How Do I Choose A Good PPC Agency?

Mackenzie | July 27, 2021 | Evenbound

So you're looking for a PPC agency. Whether you've never run digital ads before or you're contemplating breaking up with your current provider, choosing a good PPC agency takes a bit of work. It's a technical service, so there's a lot to know, and it's also a marketing service that's super budget-focused, so there's money to worry about. There's a lot to consider, and if you're not a PPC expert, it can be tough to judge who's actually great at their job, and who's just telling you they are.

New call-to-action

If you're wondering, "how do I choose a good PPC agency?" the Evenbound team is here to help. We work with clients every day who use our PPC and paid media services, as well as clients who use us for inbound marketing and someone else for PPC. That means we've seen the good, the bad, and the ugly, and we can help you figure out what's what. Here are 7 key qualities to look for in a good PPC agency:

01. They Have Partnerships with the Ad Platforms You Care About

When we talk about paid media, we're talking about anything from Google and Microsoft ads to social media advertising on platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn. Regardless of what kind of paid media services you're looking for, a good PPC agency is one that is certified in and partnered with the platforms you're most interested in.

Why do ad platform partnerships matter?

While there are a number of options out there, the big three partnerships for a PPC agency are:

  • Google Partner
  • Microsoft Partner
  • Facebook Partner

PPC agency partners_google partner_facebook partner_microsoftThere are different tier levels for each of these partnerships, but any good PPC agency will have some sort of partnership with at least those three, if not more. These partnership certifications are more than just a badge that signals a good PPC agency.

PPC agency partnerships also deliver some significant benefits, like:

  • Skipping the support line. If you ever have an issue with your ads, a PPC agency that is a Google, Microsoft, or Facebook partner has a representative they can contact directly to immediately address problems, rather than having to wait to resolve a support ticket. 

  • Trained & certified pros. These partnerships show that this PPC agency has taken and passed extensive platform-specific training programs. For you, that means the people building and managing your campaigns know exactly what they're doing, and can deliver the results you're looking for. 

  • Serious results. For most of these partnerships, partners must meet or exceed certain performance requirements to maintain their status. PPC agencies with these partnerships have delivered serious results for their clients, and continue to do so to maintain that partner status. 

02. They Get Your Goals (And Make Sure You've Set Them)

I don't care who you are or what you do, you can't have an effective PPC strategy if you don't have goals. There are SO MANY ways to run paid media ads — display ads, pay-per-click ads, social media ads, remarketing ads, the list goes on and on. To decide how best to spend your money for the greatest ROI, you need to have set goals.

So, when you're interviewing PPC agencies, pay attention to the questions they ask and the advice they give you right off the bat. Have they asked you what you're looking for?

A good PPC agency will want to know what your goals are for your paid media campaigns, be it:

  • Clicks
  • Impressions
  • First-page presence
  • Brand awareness
  • Etc.

And they'll want to know your goals before they start offering solutions. If a PPC agency asks you what your goals are for your paid media strategy, and you don't have a great answer, a good agency will put it back on you to decide what you want before they start telling you how best to build those ads. 

New call-to-action

03. They're Big on Data

Amidst a range of marketing and advertising tactics — from content marketing to website optimization — paid media can feel a bit more high stakes. Why? Everything you test and try costs money. And you immediately see those dollars come out of your bank account in a way you don't when you start blogging or emailing.

That's why it's so important to look for a PPC agency that uses data to inform their decisions. Good PPC agencies look at a whole host of metrics before they build out your campaigns.

A good PPC agency will inspect:

  • Your keywords. Which of those keywords make the most sense for your paid campaigns? How do the bid prices for those keywords stack up?
  • Your industry. What are your competitors doing? How much are they spending and what results are they seeing from those efforts?
  • Your current campaigns. If you have paid media campaigns running, a good PPC agency will take a look at how they're performing, and make recommendations for improvement based on your historical data.
  • Future campaigns. In addition to looking at historical data, good PPC agencies are always working to gather and use data to inform future campaigns. They test your existing campaigns, work to improve copy and landing pages, and are looking for the data that shows them how they can build better campaigns for you in the future.

Any PPC agency you interview is going to tell you how much of a difference they can make for you. A good PPC agency will show you exactly what changes they plan to make, and what data they used to arrive at that conclusion.

When you're interviewing PPC agencies, ask:

  • What kind of tools they use
  • What kind of testing they do to improve ads over time
  • What data, stats, and information is most important for them
  • How they arrived at the recommendations they're showing you

When you're talking to a great PPC agency, it'll be pretty obvious by the numbers, charts, and examples they use that they're big into data. But asking the questions above can help you get a better feel for how they plan to use that data to manage your paid media campaigns.

04. They're Familiar with Your Industry

There are plenty of marketing tactics that don't require a ton of industry experience. Paid media isn't one of them. When you're trying to figure out how to choose a good PPC agency, look for someone who has worked in your industry. If you manufacture bolts, you don't need to find an agency that only advertises for bolt manufacturers, but you should look for agencies that regularly work in the manufacturing industry and who understand how to advertise highly technical B2B products.

PPC agencies with experience in your industry offer a few benefits:

  • They already know how to talk to audiences like yours
  • They have plenty of information and data on the advertising platforms that work best for you. Example: These Google Ad Benchmarks By Industry our PPC Team put together.
  • They have industry-specific data they can use to judge how well your campaigns are performing

Choosing a good PPC agency means more than just choosing someone who knows how to set up ads. Finding an agency you can trust who has worked with clients in your industry can provide a wealth of benefits that typically translates to better results, faster. They'll have plenty of examples of how certain campaigns have performed for clients like you in the past, and they'll have a wealth of knowledge on how and where your company is likely to see the best results.

05. They Bring a Big-Picture Approach to PPC & Paid Media

Paid media services are an important marketing tactic, but they don't exist in a vacuum. A good PPC agency recognizes that paid media is just one (very important) component of your entire marketing plan.

For example, did you know that your Google Ad campaigns are more likely to gain first-position placement when your website is already ranking well in organic search results? A good PPC agency does.

There's only so much an exceptional paid media campaign can do for you. If you don't have a kick-ass landing page and an optimized website, the leads you're pulling in from your campaign are likely to bounce right off. That's why a good PPC agency will offer suggestions beyond just which keywords to bid on and how much you should be spending on social media ads.

A good PPC agency will want to know what your goals are for your paid media campaigns, be it:

  • Make suggestions on the pages your ads bring leads to (aka landing pages)
  • Work to develop ad campaigns that fit well into the rest of your inbound and outbound marketing strategies. For example, if you're heading to a tradeshow, maybe they have plans to help you drive relevant leads to your booth.
  • Ask about your bigger marketing and sales priorities. A PPC agency that asks about and understands your big-picture goals is an agency that can work with you to achieve them.

06. They're Upfront About Pricing

There are a lot of things your company wants to invest in that are hard to put a number on. You might not know exactly how much you'll need to spend on a website until you start building it. You might not know exactly how much a content manager will cost you, or how much you'll spend over the year on trade shows.

You should know how much your paid media services will cost. A good PPC agency is great with numbers. As we've already discussed, they're confident working with data and they have historical data on how much companies in your industry spend on advertising. That means they have the information they need to be upfront about how much a PPC campaign that can meet your goals will cost.

How much does a good PPC agency cost?

The cost of a PPC agency's services breaks down into a few key expenses. While every agency is different, the big numbers to look for and ask about are:

Onboarding & campaign audit costs
Essentially, how much it will take for this new agency to poke around in your existing ad campaigns, audit them, and develop a solid plan for the next steps that bring you closer to your paid media goals.

Ad costs
This is the cost of running the ads themselves. No matter what platform you're running ads on — Google, Microsoft, Facebook, etc — it costs money to run those ads. A good PPC agency will be very upfront about what they'd like you to spend, and what you're likely to get out of that spend.

(Pro tip: Paid media strategists know that every company has a different budget. Many quality PPC agencies will offer pricing options in a good, better, best format that helps you understand what results you'll see for the money you put in, and how they can help you maximize that PPC budget.)

Ad campaign development & management costs
This is the money the agency actually gets for putting together, managing, and running those ads for your company. It's important to remember that campaign development & management costs are separate from ad costs. Your ad spend is going directly to Google, Facebook, and more, while your development and management costs go to the people who create and manage those ads.

In short, there's a lot of money floating around when it comes to paid media. You want your PPC agency to be upfront about how much they'll need to achieve your goals, and where exactly all of that money goes.

07. They're Dedicated to Transparent Reporting

The last (and maybe most important?) thing to look for when choosing a good PPC agency is transparent reporting. This team will be in charge of your paid media campaigns, after all. They should be pretty upfront about where your money is going, and what it's doing. A good PPC agency will give you all the access, information, and analysis you could ever want (and possibly even more than you can handle!).

To discover how transparent the PPC agency you're interviewing is, these questions can help:

  • How do you communicate campaign results?
  • Will I have access to my own campaign reporting?
  • What happens if we have a bad month and our ads don't deliver leads?
  • How often will you update me on the progress and results of my campaigns?

In general, most PPC agencies want campaigns to gather enough data to be statistically significant before they report on results, but once your campaigns are rolling, you should expect monthly reporting.

If you don't care too much about the numbers behind your paid media campaigns (as long as they're delivering results), that's great, but you should still seek a PPC agency that is happy to share results, analyze performance, and offer options for continuous improvement. Any agency that doesn't let you see how your own ads are performing is one you should run from.

Take the Time to Choose a Good PPC Agency

Finding, interviewing, and hiring a good PPC agency can feel like a long, arduous process, but putting in the effort now will pay off in dividends later. If we could offer just one tip to anyone looking for a good PPC agency, it would be to really do your research to make sure that this agency is one you want to work with for a while.

Once you've put in the work and found an agency you like, make sure you're keeping up with them! The longer you work together, the more historical data you'll collect, and the more refined and optimized your ads can become. That's why it's so worth it to find a good PPC agency and work together to tackle the hard work upfront. With a solid partnership, you'll start to see the results you've been looking for in no time.

Questions About Choosing A PPC Agency?

If you have more questions about choosing a PPC agency or if you're not sure your PPC ads are performing the way they should, schedule a free consultation with our Director of Paid Media, Spencer! He'll walk through your existing campaigns, let you know where you're doing well, and offer a few suggestions for improvement as well.


Not ready to talk to a real person? No worries! The checklist below is an amazing resource to help you optimize your PPC ads (no human interaction required!).

New call-to-action

Related Articles

Got Big Growth Goals for Your Company? We're Here for That!

Serious Results. Serious Fun.

At Evenbound, we're all about helping our clients grow. We use inbound and outbound marketing strategies to deliver you the qualified traffic and leads you need for serious growth. And we have a lot of fun doing it.


(616) 215-0626
41 Washington Ave. #390
Grand Haven, MI 49417

Privacy Policy

Stay Connected

Join the Evenbound Community! Get updates on recent Evenbound news.