Paid search is an incredibly effective tool for driving business growth. Search plays a critical role in the consumer decision journey, which has evolved over the years. Today, consumers have instant access to more information than ever through blogs, social media, forums, YouTube, and other channels. Consumers have come to rely on search to discover and compare products and services, scour recommendations, and scout deals and offers.

In fact, according to research from SimilarWeb, around 39% of worldwide e-commerce traffic is referred by search. But as a small business, it can be difficult to appear on first-page results through organic search alone.

Thankfully paid search can be a cost-effective and efficient strategy for small businesses. And you don’t need a marketing expert to reap the benefits. Here’s how paid search can help your business drive revenue.

Build Brand Awareness

Paid search — also known as pay-per-click (PPC) advertising — is an excellent way to help you increase a consumer’s ability to recall your product or business. In fact, it’s a key strategy for marketers. According to an internal Bing Ads ROI study, 60% of brands leverage paid search to boost brand awareness and 61% use paid search to improve brand perception and purchase intent.

Furthermore, when consumers begin their decision journey, 72% of the time they are using a non-brand or conquest term when they search. Consumers are less likely to go with a brand they’ve never heard of. Through paid search, you can increase the chances that your brand appears in their results, thus increasing their familiarity with your brand and the likelihood that they will eventually choose your brand over your competitor.

Target the Right Audience

One of the huge benefits of paid search is the robust set of tools that enable you to serve up personalized, relevant experiences the moment consumers are searching — no matter where they are in the customer decision journey.

Tools like keyword targeting enable you to select the specific keywords that you think will align well with users’ searches. Audience targeting allows you to pinpoint the consumers most likely to purchase from you. These tools position you to capture the attention of your intended audience and increase the impact of your marketing investment.

Amplify Other Marketing Investments

Speaking of marketing investments, search marketing is a great way to heighten the impact of your other marketing endeavors. Bing Ads recently demonstrated this in a study with Pepperjam, where they determined that conversion rates of search and social resulted in a 14% higher average order value than social alone.

And what about organic search? If you’re investing in SEO, paid search can increase the impact of those investments as well. When display ads appear with organic search results, studies show that it can increase the total number of clicks, by 31% according to this retail study.

Paid search marketing is a simple and cost-effective way to meet your sales goals. For more insights and strategies, be sure to review The Growth Marketer’s Guide to Search.