The usage of SaaS products has exponentially skyrocketed over the years. So much so that companies have reportedly spent over $343 k on an average on SaaS products every year.
The rapid growth is a result of companies collaborating with PPC or the Profit per Click marketing style. While this may be great news, it brought about a massive increase in competition in the SaaS product market. This, in turn, leads to the PPC SaaS campaigns.
Before jumping into the possible reasons for your PPC campaign for SaaS products failing, let’s get an understanding of what baselines should be kept in mind to keep a check on your performance.
How to Incorporate a Primary Baseline to Measure Your SaaS Product PPC Performance?
You must establish a standard for measuring the performance before starting work on a SaaS business through PPC. You must settle down on a limited number of these baselines for measurement of performance! Why? Because it is difficult to follow too many of these metrics, this could lead to you focusing on multiple trending metrics instead of those that are perfect for your campaign.
Hence, you must limit yourself. The top three best essential baselines to measure your SaaS product PPC performances are as mentioned!
Calculating Total Ad Budget
Before you start raking in customers and start making money, you will have to think about maintaining a steady cash flow. To ensure your business is stable, you must calculate the money you will be investing!
You can calculate the total Ad budget by using the formula mentioned below.
The target number of closed deals per month x Target CAC or the amount you will be paying for each customer
For example – If your targeted CAC is $2000 and you have managed to close two deals in the month, add these numbers to the formula, and you will get your total ad budget to be $4000.
It is a critical baseline measurement to keep track of your recurring costs, whether you’re adding to them or losing them.
Calculating Number of Clicks Needed
Calculating the number of clicks or the click rate helps you know the frequency with which people are seeing and clicking on your SaaS PPC advertisement. A higher number of clicks is a clear indication of your PPC advertisement doing good.
Following the formula mentioned below, you will find out how many clicks you are garnering.
Clicks required- Demos required per month/ Visitors to demo conversion rate.
Let’s put this formula into action! Say your website visitor to demo conversion rate is about 5%; this is your denominator for the clicks you need. Now let’s calculate the number of demos required per month.
All you will have to do is divide the total deals you closed in the month ( for this equation, it would be 2) by the demo conversion rate. Let’s assume your demo conversion rate is 10%. You would get 20 and that is the number of demos you’ll require per month.
How many clicks does that make? Now divide these 20 demos per month by 5%. Your result would be- 400 clicks.
Calculating Your Baseline Target CPC
Once you have calculated your total budget required for the SaaS PPC advertisements and the total number of clicks you need, all you are left to do is calculate your targeted CPC.
For this, you must divide the total ad budget ($4000) by the total clicks you require (400). You will get a total of $10 target CPC!
Reasons Why SaaS PPC Campaigns Underperform
Targeting Too Narrowly
Targetting too narrowly is a common mistake made by companies trying to advertise their SaaS products through PPC.
Limiting yourself to one set of people in the name of the target audience will, in a way, determine your audience supply. It becomes a problem because most ad platforms make money by serving more people. So if you target a limited set of people, you will have to pay the platform extra for limited impressions.
The only way to fix this is by broadening your audience, and you must include people that aren’t close to being your prospective audience. It will help you maintain the perfect balance between raking in the right impressions while keeping low costs per click for the impressions.
Optimizing for Bottom of the Funnel Conversions Too Early
Another common mistake committed by the SaaS companies with their PPC campaigns is to boost the campaigns through just trials or demos. Performing this before the PPC ads have managed to rake insufficient data will take away the learning period. The platform requires this learning period to understand the difference between good and wrong clicks.
If you do not follow this, then the lead quality will be inconsistent, and you will end up paying extra for lead conversions.
What you should do instead:
- Optimize your engagement right at the start
- Allow the platform enough time to analyze the click behavior on the clicks.
The PPC Optimization Process We Do with Our B2B SaaS Clients
Increase CTR First Before Pursuing Other Improvements
CTR or the click-through rate helps increase customer attraction towards your product. They are a clear indication of the relevance your ads have with what people are searching. They also will have a significant contribution to the ad rank in search engines.
It is vital to increase your CTR because running ads with a low CTR will ensure Google assumes all ads associated with your Google ads account will have a low CTR. It will push the ads lower on the ranking page.
Standard methods to increase your CTR are:
- Compose eye-catching headlines.
- Strategically boost the meta descriptions.
- Utilize quality visuals to coax users into clicking on ads.
Create New Ads Every Month to Prevent Ad Fatigue
Running similar ads frequently is a sureshot way to get users to lose interest and drop engagement by a subsequent amount. There will also be a reduction in your SaaS PPC ad campaign’s effectiveness, and you can completely forget the return on your investment. The best way to avoid ad fatigue is by creating new ads every month!
Reduce Wasted Ad Spend by Adding Negative Keywords and Audience Exclusions
Negative Keywords are a set of Keywords utilized to get your product or website qualified so that your ad doesn’t show up for a specific keyword or phrase.
A particular keyword will not trigger your ad, so there will be no association with it. For example- you want to add the negative keyword ‘free’ because you provide something free with your SaaS product’s ad campaign. It sends Google the message to not show the ads to anybody doing searches with the term ‘free.’
It is likely to reduce the amount of money you will be paying for the clicks made by people that aren’t a good fit. By getting your negative keywords right, you can boost your business and reach the next level. How to use them to reduce wasted spend? Carefully read the tips mentioned below-
- Remove irrelevant traffic- understand your customer to know all the relevant keywords they will associate with your SaaS product. This way, you can keep all those irrelevant keywords that have no connection to your ad campaign out of the way.
- Analyze your search term reports- you can use the keyword planner to get report listings. It is a report provided by Google that shows you all the top searches that led people to your product/site and accordingly change the keywords or add new ones to the list.
Allocate More Budget to Top and Middle of Funnel in Highly Competitive Markets
If your competition in the market is low, then it is best to concentrate the PPC ads towards the lower end of the funnel. The competition being lower opens doors for reduced costs and a whopping increase in impressions with the audience.
However, if your competition in the market is high, then all the focus cannot be on the sales funnel’s lower end. Your competitors may be shelling out more money on their PPC SaaS product campaign. In this case, the best thing to do is to move the budget to the funnel’s middle or top.
Applying this method will lower the blended acquisition costs and ensure a reduced price on the clicks. You will be able to trap the attention of prospects higher up in the funnel while also getting a hold of them early on in the process, so these prospects are likely to be loyal to you.
In Moderate or Lower Competition Markets, Outbid Competitors for Highly Engaged Users (RSLA, In-Market, Remarketing)
It is quite common for companies to face a hindrance when trying to acclimate any new products into their operations. The process is tedious, and often companies will find it difficult to carry this burden. In such a low or moderate competition market, you can try your hands to outbid the competitors to garner highly engaged users.
By using this strategy, you will be able to:
- Get an increased budget for remarketing of lists for your search ads.
- Get an increased budget for remarketing of audiences. It will help you engage with the people who have looked at your ads but didn’t sign up for a demo or trial.
Matters you must put your focus on settling with baselines that suit your business best instead of being overwhelmed and focusing. Setting achievable goals with the PPC SaaS campaigns will be your key to improving your current results!
“Measuring is easy”, said no one ever
Understanding the role that each touchpoint plays in a conversion is crucial for budgeting, allowing devotion of funds to the most effective touchpoints while diverting funds away from ineffective channels.
Multi-touch attribution models have been proven ineffective for two reasons:
- the platforms are sealed off from each other in terms of attribution;
- the models are not good at tracking the real-life, messy-middle, customer journey and thus provide unreliable feedback.
At Booster Box we have built “MMMMachine – Marketing Mix Modeling Tester”, a terrific weapon to combat this, accurately measuring the value of different marketing efforts.
The cookieless wasteland
Source: Vyshnavi Bisani, Unsplash
The advertising world must face the change that the cookie apocalypse is bringing. As of now, almost half of open web users’ actions are untraceable on Firefox and Safari. This number is bound to increase with the upcoming loss of third-party cookies.
Faced with this situation, it is essential to safeguard the performance of marketing campaigns and limit any disruption to tracking and revenue. Unveiling the real path to conversion through Marketing Mix Modeling (a.k.a MMM) is a viable, ready-to-use solution in a landscape of new privacy norms.
Understanding incremental value
Source: Booster Box Photoshoot
Ad budgets don’t grow on trees or fall from the sky. Therefore, investing in ads where customers would have converted anyway, and/or investing in non-converting campaigns is a huge mistake and waste of resources.
Marketing teams who are keen to allocate capital efficiently are always at the frontline in the battle to understand incremental value, cross-channel impacts and marginal returns.They make data-driven ad spend decisions accordingly.
Not a pipe dream
A marketing team’s main ambition is to be able to forecast the likely outcomes when deploying a specific set of tactics, thus reducing any deadweight loss by reallocating inefficient spend to the most effective touchpoints. This can be achieved: with a lot of science, data analysis and modeling- three areas Booster Box excels in.
Come and see me present on this topic in more detail at Hero Conf London.
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