Q4Launch Experience: PPC Advertising Made Easy

September 4, 2020

Paid search is one of the most successful and lucrative advertising channels your businesses will ever use! Targeting specific keywords with paid ads on Google is also known as pay-per-click (PPC) or search engine marketing (SEM). But no matter what you call it, you’ll quickly realize that it’s tougher to design a solid paid-search strategy than it seems on the surface. Google leads many small businesses to believe that achieving a return on ad spend is as simple as setting up an account. What the fine print doesn’t say is that Google Ads is a complicated business. Luckily, our team of PPC experts at Q4Launch is here to help. Continue reading below to find out how we help our clients drive ROI with their PPC ads!

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How Q4Launch Helps Deliver ROI With Paid Search

An amateur campaign setup might deliver around 200% return on ad spend (ROAS), but your business can see as much as 1000-2000% with expert PPC management!  Q4Launch PPC customers are in this ultra-high ROAS group. In fact, for July and August 2020 the average Return on Ad Spend in PPC for Q4L customers was over 20 times the spend. In other words, we turned every $100 invested in pay-per-click advertising by Q4Launch clientele into $2,000 in booking revenue. 

How We Do it

We’re often asked how we achieve these awesome results. The answer is that PPC performance rewards customers who know the system inside and out. You’ll want a PPC manager who knows the secret settings and has experience working in your business sector – the hospitality and tourism industry, in our case. 

Below are a handful of the areas in which our expertise helps each and every Q4Launch PPC customer achieve such amazing results.

Keyword Targeting

PPC was called AdWords for many years because the primary targeting technique is to have the right keywords. Q4Launch employs a proprietary method of campaign setup and development to create the best keyword lists possible. “vacation rentals Hilton Head” as a general search keyword, for instance, would actually become about 600 Q4Launch keywords.

Different variations, word orders, and specific additions help make sure our customers get the top spot on search results for high-value, industry-specific keywords. Continuing with the above example, additions to this search might include a specific neighborhood, like “Sea Pines Hilton Head rentals.” More specific keywords are sought after by fewer bidders, which lets us buy clicks more efficiently and target the right audience. 

Additionally, features like the number of bedrooms, type of view, and proximity to the beach round out the list of ultra-specific PPC keywords that add to our success at delivering revenue from paid search. In addition to clicks being cheaper for these specific searches, it also indicates a user is further along in their vacation rental search. Being lower in the sales funnel increases the likelihood of booking at that moment – priming the pump and delivering massive booking totals.

Negative Keywords

Negative Keyword Examples for PPC AdsDirectly behind the targeted keywords would be the negative keywords that block our ads from coming up. If a typical keyword list is around 5,000 unique options, then the negative keyword list employed is around 20,000 – and growing. We’ll actively block searches that we can see in the data are irrelevant to our customer’s offerings. At the most basic level, these are words like “Chevy” or “SUV” for a customer with rental properties in Lake Tahoe. 

But it gets much more specific than this – and saves budget by not wasting dollars on irrelevant traffic. You might think someone searching for Chevrolet Tahoe will not click on a vacation rental ad because it’s obviously not what they’re looking for. You would be wrong, however. Google users will click ads that are wildly different from what they searched for. It’s only after they land on your site and see no SUVs that they realize their mistake. But you still have to pay for those junk clicks. It’s for this reason that our extensive negative keyword lists single-handedly boost Q4L PPC customer ROAS by around 30% or more. More budget for truly relevant clicks means better revenue for every dollar spent.

Optimized Targeting Bid Adjustment

Keyword lists and specific keywords have bids attached. You can specify that you’ll pay 50 cents for a click on “Biloxi Beach Oceanfront Condos” in the USA, and that can be the end of it. Q4Launch PPC goes significantly deeper with proprietary bid adjustments based on dozens of factors:

  • Geographic area: how likely are folks from this zip code, city, county, state, or region to book a vacation rental based on the data? If the searcher is somewhere that has a huge market for Biloxi condo bookings, then we’d boost the bid to 75 cents.
  • Devices: mobile devices make up more than 2/3 of searches in 2020. But the reality is that these mobile searches result in far fewer bookings, far shorter site visits, and are generally worthless. 

When booking different types of lodging, there are distinct patterns we apply to ensure our spending by device matches how much revenue we’re generating from that device. Diving into the data allows campaign-level adjustments to precisely land on the most efficient mix of devices on which our customer’s ads will show.

Ad Schedules: Time of Day and Day of Week

A couple of rookie mistakes in PPC are keywords that are too broad in scope and thoughtless ad scheduling. The end result for these accounts is that they spend their entire daily budget from midnight to about 12:45 a.m. Then the ads turn off and stop showing until the next day at midnight when a new daily budget is available. This is a surefire way to waste your spending.

Tailoring when our ads show by the time of day and day of the week is critical. Data and analytics tell us when bookings are happening and on what day. Analysis of these trends lets us maximize value by boosting that 75 cent bid for a click at 4 p.m. up to a dollar. Thus, we show more ads when the bids are higher.


We make adjustments by age, gender, household income, education, marital status, kids in the house, age of those kids, homeownership status, interest areas, upcoming travel plans, and much more. When we find our bullseye target in the data, we can make our ads ultra prominent for this group of people and stop showing ads to folks who have not delivered revenue in the past.


PPC Ad Examples

What if a user searches for a “Gulf front condo in Destin,” lands on our site, views dozens of listings, but then leaves the site without booking? They’re not gone forever. The next time that individual user searches for any of our keywords, we can be ready and waiting. Our example bid might go up to $1.50 for their next click because they’re closer to booking and lower in the sales funnel.

We also remarket with specific listings to show display ads to users who show interest in certain houses – putting the house they liked into a display ad to encourage them to come back and book. 

Additionally, Q4L PPC delivers repeat customers by being ready the next year when a user is booking their trip. We know they booked with us in the past and might bid $3 for a click on previous guests.

Negative Remarketing

Knowing if a user has visited our customer’s website is a powerful tool in search. We want the user to come back and book, of course. But what about when they have already booked? These folks are still likely to search for directions, details on check-in, questions, and more as the trip approaches or during their stay. Q4L PPC researches booking windows and lead times to travel for each account to stop showing ads to folks who have made a booking in the last 60 days, for example. We still want them to have a great trip and get the info they need – but want to exclude them from seeing ads so we can focus on paying for other bookings.

What Can You Do to Maximize Your ROI for Paid Search?

This is just the tip of the iceberg for optimized, expert PPC programs. Over time and with more data, every program will continue increasing inefficiency and ROAS. Q4Launch’s fully managed PPC programs take all these concerns and worries off of our customer’s plate. We deliver exceptional results for every geo area and type of travel with a unique combination of research and strategy. Our data analytics, proprietary tools, broad experience, and PPC expertise has delivered ROAS for our clients for over 10 years.

In July 2020, several of our clients were completely sold out during one of the worst dips in travel spend in the last decade. Our PPC reports also show over 100 times return on ad spend. If you’re ready to take your PPC strategy to the next level and start filling up your rooms, reach out to our team today for a PPC consultation and ads analysis! 
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