The Future of PPC Advertising: Best Practices & Strategies for 2021

As we come to the end of what has been a very different year for us all, it’s time to think about the PPC best practices from the last few months and what we can expect for the future to further improve the performance of your paid search campaigns.

Not only is this a good time to revisit dependable PPC best practices, but also implement new ones into your PPC strategies for the future to drive your campaigns forward. Whether you use a PPC agency London or have a team in-house, it’s important that you stay in line with the latest trends to ensure that your campaign can gain the best results possible.

So, what is the future of PPC best practices and what has 2020 taught us?

Budget Reviews

Unfortunately, advertisers can sometimes get stuck in a rut and forget to reevaluate and review the distribution of their media budget.

When managing your reviews, you should take into consideration whether poor performance campaigns that have been optimised throughout the year should be eliminated to free up budget for other campaigns. Competitive metrics should be looked at to identify whether there is any additional traffic that can be captured that will help to grow results for winning campaigns.

Test New Platforms and Features

One of the best PPC practices you should adopt is testing new paid platforms and going beyond your comfort zones. Some advertising platforms you could consider include Pinterest, Snapchat and LinkedIn. You should try new digital advertising tools to get the best performance.

If you are yet to utilise many of the features available to you, you should take time to also test these as you may find one that will benefit your campaign.

Understand Your Audience and Buyers’ Journey

It’s important that you look at the whole picture of the audience that you’re aiming for. In 2021, the most successful PPC marketers will focus on their target audience as part of their strategy. Those advertisers that align their PPC marketing efforts with the journey of the buyer will be ahead of the curve in 2021. This can be achieved through thinking about your customer and their method when deciding to buy from you. Consider the following:

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  • What they might be searching for
  • Where they interact
  • How long the buying process takes

Marketers need to evolve their approach and think about engaging the right audience; two areas that are important for reaching your customers are keywords and images.

Power of First-Party Data

It’s been suggested by industry experts that how data is sourced is about to be disrupted. This has come about due to restrictions to third-party cookies across browsers and changes in global privacy policies. Some specialists have even said that search engines don’t want you to track anything meaningful moving forward. Therefore, it’s important that you are in a position to recover a chunk of your traffic data.

Perfect Ad Messages

In 2021 it will be increasingly more important to articulate your message and it will be more valuable to write good ads, as opposed to bad.

2021 will be the year to have a renewed focus on who your customers are as people, as opposed to just simply data! Having the right person at the right time, but with the wrong message is a completely missed opportunity. What drives that emotional connection and gets someone to engage is down to the creative.

Therefore, skills around ad writing and execution have never been more important.

Mobile Experience Is Important

If brands want to be successful in 2021, then they need to have an accessible site, which will be a huge focus of next year. There are still so many brands that don’t have a website with good mobile experience and so many people have never visited their own site on a mobile device. Therefore, test and review the mobile experience, especially as so many more people use their mobile devices, as opposed to using desktops and this will continue into next year.

Reevaluate How You Report

You may have been using the same performance report for years. Although it may work well, it’s time to reevaluate your key PPC metrics and add that data into your reports. For example, this year Google actually removed the average position metric and now suggests that you use the search top impression rate or the search absolute top impression rate instead. Whether you are using Google Ads or Microsoft Ads, both have overview pages with handy graphs if you need them quickly.

When reevaluating your reports, you should look at whether you are still using the data, if the information is actionable and what new metrics could you add. There is only point of adding new data if it is actionable and will be beneficial when making decisions on the account.


Hopefully, this short guide has given you some insight into what PPC best practices will look like next year and which trends and methods you should continue to implement into 2021.

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