someone that visits your website via a branded keyword search or directly can (and should) be treated far differently than a visitor from a pay-per-click campaign and a visitor coming from a generic search phrase related to your business.
If you’re sending pay-per-click traffic to your main website, you’re leaving serious money on the table in the form of missed leads. And no, a special landing page is not enough. Taking this approach is using a BB gun when you need a bazooka!
In all but a few cases, you should send your pay-per-click traffic to a specially created micro-site. Why? Have a look:
Client “A” 2009 Google AdWords Campaign:
10 online conversions with a cost per conversion of $270.33. But let’s not forget the phone calls generated by the pay-per-click campaign. Since we’re tracking the phone calls associated with this campaign, here’s a look at that information:
Client “A” received 23 phone calls from their pay-per-click campaign in January 2009. They had 2 callers that hung up, but we won’t count those for this example. This gives Client “A” 33 total conversions, a 4% conversion rate and an overall cost per conversion of $81.91.
Not too shabby given this client’s business.
All of the traffic from this campaign was sent to special landing pages linked to the client’s main website. The landing pages were specific to the products/services being advertised.
Now, let’s look at the same campaign in 2010 (same campaign, same client). The only difference is that now the pay-per-click campaign points to a special micro-site developed specifically for the client’s pay-per-click campaign.
First, the online data (still Google AdWords):
Now the phone data:
In 2010, Client “A” received 55 phone calls from their pay-per-click campaign and 23 online conversions! Total conversions was 78—a ~136% increase from the 2009 campaign.
The cost per click declined from $3.29 to $3.18, but the client’s ad position actually improved slightly—going from 1.9 in 2009 to 1.8 in 2010 (likely due to an increased quality score).
The online cost per conversion in 2010 was ~$120. The overall cost per conversion decreased about 56% to $35.37!
Leads up 136% and cost per lead down over 50% and the only thing that changed was the destination of the pay-per-click ads.
There are two major takeaways here:
First, you can see how important it is to track the phone calls associated with your pay-per-click campaigns. In 2009 and 2010, this client received more than twice as many phone inquiries as online inquiries from their pay-per-click campaign.
If advertising decisions were made only based on the online inquiries, those decisions would be based on less than half the picture! It you want to maximize the performance of your pay-per-click ad campaigns, it’s imperative that you track the phone calls associated with your campaigns.
The second takeaway is that creating a specialized website—one that’s designed specifically with pay-per-click visitors in mind—can radically improve your campaign’s performance.
While it’s nice to think that the country being on the road to economic recovery played a part in these results, comparisons between 2010 and 2006/2007 look almost exactly the same.
If you want to get more leads from your pay-per-click campaign and lower your cost-per-lead, stop sending traffic to your main website and don’t goof around with landing pages. Create a special website that is designed specifically for your pay-per-click visitors.
Unfortunately, we’re not going to tell you what should and should not be part of this special website. This information is just one of the perks of being a Blue Corona client (come on—we can’t give away all of our secrets)!
About The Author: Ben Landers is the President and CEO of Blue Corona, a data-driven, inbound internet marketing company. Submit an inquiry to book Ben to speak at your next conference or event.
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