PPC Traffic Projections Part Deux: Estimating Impact

To compensate for the extended hiatus, let’s dive right into ppc estimates and projections for a new campaign. I can not stress enough how important it is to conduct keyword research as the initial step. Keyword research is comprised of not only aggregating search impression volume from the search engines, but also of mining data from the most important data set available to you – site side keyword searches and top navigational paths.

Regardless of how optimized your UI/UX is, visitors to your site generally can be bucketed into several conversion funnels. Even if you feel your UI/UX leaves much room for improvement, visitor behavior on the current version of your site can be used for product enhancement decision-making in addition to surfacing areas of opportunity.

ppc-projectionsI have always been a proponent of launching new campaigns using exact match and a disproportionately high daily budget. A tight list of exact match search phrases will allow you to maximize your CTRs. A high daily budget will allow you to compile performance data more quickly. There is not much optimization that can be done without this data with a sample size large enough to allow for a high confidence level. CPCs will obviously vary greatly by vertical, but the benefit of high CTRs is manifested in higher quality scores and subsequently lower CPCs.

Again, this is just my opinion, but I have always presented paid search traffic projections using matrices. Two-dimensional variable axes for CPC and CTR is usually a great starting point. This will get you to the visitation impact. We’ve only just begun. From here, you should create another matrix using visits and conversion rate as the two dimensions. This will give you a confident estimate for conversions.

At this point you will be able to calculate ROAS. Although ROI and ROAS are used interchangeably, they are entirely different beasts. ROI factors in overhead such as development effort and all ancillary resource costs. ROAS is plain and simple. ROAS = (Revenue)/(Media Spend). This number is usually represented as a percentage. 100% ROAS means you generate $1 of revenue for every $1 of media spend. If your ROAS is less than 100% then you have some “splanin” to do.

I will try my best to draft the third part of this series in the near future, but my boss is a slave driver. <– This is just a test to determine whether or not he actually reads my blog :)

3 thoughts on “PPC Traffic Projections Part Deux: Estimating Impact

  1. Ian Leong Post author

    Costa Rica SEO,

    Thanks for reading and posting a comment. Traffic projections based on historical performance is something I had planned to post in the third part of this series. Sorry for the delayed reply – your comment got lost in all the spam posts. Shoot a note to my ‘first initial’+’last name’ at gmail. No space or + between first and last initials.

    One of the first things you should do is to run the search impression report. It will give you an idea of your share of voice. For example, if you have 50% impression share, you know you will be able to roughly double your clicks with your current campaign setup. However, it’s extremely important to look at post-click activity. More often than not it’s better to optimize your conversion rates before you increase your PPC spend. It’s possible to double or triple your conversions with the same level of spend.

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