“ PPC is a waste of money, no one ever clicks on the adverts ”
If I had £1 for every time we hear this…
The reality is that a significant proportion of your prospective clients will be clicking on the ads, perhaps up to as much as 64% of the lead flow.
Let me explain…
Firstly, let’s consider a real-life scenario within the property sector. Here we have 100 prospective clients searching for estate agency services in Bristol.
Traditionally, they may have wondered down the high street, or perhaps found an advert in a newspaper or were simply swayed by the number of local ‘Sold’ boards.
However, times have changed. Tepilo estimate that 98% of house searches are now started online.
So let’s re-imagine the scenario with our 100 prospective clients starting their search by using Google - ‘estate agent in bristol’.
Here’s what I saw:
What are your observations?
What’s striking for me is that you can only see advertisment listings above the fold (in your browser window).
This is important because people are looking for quick results and will only scroll down if they have to.
Furthermore, to the untrained eye, it is also not particularly easy to discern that they are adverts. In fact, the latest stats suggest that 45% of people do not even realise they are adverts.
Let’s take a closer look:
The principle difference is the easy to miss little ‘Ad’ box before the URL. The other variance is that adverts tend to contain more ‘click friendly’ content (‘Book a Free Valuation’).
So what does all this mean?
It means a lot of people click on adverts. One study in the US found that a massive 64% of searches (that include commercial intent) resulted in an advert click.
So let’s return to the above scenario. Of the 100 prospects who carried out the initial search, 64 of them are funnelled away via the adverts.
This leaves 36 people.
If we scroll a bit further, you then find the localised listings:
Good news if you’re Knight Frank, Parks Estate or Bristol Property Centre, as these listings will be funnelling away another proportion of the search volume. Perhaps another 10-12 prospects.
Finally, lets scroll down to the third full-screen where we finally come across the natural results:
It’s widely accepted that places 1 and 2 get the vast majority of interactions, with a cliff edge drop in clicks from 3rd place onwards.
So unless you’re The Bristol Property Centre or Connells, you’ll be lucky to get more than a couple of clicks from our original 100 prospects.
The above example is obviously a simplified version of reality. Different types of searches, devices and duplicate search interactions will have different user flows, however this scenario does demonstrate the ever growing dominance of PPC.
There’s one really important point to remember: Google is a colossal commercial beast who are incentivised to disguise adverts and maximise revenue, and it is in their interest to maximise clicks on adverts.
Please do get in touch if you would like to learn more, or would like to discuss your own paid media campaign.