Pay per click advertising is a great way to boost traffic to a site, or help a new site gain some targeted listings. It is also highly competitive and therefore can be quite costly to run a pay per click advertising campaign.
Pay per click advertising can be found on major and smaller search engines. Google runs Adwords. Yahoo! has Overture and MSN are coming close behind developing the MSN adCenter. Many others can be found, some for a more specific audience than others – try entering “pay per click advertising” into any search engine to see how many options there are. It may also be that a program puts ads out on affiliate sites.
The way it works is to carefully select a set of keywords for your site which are used by prospective visitors searching for sites. Each keyword is then given a cost per click, or bid, which is paid each time the ad is clicked on after being shown as a result of that keyword being searched. Generally speaking, the more common the keyword and the bigger the search engine, the higher the cost per click.
One thing to watch out for with pay per click advertising is click fraud, where the less scrupulous of your competitors repeatedly click on your ads in order to drive up the price of your bids to attempt to push you out of the running. The way to recognize this is to look for odd patterns of high clicks to your keywords over very short periods of time.
Pay per click advertising can be a very cost effective method of advertising – you can control the budget and it is cheap in relation to, say, taking out a magazine advertisement. Also, in its favor against the magazine example, pay per click advertising will provide you with a means of tracking and analyzing the success of your advertising by means of various styles of reports. These reports can help you to develop a more effective pay per click advertising campaign and a lot more visitors than simple search engine listings.