Friday, April 16, 2010

Who’s Threatening Google?

Most of Google’s revenue comes from its Adwords PPC (Pay-Per-Click) web marketing. With advertising revenues totalling almost $23 billion in 2009, Adwords has led the movement of PPC web marketing. Paid search engine marketing is no longer effective as organic search engine optimization, because search engine users often trust the non-sponsored listing more. For this reason, many marketers prefer to stick with organic search engine optimization. Still, there are many benefits to paid search engine marketing with Google (see my last blog for more on PPC web marketing versus organic search engine optimization). As far as targeting the right audience, Google Adwords can only be targeted according to keyword, location and search history.

On the surface, the competitors for Google’s PPC web marketing are Yahoo, MSN and various other ad networks. But one contender is slowly but surely rising the ranks, a contender with no search function at all—Facebook. It may surprise you that a social networking site is competing with the top search engine for revenue, and there are many crucial differences. Facebook offers PPC web marketing that doesn’t just stop at location and search history. Unlike Google, Facebook’s PPC web marketing has the power to target users based on gender, age, interests, affiliations, marital status, and more. Facebook ads are generally cheaper—as much as half the cost of Google ads—though sometimes they tend to garner less of an audience than paid search engine marketing with Google.

As marketers, we have to decide between the high traffic and visibility of Google’s paid search engine marketing and the highly targeted PPC ads on Facebook and PPC web marketing on other social networks.

In order to choose the right mix for your PPC web marketing, it’s important to weigh the different parameters and see the whole picture. You need to take into account the forecasted amount of traffic, compare conversion rates, assess the amount of competition, and determine the pricing. Every advertiser is in a different situation and at the end of the day, we all want to get new client leads with the least amount of money.

Is PPC web marketing right for you? Which ad network should you advertise with? Feel free to contact us for advice on paid search engine marketing.