HomeFeaturedPay per Click vs Natural (or Organic) SEO

To Click or not to Click?

One of the biggest questions in marketing today is whether on not to use PPC campaigns for advertising a business.  In order for me to give you a good idea of which is good for you I have to explain both in a little bit of detail.

PPC: (Pay Per Click)  This is the purchasing of keywords and Phrases with such companies as Google AdWords, AdZZOO, Yahoo Search Marketing, ect.  The purchasing of the keywords or Phrases takes into account your budget per day or month that you have to spend with them on advertising.  You now have the ability to Geo-target your audience as well, further refining where and when you ad will appear.   Over the last few years lots of money has gone into the PPC campaigns for domestic businesses, and much more will be spent in the coming ones.

  • PPC search advertising continues to be the largest category, growing from $9.1 billion in 2007 to $20.9 billion in 2013. (Source: C|Net News, June 30, 2008)

SEO: (Search Engine Optimization) This is the art and science of using keywords and phrases, and other techniques to bring your web site into view in the organic listing on the search engines.  Whole companies dedicate themselves to optimizing your site for you.  From working on your copy, to better attract the spiders, to meta tags and re-writing the code of your site for better accessibility and indexing.

  • SEO: $1.3 billion (11%) (Source: SEMPO data via Massimo Burgio, SMX Madrid 2008)

But Which one is better to use?

Looking at the graphic on the Google heat map it seems that PPC would not be a good investment for a small to medium sized business.  You can see where most people will click on the listings.  The top 3 of the organic list, NOT the paid advertising.  Why this habit of clicking mostly in the organic listing is there I am not sure.  There are lots of theories to this, but not one theory is more prominent then another.  personally I think it’s because people instinctively shy away from companies that spend lots of money on advertising, while going towards the companies that, in their eyes, know more about their services because their sites are higher up in the listing naturally. (this is just my two cents worth, not fact)

When should I use the PPC, and when should I use SEO?

Typically a company that uses PPC doesn’t have sufficient placement in the search ranking, or needs to get new information about a product or service out quickly. SEO done the right way that will not venture into black hat techniques, takes time to establish on it’s own.

Companies that use a combination of the two   forms of advertising will see the best results in the end.  If you have the time to build the rankings, SEO is your best investment, but to be seen quickly PPC is the only way to go.

Have fun out there,


Google heat map

Google heat map Click for larger image

google heatmap seo vs sem

google heatmap seo vs sem

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