For a long time now, we have been asked so many questions concerning which the best marketing strategy for a business is between SEO and PPC. When you Google the same question, the majority of the answers you will get is, “It depends.” Well, these sites never truly answer the question you have been yearning an answer for. This article, however, will finally answer your question.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Without getting into the nitty-gritty of what Search Engine Optimization is all about, it can be understood in layman terms as an ‘organic’ lead generation strategy. In general terms, it is all about optimizing your website in order to boost their position in web search results. To top it all, SEO is available to anyone free of charge! Well, kind of. It mostly requires the right skills and patience to pull it off.
Advantages of SEO
- Increased site usability
While making your site easier for search engines to navigate, you are also making the website navigable by your site visitors. User experience is now a very important factor used for ranking.
- Increased brand awareness
Sites which appear on the top pages of search results are perceived to be more trustworthy. The end goal of SEO is to optimize your site to appear on top of the search engine results pages.
- Increased ROI
Comprehensive analytics provides traceable and quantifiable results.
Search Engine Optimization mainly consists of slowly building up a website to the top and the only costs you incur are labour/agency costs. No recurrent expenditure needed. No need to pay anything to Google.
- Increase traffic
Having top results on search engines means more clicks to your website and more engagement. It increases your chances of selling to a large audience. However, you cannot sell by securing the top positions alone, like any other platform, you need to make sure you provide the information your target audience is looking for. I highly recommend posting high-quality content on your website regularly.
- Long lasting results
If done correctly, within Google’s guidelines, then the rankings can last for years. As it is not easy to displace a website from the top three positions. However, due to increased competition, you may notice fluctuations in your rankings, this is rare if you have used white-hate SEO techniques. In case of such fluctuations, you may need to continue posting engaging content on your website and share it on different social platforms, soon after posting the article on your blog. Do not forget to link to other related blog posts on your website and make sure your content is optimized for the Search Engines as well as real people.
The drawback of SEO
- It is quite time-consuming. The process is rather slow and does not generate quick results.
- It is difficult to find the right SEO specialist with so many scammers out there.
- You will not know how SEO is carried out unless you possess the basic knowledge of SEO and ask for the required reports.
- Agencies often provide the ranking reports which do not give any details of the actual work done on the website.
- You have no control over the quality of links being created to your website and the content used for creating those links. We advise logging into your Search Console to see the linking domains and pages if the agency refuses to provide the link building report. However, if the agency is using white hat SEO techniques then they have nothing to hide. At Smart Digital Marketing, we provide a full SEO Link building report, On-site report, to name a few.
Pay-per-click Advertising (PPC)
Just as the name, PPC generally means paying for visitor clicks to your website from search engines such as Google. With PPC, you can quickly leverage the visitors who search for something using the keyword provided. Your site appears on top of the list of search engine results by bidding and paying for traffic which clicks on your ads.
Advantages of PPC
- No more waiting
SEO can take even months for results to be seen. With PPC, results are instant. You will start seeing more traffic generated to your website, clicks, and also conversion.
You can choose the type of targeted people by certain factors such as demographics.
The drawbacks of PPC
- It requires a lot of skill to set up a successful PPC campaign. Most companies prefer outsourcing from experts.
- Clicks do not automatically lead to conversion. You can find that money is wasted on people who do not convert.
- Costs can rapidly shoot up especially when you are not monitoring your campaigns. Since money is needed, you will need to allocate some in your budget unlike for SEO where only time is required.
- Proves to be expensive over time.
- Where Organic rankings are your asset built overtime, PPC is an expense. Organic rankings will last for years or drop gradually. On the contrary, the day you stop paying Google, you are removed from the top page forever. It is only good as long as you have a high marketing budget.
SEO vs. PPC: Which is the ultimate winner?
Both of these ways are very powerful as a marketing strategy. SEO has long-term effects while PPC only has short-term results. Our verdict? SEO is the ultimate winner. Below are our top five reasons why we think so;
- Paid ads are less appealing. According to a report, organic results are 8 times more likely to get clicked than paid ads.
- SEO provides long-lasting results, unlike PPC which runs out after your campaign is over.
- SEO is way less costly.
- SEO can be viewed on a number of search engines at once unlike PPC which only appears on one (The one that has been paid for)
- Statistics from WebpageFX clearly shows how more traffic is brought about by SEO and not PPC.
To sum it up…
SEO and PPC are complementary. When combined, they make very powerful marketing strategies. However, for a long-lasting and cost-effective method, focus on SEO. While you wait for SEO results, you may consider investing in PPC to supercharge your overall search marketing results.