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How to Improve Your PPC Lead Quality

  • Post category:Marketing
  • Reading time:8 mins read

Generating leads with PPC campaigns is hard. Generating high-quality leads is even more difficult. In the world of e-commerce, if someone has the money to purchase a product, they can make the purchase right on the site. Furthermore, one person’s money is just as valuable as the next person’s. Once the sale is complete, you track the revenue and attribute the sale to the inbound click that drove the traffic to the e-commerce site. In order for this to work, everything needs to align on the backend of the website. Sadly, lead generation is nowhere near that simple. Furthermore, lead generation allows for anyone to convert at the initial lead conversion stage. With this in mind, it is necessary to develop strategies to target more qualified leads. Before we dive into how to improve your PPC lead quality, we need to discuss something else first.

Improving Lead Quality Means Lowering Lead Volume

Let’s be frank, if improving your lead quality was simple, you wouldn’t be reading this article. Furthermore, it would mean we wouldn’t have to sacrifice volume for quality. Sadly, we do not live in a utopian world.

When working to improve lead quality, it’s almost guaranteed that you’ll generate fewer leads. In simple terms, as quality increases, the number of leads will go down. While this may damage your ego, it’s actually a good thing since it means that you’re avoiding low-quality leads and are improving your PPC lead quality.

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When working on improving your PPC lead quality, it’s vital that you expect a few things to happen to your KPIs:

  1. Your overall lead volume will decrease
  2. Your number of high-quality leads should increase
  3. The cost per lead will likely increase
  4. Your click-through rate (CTR) will typically go down

A sidenote on How to Measure Lead Quality

There are numerous ways to measure lead quality. However, your conversion rate is without question one of the most meaningful metrics that you can measure. A high conversion rate indicates that you’re generating high-quality leads since a large percentage of your leads are converting into customers. On the other hand, a low lead-to-customer conversion rate suggests that you’re not attracting the right type of leads – even if your lead volume is massive.

Now that we’ve set our expectations, let’s get down to it.

Here are five strategies you can employ to improve B2B lead quality regardless of your lead generation campaign.

Target More Specific Keywords to Improve Your PPC Lead Quality

All effective search campaigns start with awesome keywords. The keywords are the backbone of the campaign. They determine who will see your ads, the type of copy you need to produce, the landing pages you should use, and so on.

When working to improve your PPC lead quality, you should most definitely revisit your keywords.

Long-Tail vs. Short-Tail Keywords

How many words make up the majority of your keyphrases? In most cases, the shorter the keyphrase the less intent you can assign to its associated queries.

If most of your keyphrases are one or two words long, you can lengthen them by adding a modifier to make them more specific.

The ultimate goal when it comes to improving your PPC lead quality is to find users who actually know what they want. In order to connect with these users, you’ll want to employ long-tail keywords.

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Even though it’s a minor difference, someone who searches “life insurance policies” is far more qualified than someone who searches “insurance policies.” This is because the user has clearly identified the type of insurance policy they seek, which, in turn, makes them more likely to buy right away.

When developing your long-tail keywords, you need to ask yourself the following two questions:

  1. How can you take your current keywords and make them more specific?
  2. Are there any modifiers that you can add to your keywords to give them higher intent?

Match Types

Similar to keyword length, employing the correct match types can greatly improve your PPC lead quality. Exact and phrase match allows for the most control in keyword matching. This means that you have a serious issue on your hands if most of your leads are coming from your broad match terms.

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You’ll need to pick one of two strategies in order to combat poor matches:

  1. Become hyper-vigilant with search query reviews and negative keyword additions, or
  2. Limit your use of broader match types.

Neither option is perfect. One option requires more ongoing optimizations and the other can severely limit your lead volume. However, you need to select the option that is right for you and don’t be afraid to make adjustments over time.

Improve Your PPC Lead Quality by Using Qualifying Copy in Your Ads

All marketers seek out the most appealing ad copy that will attract potential customers. That being said, you always need to be on the lookout for which headline or CTA will garner that bump in CTR and potentially improve your conversion rate.

However, this does not ring true when the quality of your leads is the primary focus.

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When you want to improve your PPC lead quality, you want to intentionally deter certain users from clicking on your ads. However, you need to go about this with tact. Just because someone isn’t in the right place to click and convert right now doesn’t mean they won’t be later on down the road.

Continuing with the life insurance example, if a user searches for “life insurance policies,” we want our content to show. However, let’s say we’re also looking to sign more clients with multiple bundled policies. Instead of writing copy that speaks solely to life insurance, we might write something that highlights the benefits of bundling.

For users not interested in bundles, they’ll most likely click on another ad that speaks only to life insurance. Oh, wait…does that mean we’ve just reduced the number of less qualified clicks? Why, yes it does!

Develop Landing Pages for Target Customers, Not All Customers

Alright, so at this point, your visitors have made it through your first two filters: keywords and ad copy. So…what now?

Landing page copy is yet another great tool to further qualify users who make it this far. The copy your present on your landing page is a great way to further weed out visitors who aren’t exactly the best fit for your product or service.

Just about everyone is eligible for life insurance. However, life insurance providers typically want younger customers who are in ideal health. That being said, the copy on the landing page will highlight those characteristics and make it clear to whom the product is tailored.

The same style of logic applies to a B2B SaaS provider. Most SaaS providers make more money on larger accounts. Even if the solution works for businesses of all sizes, SaaS providers will want to design their landing pages to appeal to businesses with 50+ employees, or whatever the ideal target segment parameters are. SaaS providers could even write a header that states, “Best suited for companies who…” and proceed to list off the traits of their ideal customer.

Regardless of whether you pursue a subtle or bold approach, make sure you use your landing page(s) to help further qualify users.

Give Your Form the Attention It Deserves

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Asking user for a laundry list of information is a surefire way to scare them off. Information is the highest price anyone can pay to a lead generation company. If you notice a large number of forms filled out by low-quality leads, try increasing the amount of information you request.

There’s a massive difference between asking for an email address and a work email address, and yet for the sake of ease most leave the field identifier as “Email.” This is similar to a slight change in keywords between “insurance” and “life insurance” – make sure you’re asking the user to provide the exact information you want in your forms.

Leverage Back-End Data to Optimize

Optimizing back-end data is likely one of the most under-utilized strategies used to improve PPC lead quality.

If you’re generating leads with PPC campaigns, you’re likely using some type of sales or marketing management system to keep tabs on all of your leads. This management system is a goldmine of optimization information.

With PPC campaigns, you can tag your URLs so that all users are tracked back to the keyword level within your campaign.

Your first challenge is to make sure your marketing automation is capturing this valuable information.

Your second challenge is to regularly pull this data and use it to optimize your campaigns.

This information can prove integral when determining budgets, which keywords to use, and a whole host of other changes.

Focus on Lead Quality, Not Quantity

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If you want to improve your PPC lead quality, you’ll need to accept the idea that you’ll need to turn people away from your business. Instead of welcoming everyone with open arms, you’ll need to prevent people from filling out your forms, but in the end, it’s ultimately the best move for your business.

Andrew Roche

Andrew Roche is a Digital Consultant at Shift Digital. He is also pursuing an MBA in Marketing & Finance through the Mike Ilitch School of Business at Wayne State University

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