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How to Tell an Edinburgh PPC Expert from an Amateur



As a business owner in Edinburgh it can be difficult to assess if your PPC expert is doing a good job for your business. Ultimately they should be judged on your Google ads producing results and in most cases this would be sales, leads and telephone calls.

With 20% of businesses using an agency to manage their PPC,  creating this article will help you to identify if your PPC company is doing the best  job for you, or not!

When businesses were asked what they felt were the most important technology agencies that they were using for marketing, 41% responded that search agencies where the most important.

The tips below will help you to identify if your agency is doing it right and also give you some questions to ask a new agency.

They asked you about your cost per acquisition

This is a very important question that they need to ask you as this will determine if your campaign is successful or not.

This is basically how much you can afford to pay for each lead or sale.

This number can then be used to work out your maximum cost per click.

Without this number your PPC expert is working in the dark.

For more information on calculating what your cost per acquisition is, please read the ultimate guide to Google Adwords

They asked you to put conversion tracking on your website

When it comes to measuring and optimising your PPC campaign, you need to have the conversion code on your website.

This conversion code, that your PPC company should supply you with, will go on your conversion pages.

What are conversion pages?

A conversion page, or thank you page, is a page on your website that would indicate that someone has performed a desired action.

These are usually order confirmation pages, ebook download thank you pages, contact us thank you pages and even a newsletter sign up page.

It is up to you to tell the PPC agency what a conversion is and they will then optimise your campaign to receive as many of these conversions as possible.

You can’t improve on what you don’t track and your agency should be optimising your PPC campaign for a few things:

  • Reduce cost per lead/sale
  • Increase in conversion rate

To do this they also need to improve:

  • Click through rates of your ads
  • Quality score

They offer a flat fee Plan

This can sometimes be a subject for much debate as a lot of PPC agencies charge by a percentage of your ad spend.

Take a look at the table below.

Ad Spend % of spend Agency Fees Total Fees












Taking a look at agency fees in the above example.  We can see the company that has an ad spend of £1,000 (which is a lot of money for a small business in Edinburgh) is only paying £100 agency fees.

At first glance this may seem like a great deal but what you have to think about is how much work will this actually mean?

Most agencies charge anything up to £100 per hour so I would question how much time and commitment they are willing to make to the success of your campaign.

This payment method can also create friction as agencies do recommend after time you raise your ad spend.

Are they just saying this to increase their profits or is it to best benefit your campaign?

If you have a great relationship with your agency, built over time and on trust, then this question will not be an issue.

This is why I would recommend you always have a fixed rate that will be outlined in your contract and proposal.

This great article goes into more detail about the benefits of fix rate pricing.

They focus on increasing conversions

You would think this one was a no brainier and for most great agencies it is.

However, if your agency just talks about increased click through rates and impressions rather than conversions this may be a cause for concern.

It is true that at the start of your campaign you may not see many conversions coming in so they will need to optimise your campaign for quality score and click through rates.

Again if you have a good relationship with your agency they will be totally transparent in what they do and detail to you what they are doing and why.

Have they set S.M.A.R.T. goals?

Setting S.M.A.R.T. goals is a very important aspect to a successful PPC campaign.

If your agency has not discussed this and set this out at the start, then now is the time to do it.

S.M.A.R.T goals stand for:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Time bound

An example of a good S.M.A.R.T. goal – The agency will get you 50 holiday bookings for your Florida resort within 6 months and they will use conversion tracking and Google Analytics to measure the success of the campaign.

Creating such goals will ensure everyone knows what is to be achieved with the campaign and helps to keep people motivated.


With PPC management not being your area of expertise (this is the reason you hired an agency in the first place) you need to know if your PPC company is doing a good job.

Make sure they know your cost per acquisition so your budget doesn’t get out of control.

Make sure they have the conversion code on your website to track the success of the campaign.  Try to get them to agree to a flat fee so everyone knows what they are paying every month.

They should have regular meetings with you to discuss how the campaign is progressing and they should demonstrate that they are focused on increasing conversions.

And finally make sure you and the agency have defined some S.M.A.R.T goals.

If you are still concerned about how much work they are doing, you can always go into your Google AdWords account and check.

Just click on Tools and Analysis and then change history and you will be able to see all account activity.

Are you a business in Edinburgh? What are the biggest challenges you face with your PPC expert?

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

What’s your goal today?

1. Hire us to grow your store

We’ve generated millions in profits for our clients using our unique ATTRACT, CONVERT, RETAIN strategy, that’s proven to increase profits and customers.

2. Learn how to increase your profits and customers

What’s your goal today?

1.Hire us to grow your store

We’ve generated millions in profits for our clients using our unique ATTRACT, CONVERT, RETAIN strategy, that’s proven to increase profits and customers.

2. Learn how to increase your profits and customers