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SEO vs PPC: Striking a Balance

SEO vs PPC: Striking a Balance

Should I be focusing on SEO or PPC to drive traffic to my website? We’ll let you in on a
little secret… utilise both together!
Driving traffic to your website in 2020 may seem like a daunting challenge, after all there’s
so much competition out there, but with the right marketing plan achieving that all important
ROI is possible. SEO (search engine optimisation) and PPC (pay per click) play a big part in
a long-term successful strategy; although both are full of complexities requiring insights,
analytics and skills to master. Many companies fail to implement both into their strategies,
neglecting one for the other, when in reality utilising the strengths of SEO and PPC
simultaneously is the best way to ensure long-term consistent traffic.
To truly strike a balance between the two you must first understand the differing roles that
they play in traffic generation and their benefits:


The clue is in the name; Search engine optimisation is the art of optimising your website to
positively rank in search engines such as Google. Essentially the traffic you generate from
this method is unpaid and ‘organic’. SEO should be seen as a long-term commitment as it
takes time to see your efforts in the rankings, it really is an investment as it adds to your
websites value.
The benefits of SEO are:

  • Increased brand authority – If you’re occupying one of those top 3 slots in the SERPs
    (Search Engine Results Pages), users are more likely to see your information,
    leaving the impression that you’re a go-to authority in your industry. Statistics back
    up the claim that users favour organic results over search ads
  • You will see a bigger ROI with SEO
  • Long-term sustainability – once you’re at the top it can take some time for
    competitors to overtake you and the cost of on-going maintenance is far less than the
    initial investment to claim your position


  • PPC (pay per click) means that you’re essentially paying for every click that comes through
    to your website. Users will search for keywords and targeted ads will appear at the top of the
    page to match these. Sounds great does it? They are, but you must realise that it’s very much
    pay to play and once your campaign is over you’re out of the game – meaning it’s temporary.
    Also, due to the competitive nature of keywords PPC can be a lot more costly, eating through
    budgets much faster than a sustainable SEO campaign.
    The benefits of PPC:
    Speed – PPC can get you to the top quickly
  • Multiplatform – SEO strictly focuses on search engine results but PPC allows you to
    become visible on other sites as well
  • Great for products – works well for eCommerce through product listing ads
  • Split testing – run multiple versions of your ad at the same time with A/B testing

Striking a balance

As you can see from the above, SEO and PPC have their own strengths and weaknesses, have
you considered that the strengths of SEO are the weaknesses of PPC and vice versa? It is this
realisation that can help you strike a perfect balance between the two as they can complement
each other.
Here’s some great ways you can strike a balance between the two:
Identify your strengths and weaknesses – firstly you can analyse if you have a good
organic ranking for a set of keywords generated through SEO, this will save you
allocating a paid budget to phrases you are already dominating and allow you to
spend on keywords that don’t have as much traction

  • Control your position – with SEO it’s much harder to precisely control your
    position, PPC can pick up the slack whilst your keyword is gaining traction
    organically. This is the best method when competing with high page rank sites and
    more influencing brands. SEO is the ultimate goal in this scenario but PPC will bridge
    the gap
  • Rapid Testing – PPC is a great way of testing out profitable keywords or phrases
    before committing to optimise them over the long-term with SEO
  • Influence On-Site Optimisation Decisions – PPC can be used to quickly test aspects
    of the website design, including conversions, prior to investing in longer term SEO
  • For Time-sensitive Exposure – PPC can be a great option when trying to market a
    time-limited offer, product launch or specific / seasonal event
  • During Peak Times – A combination of PPC and SEO works well during peak
    seasons to dominate the top positions. Any additional % share of clicks can translate
    into valuable orders during the right periods
    We hope that this article has helped you understand the individual role of each method and
    how each has its place and delivers different types of results. With a strategic approach it is
    possible to strike a balance between SEO and PPC for both short-term and long-term success.
    If you’re interested in a company that lives and breathes traffic generation don’t hesitate to
    contact us today.