PPC versus SEO: Spy vs. Spy

ppc vs seo

ppc vs seoDoes anyone remember the old Spy vs. Spy comics?  Funny stuff! Each Spy always scheming to outdo the other. There is a similar business mindset today when companies are considering a search engine marketing strategy. Business’s immediately pick sides: Pay Per Click (PPC) versus Organic Search (SEO).

The goal of a search marketing strategy is to generate leads or sales. PPC & SEO each have their advantages and can be leveraged to achieve greater ROI.

Complementary PPC & SEO programs can have a significant impact:

  • Increase of nearly 12% in the combined Conversion Rate when Paid and Organic Links are present simultaneously
  • Increase in expected Profits, ranging between 4.5% and 6.2% when both SEO and PPC links appear simultaneously when compared to the absence of one or the other

Source:  Yang &Ghose, NYU, 2009

PPC and SEO – You Have a Friend in Me!

  1. SERP Domination – Leveraging both PPC and SEO together will earn a larger share of the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).  More real estate occupied by one business, means less for its competitors. Also, there will be a greater chance of increasing your overall click-through rates.
  2. Cross Channel Insights – PPC involves more than keywords, it’s also about creating the Text Ad messaging to encourage click-through and landing page design to optimize conversion.  Using high performing PPC Text Ads as part of On-Site SEO meta descriptions should increase organic click-through.   Insights from PPC landing pages can greatly increase overall site conversion.
  3. Improve Overall Results – Everything in search engine marketing starts with the keyword research.  Choosing an SEO target keyword is truly an educated guessing game.  Furthermore, organic rank does not happen overnight and measuring success of the SEO target keywords takes time.  PPC is much easier to implement and quicker to obtain actionable data.  Use PPC to evaluate whether or not a keyword is cost-effective before a ton of time and resources are used to create an SEO campaign that may or may not generate revenue.

In today’s ever-changing online search environment, a business should strongly consider a search marketing strategy that is an on-going integrated combination of PPC and SEO efforts to achieve maximum return on investment.


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    Keyword relevancy is one of the keys to success with Google AdWords. While it may be tempting to include all sorts of keywords you can get your hands on, be aware that this is often the #1 mistake advertisers make when creating their first campaign. You only want prospects who “Need You Now” and are going to be motivated to contact your company, or purchase your services if they click your ad. People bid on the wrong keywords all the time and it hurts them big time. My company was losing an average of $0.67 per click until Simon over at RDM (his email is simon.b@resultsdriven.org) helped us get our ducks in a row with the campaign and now it makes $2.19 per click on average instead of -$0.67. If you speak with him let him know your a friend of Dean Jackson.

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