SEO or Google Ads?

Graphic of a web user performing an internet search
May 27 2022 SEARCH & MARKETING

To SEO or to Google Ads. That’s the question.  

Search Engine Optimisation and Google Ads are two online marketing strategies to help businesses increase product exposure and website traffic, which should result in more sales. They both have the main aim of putting a website, product or service at the top of a Search Engine Results Page (SERP). But one of these strategies is the long game and the other is somewhat of a shortcut. Do you know which is which? 

 

What is SEO? 

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a term used to cover various techniques to improve a website’s or website page’s ranking on a search engine (for a specific search term). Some of the SEO techniques include improving the speed of a website, ensuring it works across all device screens, SEO keyword research and writing, meta tags and much more.  

 

How beneficial is SEO? 

SEO can be exceptionally beneficial when done correctly with the help of SEO experts. According to Forbes, websites that rank on the first page of Google receive more than 90% of online traffic for that term. This essentially means if you aren’t on the first page then there is little chance of getting lots of clicks and making many online sales. And the only way to get on the first page of a Google search is to invest in SEO services.  

 

What are Google Ads? 

You’ll notice that at the very top of many SERPs there is a section dedicated to Google Ads. These are businesses that pay for their website or product/service page to be featured at the top of the SERP, above any other website that has invested heavily in SEO to be there. However, you only pay when a user actually clicks on your advert.  

Google Ads are used as a way to drive traffic to a certain product and service because many search engine users will automatically click one of the first links on the SERP. They are also highly targeted, just like social media advertising. Your Google Ads can be configured to only appear in certain locations, at specific times of the day, on some devices and not others and much more.  

 

How beneficial are Google Ads? 

Google Ads are an effective way to market a product or service online. The marketing gurus over at Hubspot agree with us. They state that when an internet user knows they want to buy something online they will click a Google Ad 65% of the time, leaving the rest of the results page to fight it out for the remaining 35% of hopeful buyers.  

 

Should I pay for SEO or Google Ads? 

In an ideal world, you shouldn’t have to choose between SEO services and Google Ads marketing. Both are already proven to effectively market products and services online with potential for exceptional returns. 

But if you have to choose, you should consider SEO as the slower long game that can build a brand and have long-term results and Google Ads as the shortcut to the top of the SERP that brings results as long as you are investing. It might just depend on where your business is at.  

 

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