What Is a Case Study?

When you’re performing research as part of your job or for a school assignment, you’ll probably come across case studies that help you to learn more about the topic at hand. But what is a case study and why are they helpful? Read on to learn all about case studies.

At face value, a case study is a deep dive into a topic. Case studies can be found in many fields, particularly across the social sciences and medicine. When you conduct a case study, you create a body of research based on an inquiry and related data from analysis of a group, individual or controlled research environment.

As a researcher, you can benefit from the analysis of case studies similar to inquiries you’re currently studying. Researchers often rely on case studies to answer questions that basic information and standard diagnostics cannot address.

Study a Pattern

One of the main objectives of a case study is to find a pattern that answers whatever the initial inquiry seeks to find. This might be a question about why college students are prone to certain eating habits or what mental health problems afflict house fire survivors. The researcher then collects data, either through observation or data research, and starts connecting the dots to find underlying behaviors or impacts of the sample group’s behavior.

Gather Evidence

During the study period, the researcher gathers evidence to back the observed patterns and future claims that’ll be derived from the data. Since case studies are usually presented in the professional environment, it’s not enough to simply have a theory and observational notes to back up a claim. Instead, the researcher must provide evidence to support the body of study and the resulting conclusions.

Present Findings

As the study progresses, the researcher develops a solid case to present to peers or a governing body. Case study presentation is important because it legitimizes the body of research and opens the findings to a broader analysis that may end up drawing a conclusion that’s more true to the data than what one or two researchers might establish. The presentation might be formal or casual, depending on the case study itself.

Draw Conclusions

Once the body of research is established, it’s time to draw conclusions from the case study. As with all social sciences studies, conclusions from one researcher shouldn’t necessarily be taken as gospel, but they’re helpful for advancing the body of knowledge in a given field. For that purpose, they’re an invaluable way of gathering new material and presenting ideas that others in the field can learn from and expand upon.

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12 PPC Case Studies: Challenges, Solutions & Results

Christina Lyon

April 3, 2023

High CPA? Low conversion rate? Let these PPC case studies inspire strategic solutions for every paid search challenge.

Here, you’ll find: 

  • Common PPC obstacles brands face
  • 12 PPC case studies highlighting  effective problem-solving strategies
  • Success stories from brands that leveraged PPC agencies 
  • Solutions to tackle your own PPC problems 

Diverse clients, budgets, and challenges call for diverse PPC strategies .

Our clients span SaaS, ecommerce , financial institutions, universities, and more, and they’ve all experienced roadblocks on the way to success.  We love to see them succeed and enjoy an average of 4.5X ROI . But what markers define PPC success? 

We’ve rounded up a dozen case studies showcasing common PPC obstacles brands face, and the strategies that helped them come out stronger on the other side.

What is a PPC case study ?

PPC case studies feature the details of a project partnership between an agency or contractor, and the brand that hired them. In these case studies you’ll find the company’s background, marketing objectives, PPC challenges, and strategies that contributed to success.

There will also be commentary on the thought process behind the strategy. Brands often review an agency’s PPC case studies to assess whether they’re the right fit to tackle their unique challenges. 

PPC professionals can also review case studies to gain inspiration on new strategies and approaches to resolve their clients’ pain points.

Ready to get inspired? Keep reading.

12 PPC case studies to inspire your next strategy

From high CPAs and competition to low brand visibility and sales, these brands sought PPC strategies unique to their most pressing problems. If you relate to one in particular, click through to read more.

1. 686 overcomes a sales slump

We’ve all been there. We pump thousands of dollars into a PPC strategy , yet sales stagnate. Or, they increase slightly, but not enough to justify the whopping ad spend . 

Ecommerce technical apparel brand, 686 , had this problem. They needed a creative kick to pump up sales and ROI. Their return on ad spend ( ROAS) was 160%, and they wanted to magnify it to 350-400%. 

Athletic fashion is a saturated market, but we used 686’s unique selling points (USPs) and customer persona to inform intentional tweaks to their strategy. 

Strategies :

  • Location-based targeting : We adjusted 686’s PPC campaigns to target U.S. locations with people who would benefit most from 686’s cold-weather products. 
  • Remarketing : Search Engine Journal says that the buyer’s journey is “a relationship that needs constant cultivating.” We launched an aggressive remarketing strategy on Google’s Display Network and Facebook to include additional touch points to boost conversions.
  • Optimized shopping campaign and product feed : Fashion is a creative industry, and we needed to help 686 stand out. We revamped their product feed and pumped up conversions on the SERPs with delicious product photos and clear pricing. 

We paired all that with ongoing keyword optimizations , bid management, and website conversion optimization . 

The results: 

  • 562% year-over-year (YoY) SEM revenue increase
  • More than 186% conversion rate increase
  • 303% increase in return on ad spend (ROAS)
  • 67% reduction in cost per conversion 

2. Peer Software finds its target audience

Peer Software is a data management software company. The problem? Reaching their specific target audience : IT and infrastructure roles at multi-site companies. The company struggled to build brand awareness and generate sales for their primary product. 

Strategies : 

  • Cross-platform advertising : Peer Software focused heavily on Google search ads campaigns, but we learned that their audience also used Bing . That’s why we created ad campaigns for both search engines , to scoop up a valuable audience they were missing out on before. 
  • Persuasive new ad copy addressing audience pain points : Our research showed their existing ad copy didn’t address their audience’s pain points sufficiently. We clearly defined the pain point (file collaboration challenges) in ad descriptions and landing page copy, and positioned Peer Software as the clear solution. 

Results : 

  • 128% increase in conversions
  • Over 46% decrease in cost per conversion
  • 126% increase in website clicks

3. CSUN says bye-bye to sky-high CPA

So you scored a new customer. Great! But how much money did you invest in that one customer? If you’re anything like California State University – Northridge — too much (before we got to their PPC strategy ). 

While the university had a solid digital marketing team and web presence, we noticed they were spending too much money to fill in under-enrolled programs. 

Here’s how we helped: 

  • Excluded non-converting audience segments : CSUN was investing ad spend into non-converting audience segments. We eliminated those segments to free up more of their marketing budget for conversion-ripe leads. 
  • A/B testing on ad copy : We tweaked and experimented with CSUN’s ad copy to test out different keywords and phrasing to see which converted the most. 
  • Enhanced cost-per-click (CPC) with robust monitoring : We knew we needed to leverage remarketing to convert audiences tipping the edge of conversion. We used enhanced CPC along with negative keywords and locations, and our constant monitoring ensured we didn’t overspend. 


  • 50% reduction in CPA
  • Nearly 2X conversion rate
  • 50% increase in YoY revenue

4. Keyword cannibalization and self-competition at Honda

In PPC , keyword cannibalization happens when you run multiple search campaigns that target the same keywords. The result? Self-competition and amped-up ad costs. That was the reality for our client, Honda . 

They had a unique risk here. They weren’t planning on running competing campaigns, but they had partners — new and used car dealers — who were. This put their goal of promoting the new Civic hatchback and Accord models in South America at risk. 

Same goal, but competing keywords. See the issue? That’s where we came in. 


  • Keyword targets for both Honda and dealers : We did the research (fueled by data from ConversionIQ ) and suggested high-value keywords for Honda and their dealers to bid on. This intentional approach eliminated the siloed campaigns that could have caused disastrous keyword cannibalization. 
  • Remarketing : Honda specifically wanted to capture audiences that were already familiar with their strong reputation. So, we launched a remarketing strategy for both search and display ads to improve conversions. 
  • 30% reduced cost per conversion
  • 200% traffic increase
  • 40% increase in dealer inquiries

As many of these PPC case studies show, sometimes it’s best to stick to metaphorical fruits and veggies to nourish your PPC strategy.

verizon digital media

5. Verizon Media boosts brand awareness in a competitive industry

Verizon Media leads the telecommunications and media industries, offering products like smartphones, internet packages, and television streaming. But they were struggling to stand out in this fiercely competitive industry against the likes of AT&T and other big telecom players.

They needed our help to increase their brand awareness and level up their digital marketing strategy to overcome a cut-throat competitive landscape. 

  • Display opt-in : Verizon already had a robust team of in-house marketers, but we helped them strategize audience reach by adding display opt-in to their search campaigns. This strategy is proven to increase conversions by 15% . 
  • Keyword optimization with single keyword ad groups (SKAGs) : Out of all the Google Ads campaign structure components, SKAGs are among the most time-consuming. Still, dedicated keywords for each group helped us optimize Verizon’s rankings and score more leads. 
  • Ad extensions : We wanted to lead Verizon’s audience through the buyer’s journey with as much ease and convenience as possible. That meant implementing more ad extensions to infuse ample contact opportunities and, thus, increase conversions. 
  • 3,200% more conversions
  • 50% decrease in cost per conversion
  • 37% decrease in average CPC

6. The University of Nevada homes in on targeting

Off-shore from the lapping waves of pristine Lake Tahoe is the University of Nevada, Reno (formerly Sierra Nevada University). The renowned university struggled to attract targeted leads with their former PPC agency, who had rolled out a “kitchen sink approach.” 

Problem was, everything was, in fact, in the kitchen sink — except for ideal students. The bidding was too broad, and they wanted a tailored strategy to match their niche-based marketing goals. 

Zeroed in on results, we crafted a modern, focused strategy:

  • Refined campaigns: We completely restructured the campaigns to tighten unfocused areas, including cleaning up keywords, geographic targeting, and rolling out clear conversion tracking.
  • Launched CRO-focused landing pages: Each program got its own optimized landing page with targeted copy, and a contact form to catch new inquiries and enhance conversions.
  • Ran display and YouTube campaigns: We attracted potential students in close proximity to the campus with successful display ads and video campaigns.
  • 309% increase in conversions
  • 135% increase in CTR for search campaigns
  • 43% reduced cost per conversion

7. Migration-proof SEO for VIOS & Kindbody

One of our clients, VIOS Fertility , was acquired by Kindbody. While we initially planned to support them with Google Ads, SEO, Bing, and Facebook Ads, we switched things up amidst the new merger. 

We had to shift our SEO and ad group setups to support both Kindbody and VIOS as they went through a new website migration. 

  • Google campaign revamp : We created new paid campaigns to account for expanded locations. We also tested and tracked conversions from contact forms and landing pages to maintain results. 
  • Migration monitoring and content audit : A million things can go wrong when migrating to a new website. We used an exclusive Migration Checklist to track all web items, maintain performance, and catch snags as they arose, including 301 redirects and a robust content audit. 
  • New messaging : The original ad copy wo uldn’t fly with an expansion like this one. We crafted new messaging to account for Kindbody’s brand values and ensured alignment with VIOS. 
  • 128% increase in organic website sessions
  • 74% increase in total terms ranking
  • 128% increase in organic new website visitors

Navigating big changes doesn’t have to be a nightmare, especially with the right PPC agency in your corner.

8. Clearing up cloudy insights at AppDynamics

Imagine how incredible your website would perform if you caught every bug the second it occurred. That’s what San Francisco-based computer application company, AppDynamics , offers its big-time clients like Expedia.ca. 

We could see immense value in their offerings, but their target audience couldn’t because they weren’t on the map.

  • A/B testing : AppDynamics needed sharper insights into what was working, and what was lagging in their PPC campaigns. We launched A/B tests to decipher which bids cost them more without enough conversions to justify them, and adjusted each one as necessary. 
  • Targeted landing pages : AppDynamics has a wide audience, and to capture that audience, we crafted over 200 direct landing pages.
  • Keyword revamp : Our daily tracking and A/B tests revealed more targeted keywords that spoke to AppDynamics’ audience and intent. We gave their existing ad copy a makeover and aggressively pursued more targeted keywords.
  • 20% increase in conversion rate 
  • 2X targeted traffic
  • Grew from 40 to over 200 targeted landing pages

9. Ramped up scaling at Parts Town

Parts Town , a food-service equipment distributor, had an ambitious goal to grow search and shopping channels by 40%. Their goals outgrew their previous agency, and they needed a more effective balance of optimized product feeds and audience segmentation.

They contacted Tinuiti, a large-scale performance marketing agency, for their success in managing shopping campaigns and propelling massive performance success. 

  • Monitor and tweak with proven best practices : Tinuiti continued enhancing product descriptions and titles, implementing custom labels, and specifying categorization to maximize performance while abiding by Google Shopping Ads requirements. 
  • Grow by audience segment: Understanding your audience is a constant task for scaling brands. Tinuiti knows this, which is why they analyzed and segmented customer data to find more leads and revenue. 
  • Pilot and beta testing: Tinuiti continued personalizing and tailoring the customer experience for each product category with robust testing strategies. 
  • 15% revenue growth in the first month
  • 64% revenue growth after one year
  • 223% revenue growth after three years

Slow scaling? Not anymore.

10. Getting Grayson Living’s ecommerce sales to compete with IRL

Grayson Living is a leader in the high-end interior design and furniture industry that wanted to see more ecommerce sales to complement their brick-and-mortar success. Despite their high marketing budget, we noticed conversion rates for ecommerce transactions and website views weren’t stacking up.

The problem? They were digitally selling to an in-person audience. Shopify highlights that ecommerce shoppers rely more heavily on images , reviews, and product descriptions to convert than brick-and-mortar shoppers. 

So while we wanted to improve ROAS , the solution wasn’t to tighten ad spend . Instead, we pumped more money into ad spend to generate results that actually improved our client’s ROI. 

  • Display advertising and shopping campaigns : Grayson Living already had stellar products and results to highlight. We amplified their display ads with targeted ad copy , and gave their shopping campaigns a boost. 
  • Cross-platform advertising : The ecommerce shopper has more entryways to a transaction than the in-person one. That’s why we had to leverage cross-platform advertising to catch broader audiences beyond Google searches and on social media platforms. 
  • Retargeting : We created custom landing pages and persuasive new copy to capture audiences that already visited Grayson Living’s website, and made sure that on second-visit, they understood the value of their ecommerce design services.
  • 6X ROAS increase over three years
  • 279% increase in ecommerce sales after one year
  • 11% increase in average order value (AOV) after the first year

11. Going digital with minimal brand recognition at an internet bank

An online financial institution had positioned itself as a leading brick-and-mortar bank. With 100 years of success, they wanted to launch a new digital direct-to-consumer (DTC) internet bank, with little brand recognition in that niche space. 

The company turned to Wpromote for support in creating a digital footprint in a competitive space where customers didn’t recognize their brand. 

  • Advanced targeting and segmentation : Wpromote used hyper-focused paid search campaigns to target key audiences, using messaging testing to figure out which combinations worked best for leads that didn’t know the client’s brand. 
  • Ongoing maintenance : The digital marketing strategy included a soft launch, official launch, and regular, ongoing maintenance to align new results with KPIs and channel-specific goals. 
  • Email marketing : Wpromote used a robust email marketing strategy to complement their PPC ads efforts. Communications were frequent and covered product announcements and promotional offers to generate interest and loyalty. 
  • $18B in acquired deposits
  • 68% reduction in cost per account/acquisition
  • 1,000 keywords on page one of Google’s SERPs

Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?

12. Revamping CVA’s digital marketing strategy 

Columbia Virtual Academy (CVA) is an innovative, customizable education program for parents and guardians to tailor K-12 education for their kids. CVA felt their previous marketing agency wasn’t as hands-on as they needed them to be. 

They connected with us seeking marketing support to reach new students, and we focused heavily on keyword optimization to market their offerings.

  • Exact and phrase match, negative keywords : CVA is a unique educational provider, yet the education presence online is vast. We noticed they ranked for keywords that didn’t exactly reflect their core services. We used exact and phrase match keywords, as well as negative keywords, to generate ideal traffic. 
  • High-intent keywords : We drove more relevant leads with revamped keywords that were better aligned with CVA’s offerings. 
  • Revised ad copy : We highlighted CVA’s main program features and paint point solutions within ad copy to supercharge SERP rankings. 
  • 134% in YoY Google Ads conversions
  • 51% decrease in CPA
  • 45% increase in clickthrough rate ( CTR )

The takeaway

Every business has unique challenges, which is why every PPC strategy should be built to efficiently solve those challenges.

If you’re a busy marketer or business owner, chances are high that you relate to some of these obstacles. While each company faces hurdles like fierce competition, low visibility, or soaring CPA, the right solution is within reach.

PPC management is a fantastic way to catch these issues, build an effective strategy, and accelerate results.

If you feel stuck, use these PPC case studies for inspiration to tackle challenges head-on.

And if you want to add your company to this list of PPC success stories, get in touch today. We’re here to help you soar your PPC results to new heights. 

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PPC Case Studies: 21 PPC Case Study Examples for Paid Search

How would you like to read the best PPC case studies ever published?

More importantly, how would you like to copy the best practices in pay-per-click advertising that are based on real-world examples and not just theory.

If that sounds, good then you’ll get a lot of value out of this post.

Below, you’ll find a list of the top 21 PPC case studies along with the results and key findings from each example. By studying these PPC case study examples and applying the lessons learned in your own paid search campaigns, you can hopefully achieve similar results to increase your return on investment (ROI).

When you’re done reading these PPC success case studies, make sure to check out my other SEO case studies page to find data on improving organic search engine optimization, this content marketing case studies page, general digital marketing case studies , email marketing case studies , social media marketing case studies , or this affiliate marketing case studies page if you want expert data on that type of business. There’s also a guide on SEO vs PPC if you want to understand the differences between each digital marketing strategy.

PPC Case Studies

Table of Contents

PPC Case Studies

32% increase in return on ad spend – adshark ppc case study.

Learn how Adshark helped dogIDS, an e-commerce manufacturer and retailer of personalized dog collars and tags, achieve high ROI on their paid search campaigns by analyzing historical search terms, categories, and product performance. This strategy helped the Adshark segment dogIDs Google Shopping campaigns in a way that allowed for better bid and budget management.

49% Decrease In CPA – Captivate Search Marketing PPC Case Study

Find out how a marketing agency helped the Women’s Institute for Health (WIFH) in Atlanta, Georgia, decrease their cost per acquisition (CPA) from $98 to $50 with a strategic optimization in Google Adwords.

20% Increase In Subscribers for Forbes – Adventure Media PPC Case Study

Forbes Magazine is an American business magazine, which has been in circulation for over 100 years. The top goals for this PPC case study were to grow subscribers and increase paid subscriptions. In addition to PPC optimization to attract a broad range of ages, income levels, and genders, Adventure Media also used a strategic video marketing campaign to bring in a new wave of college graduates.

139% ROI for a UK Clothing Brand – Click Consult PPC Case Study

Boohoo is a British online fashion retailer that has been recognized by top consumer titles like Reveal, Heat, and Cosmopolitan magazines. When Boohoo came to Click Consult, the retailer had been running its own PPC campaigns for 18 months and seeing poor results (PPC revenue had fallen by 26% YOY). In this case study, you’ll learn how Click Consult achieved a 139% ROI on ad spend and a 431% increase in UK non-branded PPC revenue.

Client Case Studies & White Papers – Shape.io PPC Case Study

Shape.io is an online service that helps digital advertisers scale their businesses more efficiently and profitably with our suite of budget management, spend automation, performance reporting, and ADI tools. This page includes a list of PPC case studies by clients that use Shape.io for their pay-per-click ad management.

ROAS Up 3,197% for Natural Nutrients – PPC Geeks Case Study

In this PPC case study, you’ll discover how PPC Geeks improved Natural Nutrients Google Ads campaigns to achieve a dramatic increase in revenue (5,789%) and ROAS (3,197%) year over year. Example strategies include granular campaign extension, single keyword ad groups, ad copy A/B testing, KPI focused ROAS, conversion rate optimization, and more.

A 56% YoY Revenue Increase With Google & Microsoft Ads – ClickToast PPC Case Study

To help its client achieve their pay-per-click advertising goals, this digital marketing team focused on driving sales through advanced shopping campaigns and branded search campaigns with both Google Ads and Microsoft Ads. The result: a 56% revenue increase year-over-year along with a 26% increase in customer transactions.

9X Boost In Leads With PPC & CRO – SevenAtoms Case Study

A lack of conversions and poor ROI are common problems for many B2B PPC campaigns. Because of this, Recevent was only achieving a 2.83% conversion rate on its ads. After working with SevenAtoms to improve the account structure, create optimized landing pages, improve ad spend, and modify the keyword set, Recevent experienced a boost in conversion rates from 2.83% to 11.04% (a 290% increase). Check out this case study to find out how they did it as well as how they cut cost per conversion from $183.13 to $39.85 (a 78% decrease).

3X Conversion Rate Increase – Denver PPC Case Study

In this case study, you’ll learn how Denver PPC partnered with an eCommerce company to help triple conversions from 231 to 614 during a Google Ad campaign. Key strategies included campaign optimization, improving ROAS rating, boosting clicks, and lowering cost per conversion (CPC).

$2.8 Million Google Ads Campaign – Bigflare PPC Case Study

How would you like to know how a digital marketing agency scaled a sporting goods store’s Google Ad campaign from nearly nothing to $2.8 million in revenue? That’s exactly what you’ll get in this PPC case study by Bigflare. Learn all about the challenge and what the agency did to increase ROAS by 6X on Gili Sports’ Google Ads.

The Wool Company Secures Revenue and Drives Conversions by 52% – Scandiweb PPC Case Study

The Wool Company is a family-owned business that provides clothing and home accessories made of Merino wool, cashmere, and sheepskin. With low ROAS and high CPC, the PPC strategy the company was using at the time was ineffective in competing against bigger brands. In this case study, you’ll learn how Scandiweb approached the problem and which key performance indicators (KPIs) were used to track improvements.

57:1 Return on Ad Spend In Higher Education – Creative Website Marketing PPC Case Study

There are not many public higher education PPC case studies available online, which makes this research valuable to learn from. In this case study, you’ll discover how Creative Website Marketing rebooted a university’s student acquisition PPC strategy to generate a high-performing return on ad spend of $57 for every $1 of media spend invested in Google Ads.

An Accounting Firm Sees a 958% Increase In Conversion Rate – 250Digital PPC Case Study

This is a powerful case study for local businesses.  Nearly 90% of this accounting firm’s monthly ad spend budget was being wasted on irrelevant calls from people looking for entirely different services, other local businesses, and other specific accountants. 250Digital turned things around by improving keyword selection for ads and creating specific landing pages to generate a 958% increase in conversions.

752 New Leads In the First 90 Days – The Hoth PPC Case Study

In this case study, you’ll find out how The Hoth helped a used auto dealer use Google Ads to dramatically increase their business. The auto dealer had spent over $70,000 in paid ads in just over 6 years with a very low interaction rate. Discover how The Hoth turned things around for this dealer in 90 days by generating 752 new leads.

$792,345.54 In Sales for a Furniture Stores – PPC.co Case Study

As the name suggests, PPC.co is fully invested in paid search management for its clients. And in this particular case study for a furniture store, the agency achieved a conversion rate improvement of 56.16% and a revenue increase of 66.84% from $474,912.92 to $792,345.54.

+450% using PPC Automation – Trellis PPC Case Study

This PPC case study shows the power of using PPC automation for an ecommerce rug company that sells products through Amazon.

Film Studio Experiences 400% Increase In iTunes Downloads – Vizion PPC Case Study

The film studio client was struggling to optimize their paid search campaigns based on iTunes downloads. So it sought out a digital marketing company that could establish a more optimized strategy in Google AdWords and Bing Ads to increase their title conversion rates.

24% Conversion Rate for Bankruptcy Lawyer – ClicksGeek PPC Case Study

Find out how a bankruptcy lawyer got a 24% conversion rate by working with ClicksGeeks on a targeted pay-per-click ad campaign.

Local Pay-Per-Click Case Studies – No Boundaries Marketing Group

This link includes a list of pay-per-click case studies by No Boundaries Marketing Group. You’ll find multiple pay-per-click case studies for local businesses in the following categories: dental, plumbing, event planning, auto dealerships, bus rentals, and liquor stores.

100% ROI In 1 Month 1 for MCS Cleaning – Exposure Ninja PPC Case Study

MCS Cleaning is a family-run business providing domestic and commercial cleaning services. When MCS Cleaning came to Exposure Ninja, it was only getting 0-2 leads per day across all marketing channels. After just one month with Exposure Ninja, MCS Cleaning got 15 new leads from their strategic PPC campaign. During months two to three, a stream of 20-40 new leads was acquired.

Doubled Ecommerce Masterplan’s Virtual Summit Attendance – Digital Gearbox PPC Case Study

Challenged to hit a Virtual Summit target of 500 attendees, Digital Gearbox used one simple strategy to make that happen: Google’s Discovery ads format. Check out this short case study on PPC to find out how this new ad format worked.

What Is a PPC Case Study?

A PPC case study is an in-depth study of pay-per-click advertising in a real-world context. It can focus on one PPC tactic or a group of PPC strategies to find out what works in pay-per-click advertising to increase revenue from paid search ads.

Are Case Studies Good for PPC?

Case studies are good for PPC because you can learn about how to do pay-per-click advertising in an effective way. Instead of just studying the theory of PPC, you can learn from real PPC campaigns to find out what strategies deliver a higher return on investment.

PPC Case Study Examples

PPC Case Study Examples Summary

I hope you enjoyed this list of the best PPC case studies that are based on real-world results and not just theory.

As you discovered, the PPC case study examples above demonstrated many different ways to perform well with pay-per-click advertising. By studying the key findings from these examples, and applying the methods learned to your own site, you can hopefully achieve the same positive outcome with your paid search campaigns.

New PPC success case studies are being published every month and I’ll continue to update this list as they become available. So keep checking back to read the current sources of information on pay-per-click advertising.

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Case Studies

Paid search case studies.

Our PPC team have helped businesses across industries make the most of their online advertising budgets. Read our paid search case studies to see how we've optimised clients' Google AdWords accounts.

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Improving the profitability of a campaign with a limited budget

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Learn how our Paid Search campaign netted MeshDirect a +52% revenue increase.

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Attracting new customers through non-branded terms and improving conversions

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Custom Planet

Streamlining a Google AdWords account to reduce costs and boost clicks.

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Printed 4 You

Analysing historical Google AdWords data to improve campaign efficiency.

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Wyevale Garden Centres

Generating new business with non-branded paid search campaigns.

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Penny Hydraulics

Creating ads and landing pages that persuade target audiences to convert.

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AdWords: Search Performance Marketing Case Studies

In this section, you’ll find success stories from brands across a variety of industries that increased conversions and found new audiences by using products such as Google Ad Extensions and Dynamic Search Ads.

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Forrent.com increases online visibility, traffic and roi with google’s dynamic search ads, the washington wizards add 72% more new fan ticket sales with adwords, extra space storage creates and tests ads in real time, increases ctr by 113%, intel: building its brand on search for over a decade, fiat drives up total unaided brand awareness with search ads, accor hotels uses google ad extensions to increase incremental conversions by 14%, retailer grainger uses dynamic search ads and remarketing to extend its reach, point it innovates with flexible bid strategies, boosting revenue for clients, extra space storage goes local at scale with google, miller's bakery doubles sales during peak hours with enhanced campaigns, performance marketing case studies.


Effective Spend Case Study: Paid Search & Social Strategies for a Market Disruptor

BACKGROUND: Swivel is an Austin-based tech company that provides agile workspaces to start-ups, fast-growing companies and established businesses setting up additional office space.

Swivel was looking to disrupt the overly crowded commercial real estate market. They recognized that growing tech companies were struggling to afford expensive and restrictive 5 to 10-year leases. Acting as an online workspace marketplace, Swivel connects high-growth companies with progressive landlords that offer flexible, short-term contracts. Additionally, Swivel minimizes friction in the set-up process by providing clients with office outfitting options.

After a strong start in Austin, Swivel came to Effective Spend to help drive its expansion in Austin, Dallas and other new markets throughout the US.

CHALLENGE When it comes to paid search, commercial real estate keywords are particularly competitive. Swivel was faced with a very crowded SERP, keywords with ambiguous searcher intent and very high cost per click. Furthermore, Swivel was serving up an innovative solution to a market that was largely unaware of this new way of office leasing. This presented challenges in search marketing, which is typically most efficient when customers know what they’re looking for and share a common language around how to search for it.

Effective Spend’s challenge was to identify the most effective digital marketing strategy to drive high quality leads for Swivel while keeping cost per lead in line with profit goals.

SOLUTION Since Swivel was a new concept in commercial real estate, the Effective Spend team couldn’t rely on highly relevant, longtail queries—there just wasn’t anyone searching for Swivel’s specific offering. The team implemented a comprehensive digital marketing strategy: driving high lead volume with paid search while growing brand awareness with paid social.

“We’ve been really happy with our account team and the outcomes Effective Spend has helped us produce.”

-Tabrez Syed, Swivel Co-Founder & VP, Product Strategy

STEP 1: DRIVING LEAD VOLUME WITH PAID SEARCH Effective Spend started with an intensive and iterative keyword research process to test the keywords that would convert best for Swivel. The team found that they could target mid-funnel keywords like “coworking spaces” and even high-funnel keywords for more general office space searches. They were able to capitalize on these higher volume terms while keeping CPC low by using advanced bidding strategies and finely tuned messaging to drive higher conversion rates.

GOOGLE ADVANCED BIDDING STRATEGY Following the initial launch and ramp-up of Swivel’s paid search campaigns, Effective Spend began testing Google’s automated bidding strategies to understand which strategy would help Swivel scale up while keeping CPCs and cost per lead low.

After testing and measuring performance changes, the team rolled out the Maximize Conversions bid policy. Maximize Conversions automatically sets bids using Google’s machine learning to help get the most conversions for your campaign. By using historical information about your campaign and evaluating the contextual signals present at auction time, Maximize Conversions bidding automatically finds an optimal bid for your ad each time it’s eligible to appear.

Combined with a high-volume keyword strategy, the Maximize Conversions bid policy was able to quickly allocate budget toward the top performing audiences, demographics and search queries.

MESSAGING OPTIMIZATION Effective Spend was able to achieve high impression share on mid-funnel and high-funnel search terms. But, given that Swivel was a new real estate concept, Effective Spend recognized the importance of using the ad copy to pre-qualify searchers—attracting clicks from the right users, and deterring users looking for more traditional office leasing solutions.

Building upon their own keyword research and working closely with the client’s marketing communications team, Effective Spend designed several A/B ad copy tests to understand which features and benefits resonated with Swivel’s true target customer.

Effective Spend also worked with Swivel to optimize conversion rate on the Swivel website. Applying the learnings from their keyword research and ad testing, Effective Spend helped Swivel incorporate the top converting keywords and ad copy into their landing page messaging.

Just the Line





Office Example

STEP 2: GROWING BRAND & AWARENESS WITH PAID SOCIAL As an innovative tech company in an old-school industry, Swivel needed to educate its target audience on its unique offering. To support the growth of Swivel’s brand presence and awareness online, Effective Spend also launched Swivel’s paid social advertising program.

Drawing on its extensive experience in Facebook Ads for B2B companies, Effective Spend was able to employ best practices for a successful launch right from the start. Effective Spend implemented ad units like carousel ads and video ads—formats perfectly designed to tell Swivel’s brand story. The team applied cohesive branding across all creative assets consistent with the client’s brand colors, images and style, creating a seamless visual user journey from ad to landing page. The team also analyzed Swivel’s own customer and market data as well as Facebook audience insights to zero in on the best converting Facebook audiences in the start-up and tech spaces.

RESULTS After Effective Spend ramped up Swivel’s paid digital campaigns, implemented advanced bidding strategies and improved brand messaging and creative, Swivel saw substantial quarter over quarter growth. Conversion rates and leads increased significantly, while cost per lead declined. This successful and cost-effective growth in leads allowed Swivel to expand rapidly in the Austin market and begin its expansion into new markets throughout the US.

Graph Up with More Space

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Paid Search Case Studies


Remarketing Campaign testing reduced Cost per Acquisition by 66%

The primary business objective was to increase SCENE black card acquisitions through Paid Search media while lowering the cost per acquisition (CPA).

During the initial launch of our Paid Search campaign we discovered that SCENE website visitors weren’t converting on the first visit and were more likely to convert during a second or third visit. This analysis provided us the insight needed to launch a remarketing campaign using AdRoll and Google’s Ad Network.


Non-profit uses Paid Search to boost revenue by 85.67%

SickKids Foundation received a Google Grant for use towards promoting the Foundation’s mission. With fresh funding in place, SickKids set out to increase the total number of donations and ROI from Paid Search Advertising. Having faced challenges with maximizing search opportunities with the Grant due to inaccurate reporting, they turned to Search Engine People to improve their attribution tracking and Paid Search Advertising ROI.


A bump in conversion rates leads to a mountain of new revenue

A client in the financial industry with over 35 years of experience came to Search Engine People for help to increase the Conversion Rates on their website.

Although the website had a steadily increasing amount of traffic, the client wanted more sales and qualified leads.


Travel Client Flies High With Innovative Re-Marketing Strategy

Moving into peak season, a travel client of Search Engine People wanted to improve their Return on Advertising Spend by reaching high-value travelers who were already engaged with their brand through prior website visits.

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Case Study Lucy

Lucy Case Study

Overview Lucy, a high-end women鈥檚 activewear manufacturer and retailer, operates more than 50 brick and mortar retail shops across the country and also conducts a high volume of sales via e-Commerce. Having launched pay-per-click (PPC) advertising campaigns in-house, Lucy elected to turn over management of their online advertising efforts to Anvil. Anvil was tasked with re-vamping the campaigns and increasing their efficiency and return-on-investment (ROI).

Objective Anvil鈥檚 overall objective was to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of PPC for Lucy while increasing total revenue and improving return-on-ad-spend (ROAS).

Challenge A very niche yet competitive marketplace required Anvil to narrow the scope of the campaigns; correspondingly, the client鈥檚 goal was to drive an increase in sales volume and revenue.

Strategy聽 Anvil鈥檚 strategy was to eliminate inefficient keywords; re-focus campaigns, keywords and ad text to reach the target market. Additionally, Anvil helped Implement new ROI tracking methods to increase management efficiency and quantify return on investment.

Results After a few months of active PPC management, Anvil was able to generate the following results for Lucy:

  • 560% increase in campaign click-through rate (CTR)
  • 61% increase in ROAS % from PPC
  • 34% increase in click-to-conversion-rate
  • 9% increase in overall online revenue from PPC while reducing total PPC ad costs by 33%

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Simplified Solutions

Paid Search & Google Adwords Campaign Case Studies for B2B and B2C Companies

Paid Search Advertising campaigns, informed by specific keyword terms used by customers in online searches, can drive substantial qualified traffic to specific website landing pages or offers. Paid search display program also targets relevant content on other websites that accept online advertising banners.

Simplified Solutions sets up and manages several Pay-per-click (PPC) programs for clients using Google Adwords, Microsoft Ad Center (Bing), or YouTube

Our Paid Search program for T he John Marshall Law School  in Chicago promotes the school’s JD, Graduate and Online degree programs. The marketing program drive 3x the normal website traffic and increased applications by 30%.  We also retarget visitors with a display ad program.

Wholesale Telecom is a national reseller of refurbished phone systems and parts.  Prior to hiring Simplified, the client was managing their paid search program internally. Simplified Solutions researched keywords focused on model numbers and secondary decriptors, to promote over 30 products and direct buyers back to the website.  Retargeting is used to drive return visits for key specials related to their previous searches.  The program accounts for over 30% of the company’s website traffic and 3X growth in sales.

Lodge Management Group is one of the oldest hospitality groups in Chicago and manages 11 venues in Chicago and the suburbs. Lodge was committed to a paid search program but unhappy with a vendor’s cookie-cutter approach. They enlisted Simplified for a more strategic boutique approach. The challenges is the hospitality space online is crowded and highly competitive.

Simplified Solutions ’ team looked at the previous campaigns, keyword opportunities and website landing pages before building new campaigns designed to drive traffic and conversions.

The results? More party inquiries and bookings, seats-filled and better click-through-rates overall.

Ten East Delaware is one of the premier new property developments in Chicago’s Gold Coast. We designed a Google Adwords campaign to optimize web traffic during the high volume spring selling season. The sponsored text ads average 600 new visits, or three times the normal traffic, and substantially increase calls to the sales center.

Crown Inustries  is a full service contract providing storage tank, piping and pump contruction installationa nd products.  Our google adwords programs drives over 50% of their leads.

Smart Resources , a successful independent staffing firm in Chicago, launched a new accounting division in 2009. To give the new accounting and financial placement service a lift during a key hiring period, we developed a Google Adwords campaign that drove over 900 unique website hits and several new account acquisitions. We lowered the cost per click by 10% while raising the click though rates by 13%

Active Arm is a tennis elbow exercise treatment program developed by orthopedic surgeon Dr. William Bohn. During high season search periods, content-based PPC drives incremental sales at a redesigned landing page.

For more information about Simplified Solutions ’ PPC marketing programs, click here . Simplified Solutions – A Chicago Digital Marketing &  Technology Agency


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