Brad Geddes has posted an excellent article on Search Engine Land about PPC Management billing structures.
It’s pretty long looking at all the various options including pay by the hour, % of spend, by number of keywords and flat monthly fees.
At Attacat we use the % of spend model (we charge between 12 and 20% of our clients advertising bill). The fact that this incentivises us to spend more on our clients behalf can be mistaken as not being aligned with our clients’ interests.
However this is anything but the case. All our campaigns are managed to some form of financial metric, reflective of the results that our clients are looking to achieve. This commonly takes the form of a percentage of sales or a cost per enquiry generated.
As a result the incentive is on us to increase the sales or enquires so we earn more.
One particular part of the article that rang true for me is the following:
“The absolute first note is that if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Exceptional PPC management is not cheap. Skilled individuals charge what they are worth and try not to leave money on the table. If you see an offer for $295 monthly PPC management regardless of the number of keywords you want managed, and tests you wish to run, think twice (or three times) before signing that contract. Why is it so cheap?”
We do often find ourselves being compared to such offerings (and even less expensive options periodically). Setting up an AdWords account is easy. Setting up an effective account that maximizes your opportunity and profit is another matter entirely.
The article also looks at contract length, discussing options from monthly to annual contracts. This is something that Attacat sticks it’s neck out on with our five minutes notice approach. We believe this keeps us on our toes and ensures that we don’t allow campaigns to get stale.