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Best PPC Practices

March 10, 2023
16 min

Have you ever thought of improving your business performance and your brand’s online presence?  

At Promodo, we take pay-per-click PPC campaigns among the best practices for google ads.

As part of a holistic digital marketing strategy, we emphasize PPC among the most effective promotional approaches.

Our experts prepared a comprehensive overview of the most feasible PPC strategies you would like to use in 2023 and beyond.  

Are You Trending?

Pay-per-click (PPC) serves businesses as a powerful paid online advertising strategy that is beyond merely paying a fee every time users click on your ads.

The effectiveness of PPC campaigns is about setting clear goals, knowing brand objectives, and understanding your target audience.

Our expert says: The best approach here is to observe your closest 5-10 competitors and the PPC tools they use. This will help you better understand the main sources of traffic, the type of campaigns they use, and see the market dynamics. Yuliia Beresnieva, Team Lead of PPC Department at Promodo.

While PPC is trending in 2023 and beyond, our PPC marketers emphasize:

  • Responsive search ads
  • Smart bidding
  • Remarketing
  • Video content
  • Voice-driven shopping
  • Virtual and augmented reality, and
  • AI Automation.

While your most effective google ads will depend on these preconditions, be sure not to overlook them.

PPC Effect 2019

Get atop of PPC with responsive search ads

The shift towards responsive search ads has substituted expanded text ads (ETAs). The new approach drives your PPC campaigns with more textual content: up to 15 headlines and up to four descriptions per responsive search ad.

Responsive search ads let Google work out the best PPC combos and tell you which ad stands the best chance to reach your target audience.

Reap fruit from smart bidding

Looking back to Google PPC best practices in 2022, we recommend smart bidding to maximize your conversions.

As part of your PPC success, always rely on a smart bidding strategy (manual bidding is now considered a thing of the past) to save yourself from abundant guesswork. Based on machine learning, automated bid strategies will upscale your conversion rates.

Boosted by Google’s Performance Max, smart bidding is now about testing various ad combinations that target shopper preferences in real time and match user intent toward the most preferred channels.

Your optimal PPC budget allocation will depend on how well you can dive into user behavior patterns on your site.

Upscale with remarketing

Do not overlook the magic of remarketing. Keep on showing your ads to the users who’ve been on your site.

Use PPC campaigns to personalize the customers that have already expressed interest in your brand, product, or service. By diving into your users’ path throughout the funnel, you will know where they are now and how close they are to buying from you.

This is to say that PPC is also about making your brand recognized and associated with individual people’s needs.  

Trespass PPC boundaries with video content

Efficient PPC campaigns are also about social media coverage. Fierce market competition for user attention has prioritized video content as the most engaging.

Both short videos by TikTok and six-second-long bumper ads by YouTube help companies drive impressions and boost brand awareness.

Explore voice-driven shopping

According to SerpWatch, by the end of 2023, the smart speaker market is expected to reach a staggering USD 6.5 b.

The trend for voice-driven shopping will be exclusively popular among local businesses. This means it is high time you diversified your PPC campaigns with more conversational long-tail phrases and questions-oriented keywords.

PPC campaigns will show the best possible effect once you prioritize natural, conversational language. On this background, the use of short-tail keywords will play a supplementary role.

Dive deep into virtual and augmented reality

Both virtual and augmented reality will determine the trends in user shopping experience.

This means customers will have wider options to try out branded products before buying them. More to that, they would like to do it from the comfort of their home.

The trend will make PPC ads prioritize this special selling point.

Discover AI automation

AI automation will help you make informed decisions and win comparative advantages over rivals.

Today, PPC campaigners use AI solutions to:

  • Optimize keywords
  • Test bids, and
  • Project CTR rates.

Still, Downplaying PPC?

While PPC is a serious business, few companies are aware of the tricks hidden beyond the concept. The approaches that have worked best for you may not show the same results tomorrow.

As an integral part of the best Google Ads practices, make sure that your PPC strategy follows updates and reviews. With this in mind, we recommend setting up conversion tracking to follow all the insights.

Your ad structure should be goal-oriented, so be sure to:

  • Interlink your ad campaigns, ad groups, and keywords in a logical structure.
  • Follow a similar ad structure with three or more ads within each ad group
  • Fill your ad headlines with at least one keyword, and
  • Align related ads with shared keywords in the same groups so that users can search for similar things easily.

The more you narrow a theme for an individual ad group, the more PPC effect you will achieve.

Targeting topic-related keywords are of the same importance here. We suggest using Keyword Ad Groups so that each of your ad groups has a root keyword at its core. Limit an ad group to up to 20 keywords relevant to your page content.

Google Ad extensions will encourage your site users to get to know more about your business performance and offers.

While content is king, be sure to write highly optimized texts to reap PPC fruit. Make engaging headlines with full characters all along.

Your ads should include site links and impactful call-to-action (CTA) buttons to make people click and visit your site.

Align your ad with the content of the page you land your users to. A landing page should reflect the strategic goals of your campaign.

Knowing your best keywords never hurts

While keywords are central to PPC, figure out the exact keywords to match your business offer with trending searches and the needs of your target audience.

In 2023 and above, our digital marketing experts recommend Ubersuggest among the most effective PPC tools to upscale your content marketing strategy.

Instead of relying on ‘single-word’ keywords, prioritize popular specific search phrases known as long-tail keywords. This way, PPC campaigns will drive higher traffic to your site.

Another advantage of long-tail keywords is that they will bring you quality leads far more likely to buy products or order services from you.

Playing with keyword match types

Keyword matching options will help you show your brand name in wider category-oriented queries.

Being aware of popular and trending online searches will help you reach out to more targeted users.  

Available tools like Keyword Planner, keywords are used to match your ads with the terms that people are.

In its turn, Google Ads will show you how close your chosen keywords are to user queries. With keyword matching in hand, you will empower your PPC campaigns with machine-learning features to understand your user intent better.

While broader targeting is safe from fierce competition and will bring you more traffic, we recommend betting on narrow matches that are more targeted.

In the choice between an exact match, phrase match, and broad keyword match types, we suggest using Smart Bidding that will automatically align your PPC campaigns with strategic business performance objectives.

The right selection of keyword match types will bring more relevant traffic to your site, uplift your account performance and embrace targeted search queries relevant to the actual consumer demand.

Eventually, we recommend using the exact match type as the most precise option. In this case, you can target queries identical to or the same as your keywords.

Experiment with all possible query variations and synonymous substitutions not to lose your potential leads: “buy self-development books,” “purchase self-development books,” “order motivational books online,” or “get inspirational books at home” among possible options.

If you target a specific user’s intent, be sure to rely on exact matches. This is how you convert user searches to the end customers of branded products and services on your site.

Phrase matches will help you reach wider queries. These targeted searches integrate your keywords in wider phrases.

Longer questions and phrases are the best way to capture queries and get more qualified leads.

A broad match keyword uses advanced machine learning to identify much more nuanced user intent signals on Search, helping you show up for queries that more broadly relate to your chosen keyword.

Opting for a broad match is most valuable once you want to build brand awareness and better connect with your potential audience.  

Benefit from this cost-effective approach at the start of your PPC campaign to better explore your niche and product categories.

Broad match type mitigates the keywords you’d need for your campaign. Still, the approach will help you cover valuable queries that will drive more leads to your site.

Betting on long-tail keywords

Your content should include valuable keywords that correspond to user intent. Still, you may ask us about negative keywords. These are important to add to make users click on your ads.

Essentially, negative keywords come as relevant search terms to achieve the most conversions from your traffic.

Our PPC experience shows that most businesses downplay negative keywords. These are the keywords needed to save your ads from associations with branded words or phrases.

If you are selling self-development books and would not like to target prose readership as your unpreferred audience, then add a long-tail combination like “the best books for prose lovers” as negative keywords.

The trick will save your PPC ads from being clicked by an irrelevant audience of prose lovers.

This paid search ads example shows how you can drive more quality traffic to your site.  

Benefiting From PPC Expertise

Among Promodo's success stories, in 2019 we helped Decathlon enter the Ukrainian market.

The case study is among our best PPC examples.

At the start of the client's journey, the corporate website embraced a vast array of sports stuff produced by brands unfamiliar to the local audience. That is why we have refuted display advertising as a reliable option.

As a relevant substitution to display advertising, our PPC strategy helped the brand increase on-site transactions and attain a positive return on marketing investment, ROMI.

With 1,600 stores in more than 60 countries, the international sportswear retailer needed professional support to enter an emerging market.

We have opted for PPC as the best-fit strategy to build an association with branded sporting goods.

Eventually, the case proved successful for Decathlon managed to gain a substantial market share and win consumer loyalty.

In the spring of 2019, the company pursued a two-fold strategy on the Ukrainian market. First, the brand boosted its retail presence as both ‘bricks-and-clicks.’ Second, the company introduced its sports production to the local market.

Working with Decathlon Ukraine, we applied a PPC strategy to surge the performance of the Decathlon online store.

According to Statista, the domestic demand for the “sport” category is to grow by 80%, up to 4.6 million people by 2024.

Tasked to maximize the brand’s rankings in the SERPs in the most cost-efficient manner, our PPC experts targeted the audience interested in sports stuff.

To ensure the paid search ads' best practice, we strategically needed to penetrate the demand side unrelated to any particular sports brand.

In this pursuit, we had bet on the search and Google Smart shopping campaigns. With that, we focused on the corporate website as an ultimate touchpoint to make users buy here and now.

In this pay-per-click example, we initially processed 17 sports categories from the company’s store to generate the first transactions. With that, we spotted Decathlon’s growth potential.

PPC for Entering New Market

We further launched smart strategies by having optimized the branded search campaigns. By then, we had focused on the best-converting product categories.

By testing with smart strategies, we identified what worked best for the client:

  • Shopping campaigns with long-tail phrases like: “men’s running shoes” or “ski gloves”
  • Dynamic remarketing in Google, and
  • Dynamic remarketing on Facebook

The approach enabled us to double the number of transactions with the same ad budget.

Second stage results

Finally, we had to achieve maximum brand presence in the SERPs.

For this purpose, we emphasized the brand’s wider presence in the sports niche and revenue increase.

We focused our optimized search campaigns on seasonal product categories, which brought the client X2 revenue increase.

We then disabled the rest of the sports categories by boosting Dynamic Search Ads (DSA) campaigns

While Decathlon showed an increase in its branded traffic, we decided to test the branded campaign with brand-related keyword combinations like “swimwear decathlon.”  

Third stage results

That is how we provided the client with the best PPC management solution.

The case has eventually turned into our finest example of pay-per-click advertising.

Overall Case Results

And Few More PPC Hacks

Integral to search engine marketing (SEM), PPC ad campaigns allow you to experiment with an entirety of content options at hand.

Part of your best PPC practice, show Google you have a decent amount of ad alternatives to engage users and make them buy from you.

Making mobile-friendly pages and considering the time of day and geolocation will help you get the best from PPC ad campaigns.

Our focus on paid search advertising examples has shifted towards the customization of client PPC campaigns to mobile platforms.

Google emphasizes visual search options where images successfully substitute text. Owing to Google Lens, your consumers will immediately spot the products and services they need most.  

Never downplay the quality of your ad copy. Be sure to test the ads that show the lowest cost-per-conversion (CPC) and those with the highest click-through rate (CTR). For the most PPC effect, we suggest using RSAs by Google.  

Businesses often overlook the Experiments feature available in Google Ads to keep their PPC campaigns optimized.

All our PPC ad examples involve interim tests that show how much more traffic our clients may engage.

And keep on monitoring your PPC results.

While measuring your PPC campaigns for effectiveness, go beyond ROI. Assess your PPC ad campaigns for how much they add to your brand awareness.


Written by
Taras Bereza

Content Marketing Manager at Promodo

Taras has 16 years of hands-on copywriting experience overseas with 3000+ unique copies.

Accredited with Certificate of Proficiency in English (C2 level) by Cambridge University. Studied at Writing Launch Academy (United States) and owns an Academic Writing Certificate from Oregon University. Author of 12 dictionaries with Apriori Publishers.

Written by
Yuliia Beresnieva

Team Lead of PPC Department at Promodo

Yuliia has been working in internet marketing for more than 15 years. She worked with different leading clients in varied industries. Now she leads her own team.

March 10, 2023
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