To pay or not to pay, that is the question. Unfortunately, much like Hamlet’s dilemma, there is no easy answer to Search Engine Optimization versus Pay Per Click advertising. While arguments can be made whether either is the better choice, both have some major disadvantages that come with them. Aye, there’s the rub.
So, let’s take a look at the good and the bad.
Organic Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – The Good
– Trustworthiness – Statistics have shown that people trust search engine results more than paid advertising.
– Better results in the long run – Statistics also show that the conversion rate for search engine visitors is nearly 20% higher than PPC.
– Clicks don’t cost – Unlike PPC advertising, you do not have to directly pay for each visitor.
Organic SEO – The Bad
– It’s complicated – SEO is about a lot more than just picking the right keywords (i.e. domain authority, backlinks or inbound links and URL or page name choices). Most companies turn to consulting firms or even hire a full time SEO specialist.
– It takes time – Both Rome and Page 1 Google Results were not built in a day.
Pay Per Click (PPC) – The Good
– You’ll get results faster – With PPC, you can ensure that your advertisement shows up when you want it, where you want it.
– It can be more cost effective – Although you’re paying for each click, in the short run, you may end up paying less than you did for a consulting firm. Results will vary!
– It’s in-house friendly – With PPC, you can set your campaign, set your budget and go. This is ideal for companies that don’t have time or cash for long term SEO campaigns.
PPC – The Bad
– It’s an ad – This means that people know you’re paying for their attention. It’s much better to earn their trust by letting them find you.
– Keywords determine your cost – Depending your chosen keywords, it can be very costly to be on the first few pages.
The truth is, if you’re looking for long term results and you have the resources, organic SEO is the only answer. But that doesn’t mean it’s the right answer right now for you. The best way to make this decision is to review the pros and cons and decide what’s best for your organization. Find out if you need a long or short term solution, determine your budget, see what your employee resources are and then build your plan from there.
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