The decision to run paid search efforts in-house or to outsource it to a third party is one directly related to your internal resources and the return on investment you would like to see.
Below are three guiding questions you should be asking yourself when considering adding paid search into your marketing mix.
QUESTION 1: How will paid search bring value to your business?
One of the benefits of paid search is that you are able to quickly launch a campaign and have that campaign run for a limited period of time. Perhaps your business is interested in targeting an event or sale for a limited time. For example, a Memorial Day sale in the case of a retailer. Or perhaps your business is looking to expand into a new segment or niche market. You can leverage paid search to promote this new endeavor. Or perhaps you want to target new clients or customers for a new office location.
QUESTION 2: How you will measure success?
Are you going to measure success by how much incremental traffic paid search drives to your website? Or maybe leads from your website what you’re most interested in? In which case you’ll be measure cost per lead in comparison to your other marketing efforts. Perhaps you want to use paid search to drive in-store traffic? Phone calls? Maybe you’re going to look at total ticket or spend value acquired from paid search traffic and measure ROI from your revenue.
No matter how you choose to measure success, it’s important to set measurement values at the on-set of your investment so that you are then able to determine the effectiveness and profitability of your efforts.
QUESTION 3: How much of your budget will you allocate to paid search?
Lastly, you’ll need to determine what resources you can devote to your paid search program: time, budget and staffing.
In terms of time, how much are you able to devote to planning, creating, tracking and optimizing?
In terms of budget, how much money are you able to allocate towards your paid search efforts?
In terms of staffing, are you able or are you interested in having someone in-house manage your paid search efforts or perhaps would you rather hire an external party to manage it on your behalf.
By asking yourself all these questions, in advance, you’ll eliminate any surprises down the road and hopefully ensure your business is well-positioned to succeed on the paid search front.