Yes. Google does.
I just couldn't resist:)
Seriously, you will find a large spectrum of differing results .
Not a living but a nice chunk of change running adwords direct to affiliate merchants. Just like any other type of business endeavor, it takes time, ya gotta be prepared to lose a grand or two and it may never turn a profit.
It depends if you are an end user (ie a biz doing your own marketing) or a middle merchant. If you are reselling advertising than profits don't matter. ROI has never been a marketing mantra. They sell impressions and exposure.
As a business myself the return on any ppc is slim or none. We justify the loss as part of our regular wholesale advertising budget. As a stand alone the ppc models are not break even.
Lots of people are making money [webmasterworld.com] with Google AdWords.
We definately earn our total living with PPC campaigns the biggest majority of which is in AdWords. We are an end user and receive the direct benefits of any sale.
Making a living from it
PPS Indeed works. Lot of people use it and that is why all those PPC search engines still survive. People pay as much as 20$ per click I have seen.
For most of my clients Adwords is just a nice-sized additional profit source, although at the high end of this I've got a client whose business is about 25% dependent on them. There are people working there whose jobs are entirely dependent on the business brought in by Adwords and Overture. And, I did have one client for whom Adwords could not be made to work.
For most of my clients, Adwords is an amazing 'extra' which brings in big business. Some of my clients have picked up five figure orders from people coming in via Adwords, checking them out, then getting in touch. Although bear in mind, this isn't typical e-commerce stuff, but highly specialized industry suppliers..
Other clients have leads for accounts coming in through Adwords, and considering the average account brings in five figure incomes for a company.. a few hundred dollars spent on Adwords can easily translate into an account or two.
In these specialized areas, the Adwords spend isn't the problem.. it's the traffic. Not so many people are searching for the specialized/localized stuff, but when they do.. we grab em in the SERPs AND by AdWords! :-)
when you say so far no luck do you mean you're not getting any traffic from the ad or that the traffic you're bringing is not converting at the website into sales for you?
from Doopsie2die4 Many thanks to all of you that answered my query. I was told to try this, adwords thing by someone on-line. He makes a lot of money there. I don't have $1 or $2K to lose. I ran the ads as a publisher That means there is an ad agency that pays on leads only. I didn't know what impressions were and that the CTR was very important and had to be high. So I cancelled most of the ads (6) and left one. Now the CTR is 57% but the ad agency is not showing this ad at all .I wrote to them. I will have to stop soon and cut my losses.I am trying to become an affiliate directly with companies I am interested in. One or 2 said yes. So I may try new ads. I was really hoping to be able to make a nice "piece of change" or more from this!
Its tough in the affiliate game because you are going against merchants that can brand and/or get the full markup on whatever they are selling so they will almost always out rank you.
Its twice as hard if whoever you are promoting doesn't have conversion tracking to enable you to know what terms are converting. Its like playing darts blindfolded.
The introduction of extended broad match match made it (IMHO) a much more difficult game to play. Campaigns went from a couple hundred keywords to thousands and its still an uphill battle.