SEO vs PPC: To work together or separately?

SEO vs PPC. It’s a huge debate amongst businesses’ marketing teams – and honestly, it’s still a big topic on our side of things too.

At Embryo, we don’t think that Organic SEO and PPC teams should be put head-to-head when it comes to competing for your budget. Instead, the two work better together as part of a multichannel strategy – something we’ll cover in the following guide.

Read on to learn more about how both channels can boost your online presence and potential. If you’re determined to convert as many clicks into solid leads with a set budget, then combining the two is always better than one.

In this guide, we’ll give you our stance on the matter, with thoughts on some of the more common scenarios our internal teams of industry-leading SEOs and award-winning PPC experts are often faced with.

So, let’s start with the bread and butter of both channels: visibility.

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Which one maximises online visibility best?

There’s a lot of back and forth between visibility as one of the main differences between PPC and SEO. At the moment, with paid ads coming before organic results for the most competitive keywords – combined with the recent introduction of expanded text ads – paid ads appear to rule above-the-fold search results.

In addition, for high commercial intent keywords, paid search listings appear to attract more clicks than organic search listings. When combined with SEO, which ensures organic rankings still populate the search, it shows how different channels can sway the user in the search process – and ultimately, the sales funnel.

A solid SEO strategy can improve click-through rates with useful content during the messy middle navigation phase, while PPC gets a business seen and sold when a customer wants to buy now.

Together? A match made in heaven that targets both users.

Is sharing critical data useful between two channels?

For any campaign, organic or otherwise, keywords are crucial. However, Google no longer provides many organic search terms, so determining the things that actively – and organically – drive to your site is restricted.

This can be easily smoothed, however. SEO teams utilise the Search Terms report in Adwords – a resource that is used day in, and day out by PPC teams.

Although certain metrics have to be met for terms to begin appearing in the report, it can be incredibly useful when it comes to deciding which terms should inform intent-led content.

Plus, Adwords campaigns can be set up fast, helping your team amass data that can also improve SEO efforts.

Choosing to split-test different PPC headlines and descriptions can also provide inspiration for a site’s heading, title and description tags. Keeping an eye on the terms that drew the most PPC conversions and integrating them properly into an organic strategy can also boost revenue.

Does PPC also minimise bounce rates?

One of the three factors determining each keyword’s Quality Score is landing page experience – something that PPC relies on SEO-led content to get right.

The two teams can work together with a content writer to ensure the landing page itself matches the message behind the copy in the ad text. Having a clear follow-through can staunch unwanted bounces, improving the user experience and ultimately, bringing down the cost-per-click.

Can they bring back visitors who didn’t convert first try?

A conversion from a single visit is not the norm. It’s said that 96% of organic search traffic visitors do not convert on the first visit, especially when the vast majority of searches have an informational search intent.

When your user is high up in the sales funnel, that’s where PPC truly shines, bringing visitors to your website with a strong remarketing strategy.

In essence, use a dual-pronged strategy with organic actively driving visitors to your content and becoming brand aware over time. Then, target them with remarketing with the help of your dedicated PPC team and see those sales come pouring in.

Final thoughts

You shouldn’t be debating between PPC and SEO. Your search visibility will be significantly reduced if you ignore SEO or PPC, and handling them as two distinct processes will isolate important data and significantly impact your overall presence online.

Choosing to combine the two gives you a far higher return on investment, as well as a greater understanding of your audiences and important conversion touchpoints.

If you’d like to chat with our in-house experts and find out how we can transform your sales funnel, get in touch with us today.

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