If I had a penny for every time I heard someone say SEO is better than PPC, or PPC is better than SEO, I’d have a lot of pennies. (I’d also be really annoyed. I hate having lots of pennies.) One of the reasons it makes me roll my eyes is because the two are often portrayed as being in a battle against each other. A popular way of putting it is that it’s “natural” (SEO) versus “paid” (PPC).

seo-vs-ppc

When you use words like “natural” and “paid”, there seems to be a more positive balance on the former. And this is one of the things that often works against PPC methods in the minds of business owners looking for the best strategy. PPC is often associated with huge costs. A lot of this stems from misunderstandings about the need to be number one.

See, its possible to be number one in Google search results without paying huge amounts of money. In SEO rankings, it takes a lot more nuance and ingenuity, but not necessarily a bucketload of cash. In the world of PPC rankings, however, getting to number one requires a lot of money. It’s brute force through the medium of money. Only massive, multi-million dollar companies should be betting for the number one spot in PPC rankings.

The resulting cost of getting the number one position in paid search results will drastically reduce how much you earn via your campaign. Only very rich companies will really see any benefit. But what the PPC naysayers are forgetting is this: the optimal position for both profit and visibility will vary for each company.

A small business will find it much more useful to be somewhere in the 10-7 position. Even smaller businesses can still see visibility improvement as long as they’re in the rankings at all. PPC isn’t a zero-sum game! There are good reasons that PPC is still the most popular form of online marketing. And if you ever feel stuck, you can work with a PPC management agency.

Here’s one of the biggest misconceptions in the world of online marketing. There’s an idea that business owners have to choose between SEO and PPC. You can only have one, not both. Even if you tried to use both, the two would just conflict with each other. You’ll end up spending too much. You’ll be spreading yourself too thin.

All those “warnings” need to be taken with a pinch of salt. In fact, they need to be taken with a handful of salt. Because the fact is that PPC and SEO can not only work together very well - they can actually be used to boost each other’s efficacy. Fact: using the data that results from a good PPC campaign can guide your SEO strategy.

At the end of the day, you need to realise that it’s not as clear-cut as “SEO or PPC”. For some, SEO will work best. For others, PPC will. For most, a mix of both will come in useful and may even turn out to be the best way to go about it. But one thing you need to remember is that good SEO isn’t free. It’s not quite as “natural” as it’s often made out to be!