S.W.O.T. Analysis of Your PPC Advertising Strategy

May 16, 2013

This is the third post in a series entitled: “5 Analysis Tools: A Conceptual Look at PPC.” This series will focus on utilizing these five tools to help you develop a strong paid online advertising strategy.

Pay-Per-Click S.W.O.T. Analysis

The S.W.O.T. analysis is a great tool is to evaluate the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats of your PPC advertising (as well as your overall marketing and business objectives). In general use, it groups information into two categories: internal and external factors (Wikipedia).

The Strengths and Weaknesses categories are groupings of internal factors while the Threats and Opportunities categories are groupings of external factors.

To get the most out of this tool, identify a desired objective you would like to reach or are currently working towards. Then use S.W.O.T. to identify factors to help you build a road map to achieve this desired goal.

You might want to have a pen and paper handy, or your favorite note taking device or program.

PPC Analysis: Internal Factors


Think about your strengths and advantages (and the strengths and advantages of your organization). These could include your knowledge of your industry or how well you know your target market (what makes them tick).

These advantages or strengths could also include your knowledge and prowess in managing your PPC account(s), or the resources you have access to.

It’s useful to consider your strengths from an internal perspective, and through the lens of your customers and peers in your industry (Mindtools). What strengths or advantages do these people say you have?


In identifying your weaknesses it’s important to be realistic. Sometimes it’s easy build up our strengths and forget to realize our weak points. It can also be easy to bring down the hammer and over inflate these weaknesses to a point that they become debilitating.

Think and take note of your weaknesses (or the weakness of your organization or PPC advertising strategy). Think about what’s lacking or what could be improved.

Are your ads lacking compelling content? Do you really know who your target market is? Are CTRs high yet the traffic isn’t converting? (This could be an indication that your landing page(s) need some work).

PPC Analysis: External Factors


What trends can you take advantage of? Based on what you’ve learned from using the P.E.S.T. analysis and Porter’s Five Forces tools, what opportunities are out there?

Using the strengths and advantages you’ve identified what opportunities can you take advantage of?


What threats are out there? Again it would be beneficial to take what you’ve learned from the previous tools we’ve discussed to help you identify possible pitfalls.

Are the barriers to entry in your industry or market very low? Is competition on the keywords you’re targeting increasing? Are there outside forces that could threaten the profitability of your online advertising?

What weaknesses have you identified that could be roadblocks in achieving your desired advertising objectives?

PPC Strategy Takeaways

Be realistic and identify as many factors as you can. Match these factors you’ve identified in your S.W.O.T. analysis with factors from the previous tools we’ve discussed. The point is to plan how you’re going to use your strengths to take advantage of opportunity, and how you’re going to overcome your weaknesses.

Post 1: PPC Market Analysis with PEST

Post 2: PPC Analysis with Porter’s Five Forces


“SWOT Analysis.” Mind Tools New Articles RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2013.

“SWOT Analysis.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 24 Apr. 2013. Web. 24 Apr. 2013.

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