In an effort to grow your business online, you may be wondering whether you should invest your time and money in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) or Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising. So, you may be asking, SEO vs PPC — which is better for your business?
Like most things in life and business, both SEO and PPC have their advantages and disadvantages. You may be wondering though; is one better than the other?
To answer this question: SEO vs PPC — which is better for your business? Let us first, look at what SEO and PPC are in simple terms. Then, we will review some advantages and disadvantages of both SEO and PPC.
What is SEO or Search Engine Optimization?
SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is the process of getting your website and its contents optimized so that it can appear as high as possible on search results from search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing.
To achieve this higher ranking in search engine results, you will need to find out what your potential customers are searching for online. Then, you will need to know what keywords or search phrases they are using in those searches. Then, you need to produce content or optimize content already on your website to rank higher for those keywords or search phrases.
Keep in mind that it is important that you follow Google’s best practices for SEO as you work on optimizing your website. Failour to do so can result in serious ranking problems and Google penalties that may render your website and its pages invincible on Gogle search results.
What are the advantages of SEO?
There are many advantages of deploying SEO (Search Engine Optimization) as part of your marketing strategy. Let us look at just three of these SEO advantages.
1. The top ranking result of SEO that is properly done can last for a long time. When you get your webpages or content to rank higher in search results, thos rankings can hold and you can continue to receive quality traffic and leads for a long time.
2. SEO is cost effective or less expensive compared to PPC. Compared to the cost of setting up and maintaining a solid PPC campaign, SEO is very cost effective. A higher ranking on search results will enable you to receive consistent website traffic. And you do not have to pay for this traffic as you would with PPC. Imagine if your website is in the first position on Google search results for your competitive search phrase. The lead opportunities are limitless.
3. Strong credibility and trust. Ranking higher organically builds stronger credibility and trust as compared to gaining top position due to PPC ads.
What are the disadvantages of SEO?
Let us look at three key disadvantages of SEO.
1. SEO is slow and takes time to see the desired results compared to PPC. It can take many months after putting hard work in optimizing your website before you can start seeing the desired result. If you are looking for an instant result in website traffic or leads, then SEO is not for you.
2. SEO is never 100% complete or your website will never be 100% fully optimized. It is an ongoing process as SEO keeps evolving. It can be a challenge to keep up with the ever-changing SEO landscape either because of limited budget resources or technical limitations. The silver lining here is that persistent and continuous optimization can yield excellent results.
3. High quality content is a must to make significant headway in organic search ranking. It is important to note that search engines such as Google are keen on building trust with users. So, they focus on high quality content. The need for quality content can put a strain on a business owner with limited resources. Hence, they are unable to make headway on achieving a meaningful organic SEO ranking.
If you are a small business owner with limited marketing resources and needs help with SEO, contact us. We can look into what we can do for your business within your current limitations.
Now, let us talk about PPC or Pay-per-click advertising. What is PPC? What are the advantages and disadvantages? And when can you use pay-per-click advertising?
What is PPC or Pay-Per-Click?
PPC or Pay-per-click is an online advertising method used to drive traffic to websites and generate leads. In this form of internet marketing, an advertiser pays when their ads are clicked. Hence the name pay-per-click. PPC allows advertisers to advertise in search engines. This enables the advertiser to get immediate results from targeted traffic to the product or services being advertised.
What are the advantages of PPC?
Let us look at just four advantages of PPC that can significantly benefit your business.
1. You can get quick results with PPC. Unlike SEO which can take many months to see meaningful results, PPC produces quick results. All you need to do is to setup and launch a well-structured PPC campaign. Ads click, traffic, and conversions can be immediate.
2. You can experiment with your PPC campaign quickly and easily. With PPC, you can set up a campaign and run A/B tests to monitor what works and what does not work. All you can do very quickly. SEO on the other hand, is a slower process. That is why it takes time to come to any meaningful conclusion regarding the success of an SEO campaign or strategy. With PPC, you can even achieve this within 24 hours.
3. Unlike SEO, your PPC account and results can be controlled. You can set the limit of your budget and your cost per click. This allows you to have a clear idea of the amount of clicks you will receive.
4. You can accurately target single or multiple demographys and regions or locations. You can target people by gender, age, occupation, interest, education, etc. However, you cannot zero in on your targeted audience this way with SEO. With SEO, you primarily target keywords or phrases potential customers are using in search.
What are the disadvantages of PPC?
Though PPC is excellent for fast results, there are some disadvantages. Let us look at some of these PPC disadvantages.
1. You have to pay to get good results and it can be really expensive. This can cause a significant dent in your advertising budget, especially if you are in a highly competitive niche or industry. Some businesses experience low ROI and higher spend due to the competitive nature of their niche and the aggressive bidding war to out rank competitors.
2. PPC can be like a tap faucet to your marketing effort. As soon as you turn off your PPC campaign, the clicks, traffic and leads will immediately stop. This can become a huge problem for businesses that need to redirect their PPC/marketing budget to something else because of limited budget resources. Most businesses will find it difficult to survive as the reduction in lead will mean no revenue for the business.
3. There is still a huge problem with Roboclicks or Click Fraud. Rogue competitors who choose not to play by the rules can use automated tools and manual clicks to rack up your advertising spend.
So SEO vs PPC — which is better for your business?
The answer to this question is — it depends on you. Your marketing goals, the financial, time and human resources available to you can all impact whether you choose SEO or PPC.
If you want immediate results, have the budget and expertise or can afford to hire an expert to setup a well-structured campaign, the PPC should be your choice.
However, you should choose SEO if you are not looking to generate immediate leads. You should choose SEO if you want to build a lead generation source that can last for the long run without you having to pay for it.
SEO vs PPC — which one do we recommend?
For maximum results, we recommend doing both to complement each other. This way, the keyword and conversion data from both SEO and PPC can be used to improve both PPC and SEO marketing campaigns. You can create high quality content to rank organically for high performing keywords in your PPC campaign.
Don’t try to choose between SEO vs PPC, except if you don’t have the resources to run both. And if you have to choose between SEO and PPC, make the choice based on your marketing goals and available resources.
If you need help to achieve the durable double growth effect of both SEO and PPC, contact us here at Compuvate. We would be delighted to work with you. We can help you with both search engine optimization services, Google Ads setup and management and other PPC services. Compuvate is an accredited Google partner agency.