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PPC Or SEO-Which Should You Choose?

The number of consumers making purchases online continues to rise, many companies now use Search Engine Marketing (SEM) to try and drive more visitors to their web site so they can take advantage of this growing market.

There are two main forms of SEM that can be used, they are Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). It seems that people are often unsure as to which type of SEM to choose when promoting their business.

PPC - This form of advertising brings traffic to a web site through visitors clicking on an advert, every time the advert is clicked a charge is made to the advertiser. The advertiser bids on certain keywords to bring only relevant traffic to their web site. Through this process they can control the total level of their advertising budget.

SEO - A number of different factors relating to a web site can be altered to make it appear higher in search engine rankings and therefore attract more visitors. The factors that can be changed include the site content, the actual coding of a site and the external links which point to it.

The best type of SEM to use in order to promote a business online depends on the specifics of the market and the goals of the company.

Benefits Of PPC

In most cases the web site does not need to be changed at all.

It is very quick, you can often start seeing results within hours of activating a campaign.

You only pay when your advert is clicked.

You can pick which keywords to bid on.

The results can be tracked allowing continual improvements.

You can choose the page that users are sent to.

It is possible to target specific countries and regions.

You can rank highly for any keyword if your budget is large enough.

PPC can be a very effective way to promote a web site. However the main drawback is that once you stop spending your adverts stop showing, there is no long term return for the expense.

Benefits Of SEO

Visitors from search engine results do not cost you a penny.

The rankings a web site achieves through SEO can continue for a long time after the work has been done.

Over the long term SEO can be more cost effective than PPC.

Visitors are more likely to trust a site they find in the rankings, they feel it has been 'approved' by the search engine

The main problem with attracting visitors to a site using SEO is the time it takes to achieve results. You can expect to wait at least a month, and sometimes longer, before you see any real increase in traffic.

Kath Dawson is head of the Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) team at Strategy Consulting Limited. We have a wealth of experience in delivering effective SEO to a wide range of clients. Contact us today to find out how our services could improve the results of your online business.

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