Walk-Through: Paid Search Marketing

You can get your company's name displayed on screens by buying keywords through individual search engines (e.g., Google AdWords or Yahoo). These keywords are words that your potential customers would type in to a search engine to either find your product or a similar product. This is a great marketing strategy although it may not be the easiest to master because the process of buying paid keywords is best executed via trial and error. To spell this strategy out, let’s take for example the gourmet food-delivery service NuKitchen that I started a few years ago as a case study.

I’ll use my own experience with paid online search words as a “walk-through” guide:

NuKitchen Example

Organic searches are the results that come up when someone types a keyword into a search engine. There are many factors affecting your ability to be listed among the top search results, and not all are in your direct control, so paying through Google AdWords can ensure that you'll gain exposure to potential customers. Because NuKitchen was an online-only service (we didn't have a brick and mortar storefront), I had to "drive" potential customers to my website. Google helped me set up a budget with Google AdWords for $50 per day or about $1,500 a month. We then determined the key words that most customers would use to find NuKitchen online.

Two of those key words were "meal delivery." So, every time a user typed "meal delivery" into the Google search engine, a highlighted link to NuKitchen would appear at the top of the page or on the right hand side of the page, along with the "organic" results. If the user clicks on the NuKitchen sponsored keywords, he or she would be directed to the NuKitchen website and the Google AdWords account would charge for the click. The benefit to this model is that you are charged only when a user actually clicks through.

The cost of the words depends on their popularity. I've seen word search combinations go for as little as 10 cents per click (known as Cost per Click) and others as high as $10 CPC or more. With NuKitchen, let's assume the CPC for "meal delivery" was $5, so 10 users could click through to the NuKitchen website before my daily budget of $50 was exhausted. At that point, Google AdWords wouldn't display the NuKitchen link until the next day, when the $50 budget would start again.

Another benefit of paid search results is that you can more easily track the cost of acquiring a customer from this channel. If 10 users clicked through to the NuKitchen site and all 10 purchased the product, the cost for acquiring each customer was $5. If none of them purchased, then it was $50 spent with no revenue generated. Try out different keywords at a week's time and track your progress. Don't waste money on ineffective phrases!

Bryan Janeczko
<p> Bryan has successfully launched multiple startups. His latest venture, Wicked Start, provides tools to plan, fund, and launch a new business. Also author of WickedStart: Guide to Starting a New Venture with Passion and Purpose, Bryan is committed to helping small businesses grow and succeed.<br /> <a href="http://www.wickedstart.com" target="_blank">www.wickedstart.com</a> | <a href="http://facebook.com/wickedstart" target="_blank">Facebook</a> | <a href="http://www.twitter.com/wickedstart" target="_blank">@WickedStart</a> | <a href="http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=3277641" target="_blank">LinkedIn</a> | <a href="/author/bryan-janeczko/all-posts" target="_blank">More from Bryan</a></p>


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