Are Paid Ads Worth It?
17th May 2023
No. They’re not.
However, if you want us to manage your ads, please enquire at email@example.com.
… Just kidding! 😛
It depends – is the real answer
Results vary from industry to industry. And company to company. How enticing your product or service is will have a big say too.
If nobody knows your brand and your service or product is priced at £1,000, this will be a tough sell. People need to trust you to hand over that sort of money.
A sketchy 285-character ad on Google isn’t enough to build trust!
Firstly, people need to know who you are
The first step is brand awareness. This can be achieved in several ways. You could choose to advertise on a billboard or create a television advert.
You could use paid ads for brand awareness. Don’t use shopping ads or search ads for this though. Instead, use display ads. Why? Because they’re much cheaper per click!
Also, you can get way more impressions. For example, it’s not uncommon to receive 100,000+ impressions per month. The advantage for the consumer is that display advertising doesn’t interrupt marketing. It’s just a skyscraper ad at the side of the blog or news article they’re browsing.
You’re going to want to work on your SEO strategy too
This is more of a long-term tactic, so you won’t see results immediately.
However, great results in SEO can lead to long-term success. Eventually, you may be able to rank for your top-targeted keywords with lots of search volume. People will see your organic listing regularly, which will make you more well-known.
This will then lead to more enquiries and sales.
The tricky part about PPC – is that you can’t predict how well the ads will perform
You can give an estimation, but this does not guarantee great results. I like to think of paid ads as an experiment. You hypothesise, carry out the main task, and observe the results.
My advice to all people is only to spend what you can afford.
If your business is down to its final £500, I can understand why you would try PPC. If you immediately get to the top of page 1. A few sales could triple that £500.
The issue is the competition is fierce. All big brands use PPC. For instance, Amazon spends a fortune on paid ads – they spent north of $20 billion in 2022.
You want to set yourself up for success
For paid ads to work, trust needs to be established, especially if your products or services are expensive. If you sell products that are cheaper, shopping campaigns can work well. However, you may struggle to make a profit because your margins are much smaller.
Also, you need to make sure your website is functional and well-designed. You can write the perfect ad but if your website looks like it’s from the 1990s, then you have a major problem.
You’re just burning through money because people question the legitimacy of your business. They won’t buy but will most definitely click on your well-written ad – wasting your ad budget without converting.
Don’t get intimidated by paid ads
There isn’t much to PPC. I know some people will write articles detailing the most extravagant, statistical approaches… you get the point. But essentially, they just overcomplicate paid ads.
- For search ads, you pick relevant keywords and write short ads.
- For shopping ads, you make sure products are uploaded and approved in the Google merchant centre. Then, you create your campaign in Google Ads.
- For display ads, design the images you have to the best of your ability. Then create a display campaign and upload the images.
Then you analyse the data and exclude keywords/products/placements. You may increase or decrease bids or use an automated bid strategy depending on which is more suitable.
Whether paid ads are worth it or not – it’s down to you
If you don’t have the time to run ads or you would prefer to leave your ads in the hands of someone more experienced, I recommend speaking to a few agencies. Advertisers working in agencies have experience managing many accounts across different sectors. They understand how results can vary and how different strategies can be applied.
Don’t fall for people promising the world and giving you an exact ROAS or ROI they can achieve (it’s almost always wrong). Whilst it’s possible for them to deliver on this, they can’t predict this for certain. Just have in mind that this could fail spectacularly.
I’m not trying to be a killjoy, but I’ve seen it happen more than you would think during my career.
A salesperson promises the client the world only for the client to receive no conversions and be left devastated.
I mentioned before to only spend what you can afford. However, I would slightly adjust that now – spend what you are willing to lose.
If that is £0, I completely understand. The risk may not be worth it for you presently. The money may be better spent elsewhere. On a new website, staff, or improving your products or services.
If you’ve got this far, thanks for reading
And if you are interested in running paid ads and want somebody else to look after your account, you are more than welcome to have a chat with us.
Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we look forward to hearing from you.