PPC vs SEO: Which Is Right for Your Digital Marketing Strategy?

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Traffic is the lifeblood of every business website. And for the most part, marketers use two different methods to get traffic moving: SEO and PPC services.

This leads us to a very important question: which one is right for your digital marketing strategy? In general, both are effective in driving results for your business, but in different ways and means.

For this post, we sat down with our PPC and SEO specialists to discuss the right approach for your website. We also listed some tips to help you decide which one works for your business best. Read on and see how we can help!

How Does SEO Work?

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a strategy that you can use to boost your organic rankings on Google, Bing, and other search engines.

Through optimization, you’ll increase your website’s visibility to your target audience. This will result in higher organic traffic and eventually, conversions.

In a nutshell, here are the basics of SEO:
  • Keyword research. Keyword research is the main foundation of every SEO campaign. Here at Top Position, our specialists identify the keywords that your target audience searches for in relation to the product/service you want to promote. This helps us understand user intent and what keywords should be optimized on your website.
  • On-page optimization. Next, we optimize the keywords on various on-page elements. This includes title tags, meta descriptions, headers, and copy. This helps search engines understand what your pages are about.
  • Quality content creation. Content is king in SEO and it’s a powerful tool in driving traffic, leads, and sales to your website. We do this by publishing informative blog posts, videos, and other types of shareable content. This way, we can establish your brand as an authority in your industry, which will attract more organic traffic.
  • Link Building. High-quality backlinks from reputable websites give your website a big boost in terms of rankings. These links act as a vote of confidence for your website’s credibility and trustworthiness in the eyes of search engines.

Pros of SEO:

  • Long-term results. It takes a while for you to see results from SEO, but it’s truly worth the wait. Once you start ranking, you’ll enjoy a long-term increase in traffic, engagement, and conversions.
  • Organic traffic. One of the biggest differences between SEO and PPC is the way they drive traffic to your website. With SEO, you’ll enjoy continuous web traffic without having to pay for each click.
  • Cost-effective. If you don’t have the budget for paid search yet, SEO would be a great starting point for your digital marketing campaigns. It’s cost-effective and definitely a great strategy for new companies who want to take their business off the ground.

Cons of SEO:

  • Time-consuming. Search engine optimization is a full-time job. Search engine algorithms change regularly and you have to be consistent to get good results. If you don’t have the time and skill, it’s best that you partner with an SEO services provider.
  • Uncertain rankings. As we’ve mentioned, ranking algorithms change constantly, which means you have to continuously keep up to maintain your results.
  • Requires technical knowledge. Implementing SEO strategies requires technical expertise, which many businesses don’t have. If you’re also struggling in launching your SEO campaigns, contact us, and our specialists will help.

How Does PPC Work?

PPC or Pay-Per-Click services are a type of paid ads where you can bid on specific keywords or phrases that your target audience searches for. It’s similar to SEO in a sense, but the big difference is that you’ll pay whenever someone clicks on your ads.

Also, PPC services are a very popular strategy since it’s cost-effective. Unlike traditional ads where you pay upfront regardless of the results, PPC campaigns only charge you when someone engages (clicks) on your ads.

If you’re weighing your option between paid search vs. SEO, these basics can help you decide:

  • Keyword Research. Similar to SEO, your PPC campaign starts with keyword research. Our specialist will identify relevant keywords that align with your business and target audience.
  • Campaign Setup. Next, we set up your PPC campaigns on platforms like Google Ads or Bing Ads. We will also set your preferred budget, select target keywords, prepare ad copy, and choose bidding strategies.
  • Ad Placement. Once we finish setting up your campaigns, we make it live where your ads will be displayed on search engine result pages.
  • Cost per Click. Depending on the quality score and keyword competitiveness, your cost per click will highly vary. Still, we utilize various strategies to ensure that your campaigns will be profitable.

Pros of PPC:

  • Immediate results. The main advantage of PPC vs. organic is its instant results. Once your campaigns go live, you’ll see real-time results, clicks, spending, and conversions.
  • Targeted audience. With PPC, you can laser-target your ads to reach specific audiences. We do this by fine-tuning specific demographics, locations, and interests related to the products or services you want to promote.
  • Control over budget. Another great thing about PPC is you can decide how much you want to spend. Also, you can enhance your campaigns anytime to improve their ROI.

Cons of PPC:

  • Costly. For highly competitive industries, PPC campaigns can be expensive due to higher cost-per-click. But as with any investment, higher risk means higher returns.
  • Requires ongoing optimization. Similar to SEO, you need to continuously monitor and optimize your campaigns to achieve the best results.
  • Ad blindness. One big downside between paid media vs. SEO is that some internet users don’t trust ads. They may ignore it completely, and you’ll need to implement a different strategy.

How is Ranking Different When Comparing PPC vs. SEO?

When it comes to the difference between PPC and SEO, one thing you have to consider is how they bring ranking results.

Basically, PPC will bring your pages to the top of search engine result pages instantly. However, it will be marked as ‘Ad’ or ‘Sponsored’, but still, you’ll be in ‘rank zero’ without waiting for months.

Also, the higher your bid is on keywords, the better your ad positions will be. If budget isn’t an issue, Pay-Per-Click campaigns can definitely stack the odds in your favor.

Meanwhile, SEO is quite different in terms of ranking. High-ranking organic pages will appear right below the ‘Sponsored’ pages or those powered by PPC campaigns.

But unlike Pay-Per-Click campaigns, SEO rankings are not based on how much you’re willing to bid. Your position will be based on your keyword relevance, user experience, website authority, and other ranking factors.

SEO vs. paid search: which one should you invest in first?

Both SEO and PPC strategies are powerful marketing tools. But if you want to focus on one strategy in the meantime, the following points can help you choose which one is best:

Use SEO if…

  • You have a long-term vision for your business and want to establish a strong online presence over time.
  • You’re aiming to build brand authority and credibility.
  • You have the resources and patience to invest in long-term optimization.
  • You want to attract organic traffic and reduce your reliance on paid advertising.
  • You’re targeting a specific niche or industry with less competition.
  • You want to improve your website’s overall user experience and usability.

Use PPC if…

  • You need quick results and want to bring your website to the top of SERPs immediately.
  • You’re running a time-sensitive offer or promotion that needs to reach your audience as soon as possible.
  • Your target audience is actively searching for your products or services online.
  • You have a flexible budget for advertising.
  • You want full control over your ad campaigns, including targeting options, ad messaging, and budget allocation.
  • You’re in a highly competitive industry where it’s challenging to rank organically.
  • You want to drive targeted traffic to your specific landing pages or product pages.

Benefits of Using PPC and SEO Together

Why choose one if you can have both? SEO and PPC can go hand-in-hand in boosting your business website’s conversion, online presence, and long-term growth.

Here’s why many of our clients use SEO and PPC as a combo strategy:
  • Increased visibility. When you run PPC and SEO campaigns at the same time, you’re maximizing your online visibility. This will set you steps ahead of your competitors who are only using one method.
  • Improved CTR. Since you’ll appear in both organic and paid searches, you’ll enjoy higher click-through rates (CTRs). This means higher traffic and conversions for your website.
  • Cover All Stages of the Funnel. You can use PPC to cold leads in the early stages of your sales funnel. Meanwhile, you can use SEO to help attract warm leads searching for more specific information or ready to make a purchase.
  • A/B Testing Opportunities. The best way to know which one is best for your business is to try both methods. You can run SEO and PPC campaigns simultaneously to see which one will yield the highest returns. From there, you can allocate your resources more to the strategy that performs best.

Do you want to get all these benefits for your business?

Do you need expert help for your PPC or SEO campaign? Or maybe you don’t know which one suits your business? Whatever it is, Top Position is here to help.

Our team of digital marketing specialists will give you the best of both worlds. With us, you’ll have a partner who will help your business grow through tried and tested marketing strategies.

Can we interest you with a free quote? Contact us today for a free consultation and estimate!

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