Over the holiday break, like most home owners, I wanted to get a little bit of work done around the house. Like many IT nerds, my skills in the home improvement area are somewhat limited, so I turn to the Internet, and find the experts to get some quotes.

Don't get me wrong, I understand that this time of year is tough. Skeleton staff makes it sometimes difficult to get to everything until everyone returns from holidays. The big thing I found in my attempt to get some quotes was the lack of replies to my enquiries from people paying money for me to see their ads. I am looking to install some wardrobes at my place, so I searched for 'wardrobe installation' in Google and clicked on a couple of ads, and a couple of the organic listings.

I contacted them all with the same details. 3 days went by, and I had 1 phone reply by phone (great response), and 1 very short email reply (this was now a week later). Here is their email reply: "Hi james can u plz call 04xxxxxxxx5were do u live" This led me to 3 very easy rules for how to deal with PPC leads effectively:

1. Answer them as quick as you can

This is a race, and you need to finish first. If a customer is contact a few suppliers (and they are), you need to speak to them first. The early bird gets the worm, gets to build my wardrobe, and makes a lasting impression. Even if this is only a short reply saying, 'We will get to you shortly', then I am happy. You can even cheat with a delayed auto-reply that buys you some extra time.

2. Get them sufficient information, and a quote, in a short period of time

First contact should always be phone if they give you a phone number. If you can arrange a face to face, if that suits the product, thats ideal. If not, a proposal document, and supporting information, and a quote needs to be emailed to the customer within 24 hours (preferably the same day).

3. Follow up

Don't just send out your quotes and then wait for them to come back in. It takes persistence and quite a few lines of communication to close a deal - so stick with it.

This is the basics, and there is obviously lots more to it, but many businesses by just implementing these points, will improve the Google Adwords conversion rates dramatically. If you are spending money to get customers to your website, make sure the process to follow through these leads is up to scratch.