What is PPC or Paid Advertising?

PPC stands for pay-per-click, an internet advertising model where you pay each time someone clicks on your ad. PPC is an incredible business growth opportunity because you get to advertise within sponsored listings on popular platforms.

What is Paid Search?

While “PPC” could refer to pay-per-click ads on any platform, paid search is very specific, referring to PPC advertisements in search engines like Google and Bing.

Paid search gives you the opportunity to advertise within the sponsored listings of a search engine – be that a traditional search engine like Google or Bing, or an online retailer like Amazon or eBay – by paying each time your ad is clicked.

Paid search is the fundamental activity of search engine marketing. It’s concerned with increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website. It can be immensely profitable but also incredibly costly when not performed correctly.

Google is by far the most popular paid search platform. In 2020, Google’s ad revenue amounted to 146.92 billion US dollars – over 85% of total revenues (Statista).

Facts & Figures


For searches with high commercial intent (someone looking to buy a product) paid search gets 65% of all clicks (WordStream)

Paid Social

"Understand Your Audience & the Buyer Journey." - Aaron Levy


"The end is in sight for third-party cookies, so brands need to start finding solutions straight away to avoid losing out to the competition." - Will Dixon

What is Remarketing?

Remarketing, or retargeting, is a tool within paid search platforms like Google AdWords that enables you to show targeted ads to users who have already visited your website.

These ads only show up when a user browses Google or its partner websites, or the platform you are running your ads on. Remarketing works by placing a cookie in the user’s web browser that activates personalised ads based on browsing history.

‘Personalisation’ is the key word around remarketing because that’s what it does – it personalises ad experiences. It’s an extremely powerful marketing tool because it retargets those who have shown a genuine interest in your products.

By retargeting website users, you can increase brand visibility and the likelihood that the initial click you paid for will give you a return on investment.

Facts & Figures


Website visitors who are retargeted with paid search ads are more likely to convert by an average of 43% (Criteo)

What is Display Advertising?

Display advertising is a type of pay-per-click advertising where your ads appear on websites, social media platforms and apps rather than in search.

The aim of display ads is not to answer queries but to grab the viewer’s attention and disrupt their experience to generate clicks. This is achieved with images, videos, HTML5 animations and rich media so the ads stand out.

Display advertising helps you promote your brand, generate product awareness, increase web traffic, increase sales and increase leads. The trick is to reach the right people, which is made possible with targeting filters within advertising platforms.

The biggest display advertising network is the Google Display Network, which reaches 90% of internet users worldwide (Google). This single network will get your ads on millions of partner websites, blogs, YouTube and other Google assets.

Facts & Figures


68% of marketers say paid advertising is “very important” or “extremely important” to their marketing strategy (Hubspot)

Display Advertising

"The more diverse your media mix, the more nimble you can be." - Bishop

PPC Advertising

"It’s crucial to hire the right people with the most suitable skill sets."

What are Google Shopping Ads?

Google Shopping Ads are pay-per-click advertisements that pop up at the very top of Google search results for product-based search queries.

For example, if you search “buy Nike trainers” or “Samsung S20 sim free”, Google may show a carousel at the top of search results with product listings.

The information displayed in these listings is generated from Merchant Centre product data inputted within Google Merchant Centre. However, the ad campaign is managed within Google AdWords. The two platforms are synced.

Google can also show local inventory ads to users on the Google Display Network. These are useful for local shops. Another type of ad is Showcase Ads, which group related products together so people can compare products side-by-side in search results.

Facts & Figures


Google Shopping Ads now account for 76% of retail ad spend, and generate 85.3% of all clicks on AdWords campaigns (Smart Insights)

Wrapping up

PPC offers you a golden opportunity to get your brand and products/services in front of a highly targeted audience. However, it’s only worth your time if it’s profitable.

The fundamental here is to know what profit you make on a sale. The basics are simple. If a product makes £9 profit per sale and the average cost per visitor (cost per click) is £1.50 then you need a sale every six visitors to break even.

The biggest mistakes businesses make with PPC include targeting keywords that are too expensive, targeting keywords with no search volume, targeting broad match keywords and going for the number 1 spot (this can get very expensive).

If you are inexperienced, we implore you to work with a digital marketing agency that specialises in PPC. Unprofitable campaigns are scarily common. At the very least, get advice before you jump in. It pays to be prepared with pay-per-click.