You don’t need to be an expert in all things marketing to understand the value of a digital strategy for your business. Your goal is to get loads of online traffic funneling toward your website because this is how leads are formed and conversions are made. The goal is simple, but the process isn’t. There’s a lot of advice out there about which digital strategy is best for producing the results you need. 

The only problem is this advice usually doesn’t take into consideration the unique nature of your individual business. Even with so much advice floating around, each business is forced to answer the age-old question for themselves – SEO or PPC, which is better for my company?

There’s no short and sweet answer to this question. Each has their own strong points and weaknesses, and each is going to perform for your business in different ways. Often the answer can’t be found in one or the other. This is why many businesses take a combined approach or continually adapt their strategy to highlight one over the other as their marketing goals and needs change.

So, where do you begin in deciding which strategy is best for you? Here’s a breakdown of the pros and cons of PPC and SEO for your business.

What Is SEO?

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a strategy that’s designed to increase the amount of organic traffic moving toward your website. In digital marketing terms, organic means “free”, and this is one of the primary benefits of SEO.

For many businesses, SEO is their first step into digital marketing. Yes, search engine optimization can cost in terms of resources, the purchase of SEO tools or outsourcing, but you’re not paying search engines or any other platform to help you generate traffic.

Because marketing budgets aren’t always high on the list of priorities for new and smaller businesses, SEO is the logical, safe choice. If you’re in any way concerned about the impact of spending too much on marketing, SEO eliminates these worries.

This isn’t in any way to say that SEO is the “cheap” choice. Search engine optimization is incredibly valuable in today’s digital space. Internet users have become fatigued, or even immune, to the constant bombardment of businesses trying to get their attention with PPC ads. With SEO, you’re encouraging traffic, but your audience still feels as though it’s all happening on their terms.

SEO has other benefits as well. These include:

  • Increases online visibility
  • Helps to build brand awareness
  • Establishes brand credibility
  • Provides a sustainable boost in traffic
  • Provides analytical data that helps you learn more about your target audiences
  • Low risk allows for painlessly testing and adapting your strategy
  • Elevates about the heap of competition online
  • Low cost/high return results
  • Easily scalable and is accessible at any budget level

If there’s a downside to SEO it’s that it takes some time, and often quite a bit of trial and error, to really start seeing results. SEO is best suited for businesses that have a little time to spare before they need to start seeing traffic pour in. It’s also a great choice for businesses that are looking to build up their credibility and presence online.

At the end of the day, search engine optimization is well suited for practically every business, but there are times when your digital strategy might need a little push. This is where PPC enters the picture.

What About PPC?

In contrast to search engine optimization, pay per click (PPC) strategies require a bit more of a financial investment, however the payoff is usually worth it. The premise behind PPC is pretty simple. You create a digital ad, place on search engines or other platforms, and then pay a predetermined fee each time someone clicks on your ad.

From a paid marketing standpoint, PPC is genius – especially compared to non-digital forms of paid advertising. Those television ads, magazine spreads, and billboards? They all cost money but there’s a lot of potential impact that’s wasted on people who aren’t at all interested in what’s being advertised.

PPC as a paid strategy is super targeted. Businesses create optimized ads that are designed to capture the attention of an audience that’s most likely to convert. Then, only those who are interested enough will click to learn more. With PPC, you don’t get a lead or conversion out of every click, but your cost per acquisition is significantly lower than with other strategies.

Some of the other benefits of PPC include:

  • Fast – you can see results within days, even hours – rather than weeks
  • Targeted toward audiences with higher conversion potential
  • Reaches audiences at exactly the right time
  • Scalable, with options that can be tailored to your budget
  • Controlled costs
  • Impressive ROI
  • Increases brand exposure
  • Easy to track and compare campaigns
  • PPC retargeting ads give you a second chance with missed opportunities

You don’t need a huge budget to get started with pay per click advertising, which makes it a great choice for any business that’s looking to see a quick surge in traffic and conversion. The downside is that you may need to experiment, test and repeat several times before you find the magical sweet spot for your PPC ads. Pay per click ads are ideal for businesses that need immediate results or are launching a new product or service that they want to draw attention to.

Discover the Yin and Yang of Digital Marketing with a Boston SEO Company

Would you like to learn more about whether SEO or PPC is the right choice for your business? We’re the SEO company in Boston that’s ready to sit down and help you explore your options. Your business is unique, and that means your approach to digital marketing should be too. What you need is a partner in elevating your business online that knows digital marketing like the back of their hand. SEO and PPC can both work beautifully for helping your business take flight. Contact GoingClear today and let us show you how.