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Make Money. Your Premier Partner in crime

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PPC agency Manchester

Crooks, blaggards, charlatans a blight on the PPC landscape

Their lack of contact has ground your teeth to dust. Squirms and ‘erms’ abound when you eventually catch up with them – it’s enough to make you sick. Forget ‘em. It’s time to say good riddance to underpar PPC services. Manchester, you know you’re better than this.

But don’t just turn to another bunch of villains. Waiting in the shadows by the banks of the snaking Ship Canal, pacing the ginnels, biding time beneath the catacomb of railway bridges as Pendolinos thunder overhead, the Dark Horse collective is waiting, ready to serve. Our PPC agency sweats and bleeds integrity; unclench those peggies – your decline into despair is over.

Piqued your interest? Welcome. Salvation has arrived.

What is PPC?

So, what is PPC? PPC stands for ‘pay per click’, a type of online advertising that sees advertisers pay every time someone clicks on their ads. This sets PPC advertising apart from more traditional methods, such as print or billboard ads, where advertising space is rented on a fixed price basis, regardless of whether anybody interacts with the ad or not.

PPC also has the advantage of being extremely measurable. Our PPC experts can see exactly what is driving positive results to double down on these tactics, while eliminating areas that aren’t performing as well. We’ve got your back.

Leave the shoddy PPC of your past behind and start putting your competition to shame.

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How does PPC work?

PPC advertising is designed to get your brand in front of the right people. By ‘the right people’, we mean the users who are dripping with intent to purchase, new audiences, old audiences and audiences that didn’t even know they needed you until they saw you. These are the people who are going to make you £££.

Our impact-driven pay per click research uncovers the nooks and crannies that will amplify your brand and secure conversions. Meanwhile, straight-line PPC will align searchers’ desires with your website to get them converting and spending. Expect quality leads and the ROI you deserve.

PPC advertising allows you to be seriously focused on variables beyond simply which keyword to drill down to. We look at audience signals, demographics, device, time of day, location and lots more to make sure your marketing spend is going into all the right areas.

PPC marketing goes hand-in-hand with properly executed Paid Social advertising and top-drawer SEO. We do it all and we’re ready to serve – just send us a sign.

Our PPC services: Manchester, strap in

Dark Horse is a Google Premier Partner, which means our PPC agency is in the top 3% in the UK. We couldn’t be prouder about it. We know that we know our onions, and we’re glad Google knows that too – a bit of extra validation for those who want to see it. Ultimately though, your business comes first, and we’ll always test everything Google offers to make sure it works for you; Google’s a business at the end of the day, and it’s dog eat dog out there – they’re just trying to make some dough, but we’d prefer you made dough more.

Tell us your commercial goals and we’ll create a battle plan to make them happen. To put that into motion, we’ve hired the best PPC experts from across Greater Manchester and beyond, who live and breathe all things pay per click. We only accept victory when tangible results and converting traffic are coming in.

We use a tactical approach underpinned by process, knowledge, tried-and-tested tools and PPC experts to make your goals a reality. Our PPC dominance is well documented; it’s expansive and powerful.

Our PPC services include:

  • Exhaustive, forensic PPC audits – we’ll talk you through our findings, what they mean for your brand and what we’re going to do about them, without any jargon
  • PPC management, comprising a pay per click marketing strategy that includes search, shopping, display, remarketing and more
  • Transparent execution of the whole PPC build and delivery process – you’ll have insight into all of our ongoing tasks, so you’ll always know where you’re at
  • Product feed management – we’ll make sure it’s as relevant as possible so it’s picked up by your users’ search queries, however niche they are
  • Intrinsically researched keywords that we know will convert and make you money
  • Monthly reports with real results – we’ll show you everything; the good, the bad and the bloody brilliant
  • All the access you need to our PPC experts, with regular consultancy meetings
  • No juniors – you deserve the time of an expert and that’s exactly what you’ll get
  • All the tools you need to leave your competitors quaking in their loafers

We’ve seen it all; the mediocre, the shoddy and quite frankly the piss poor. But we’ll always turn it around with integrity, quality and real results. The stuff that really matters.

PPC campaigns: the lowdown

PPC campaigns can take different forms, depending on which type of PPC advertising is used. Our elite team of PPC experts have bags of experience in creating Paid Search ads, Google Shopping ads and Google Display ads to get your brand in front of the right people.

Paid search ads

Rule Google with paid search ads that will demolish your competition. Hear that sound? It’s their footsteps fleeing. Cowards.

Our PPC specialists create search ads that convert, positioning you as the elite product in your niche, so you’ll display prominently annihilating your competitors’ ads. Paid search is a science of creativity, keyword data and targeting. You need PPC experts who can operate and lead paid ads to fill your pockets.

We’re constantly analysing the data, constantly testing and constantly striving for better. We won’t rest until we’ve met your goals and then some.

End your quest for quality paid search ads today and slay the competition.

Google Shopping ads

Our PPC agency provides unrivalled Google Shopping ads and product feed management for retailers, e-commerce sites and anyone else who’s got something to sell. Convert bigger, more relevant, can’t-part-with-their-cash-quick-enough audiences and haunt your competitors’ nightmares with shopping ad campaigns that will crown you King of e-comm, ruler of them all.

The Dark Horse’s collective PPC experts gather user behaviour analysis before creating shopping ads with strong product feed optimisation, taking advantage of CSS. You’ll be dominating the Google Shopping search results faster than you can flip the bird at the shoddy agencies of your past.

Google Shopping ads from a Google Premier Partner? It doesn’t get much better than that. Start tyrannising your opponents today.

Google Display ads

Our PPC specialists also know more than a thing or two when it comes to Google Display ads – we weren’t named a Google Premier Partner for nothing. Our fearless PPC experts analyse data, test proven ad techniques others won’t try and manage your media to increase sales above your expectations. You’re going to need bigger pockets.

While Search is about getting users with intent to convert, Display is higher up the funnel, and it’s all about instilling that intent in the first place – finding an audience who could become paying customers. Our PPC experts will sow the seeds of what they’re looking for via targeted ad placements, getting intp their heads to fill your pockets. And once they can’t stop thinking about your product, Remarketing can be used to ensure they come running back to you, to convert.

The Google Display Network reaches around 90% of all web users across websites, emails and blogs. Yes, you did read that right – 90% is a lot of people and that’s a lot of opportunities to make money. With the right PPC agency behind you analysing and managing your display ads, you can make money on the right websites with the right audiences and send your competitors packing.

Ready to change your PPC marketing fortunes? Entrust Dark Horse with your Display ads – we won’t let you down. Cross our hearts and hope to die.

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The right PPC management company could change your destiny

We’ve hired the finest minds in PPC; Manchester, the north-west, far and wide – we’ve scoured the country with a claw-toothed comb, seeking out the very best PPC talent. The smarter we work, the more money we make you. Simple.

We have client relationships spanning years and years; that’s not down to sickening schmoozing, fancy lunches or jargon vomit, it’s down to the cold, hard cash we make for the businesses we work with. Our PPC services are incredibly good value; we’re based up north which keeps our overheads down. Cut us open and we bleed grit and integrity.

Dark Horse gets *it*. We combine analytical approaches with creativity to make sure we’re focusing on improving your bottom line while producing ads that appeal to the end user to drive higher volume. Expect data-driven decisions that will deliver results, make you money and leave you cursing yourself why it took you so long to get in touch. Our PPC agency isn’t for everyone, but it could be for you.

What are you waiting for? Channel some of that Manc grit, rip off the plaster and give us a call today.

Leave PPC villainy behind

Find out more about PPC


Ryan Bartram

The 3 Ad Assets you shouldn’t overlook

  Ad Assets, formally known as extensions, are a key part of any Google ads account. Most accounts we see use these in some capacity, with site links and call extensions being the most frequently used. But I want to talk to you about a couple of Google ads assets…


Why work with Dark Horse

It’s our genesis. Dark Horse was born out of being mis treated by a PPC management company. We were charged £650 for 1 change to one Ad group – to raise by 10p and back again. Two logins in that month. A combined time of less than 60 seconds. No research. Nothing.

That agency is one that is 14 years old, multiple offices in the UK, countless awards and widely recognised as an industry leader. We know the truth of what happens if you don’t give them enough profit.

The question to you then….do we seem disingeniuos? If so, don’t work with Dark Horse. If you think we tell the truth, then we are the only option for consideration.

Other things we do


Digital Audit

There is no room for mediocrity in the future. We will forensically retire your incumbent agency. Piece by ickle piece individually wrapped in powerpoint slides.

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Paid Social

They haven’t got mortgages so why not take their savings instead of Netflix. Paid Social so startingly revolutionary that it could make Gen Z vote Tory with Kirsty Allsop as PM.

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SEO Service

The only thing you will get from page 3 is going blind. Law professional, Tracey 23, from Skegness says "No sales below my favourite position - number 1 of course!"

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Why should I use a PPC agency rather than do it in-house?
Why should I use a PPC agency rather than do it in-house? - Expand

Extensive teams of experts, access to specialised tools, lack of time and resources – the list goes on. But there’s one reason above all else to use a PPC agency and that’s cost-effectiveness. We have economies of scale, which allows us to optimise campaigns at a lower cost than you can do in-house. Bring on that sweet sweet ROAS.

Why should I use an PPC agency rather than a freelancer?
Why should I use an PPC agency rather than a freelancer? - Expand

You know that age-old saying ‘two heads are better than one’? Well, it turns out that 10+ heads are a lot better than one. We have a large team of experts who work together to create and manage your campaigns, making them more comprehensive and effective than a single freelancer could ever hope to achieve. We also have the resource to help you scale as your business grows. We’re willing to bet Freelancer McGee will come up short on that front too. 

How does Dark Horse measure the success of a PPC campaign?
How does Dark Horse measure the success of a PPC campaign? - Expand

Data is everything at Dark Horse. We constantly evaluate the effectiveness of our PPC campaigns and use that data to optimise our ads and adjust our strategy. Success varies based on the objective of each campaign, but we typically use the below as key measures:

  • Click-through rate: This basically measures how often people who see your ad actually click on it. The higher the CTR, the more relevant and appealing to your target audience your ad is
  • Conversion rate: So, people are clicking on your ads – but are they taking action from there? 
  • Cost per conversion: No doubt you want to know how much you’re paying for each conversion – and we want that cost to be as low as possible
  • Return on investment: We look at how much profit your PPC campaign is generating

Quality Score: We need to please the big G. Google Ads uses Quality Score to measure the relevance and performance of your ads, keywords, and landing pages.

What is the difference between PPC and SEO?
What is the difference between PPC and SEO? - Expand

PPC and SEO both fall under the search engine marketing bracket, increasing your brand visibility, nudging leads to site and driving conversions. They just use different means to get to those same results. 

  • PPC is a paid advertising model where your ads are displayed at the top or bottom of search engine results pages, and you pay a fee every time one of your ads is clicked. It’s one of the fastest ways to drive traffic to a website. However, as soon as PPC activity stops, so will the traffic and revenue associated with it
  • SEO is an organic channel that improves your website’s rankings in search engine result pages through optimised website content, backlinks and technical fixes. SEO takes time, but you’ll reap the rewards long after SEO activity stops, assuming you put the right investment and time into it
How long will it take to see results from our PPC efforts?
How long will it take to see results from our PPC efforts? - Expand

A PPC campaign will deliver both short and long-term results. Within just a couple of days of launching your (do we really need to say it?) high-quality campaign, you should see an increase in traffic and conversions, as well as improved brand awareness. But like all good marketing, PPC feeds off data. The longer a campaign is live, the more data we have, and the better we can optimise it. Longer-running, data-driven campaigns perform better over time. 

Who will be my day-to-day contact once I am a PPC client?
Who will be my day-to-day contact once I am a PPC client? - Expand

We don’t rely on account managers at Dark Horse. Instead, you have direct access to the relevant person working on your website – no middleman. Email or call the PPC lead on your account anytime between 9 and 5 and they’ll get back to you directly.

Is Dark Horse a Google Partner / Premier Partner?
Is Dark Horse a Google Partner / Premier Partner? - Expand

We sure are, and we’re chuffed as chips about it. It means our PPC agency is in the top 3% in the UK. We know we know our onions, and we’re glad Google knows that too – a bit of extra validation for those who want to see it.

Does Dark Horse conduct cross-channel campaigns?
Does Dark Horse conduct cross-channel campaigns?  - Expand

Absolutely. Dark Horse’s roots may lie in PPC, but we’ve grown as an agency, expanding into Paid Social and SEO. We can join forces with our counterparts to create unbeatable paid and organic search marketing campaigns that help you dominate across the board. Paid gets you leads quickly, while SEO works on your long-term visibility.

Can I work with Dark Horse if I’m located outside of Manchester?
Can I work with Dark Horse if I’m located outside of Manchester? - Expand

We have an array of clients based within the M60, but you don’t need to have a Manchester postcode to work with us. We’ve had clients based everywhere across the UK and internationally. Our only criteria is that you want top-quality PPC from Paid Marketing elites. 

Should I be doing both PPC and SEO at the same time?
Should I be doing both PPC and SEO at the same time? - Expand

In short, yes. The two work hand in hand. PPC focuses ondriving targeted traffic to your site immediately, while SEO focuses on the longer term, building your site’s organic visibility to drive more “free” traffic over time. As such, PPC not only benefits your site in its own right but supports SEO by filling in the gap while you’re waiting for your optimisation efforts to pay off.

How long is a PPC contract with Dark Horse?
How long is a PPC contract with Dark Horse? - Expand

We’re in this for the long run and want to help you get the best results from your paid advertising. That’s why a typical PPC contract lasts 12 months. If you have other needs, though, give us a call and we can chat more about it. 

How much does PPC cost?
How much does PPC cost? - Expand

Our PPC campaigns start at £900 per month, though the fee will vary based on how many hours you invest in. Before you sign with us, we recommend a set number of hours based on how long we think it will take to achieve your business objectives and deliver the best results for you. Speak to our sales team to discuss our PPC costs further.

What budget will be needed to run a PPC campaign?
What budget will be needed to run a PPC campaign? - Expand

In short, your ad budget is completely up to you. We recommend spending a minimum of £2000 a month, though, so that there is enough data to judge results and inform our ongoing strategy.

What fee models does Dark Horse use?
What fee models does Dark Horse use? - Expand

We have a standard retainer, but for higher spends we charge a percentage of ad spend. This percentage can be tiered so that it reduces as budgets increase. Ultimately, it’s designed so that the hours required for higher budgets match the fee structure.

How many hours will be required?
How many hours will be required? - Expand

We’re too meticulous to throw a random number out there. Instead, we can provide more insight into the numbers of hours we need after we audit your account and have identified the scope of opportunity. Having said that, we do require a minimum of 9 hours.

What happens once I become a PPC client?
What happens once I become a PPC client?  - Expand

You’ll have taken your first step towards PPC success!

First, we assign a PPC specialist from our team onto your account and organise an intro call with you and everyone you dealt with during the pre-sales phase to ensure everyone is fully up to speed with your business. We then produce an initial workflow document detailing the action plan for the first month and beyond.

What PPC tools do we use?
What PPC tools do we use? - Expand

We use all of the usual tools you’d expect, like Google Ads. But we also use the likes of Supermetrics and Shoptimised. Don’t worry, all of these are included in our hourly fee, so you can benefit from them at no extra cost.

Does Dark Horse have experience working in my vertical?
Does Dark Horse have experience working in my vertical? - Expand

Our team of PPC specialists have over 63 years combined experience. We struggle to find a vertical we haven’t worked in before. If you want the juicy dets of who we’ve worked on, you’ll need to get in touch.

What PPC tools do we use?
What PPC tools do we use? - Expand

We use all of the usual tools you’d expect, like Google Ads. But we also use the likes of Supermetrics and Shoptimised. Don’t worry, all of these are included in our hourly fee, so you can benefit from them at no extra cost.

How often will I receive a report? What is included in my PPC report?
How often will I receive a report? What is included in my PPC report? - Expand

We want our reports to be valuable for you, so we make them fully bespoke to your needs and KPIs. Our monthly reports provide detailed insights into the results we’ve achieved so far vs your goals, and the actions and plans for the following month to keep driving that success. Dominate or die. 

Our reports are usually monthly, but we can adapt their frequency to your needs. At Dark Horse, you come first.

Avenue 85

Avenue85, an e-comms clothing company, had heard about Dark Horse’s reputation. It came to us to grow its site and reduce third-party platform reliance. It had heard that Dark Horse was forensic in its actions. Avenue85 presented Dark Horse with a challenge; raise performance significantly to a minimum of 6x ROI, maximise revenue from 25 brands and achieve a cost of sales equal or better than Amazon. We accepted.

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