Would your business benefit more from SEO or PPC?

Not sure whether your business would benefit more from SEO or PPC? Well, it depends on your current situation, objectives and marketplace. Understanding your prospective customers and how they navigate the web is key to determining which is the best approach for your business. SEO and PPC have their advantages and disadvantages. Therefore, maybe a combination of both would be most beneficial. Spend a few minutes with our quick read. You will soon find out whether you will benefit more from SEO or PPC.

SEO: Improve your organic traffic

The pros of SEO:

1. Awareness: Visibility in search engines for your targeted keywords puts your business in front of potential customers and it drives brand awareness.

2.Branding: Your brand can become associated with and trusted by searchers who are asking questions as they conduct the research that will lead to a purchase.

3. Credibility and trust: Many users skip ads and trust organic results more highly. Being visible gives your business that all-important stamp of approval.

4. Website traffic: Increasing website traffic provides you with more opportunities to drive awareness of your business and educate a prospect as to why they would buy from you.

5. Cost per click: Traffic from organic search is free. Developing that visibility will take time and effort (money) but there is not a direct charge for each impression or click.

6. Return on investment (ROI): Organic search engine traffic can provide an improved ROI over traditional forms of paid media.

7. Sustainability: Unlike paid search marketing, organic traffic does not stop the moment you stop paying.

8. Improved click-through rate (CTR): A higher percentage of users click on the organic results.

There are also some cons when it comes to SEO. In many cases, organic traffic can be slow to come by. It can take up to 6 months before you really start seeing measurable results. You may also need to develop content assets to achieve strong organic visibility. You are halfway there in finding out if you will benefit more from SEO or PPC.

PPC: Laser-targeted visibility

The pros of PPC (Pay Per Click):

1. Position on the page: With typically four ads on desktop and three on mobile, a user will always see the paid search ads because they are on the top of the page.

2. Improved ads: You have far more granular control and more space for delivering your marketing messages.

3. Visual product ads: This kind of ad can really improve the click-through rate by offering a feature not available in organic search.

4. Brand visibility: Running paid search advertisements gets you seen by the right people.

5. Budget: PPC allows for a tight control of budget.

6. Targeting: Ads can be targeted by search keywords, time of day, day of the week, geography, language, device and audiences based on previous visits.

7. Speed: A PPC campaign can be created in days and ramped up in weeks. There is no faster way to get in front of customers at the very moment they are primed to buy than paid search engine advertising.

8. A/B testing: Easily split-test ads, landing pages, and even call-to-action buttons to determine where the very best results lie.

PPC also has its cons. Paid search can be expensive and it requires constant investment. PPC is easy to copy and can be easily evaluated by competitors. Successful PPC needs skilled management and optimization which not every business can provide.

SEO and PPC

SEO and PPC on their own are not always a good fit for all businesses. Results are improved by utilizing both paid and organic.  Therefore, you may not need to answer the question of do you benefit more from SEO or PPC. The answer may be using both of these strategies.  The benefits of running SEO and PPC together include:

  • Keyword and conversion data from PPC can be fed into SEO.
  • The total traffic can be increased by targeting clicks in paid and organic for high-performing keywords.
  • A/B testing of ad copy and landing pages can be fed into your organic listing and landing pages.
  • Test your keyword strategy in PPC before committing to long-term SEO strategies.
  • Target users at all stages of the customer journey with commercial keywords.
  • Increase confidence and awareness by having both strong organic and paid visibility.

The author, Carolina Macedo, is Project Coordinator of Marketing Keys.