CPC lead generation campaigns cannot be your only source of leads

May 11, 2012Marketing and Lead Gen

Cost Per Click (CPC)lead generation campaigns (CPC) are valuable traffic drivers. They can give you a nice boost while you’re trying to ramp up other lead generation strategies. The only problem is that CPC could be doing a lot more considering that half the time the ads don’t work. We’ve always recommended that CPC should only account for 20% of a company’s lead generation strategy. Betting the bank on CPC is one of the most unhealthy ways to try to gain long term success, and new research is proving this to be true.

Research conducted by BloomReach indicates that non-branded paid clicks have a 55% bounce rate from their landing pages. Google Analytics and KISSmetrics reports put the range from 10% to 90% with new visitors bouncing 62.9% of the time from paid search clicks. What these numbers indicate is that only about half of paid clicks actually drive conversion from new visitors they attract. That is the equivalent of throwing away $.55 of every marketing dollar. That’s not to say paid clicks aren’t a good idea, but rather that they can and should be more effective and efficient.

ClickPoint Software is focused on helping company decrease ROI by allowing them to focus on profits, not process. But by investing heavily into CPC you may find a bigger headache than you’d hope for. In paid search, there are two ways to bid: exact match or broad match. The choice means most paid search marketers are forced to choose between scale and profitability, depending on how they bid. Exact match can offer profitability but lacks scale and it only wins if the query matches the exact keywords you chose. Broad match includes other content too, which is why it offers great scale, but it’s less profitable because it’s not as accurate.

Ultimately a relevant landing page makes the difference when completing the marketing process that began with a paid click. A relevant landing page is created by selecting keywords, bidding strategically on those keywords, and writing compelling ad copy. Once those items are addressed, it’s important to maximize landing page relevance by adapting to search intent and product catalogs, which requires rigorous Big Data science. This science refers to the algorithms and data management techniques for handling very large, distributed, and unstructured data sets.

The disparate quality of data lies in the fact that 90% of Web content was created in the past two years. There is a tremendous amount of content that is never found by people because the volume is growing rapidly, changing frequently (about 40% of product information changes per month), and is structured in a browsing hierarchy that leaves many content-rich pages undiscovered. Pages are basically buried deep in a site without many links in and out to guide consumers and crawlers who don’t land on the right page. On the paid side, even fewer pages get found because it’s not cost efficient to manually create relevant landing pages for every product and ad group needed.

A lot of groups are working of ways to solve this problem by analyzing big data and turning it to something more useful and giving consumers better results on searches, which mean that your content should get found more easily. However, because of the current management problems with CPC, we still think it’s best for companies to create campaigns that generate leads organically, and then use CPC to supplement your campaign during dry spells.

Gabriel Buck

Gabriel Buck

Combining years of startup entrepreneurial spirit, with hard work and a healthy dose of passion, Gabe has created a winning culture at ClickPoint Software. He is passionate about lead management, customer service, easy-to-use software design, and creating tools that help marketers create more valuable leads. You can find him in the trenches looking to improve any sales or marketing process in need of improvement.