Last week eBay released their study on the effectiveness of PPC to the Harvard Business Review. The article on the eBay study, dubbed “Did eBay Just Prove That Paid Search Ads Don’t Work?” has created a lot of debate for companies who are currently utilizing PPC as an advertising medium.
So – could it be true? Is PPC an advertising enigma? Of course not! At the surface level many people would probably side with eBay in belief that pay per click does not work, but when taking a deeper look it is easy to see that their case was atypical. First, almost everyone already knows who eBay is and what they do. This is not true for most other businesses; especially local businesses. This is why PPC is important – to build brand awareness. Secondly, it is important to remember that eBay does not have ‘core products.’ When building a quality PPC campaign it is important to create text ads and center on keywords that focus on your businesses main or most profitable products so that you can clearly see your ROI. As for eBay, their buyable products are constantly changing, making it difficult to have targeted keywords and keyword rich text ads. eBay’s ever changing product list also gave them a little trouble when creating dynamic ads:
So, although eBay is not drinking the PPC Kool-Aide, it is important to remember that the best advertising method for one business may not be the best for the next business. Read the article for yourself and let us know that you think – but I believe you will find that indeed paid search ads DO WORK.