AdWords vs SEO – Which is Best For Your Marketing

Should you promote your business on AdWords or through search engine optimization (SEO)? Originally launched October 23, AdWords is Google’s pay-per-click (PPC) advertising platform. It allows advertisers to create targeted ads that are displayed only when a user searches for one of their keywords. SEO, on the other hand, is a catch-all term used to describe the process of optimizing a website for higher search rankings.

SEO Pros and Cons

One of the biggest benefits of SEO is its low cost. Aside from traditional website expenses like a domain name and web hosting, you don’t have to pay for much else. Of course, you can always pay for professional optimization services, but this isn’t required.

Studies also show that users trust organic results more than PPC ads. Any company can buy a PPC ad, but companies with a top organic search ranking have essentially been vetted by Google. This seal of approval results in a higher level of trust and confidence among users.

Although it’s cheaper than PPC, there’s no guarantee that your website will rank high for your target keywords. You can exhaust countless hours and resources into optimizing your site, only to discover little-to-no change in its search rankings. This, of course, is a fundamental disadvantage of SEO.

AdWords Pros and Cons

With AdWords, you are guaranteed a top placement if you bid higher than other advertising competing for the same keyword. You don’t have to cross your fingers and hope that Google gives your ad a decent rank. As long as you bid high, you’ll secure a top placement.

AdWords also delivers near-instant results. Granted, it may take Google one to two days to approve your ads, but that pales in comparison to the months-long process of SEO. If you’re promoting a product or service and want to begin generating sales now, PPC is the way to go.

Furthermore, AdWords offers greater freedom over your copy. You can split text a dozen or more ad variants to see what works and what doesn’t. With SEO, making changes to your site’s title or description could result in lower rankings.

However, running an AdWords campaign requires constant monitoring. If traffic from a particular ad or ad group isn’t converting, you’ll need to adjust it; otherwise, you could end up losing money on the campaign. While you can always monitor your own AdWords campaigns, there are companies out there that specialize in PPC management, such as PPC Pro by Local Digital.

As you can see, there are pros and cons to both AdWords and SEO. With that said, you don’t have to limit marketing strategy to using only one of these channels. Combining SEO with PPC will allow you to reap the benefits of both and dominate the competition in the process.

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Ive been blogging now for 5 years on various sites for the love of knowledge share. I decided to start my own blog a few years back to share everything from tech to business news. Follow me on twitter for more.