Local PPC: A comprehensive guide to driving local traffic in Ireland

1. Introduction to PPC

Pay-per-click, affectionately known as PPC, isn’t a new kid on the block, but it still packs a mighty punch in the digital marketing ring. It’s a mode of online advertising where the advertiser pays each time a user clicks on one of their online ads. The objective is deceptively simple: get those curious clicks to turn into conversions.

But, as is often the case with seemingly simple things, there’s more to it than meets the eye. The intricacies of PPC, much like a complex jig at a ceilidh, require finesse, rhythm and an understanding of the dance floor – the marketplace in this case.

1.1. What is PPC?

PPC, at its core, is an auction-based system of advertising. You, the advertiser, bid on specific keywords or phrases. If your bid is successful, your ad gets to appear when users search for that keyword. But it’s not all about outbidding rivals. Advertisers also need to ensure their ads are relevant and useful to their intended audience.

There are several platforms where PPC is used, but the most well-known is Google Ads. However, don’t ignore the likes of Bing, Yahoo, and even social media platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn. Each platform has its nuances and appeals to different demographics. Diversifying your PPC strategy to include these other platforms can provide additional avenues of traffic.

To understand PPC’s importance, consider this: PPC ads are one of the few ways to get immediate traffic from searches. Organic SEO strategies are essential, yes, but they take time to bear fruit. PPC lets you jump the queue, but at a price.

1.1.1. Types of PPC

There are several types of PPC, each serving a distinct purpose. The most common are search ads, which appear on search engine results pages (SERPs). These are usually text-based and driven by the searcher’s intent. Display ads, often rich with images or videos, appear on websites, apps or social media through ad networks like Google Display Network.

Then we have shopping ads, which appear in search engine results and display product images, reviews, and prices. Lastly, remarketing ads, or retargeting ads, are a clever way to re-engage users who have previously interacted with your website or app.

1.1.2. Importance of PPC

PPC offers businesses a chance to appear prominently in search results, which can be particularly beneficial for newer businesses lacking SEO clout. It also allows for highly targeted advertising; you can focus your ads based on keywords, location, demographics, device, and even the time of day.

But perhaps most appealing is PPC’s scalability and measurability. With instant results and detailed reporting, businesses can quickly ascertain if their campaigns are working and adjust accordingly. It’s like having a GPS on the winding road of online advertising.

2. The Local Aspect of PPC

As an Irish business owner, you don’t necessarily need to conquer the global market; you might just need to win over Cork, Sligo, or even just Dublin. This is where local PPC comes into play, specifically designed to target potential customers within a specific geographical area. It’s the equivalent of putting a digital sandwich board out on the street of your local town.

But how does local PPC differ from its more broad-ranging sibling? And what benefits can it offer Irish businesses? Let’s take a stroll down the local PPC lane.

2.1. Understanding Local PPC

Local PPC is a location-specific digital marketing strategy designed to drive customers in specific areas to local businesses. By geo-targeting ads, businesses can ensure that they’re not wasting money on clicks from users outside their service areas. It’s a highly efficient way to make sure your marketing euros aren’t used to attract someone in San Francisco when you run a boutique hotel in Galway.

Local PPC ads often include location-specific keywords and ad copy. They may also feature local phone numbers, addresses, or map directions to increase relevance. And while local PPC can include various ad formats, local search ads are the primary focus.

In essence, it’s about making your business more visible to the people who are most likely to walk through your door or use your services, based on their location.

2.1.1. Benefits of Local PPC

Local PPC can be a game-changer for small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs). For one, it allows you to compete with larger companies without trying to outbid them for more competitive, general keywords. Just as a corner shop can’t compete with a supermarket on variety, SMBs often can’t compete on budget. But by targeting locally, you’re picking a fight in a ring where the bigger players might not even be present.

Moreover, local PPC helps increase your brand visibility within your local community. As a result, you can enjoy a higher click-through rate (CTR) and conversion rate (CVR), as local searches have high purchase intent. It’s like hosting a neighbourhood party; the guests are more likely to show up because they’re just around the corner.

2.1.2. Pitfalls of Local PPC

Despite its advantages, local PPC isn’t without its challenges. One of the main pitfalls is incorrect geo-targeting settings. If not set up correctly, your ads may be seen by users outside your targeted location, resulting in wasted ad spend. It’s like casting a fishing net and catching old boots instead of the desired salmon.

Another common pitfall is not using location-specific keywords. Without them, your ads won’t resonate as well with the local audience. It’s akin to trying to sell an Aran jumper to someone in Australia without mentioning its Irish heritage.

3. Implementing a Successful Local PPC Campaign

Knowing the benefits and pitfalls of local PPC is just the beginning. Now comes the crucial part – implementation. This process involves the careful selection of keywords, crafting engaging ads, and optimising your landing pages for conversions. Like a well-prepared Irish stew, it needs the right ingredients, added at the right time, and cooked to perfection.

So, where do we start? Well, every good local PPC campaign starts with understanding the local search landscape and identifying the most effective keywords.

3.1. Keyword Research for Local PPC

Keyword research is the cornerstone of any PPC campaign. It involves identifying the words and phrases your potential customers use when searching for your products or services. For local PPC, you’ll want to identify those keywords with a strong local intent, such as “restaurants in Kinsale” or “Dublin SEO services”.

The beauty of local PPC keywords is that they often have less competition than more general keywords, making it easier for your business to rank highly. Think of it as a smaller, less crowded playing field where you have a better chance of scoring a goal.

But how do you go about finding these local keywords, and what strategies can you use to make the most of them?

3.1.1. Tools for Local Keyword Research

There are a host of tools available to help with local keyword research. Google’s Keyword Planner is a good place to start, offering information on search volumes, competition levels, and even suggested bid estimates for your chosen keywords.

Other useful tools include SEMRush and Moz’s Keyword Explorer, both of which offer features specific to local keyword research. Using these tools can provide the competitive edge needed to discover untapped local keywords. It’s like having a trusted local guide when navigating a new town – invaluable.

3.1.2. Strategies for Local Keyword Research

When it comes to strategies for local keyword research, it’s crucial to think like your customers. What terms might they use when searching for your products or services? Don’t forget to include local landmarks or colloquial terms. After all, a “chipper” in Ireland isn’t looking to cut down trees.

Another useful strategy is to analyse your competitors. What local keywords are they bidding on? Can you identify any gaps in their approach that you could fill? Observing your competitors can be as enlightening as looking through a lighthouse’s lamp – illuminating the way forward in a sea of possibilities.

3.2. Creating Engaging Ads for Local PPC

Once you’ve identified your keywords, it’s time to create engaging ads. Effective PPC ads grab attention, communicate value, and prompt action. But when it comes to local PPC, they need to do all this with a local twist.

For instance, including your location in the ad headline can immediately signal relevance to a local searcher. Similarly, mentioning local events, landmarks, or even regional dialect can help your ad stand out. Imagine seeing “Get your St. Paddy’s Day outfit at our shop on Grafton Street” when looking for festive attire – you’d be hard-pressed to ignore it.

3.2.1. Ad Design Tips for Local PPC

Designing ads for local PPC isn’t just about text; visual components also play a vital role. For instance, using images of local scenes or landmarks in display ads can increase their relevance and appeal. Just as the sight of a pint of Guinness can evoke feelings of home for many an Irish expat, a well-chosen image can draw in your local audience.

Furthermore, remember to use clear, readable fonts and colours that reflect your brand identity. Much like a store’s front window display, your ad’s design is often the first impression potential customers have of your business.

3.2.2. Copywriting Techniques for Local PPC

Copywriting for local PPC requires a mix of persuasive writing and local knowledge. It’s essential to communicate the unique selling points of your business while also resonating with the local culture. Think of it like writing a love letter to your town, but with a commercial twist.

One useful technique is to include a strong call-to-action (CTA) with a local aspect. A CTA like “Visit our Galway store today” or “Call your local Dublin plumber now” can be far more effective than a generic “Visit us” or “Call now”.

3.3. Optimising Landing Pages for Local PPC

When a potential customer clicks on your local PPC ad, where do they end up? On your landing page. Just as you wouldn’t welcome guests into a cluttered room, your landing page must be clear, relevant, and designed with the customer journey in mind.

For local PPC, this also means incorporating local elements. Including local phone numbers, addresses, and even customer testimonials can enhance the local relevance and boost conversions.

3.3.1. Elements of a Successful Local Landing Page

A successful local landing page is more than just a page with your contact information. It needs to convince visitors that you’re the local business they’re looking for. Therefore, highlight your unique selling points, provide proof of your expertise, and use local-specific content to build credibility. Much like a pint of Guinness isn’t just a beer, a good landing page is more than just a webpage.

Other elements of a successful local landing page include clear CTAs, intuitive navigation, and mobile-friendliness. Remember, a significant number of local searches happen on mobile devices. Ignoring this audience is like refusing to serve half your customers – not exactly a strategy for success.

3.3.2. Conversion Rate Optimisation for Local PPC

Conversion rate optimisation (CRO) is all about turning more of your website visitors into customers. This includes techniques like A/B testing, where you compare two versions of a page to see which performs better, or using heatmaps to understand how users interact with your page.

For local PPC, CRO might also involve experimenting with local-specific content or offers. For instance, could a discount for local customers increase conversions? Or would displaying customer reviews from local residents build trust and drive more sales? Much like finding the perfect recipe for Irish soda bread, it often requires some testing and tweaking.

4. Conclusion: Driving Local Traffic with PPC

In the digital age, the old saying “all politics is local” could well be rewritten as “all business is local”. Local PPC is a powerful tool for Irish businesses to attract more local customers, compete with larger companies, and strengthen their local brand presence. But like any tool, it requires skill and knowledge to use effectively.

This is where Kinsale SEO comes in. As the leading SEO company in Ireland, we specialise in helping businesses like yours harness the power of local PPC. With our expertise in keyword research, ad creation, and landing page optimisation, we can help you turn local searchers into local customers. Don’t just take our word for it – check out our testimonials from businesses all over Ireland who have grown with our help.


  1. What is local PPC?
    Local PPC is a location-specific digital marketing strategy designed to drive customers in specific areas to local businesses.
  2. Why is local PPC important for Irish businesses?
    Local PPC allows Irish businesses to compete with larger companies on a local level, targeting potential customers within their specific service areas.
  3. How do I find local keywords for my PPC campaign?
    Keyword research tools like Google’s Keyword Planner, SEMRush, and Moz’s Keyword Explorer can help you identify relevant local keywords.
  4. What makes a successful local PPC ad?
    A successful local PPC ad grabs attention, communicates value, prompts action, and includes local-specific elements such as location-specific keywords or local phone numbers.
  5. How can I optimise my landing page for local PPC?
    Incorporate local elements like local contact information and customer testimonials, ensure your page is mobile-friendly, and use conversion rate optimisation techniques to turn more visitors into customers.
  6. How can Kinsale SEO help with my local PPC campaign?
    Kinsale SEO can help with all aspects of your local PPC campaign, from keyword research and ad creation to landing page optimisation and conversion rate optimisation, helping you attract and convert more local customers.

About the author

Casey Meraz is the Founder of Kinsale SEO, Juris Digital, Solicitor Digital and Ethical SEO Consulting. He has been helping companies thrive online through effective organic SEO and Local SEO programs.

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