What is PPC and How it Works?

Last Updated on 20th September 2023 by Ajmer Singh

If you’re a blogger, then there’s a good chance you’ve heard of PPC – pay per click.

But what is it, exactly? And how can you use it to boost your blog traffic?

In this complete guide, we’ll answer all those questions and more!

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What is PPC and How does it work?

What is PPC and How does it work

So whether you’re new to PPC or just looking for some insider tips, read on for everything you need to know about this powerful advertising tool.

PPC is an online advertising model used to drive traffic or increase brand awareness by paying for listings in organic search results.

PPC ads generally pay per click – payments are made when a visitor clicks on your ad, which is displayed along with the list of organic search results for a specific keyword query.

Paying Google or Bing for a PPC ad is a clear sign that your website is not ranking high enough in organic search results.

The most common PPC model is the cost per click (CPC), where you only pay each time a visitor clicks on your ad.

However, there are other pricing models – with impression- or click-based bidding now being more popular.

As an advertiser, you have to determine the maximum bid that could be afforded for a specific keyword.

This is strongly linked with your website’s ‘Landing Page Quality’ – if this is high enough, you can afford to pay more for each click on your ad.

If there are too many competitors, the cost-per-click may rise sharply.

You have to choose keywords that are less competitive but bring you more conversions – this way your return on investment will be higher!

You can set up a PPC campaign within minutes. All major search engines support it – Google Adwords, Bing Ads and Yahoo Search Marketing.

The aim of a PPC campaign is to optimize your website’s click-through rate, which will increase the quality score and consequently lower your costs per click.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising involves paying a publisher when a visitor clicks on an ad that takes them to the advertiser’s website.

Common examples of this include Google Adwords, Bing Ads, and social networks such as Facebook Ads.

The major advantage of PPC ads is that they allow businesses to gain more exposure and drive traffic to their website immediately.

The advertiser only pays for the ad when a user clicks on it, creating a direct relationship between advertisement cost and return on investment.

In some cases, especially with Google Adwords, keywords are free of charge and can be inserted into the ad for free.

When a user searches for any of those keywords, the search engine displays an advertisement at the top or bottom side of its results page:

Different types of PPC advertising models

Different types of PPC advertising models

1. CPC (Cost Per Click)

With CPC, advertisers pay each time someone clicks on their ad. With this model, you only pay for the traffic actually delivering results.

2. CPM (Cost Per Thousand Impressions)

CPM is an acronym for cost per thousand impressions which means that advertisers only have to pay when their ad is displayed 1,000 times.

The advertiser doesn’t have to pay every time someone clicks on the ad.

This model is often used in banner advertising, but it can also be applied to text ads placed on search engine result pages (SERPs).

3. CPS (Cost Per Session)

With CPS, advertisers pay for every session (or visit) on their website.

The advertiser gets charged according to the number of times it was visited, even if the visitor didn’t click on the ad.

This model is often used in lead generation campaigns.

4. CPA (Cost Per Action)

With CPA, advertisers only pay when a user completes a specific task on their website, such as purchasing a product or subscribing to their newsletter.

The advertiser doesn’t have to pay in every case when the ad is clicked – it only pays for completed actions.

5. CPL (Cost Per Lead)

Advertisers are charged according to the number of leads they receive when visitors click on their ad.

CPL is often used in lead generation campaigns.

Using interactive ads you can track each step your potential client took before he purchased your product.

This way you will know what ads were clicked, which ad copy was read and which products were put into the cart.

This information is very valuable in finding out which ads drive sales and maximize profits.

Advantages and Disadvantages of paid campaigns:

Advantages and Disadvantages of paid campaigns


– Paid campaigns are highly targeted.

– They are easy to create and manage.

– You only pay if someone clicks on your ad or views it for at least one second.

– You can track conversions, time spent on your site or sales generated.


– Your website needs to have visitors with the right target audience in order to get conversions.

– Your click rate is limited. Sometimes it takes a long time for potential clients to see your ad, read the copy and click it.

– Your campaign can potentially stop working if Google reduces your Quality Score or stops showing your ads for some other reason.

How to create PPC campaigns on search engines?

How to create PPC campaigns on search engines

1. Open the advertiser’s account (for example, open an Adwords account) and click the “New Campaign” button.

Enter the settings for your new campaign – select your desired ad group, set the daily budget or select “No limit” for your campaign.

2. Create a keyword list. The keyword is the text people use to search on search engines. You can create keywords using two methods:

– By using Google Adwords Keyword Tool or Semrush.

– By entering your own lists of keywords in the “Keywords” field.

3. Enter the URLs of your website pages where you want to place ads and set up ad scheduling:

– Select a day of the week and time when you want your ads to be displayed on search engines (for example, Monday 8 AM – 11 AM).

– Decide which hours of the day you want your ad to be shown (for example, from 9 AM to 5 PM).

4. Select the ad format:

– You can create text ads or display ads (banners).

– If you’re creating a text ad, insert keywords and an offer to entice users.

– Enter your website’s URL and choose options such as “Link to:”

– Create display ads using images and logos.

5. Launch your campaign and track its performance using the ad statistics provided by Google Adwords,

Or other search engine advertising services, such as organic clicks, impressions, cost-per-click (CPC) and conversion tracking.

Note: if you’re a paid advertiser on a search engine results page (for example, in Google), you will always appear above the organic search results page.

40+ tips to run a successful ad campaign!

tips to run a successful ad campaign

1. Define your target market.

2. Decide which ad groups will be in your campaign and the general theme of the ads within them.

3. Advertise promotions and special offers that you currently have, but only if they apply to a large majority of people.

4. Provide a brief description and preview image for each of your ads.

5. Include a link to your website in the text of every ad and the final URL in your links.

6. Start each ad with an attention-grabbing statement.

7. Use features such as CPC/CPM bidding, automatic placements and demographic targeting.

8. Monitor how well each campaign is performing by using reporting tools.

9. Optimise creative content based on campaign performance.

10. Create a set of ads for each ad group, or split your ad groups into sets of creative material.

11. Use targeting to increase the relevance of your ads by using keywords, topics and interests.

12. Add negative keywords to your campaigns to avoid showing ads where they’re irrelevant.

13. Set daily budgets for your ad sets, allowing you to spend more or less on specific campaigns.

14. Combine keywords into phrases and create broad match modifier keywords to use in your ads.

15. Create a custom audience of people who visited your website so you can target them again with similar ads.

Use conversion tracking

16. Use conversion tracking to see how well your ads are performing, checking the value of conversions and costs.

17. Track the performance of individual keywords so you can switch them on or off depending on their success.

18. Create separate campaigns for mobile devices if you have a mobile website.

19. Use ad extensions for additional information about your business.

20. Experiment to determine what works best for your advertising campaign, then expand on that approach.

21. Use the Facebook pixel to track conversions on your website.

22. Add location extensions and call extensions to help you stand out against other advertisers in the SERPs.

23. Advertise new products or services with a catchy and intriguing slogan that will entice users to click.

24. Use Google DSA ads as a way to target specific audiences with tailored advertising based on previous behaviour.

25. Create remarketing lists for search ads so you can tailor your ads specifically to those who previously visited your site.

26. Pair Google Display Network image and text ads to create an array of creative material for your campaign.

27. Target users’ interests based on the sites they visit, YouTube channels they subscribe to and Gmail contacts.

28. Use Google Display Network text ads alongside GDN image ads to enhance their respective effectiveness.

29. Switch between AdWords search campaigns and display campaigns depending on your financial or special requirements.

30. Use the AdWords automatic placements feature to allow Google to place your ads on sites it thinks will work for you.

31. Create a separate campaign for campaigns with multiple ad groups and use sitelinks as an extension of text ads to tailor your site navigation.

32. Include specific call-to-action text in your ads to give users a specific next step.

Include specific call-to-action text in your ads

33. Use image sitelinks as a way to further connect with interested users by giving them more information about the site and what it offers.

34. Monitor and modify your ad performance using AdWords tools.

35. Optimise even more by creating custom combinations of ads with different wording, images and offers.

36. A/B test your ads to see which creative material works best for your campaign.

37. Control the flow of ads so you spend more on high-performing campaigns and less on poor performers.

38. Use geo-targeting to narrow down campaigns by country or city so you only advertise in the locations you specify.

39. Use AdWords device bidding to increase or decrease bids depending on whether ads are being viewed on desktop, mobile or tablet devices.

40. Track clicks as they convert into sales and leads so you stay updated with the return from each ad group.

To conclude, paid campaigns are an excellent tool for promoting your website or landing pages on search engines.

It allows you to attract new visitors and measure the performance of your ads in terms of cost-per-click (CPC) and ad conversion rate.

Google Adwords is currently one of the most popular and effective paid advertising platforms on the Internet.

Wrapping Up

PPC is a form of online advertising that allows you to bid on certain keywords and then have your ad displayed when someone searches for those terms.

PPC can be an extremely effective way to drive traffic to your website, but it’s important to understand how it works before you start bidding on keywords.

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