Organic SEO vs. Paid SEO (SEM)
WHAT IS SEO AND SEM?
- SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. SEO is the activity of ensuring that a website can be found in search engines for words and phrases relevant to what the site is offering.
- SEM stands for Search Engine Marketing. SEM is a form of online marketing that promotes websites and increases their visibility to search engines through paid advertising.
WHY IS SEO IMPORTANT?
The main goal that practicing good SEO can achieve, is making it to the top of the Google search page when searching for a specific keyword or phrase. This is all dependent on an algorithm that each search engine formulates. In more simple terms, search engines such as Google and Bing can filter out content that is not relevant to the search terms or that doesn’t contain original or quality content. SEO is of great importance because it directly relates to the content quality and relevance of a website.
WHAT IS ORGANIC (NATURAL) SEO?
Achieving organic Search Engine Optimization is the process that is used to increase traffic to a certain website by following a set of guidelines. There are many factors that go into having good SEO such as: back links, word content, media content, keyword development and more.
ORGANIC SEO BENEFITS
• Credibility: Organic SEO establishes credibility and trustworthiness to customers. If a website is ranked high on Google, a customer is more likely to find the website, but also stay there.
• Results that last: Once Google, or any other search engine, ranks you high because of your organic SEO, they are deeming your site to have relevant and quality content. This is the best way to stay highly ranked for a long period of time with only a little maintenance required.
• Inexpensive: Although generating organic SEO is more time consuming and takes some research, it is basically getting free advertising. And as long as you maintain your content, the search engines will keep you at a high rank.
ORGANIC SEO DOWNFALLS
• Takes time: Any process that is completed without taking any shortcuts is going to take a longer turnaround time to see real results. If you are impatient and don’t want to wait for your website to be ranked on its own, maybe organic SEO isn’t the route for your company.
• Can be Complex: Even the SEO Experts are learning new things every day. With the search engines updating their algorithms frequently and the unpredictability of the World Wide Web, you are never guaranteed a specific outcome. It takes trial and error in order to achieve excellent organic SEO.
WHAT IS PPC?
PPC is a tool used in the SEM process. It stands for pay-per-click which is a quicker way to attract traffic to your website. It is used by online marketers and advertisers whom pay a fee for every visit to their site. PPC campaigns guarantees fast results that may or may not be long lasting.
PAID SEO (SEM) BENEFITS
• Fast results: With paid SEO, your website will immediately start seeing more clicks/traffic. Compared to Organic SEO, the initial results will start to show immensely quicker for fast results.
• Targeted results: Paid SEO (SEM) offers controlled customer targeting. With Organic SEO, it is hard to predict the visitor experience or what kind of visitors you are pulling in. With SEM, the advertisers have control over where the ads are exposed.
• Establishes brand awareness: SEM platforms such as Google AdWords, will promote your website at the top of the search page when relevant keywords and phrases are searched for. Even if the customer doesn’t click your ad right away, it will keep popping up for them reminding them of your brand, products and services.
PAID SEO (SEM) DOWNFALLS
• Costs: PPC, meaning pay-per-click, can become quite pricey. Without setting up a proper PPC campaign, the cost is going to outweigh the benefits. In order to be successful with a PPC campaign, an expert may be able to come in help. However, that is another added expense. It is also important to remember that the more successful your PPC campaign becomes, the more expensive it gets.
• Short-term results: With Paid SEO, you may see fast acting results but they are not long term. As soon as you decide the cost is getting too high, or you think you have had a good advertising run and decide to cut the campaign, the traffic will abruptly stop. As fast as Paid SEO put you on top of the Search Engines, it will pull you off just as quickly.
• No sales guarantee: There is no promise that a SEM campaign will generate actual sales revenue. The paid ‘clicks’ you receive, only get your customer as far as opening up your website. It’s the Organic SEO process that actually gets customers to read content, buy products and hire for services.
IS ORGANIC SEO OR PPC BETTER FOR ME?
Organic SEO and PPC show different kinds of results. For a small business that has plans to grow and expand their internet presence that is going to last, start with Organic SEO. Organic SEO will establish quality content which will be recognized by the major search engines and rewarded with high rankings.
So, Organic SEO is a must. However, if your company has the funds to correctly launch a PPC campaign, it can be useful. You just need to be careful that you are investing in the right campaigns. For instance, avoid the overly artificial options to gain traffic and rank that won’t last. With both options, it is smart to consult with an expert before wasting your time and money on a null campaign.