As a small business owner, you know your business. But do you have time to master PPC? If not, you’ll want to hire someone to do this for you.
That’s why I’ve created this checklist — to help you pick the right PPC person and make sure they get the ROI what you want.
There are 7 critical things I’ve learned in my 14 years of optimizing PPC accounts. Having these at hand helps you get what you need out of your PPC guy. Let’s get started…
#1: Make Sure Your PPC Guy Uses Your Adwords Account For Their Work
If your PPC guy doesn’t use your Adwords account, you may not “own” the work they do for you. If you change providers, everything they’ve done for you may be lost.
Before hiring any PPC expert, ask, “Are you going to upload the campaigns you create to my account?” “Yes” is the only right answer for two reasons…
- You “own” the work they do. This way, if you change providers, you can just remove their access and keep the work that’s been done.
- And it increases transparency. If it’s in your account, you can check on the status of the campaigns without having to bug your PPC guy. You just login and do a spot check.
Bottom line: get this or walk away.
#2: Verify How Much Work They’re Actually Doing
It’s crucial you confirm the work they’re actually doing. Here’s how…
Once a week, go to “Change History” in your Adwords Account and go to “Tools”, and click on “Campaigns”. Then, click on “Change History”.
A log of what work has been done will come up. Then you can confirm the changes are what you agreed to.
#3: Ensure They Avoid Broad Match Keywords (With One Exception)
Adwords has five “match types” you can use for the keywords you’re targeting)…
- Broad match
- Modified broad match
- Exact match
- Phrase match
- Negative keywords (I’ll discuss this later in the post)
Make sure your PPC contractor is using some combination of modified broad match, exact match and phrase match only.
A campaign with just broad match keywords lets Google give you the “kitchen sink” approach to showing your ads. This will dilute your ROI and hurt results.
The exception is when you’re marketing to a small to mid-size geographic region. In this case, your market will be smaller and you may have to use broad match to generate enough views of your ads (impressions).
#4: Confirm They’re Adding Negative Keywords
Adding Negative Keywords should be added to curb unrelated traffic. It will:
- improve the quality of your traffic
- reduce wasted spend and
- improve your ROI
- and boost your click-thru-rate (CTR).
Make sure this is part of your PPC guy’s plan and then confirm he does it each week.
#5: Insist They Specialize In PPC Only
Change is constant in SEO and Adwords. That means an expert in either has to specialize in either one to stay current and provide value.
No one can be really amazing at both. The bottom line:
If you want an SEO guy, hire an SEO guy. If you want a PPC guy, hire a PPC guy. As the saying goes, “Jack of all trades, master of none.”
#6: Verify Their Adwords Certification Is Current & Valid
When hiring a PPC guy, you’ll really want to make sure they’re Adwords certified. This means they’ve taken and passed a series of demanding tests from Google to prove their know-how.
So, before hiring someone, ask them for a link to their Adwords certification. Make sure it’s valid and current. This avoids problems down the road.
#7: Approve All Keyword & Campaign Creation Steps
No PPC guy will know as much about the intricacies of your business as you do.
This means that he’s going to have to rely on your expertise to guide his research and campaign creation. Therefore, make sure that you get to review and approve the keywords they’re going to use.
On top of that, make sure you get to look at and approve the campaign before it goes live (and you start spending money).
You’ll probably catch little things that they missed because of your industry knowledge. I’ve seen this save clients a lot of money.
What All This Means For You
Use this checklist and you can make sure of two things:
- you’ve picked the right PPC guy
- once hired, you can make sure he’s delivering on his promises
You’re ready to start succeeding at Adwords!
If you liked this post, check out our Small Business Guide to Paid Search.
Tim Goggin is the founder of recessionRebirth, Inc. – a PPC & Facebook consulting agency. They help small- to medium-sized businesses create money-making ads, generate & convert more leads and accelerate the growth of their ROI. Download his free supplementary checklist, “10 More Ways To Get The Most Of Your PPC Guy” here. Once signed up, claim a free Adwords audit (limited to first 9 businesses that apply).