When we talk to our clients about organic and paid search advertising, we often get asked “Which one should we choose?” or “Which one is better?” This is a bit of an unfair question, as they are both two completely different pieces of property. It’s a common misconception to pit paid advertising and organic advertising against each other, when in truth – they actually complement each other tremendously.
Let’s start with organic. Natural page one, position one ranking; this is what everybody wants. And why wouldn’t you want that? You’re not paying for people to click on your link, there’s a high level of trust on where the link will take you, it’s effective, and it promises rewarding results. You know that whatever those first few links are, they’re going to be relevant and will likely give you all the information you’ll ever need to know without having to visit another website.
Paid advertising on the other hand, seems to be the digital marketing medium that most companies feel they don’t need. Perhaps this is because there’s a stigma that paid ads aren’t as in touch with the keyword you’re entering, or maybe it’s because paying money every time someone clicks can be a deterrent for many. But if you’re discrediting paid advertising because you think it’s leading you to a landing page that has nothing to do with what you’re searching for, it’s time to get brought up to speed. Paid advertising is relevant, more so than it’s ever been before, and that isn’t going to be changing anytime soon. With that established, it’s time to start arming yourself with reasons why both organic and paid should be actively engaged at all times.
The main downside with organic optimization is the time it takes for it to move up the ranking ladder. Very rarely will your landing page show up on page one instantaneously. It often takes weeks or even months for it to rise to a position that’s pertinent. This is when a paid advertising campaign can come in handy. By taking the same landing page you’re trying to rank organically and optimizing it on the paid side of Google’s real estate, you’re bypassing that agonizing waiting period while your page organically moves up at the cost of missed traffic and conversion opportunities. You’re on page one right away. By the time your organic placement has reached that top position, you won’t have missed a beat and you’ll already have new business to boot. But what happens when you now have a page one position one organic placement? Do you shut off your paid advertising campaign?
Try googling the word “running shoes”. You may notice some familiar brands popping up on both the organic and the paid side. So the question is – why are they advertising on both? If a company has page one position one status organically, why spend more money on the paid side of things? The answer is simple: utility.
There are advantages to having a PPC (pay per click) campaign, and that is the level of customization that can be applied to each of your ads. You’re not just advertising one landing page, you’re essentially compacting your entire website into a miniature PPC ad. You can have multiple links pointing to a shopping cart, an “about us” page, other products or services you offer, a newsletter subscription page, your company’s address and phone number. You can establish multiple conversion points in one ad, something that organic simply cannot do as effectively. PPC Ads can be created and modified on the fly, meaning if you have a new product, service, or advertising campaign you want to launch, there won’t be any waiting period.
By combining the familiarity of organic advertising and the utility of paid advertising, you’re putting yourself in an authoritative position to market to all audiences without excluding anyone. Not to mention you’re taking up more real estate on Google and Bing – something you can never have too much of.
In conclusion, the perception of “paid versus organic” advertising needs to be abolished. They should never be looked upon as competing initiatives or “one or the other”. They should be viewed as two crucial (albeit different) digital marketing mediums that should both be engaged at all times.
For more information about organic or paid advertising, or if you’d like to start an organic SEO/PPC program for your business, call us. We’ll have you soaking up page one property in no time!