SEO Natural Search vs PPC – an Age Old Debate

Ian Hancock Pay Per Click, Search Engine Optimisation

SEO Natural Search

There are hundreds of debates that revolve around SEO natural search and paid for results i.e PPC. A question we are often asked by prospective clients is; ‘why do I need to wait a while to perform in natural search results when I can pay to appear at the top today?’ It’s not a question that we struggle to answer as the benefits of SEO and natural search far outweigh those of PPC and paid for adverts.

Using SEO to appear in natural search results is, in most cases, a more solid approach than just PPC because it is a long term solution to a long term problem. PPC is a short term solution that can leave you out of pocket with nothing to show for it.

When you employ SEO techniques you have to wait but your patience is rewarded. When results are eventually achieved you are guaranteed to appear for your targeted keywords (as long as you are on page one). With PPC you can only appear as often and as high up as your budget dictates. What’s more, once your PPC budget runs out you are back where you started. Your entire SEO budget, on the other hand, contributes to your end goal.

PPC is ideal, however, if you are after a quick win. For example; you have some leftover stock that you need to sell quickly. In this scenario you simply don’t have time to wait for SEO to take effect so PPC is the obvious solution. Moreover PPC can work alongside SEO as part of a comprehensive online marketing strategy. Sometimes there are terms that your SEO budget simply won’t be able to achieve and PPC may be the only way to appear for very competitive keywords.

It’s important to consider your goals when choosing the road you wish to go down. SEO natural search is usually the route we advise but there are some cases when PPC is preferable.