Do you SEO, PPC, or go both ways?

As you may know customers can get to your website many different ways. This blog is about SEO (search engine optimization) and PPC (pay-per-click). Google, Bing, Yahoo, and other search engines are how your customers find stuff on the web. They pull out relevant information gathered from what you put in your search. Google alone accounts for 3,500,000,000 (3.5 Billion per day) that’s a lot of people looking for answers, products and services every hour of every day.
So how do you find which is the best way for you and your company to the first page on search engines? Both SEO and PPC work, but do you need both? To understand the difference between SEO and PPC, let’s take a look at them and see their strengths and weaknesses.

PPC (Pay Per Click)
Instead of organically and gradually ranking your way toward the top of search results, you pay the search engine to place your website on the top of page instantly. Every time a user clicks on your ad or website, the search engine charges a small fee. One thing to take note, it’s more than money that gets you to the top. It’s also “quality score”, location, relevance, and site functionality. But PPC search words are sold on the open marketing, meaning anyone can come along a take your spot if they want to pay more. Here are some of the top keyword costs per click:

Bail Bonds 58.48    
Casino 55.48    
Lawyer 54.86    
Insurance 48.41    
Cash Services & Payday Loans 48.18    
Cleanup & Restoration Services 47.61            
Loans 40.69    
Plumber 39.19    
Termites 38.88    
Pest Control 38.84    

That means every time you click on a website paid ad in a search that price will be charged to the company. They are charged even if you leave in a couple of seconds.

Now to the reality of PPC. Most businesses will be in the $.30 to $.80 per click cost. Whatever the price you pay, you need to maximize what the customer is looking for, so mark the center of your target and go for it. All you need is the right words (AdWords) and a credit card. Far and away this is the fastest way to get traffic to your site.

SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Search engine optimization is more of an art. The goal here is to rank your website on top of the search engine results naturally and organically. Many web visitors know that the listing at the top of each page are paid for and choose the results below the paid ad because it is “natural & organic”. The strength in ranking your website higher through SEO lies in the fact that when your website shows up as a response in the search query, it won’t be marked as an ad. Three quarters of the millennials hardly ever click on the paid ads. They feel organically ranked websites are more trusted than the paid ads. So if millennials are your target audience go natural, go organic, lead with your knowledge and content. SEO is also free, or extremely cheap way of making your website, and that is huge benefit. But free isn’t effortless, you have to invest in your own time to develop quality content and efficiency on your site. If your website is not responsive (works good on a smart phone) don’t bother; Google just announced that searches will rank mobile optimized websites ahead of others. Even if your market is mostly made of people using desktop computers, you have to look better on a smart phone in order to get found. Google is always tweaking the search rules and you need to keep up. IT NEVER ENDS. If you were involved in SEO a few years ago, you used Meta Tags— we all did. Now if you have Meta Tags on your site without content corresponding to the Meta Tags, get them off your site or it will kill your search results.

So lets sum up, the main difference between the two, SEO (time) and PPC (money). Best practice is to use a mix of these two to get consistent traffic right from the start. Use PPC to jump start the traffic coming to your website, and also gradually working on your SEO efforts to maintain the flow of traffic. If you need some help APi-marketing is here for you.

Published by

Brad Weston

Brad has over 35 years of print and marketing communications experience. In his older years he is still a bit of a “smart-ass” but is working on being less obnoxious. He thrives on being an alchemist, seeing things of value when others do not.