Which Should You Choose – PPC Vs. SEO

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The classic question asked by any new website owner or online business owner is which technology should I invest in? The point behind this inquiry is to understand if they should opt for a pay per click process or a search engine optimization process.

For an expert on both these topics it may seem to be a no brainer. After all, both these techniques go hand in hand. However, we need to understand that when a person launches an online portal or business, he or she is working with very few funds.  Hence, they are very picky and choosy about which marketing technology should they prioritize.

So let us examine the benefits provided by each of these marketing techniques and attempt to provide an answer to the question.

Let us start the PPC methodology.  When you search for any topic in a search engine, you are presented with a number of results. These results are basically websites that are related to the topic. However, if you notice, you will see some websites being displaced with the word –Sponsored next to them. These results can appear at the top of the page, on the side of the page or in the middle of the page.

These paid advertisements are the PPC method. The word PPC translates into Pay per Click. In other words, an advertiser pays for their link to be displayed on the first page of the search results. This is necessary as it allows them to capture a visitor’s attention and thus increase their chances of a visit and purchase.  This makes it a direct method of advertising and revenue earning.

In contrast, the SEO methodology is much broader in its function. Let us start with the definition. SEO is called as Search Engine Optimization. This technique works on multiple levels. The first level is making the individual’s website and portal compliant to all the rules and regulations imposed by search engines. This includes keyword placement, website design and information posted in the tags in the website’s code.

The second level is the marketing aspect. Here content about the website is written and submitted to various marketing websites. The content includes articles, blogs and even short descriptions on the website. This also includes promoting the website on platforms like Facebook and Twitter.  The thought process is to get a broad range of visitors from different platforms.

If we were to compare, we can clearly see that both methodologies work to a common goal in different ways. While the goal here is to increase the count of genuine visitors, it comes down to the amount available to spend on this activity.

If you look at PPC, its direct methodology means that website owners and managers need to spend on a daily basis to beat competition and reflect in the first page. Even then this is not always a sure shot method. On contrast, with SEO, the higher workload again does not translate into guaranteed visitors.

Back to the original question, well the answer is convoluted. Firstly both these activities have to be long term to get the benefits. Secondly results vary on a daily basis. Hence website owners and managers need to decide which is better for them in the long term. More often than not it is a combination of both which delivers results.

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