AdWords Vs SEO – Which Is Better For Your Business?

These days, it seems that everywhere you look there are articles talking about the apparent fierce rivalry of AdWords vs SEO. You may even read through some of them and wonder if some kind of online version of State of Origin had moved into the digital realm of marketing! However, I can assure you this is simply  not the case. In fact, it couldn’t be further from the truth; because in reality, AdWords and SEO truly are a match made in marketing heaven!

So if you’re still asking the same old question, ‘which is better— SEO or AdWords?,’ then this article is for you! While each strategy has it’s own specific purpose, it’s the combination of both paid and organic digital marketing that will really push your business full steam ahead! Below, I’ll explain why two are better than one…

AdWords vs SEO

Image Source: ADG Online

The Limitations Of Relying On Just One Marketing Strategy

While AdWords can be very lucrative for business, as soon as you stop investing, the new leads disappear and your business has nothing left over to show that it ever happened. In a way, it’s a bit like buying take away food—you get what you’re looking for in record time, but soon it’s gone, with nothing to show for your hard earned money. There’s also the fact that you don’t want to be paying for clicks every day for the rest of your life.

With all your eggs in one basket, it means that you’re forever relying on maintaining a steady budget within your Google AdWords account (to ensure your ads show for your keywords). As you can likely gather, this is of course neither a long term nor sustainable online marketing method. Due to the quick and reactive nature of AdWords, it’s most suitable for marketing messages which you need to hit your audience with quickly and effectively. That said, you also don’t want to just rely on SEO, because while organic traffic may be free, it still won’t give you the winning edge that AdWords will.

For example, let’s say that you’re running a pre-Christmas sale within your business with SEO as your main strategy. Now, due to the nature of SEO (how long it takes to build a campaign, waiting for Google to crawl the content on your website, etc.) you’ll find that you’re unable to use SEO to advertise your sale. In fact, Google’s Search Engine Result Pages will be closed off to you entirely, leaving you to have to rely on other digital marketing means. If however, you had invested in AdWords, you’d be able to create ads with keywords specific to your pre-Christmas sale and have your ad triggered whenever those keywords were entered via search.

This is why you want to combine the power of both AdWords and SEO—because while each serve different purposes, I believe that it is the combination of these two marketing strategies together that can really drive your business onwards and upwards. For example, in 2010 a well-known NYU study found that when paid search advertising was active (and both sponsored and organic listings were available to consumers) ‘the combined click-through-rate from both of these listings was 5.1% higher than when paid search advertising was inactive, and only organic listings were present.’ (Yang & Ghose, 2010). Likewise, it’s been found that a combined SEO and PPC effort can result in traffic improvement by up to 96% (according to Google’s Research blog).

When used together as two sides of the same coin, AdWords and SEO can satisfy all your search engine marketing needs! These two guys are your main revenue drivers, so it makes sense to not just invest in one, but both!

Want to know more? Sign up for our upcoming Optimise Webinar: AdWords & SEO – a Match Made in Heaven! Oh, and did we mention it’s completely free? What are you waiting for!