The Future Of Paid Search in 2013

Paid Search

Paid search is generally the first step most people take when they start marketing for a business. Ask any search engine consultant and he’ll probably agree with you on this one.

Why does paid search get so much attention? Well there’s a simple reason: paid search gives you near-instant results. If you are doing it right, then using paid search will give you an instant source of traffic to your site.

And this traffic is huge! If it converts well, then you are looking at a massive surge in new inquiries. The more traditional SEO techniques are bound to give you long term results, but they usually take time (2-3 months after you start link-building).

PPC is instant!

So, given that the new year is around the corner, what’s the future like for paid search in 2013? Larry Kim has published an amazing article on Adwords’ spend and their strategy: here. Its an interesting read, but that’s not what I want to talk about. The purpose of my post is to simply offer an insight as to how Adwords’ plan for the future is going to affect the SEO industry.

Here are some of the important points to take home from these reports:

1. If you’ll look at the stats then you are probably going to see that the major industries which are pouring money into paid search are the Finance, Jobs & Education and Business & Industries. This data can simply be inferred from the high CPCs these verticals have.

If your enterprise falls into one of these categories, you may want to re-think putting a lot of money into PPC. You may not get enough ROI from just paid search. If you insist that PPC is the way to go, you are going to have to find better micro-niches within your field to focus on or more creative keywords to bid on.

2. Apart from the hugely popular verticals, the general CPCs of all the industries are going down. So if you feel you could not afford to spend in a lot into Adwords this year, it looks like next year is going to be better. You could easily recommend paid search to some of your newer customers.

3. The previous point brings an interesting question. Seeing as Adwords accounts for more than 90% of Google’s revenues, how do they show a 3% increase in profits despite the average CPCs in major industries falling by about 16%?

Simple…they’ve increased the number of ads in SERPs and their various products. So don’t be surprised if this trend continues next year.

What this really means is that Google is doing its best to force sponsored ads on us and focus less on conventional link-building.

4. Google wants to focus more and more on ads for mobile and tablets. Its a little challenging in my opinion, seeing as how smartphone users are more tech-savvy than desktop users and that there’s not enough room for a lot of ads in phones and tablets. But seeing as how hard Google is pushing for these segments, I won’t be surprised if ad revenues from mobile start to dominate within a couple of years.

5. Display ads have done surprisingly well last year. When they initially came out, most people were skeptical about how well they were going to perform. But the numbers don’t lie. In some cases, display ads have better conversion ratios than the normal google searches. I am fairly confident these numbers will continue to rise next year as well.

So what’s the verdict?

I think the future is looking bright for PPC next year. Google is putting all its energies into maximizing revenues from it and seeing as the CPCs are getting lower, it might be a good time to invest a little more in sponsored ads. Fans of the traditional SEO however, are going to have to start being more creative with their strategies.

Image Credit: sacmclubs

Article by Chris Barnwell

Chris has written 1 articles.

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Comments on this entry are closed.

  • ZK January 1, 2013, 2:27 pm

    Google killed SEO….With the constant algo changes on Panda and Penguin, SEO is now dying a slow death. They want you to pay for promoting your services on google. The Future is Paid Search for Google.

    • chrisseoinc January 5, 2013, 12:37 am

      That’s right in part. You’ve got to look at it from their point of view though. Every dollar someone puts in towards SEO is an opportunity they lose as PPC. So it’s not surprising that they keep making SEO tougher!

  • Ravi @ Technology Blog January 1, 2013, 2:44 pm

    Of course Google Launched Panda and Penguin for their own Profits.. But we cant blame them..They own the internet. .so they have power and they will use it.. This will surely increase the PPC market of google

  • Alicia January 1, 2013, 7:34 pm

    That’s bad news for small sites like mine. Looks like we have to pay for PPC in order to bring in traffic.

    • chrisseoinc January 5, 2013, 12:38 am

      Yup. Or you need to start looking at options like Guest Posting. They bring in more value as links, but they require a little more work!

  • Sam@Goa trip January 2, 2013, 3:12 am

    So it means now paid option will help more to rank high any site. Which is bad think for small online business owner.

    • chrisseoinc January 5, 2013, 12:42 am

      Yup. This is a trend I’ve been noticing on Google for quite some time. Of late they are moving more towards larger corporations or bigger brands. That’s where the money is for them.

  • Jasmine January 2, 2013, 8:56 pm

    Very interesting. Good for Google to make more money, but not too good news for us, trying to build a good website with some good traffic. Google is too dominant.

    Anyway, ZK, do you advertise in AdWords?

    • ZK January 3, 2013, 11:54 am

      yes i do

  • Android Application Development January 3, 2013, 1:25 am

    If you release the penguin, panda own interests, but .., Google can not blame them, we have the Internet. . Of course, if you use the force to increase market this leaf is Google’s PPC

  • Johnnie Rodriquez January 3, 2013, 5:05 am

    How much does it usually cost to market you business using those paying searches? I bet it is not cheap!

    • chrisseoinc January 5, 2013, 12:41 am

      Hard to say. Depends on your chose industry, verticals and keywords.

  • Rajkumar Jonnala January 3, 2013, 9:23 am

    Google is encouraging customers to have Adwords account. They are making a hell a lot of money. I prefer to use local ad directories for advertisements as they are free.

    • chrisseoinc January 5, 2013, 12:45 am

      Not had too much experience with Ad directories I am afraid. What’s the conversion rate like?

  • Sanji January 4, 2013, 4:20 am

    PPC is really hard, if you’re just starting out test it out by buying coupons instead of wasting real money on it. Don’t make the same mistake I did, lol! 1k USD down the drain just for testing and tweaking the ad. Good read Chris!

    • chrisseoinc January 5, 2013, 12:40 am

      Thanks Sanji.

  • Celtem Learning January 4, 2013, 5:22 am

    It is really informative post about PPC and its future, organizations can not ignore the PPC importance for their business, but at the same time you must have to retain SEO as it also give you sustainable profits

  • Quality Seo Services January 10, 2013, 8:34 pm

    The many updates by Google had the industry on its toes fixing problems, re-evaluating strategies, and trying to new ways to enhance or improve our campaigns for clients.

  • Nanvy @ CRM Software Solutions January 11, 2013, 5:13 am

    Google makes changes in algorithm often and it seems from the updates like Google Panda and Google Penguin. It really affects the traffic if you don’t follow these updates.
    Looks like, PPC will be the best option in future if this is going to be true… as it is online paid advertising and brings the immediate result for the particular targeted keywords.

  • Android App Developer January 11, 2013, 9:01 pm

    Google makes algorithm changes frequently, and it seems that Google updates Google Panda and Penguin. What matters to traffic, if you do not follow these updates.
    It seems that PPC is the best option in the future if it is true … Internet as a paid advertisement and provides immediate results of certain targeted keywords.

  • design a custom logo January 14, 2013, 3:02 am

    I personally think that Google Penguin update’s purpose is that to finish the free marketing methods like SEO, SMM etc and step by step make advertising methods paid. In this scenario your case study and points are very helpful to understand the new strategy regarding paid methods in 2013.

  • How To Get Published January 19, 2013, 2:06 am

    Too bad news. SEO is ranking down nowadays. Than this makes no sense where everyone will pay for marketing of their sites.

  • Katharine @ Phone Repairs March 23, 2013, 11:36 am

    We don’t really know what to expect in the future of paid search, but we truly do know that the increasingly mobile search trend are not ignored. The fact that so many individuals are now using their cellular devices for search, we will certainly be seeing huge changes within the infrastructure of mobile research.