PPC For Casinos & iGaming Businesses - Top 5 PPC Tips For Succeeding With Your Strategy

Karolis Pipiras

This is a blog post that talks about 5 tips for succeeding with your PPC strategy. It goes in-depth into how to build an effective PPC campaign and the best practices for running it.

Pay-per-click advertising is a type of online marketing that allows you to gain traffic by placing ads on search engines such as Google and Bing.

There are various networks, like Google Ads (Formerly Google Adwords), Microsoft Advertising (Formerly Bing Ads), Facebook Ads, Apple Search Ads, etc, where you can post your ads.

These networks allow very granular targeting of your potential customers.

One major benefit of this form of advertisement is that it’s extremely measurable with the correct conversion tracking setup.

This means you know exactly how many people have clicked or interacted with your ads and how many people made the first deposit on your site, so you know what’s working (and what isn’t).

1. Choose the right keywords 

When creating your Google Ads campaign, it's important to choose the right keywords.

This is what will determine which people see your ad and how much you'll pay for each click.

Some keywords are way more expensive than others, especially those ones that are "high intent" like "Bet on Premier League" , "Best casino sites" or "Betting sites", that can get up to £50 per click or more.

Typically we would suggest going for keyword themes/categories, as an example our account would use these:

  • Brand keywords, to protect your brand traffic. e.g.: Unibet, Ladbrokes, William Hill, etc.
  • Generic keywords, to capture a broad spectrum of searches. e.g. betting, online casino, betting bonus, etc.
  • Sports/Game specific keywords, to target more specific searches. e.g. Football betting, online blackjack, play poker online, NBA betting, etc.
  • Competitor keywords, to "steal" the traffic from your competitors. Unfortunately in this industry this strategy is very common and it inflates the CPCs for all the parties involved.
  • Long tail keywords. e.g. "Best paypal online casinos", "play bonanza slots online", etc.

Use Google Ads keyword planner tool to research and discover new potential keywords that you can target and get the volumes and CPCs of these keywords.

Also avoid using broad keyword match type as it might bring you irrelevant traffic and can inflate your cost and CPAs.

2. Create compelling ad copy

What you need is an ad that'll capture your potential customer's attention, intrigue them, and convince them to register at your site instead of your competitor.

The more specific ad copy you create for the keywords that you use, the better CTR (Click trough rate) you will have. For example if someone is searching for placing a bet on Manchester United, but your ad copy says "Bet on West Brom" or simply "Bet online with [company]", people are less likely to click on your ad.

Good and relevant ad copy will also increase your keyword quality score, which will lead to cheaper CPCs and appearing in more auctions.

Google's best practice for ads is to have 2 ETAs (Expanded text ads) and 1 RSA (Responsive search ads).

When using ETAs, it's suggested to have your acquisition offer and keywords in the headline 1 and 2, use headline 3 for your another USP, as headline 3 sometimes doesn't appear in the ads.

When using RSAs, try to use all 15 headlines and 4 descriptions, make them as unique as possible to get a "Good" or "Excellent" ad strength.

Very important is to use CTA (Call to action) in your ad, as an example "Get Up To £50 Casino Bonus", "Register With [Company]", "Claim Your £20 Free Bets", etc. Of course it's important not to mislead customers, if you have qualifiers, such as deposit x amount or bet x amount, you should mention it there as well, e.g. "Bet £5 Get £20 Bonus"

Also when creating ads make sure that they adhere to all responsible gambling rules and follow safer gambling advertising standards.

As an example in UK these rules apply when advertising gambling activities (Taken from ASA/CAP)

Marketing communications must not:
Portray, condone or encourage gambling behaviour that is socially irresponsible or could lead to financial, social or emotional harm
Exploit the susceptibilities, aspirations, credulity, inexperience or lack of knowledge of children, young persons or other vulnerable persons
Suggest that gambling can provide an escape from personal, professional or educational problems such as loneliness or depression
Suggest that gambling can be a solution to financial concerns, an alternative to employment or a way to achieve financial security
Portray gambling as indispensable or as taking priority in life; for example, over family, friends or professional or educational commitments
Suggest that gambling can enhance personal qualities, for example, that it can improve self-image or self-esteem, or is a way to gain control, superiority, recognition or admiration
Suggest peer pressure to gamble nor disparage abstention
Link gambling to seduction, sexual success or enhanced attractiveness
Portray gambling in a context of toughness or link it to resilience or recklessness
Suggest gambling is a rite of passage
Suggest that solitary gambling is preferable to social gambling
Be likely to be of particular appeal to children or young persons, especially by reflecting or being associated with youth culture
Be directed at those aged below 18 years (or 16 years for football pools, equal-chance gaming [under a prize gaming permit or at a licensed family entertainment centre], prize gaming [at a non-licensed family entertainment centre or at a travelling fair] or Category D gaming machines) through the selection of media or context in which they appear
Include a child or a young person. No-one who is, or seems to be, under 25 years old may be featured gambling or playing a significant role. No-one may behave in an adolescent, juvenile or loutish way.
Individuals who are, or seem to be under 25 years old (18-24 years old) may be featured playing a significant role only in marketing communications that appear in a place where a bet can be placed directly through a transactional facility, for instance, a gambling operator's own website. The individual may only be used to illustrate specific betting selections where that individual is the subject of the bet offered. The image or other depiction used must show them in the context of the bet and not in a gambling context.
Exploit cultural beliefs or traditions about gambling or luck
Condone or encourage criminal or anti-social behaviour
Condone or feature gambling in a working environment. An exception exists for licensed gambling premises.

3. Optimize your landing page for conversions 

For people to register with your company, you must optimize your landing page properly.

This means that you should have an enticing headline, a strong value proposition, and make it easy for people to register and deposit.

You should also make sure that the most important information is visible above the fold like your offer "Up to £500 Matched Deposit Bonus", and have a clear CTA (Call to action) like "Join Now", "Register Now", etc.

One of the most important features to any business website today is making sure that it loads quickly and has been designed with mobile browsers in mind, many of the big operators are creating mobile-first sites, and leaving the desktop a little bit behind.

The reason for this being so important is because people are accessing websites more often from their phones than they are from larger desktop screens which can make navigating an already-crowded page even more cumbersome than it needs to be.

We recommend you test your site on mobile devices too, and if it's not responsive to smaller screens then maybe contact a web designer or developer to help update the code.

Use Google Lighthouse audit for both desktop and mobile to get the site the best possible score in terms of performance, usability, accessibility, and SEO.

4. Test, test, and retest! 

Testing and optimizing your campaigns will ultimately determine the success of it.

By doing A/B testing and analyzing data from various sources can help you get a better picture of what's working and what's not in your PPC campaigns.

It's important to create a thorough plan, create a hypothesis, setup Google Data Studio dashboard to track the test and let the test running for at least 30 days without touching it.

Few test examples

  • Ad copy test to see which ad makes customers to click on more. KPI: CTR
  • Creative assets (Image/Video) test to see which asset makes people to click on your ad. KPI: CTR
  • Landing page test to see which landing page makes customers to register and deposit more. KPI: Click to registration %, FTDs
  • Bid strategy test to see what bid strategies deliver better overall results. KPI: FTDs

Don't just wing it, let the data show you what is working

5. Don't forget to optimize your bids

There are many bid strategies available in Google ads or any other ad platform.

When using the Manual CPC strategy most of your time will be spend adjusting bids, which can be very time-consuming, but you are more in control of what you spend.

You want to find a sweet spot where your ads appear, when Google removed the average position metric, they left top impression share % and absolute top impression share % to determine your position in the auction/SERP.

The top impression share % is how many times your ad appeared on the first page in any position, depending on the ad depth.

Absolute top impression share % is how many times your ad appeared in the first position.

What you would like to aim is to get almost 100% top impr share, and a low absolute top impr share somewhere around 10%.

The higher top impr share percentage you have, the more you will pay, so you have to find an optimal bid for an optimal position where you don't spend too much and get conversions at the same time.

Use keyword research tools like or Google's Keyword Planner Tool to find out how much your competitors are paying and what terms they are focusing on. With this information, you can adjust your bids to fit in with the competition and get more exposure!

Using an automatic bid strategy can be expensive in the beginning as the algorithm needs to learn and you need a good account structure, to begin with, but then you don't need to worry about the bids and appear on auctions that are likely to convert.

Bonus Tip: Utilise negative keyword lists

Negative keyword list can be a very good way to prevent certain keywords from appearing in your search queries, especially keywords that might have compliance issues like "gambling problems", "betting under 18", etc.

Try to use broad words like "problem", "addiction", etc, not to be very granular like "betting addiction", as it will catch more potential unwanted queries.

Also good keywords to exclude are adult or porn keywords, as probably you don't want to appear with these keywords.

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P.s. We don't deal with blackhat campaigns or "grey" markets

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