What do you think when you hear the acronym ‘PPC’. The more literal among you will simply say “Pay Per Click” – online marketing where you pay for every click you receive through to your site.
If you’re not in that camp, you’ll probably say something like “Google Ad Words” or “Paid Search Marketing”.
Both interpretations are very widely used, yet they are two very different things. PPC in the literal sense would include display advertising (banners), affiliate marketing and other sponsored links on third party sites.
The big difference between conventional paid links and Ad Words-type advertising is that they are ‘context sensitive’. In the case of Ad Words, the ad that is shown is picked from millions so that it is well targeted to the keyword. The term ‘PPC’ doesn’t do it justice other than in reference to the remuneration model.
We’re still not quite done in our hunt for a more precise term to use in reference to paid Google search activity (not withstanding that other search providers are available!).
‘Context sensitive marketing’ is far too general a term. It covers anything where the ad that is displayed is targeted to the context of the page in which it is being shown, which pretty well covers off most digital advertising these days. Not only that, but the term “Context Sensitive Marketing” has been ‘bagsied’ by digital QR codes (those blocky bar code things that you scan with your mobile camera).
So where does that leave us? Something more precise (Paid Search Engine Marketing?) just doesn’t roll off the tongue as well as PPC, so we’ve gone with the herd and listed more details about the services we offer under the PPC link in our navigation bar.