SEO vs PPC: Why You Should Integrate Both Into Your Marketing Strategy

By Karen Gardner

November 10, 2021

 You need to understand that Search Engine Results Pages are like real estate. Just like in real estate your highest consideration is location, location, location. In order for your business to thrive online, you need to dominate the first results page. This will increase your brand awareness and have a higher chance of site visits. The two ways of accomplishing this are through using SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and PPC (Pay-Per-Click).

The debate as to which is better for your company has been a polarizing issue for marketers, however, utilizing both should be a part of your companies overall strategy. Knowing the applications between PPC and SEO, as well as their strengths and weaknesses, will allow you to understand why you should incorporate both into your business flow.

What Is Organic Search?

Organic search results are the webpage listings that closely relate to your search query. This is sometimes referred to as “natural” search results because your site is listed higher on the results page organically. Most customers won’t click past the first page. If your site isn’t currently being displayed on the first-page search results, you may want to improve your SEO strategy.

How Does SEO Benefit You?

An article posted by Moz details how every single click on a paid search result will generate 8.5 clicks on organic results ; this could be explained by consumers becoming more aware of the differences between organic and sponsored results. Consumers have also begun to respect more organic results versus paid counterparts. Having an organically high search result for your keywords will not only build credibility and trust in your site, but it’ll also increase web traffic to your site. Using SEO to increase your organic presence is a cost-effective and sustainable strategy to employ because your organic search ranking won’t decrease once your budget or campaign ends.

What Are the Drawbacks of SEO?

The biggest drawback of using organic SEO to rank higher is it should be used in your long-term strategy instead of short-term. It can take up to a year to increase your site’s relevance score; however, once you can get your relevance score up, Google will naturally rank your site higher. Another drawback is the difficulty of ranking all your relevant keywords. You can also run into issues with the algorithm, which will rank you high one day, but then decrease your rank another day. And of course, SEO is focused on content, meaning you have to create a lot of said content yourself or hire a writer (possibly even a team) to help you.

What Is Pay-Per-Click (PPC)?

Pay-per-click—also known as paid results—are advertisements that webpage owners have paid to display at the top of the search results page. These paid listings are only charged to the advertiser’s account once someone clicks on the ad (hence the name pay-per-click).

How Can PPC Benefit You?

The biggest benefit of pay-per-click is you can potentially increase your traffic today. Once you have your campaign set up, your ads will run instantly, bringing more traffic to your site. This allows your site to scale up faster. Another benefit of paid searches is that they allow you to specifically target a geographic location that will bring more relevant traffic to your site; whether you want to target people around your local business or to venture to new areas around the world, paid searches to be a useful asset. Also, paid search results help you to create aggressive landing pages that can focus primarily on conversions. With SEO, the pages that rank the highest have a lot of content, with roughly two thousand words, which will cause people to focus on content rather than converting. One last big benefit of pay-per-click is that your paid ad will appear on the first results page, no matter where your site ranks organically. This will not only bring more conversions, but it’ll also build brand awareness.

What Are the Drawbacks of PPC?

A major potential drawback of pay-per-click is once your campaign or money stops, then your advertising stops. This is why pay-per-click is viewed as a short-term marketing strategy. It can be quite expensive, as you’re paying per visitor clicks on your ad. It’s also difficult to run a truly effective campaign, which could lead to you burning through your budget quicker than expected.

Why You Should Incorporate Both PPC and SEO

As mentioned earlier, search engines are like real estate, and the more real estate you have (especially on the front page), the more your brand awareness grows and traffic and revenue increase. Both options will increase your revenue, one more in the short run (PPC) and one more in the long run (SEO), which is a great reason why you should employ and utilize both. (If you’re a startup, you might want to consider increasing your PPC efforts while you work on your SEO.) Since both sides have their advantages and disadvantages, using PPC and SEO will balance out the negatives of each. The most important thing for your business is to find what marketing strategies work and stick with them, while also searching for new strategies, techniques, and technologies along the way.

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