Paid Ads vs Organic SEO Traffic – Everything You Need to Know

Online Ads Vs Search Engine Optimisaiton

The success of a business can be boiled down to how effective its online digital marketing strategy is, the foresight of that strategy and the ability for the company to meet their desired objectives. No matter the type of business you are in, the size of your company or whether it is B2B or B2C, having a planned strategy for paid ads and for organic traffic via search engine optimisation (SEO) is a necessity.

Paid advertising and organic traffic have always gone hand in hand, despite marketers and businesses deliberating over what is more important, what converts better or where should time and money be invested more in. Irrespective of all arguments for or against paid ads and SEO, the fact is, both are needed, and both can create mass success for a business. This article tackles the contrasting effects of using online ads, whether that may be on social media, paid search, or display advertising, with the organic growth of a website through SEO. These two online digital marketing growth strategies work best in synchronisation with one another to reach separate outcomes but contributing to the same goal, business growth. Instead of organic marketing or paid ads, maybe it is best to differentiate the usage of them both, the specific benefits they both have and what objectives they can best meet.

When to use Paid Ads?

Focusing on paid advertising is important for numerous reasons. For example, if you have high short-term objectives that you need to meet, by running ads you can get instant results. If you are promoting a new product in the market and you want to get as much exposure as possible, online advertising can push your new product to a much greater audience than only relying on organic traffic. Another reason when it could be good to promote your business with paid ads would be to increase brand awareness, showcase who you are and what you do to thousands of people.

Investing in paid advertising is the go-to for short-term success for a business, to achieve quick and measurable results with online advertising investments.

Benefits of using Paid Ads

1. Fits Any Budget

Whether you are spending on paid search with Google or social media advertising on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, or any other platform, you can set the budget requirements and control the amount you wish to spend on a daily/monthly basis.

2. Fast Results

Pay per click and paid advertising can generate instant results and your efforts can be tracked and measured from the get-go. From the moment your ads are live, you can track impressions, clicks, costings, audience demographics and importantly, conversions.

3. Multiple Platforms

There are various platforms online that you can run your ads on, each having a specific purpose and a specific audience. For example, if you run your ads on LinkedIn, you can expect a more B2B approach, professional showcasing and suited for business people and businesses. Whereas, if you are running your ads on Facebook you can expect a different audience that will generate a different outcome.

4. Short-term Sales Targets

As a company, if you find yourself with demanding short-term sales targets and you have the excess cash flow to invest with. Then paid search, pay per click, display advertising and social media advertising can help you meet your business goals. Ads provide quick results, especially if you invest enough money, you can expect to generate results instantly.

5. Measurable

Like any area in business, being able to measure action with results is key. Ad services are completely measurable, and you can track the buyer’s journey from start to finish. Services such as Facebook, Google, LinkedIn and more all have their own analytics platform that you can access and measure your ads performance with.

6. Generate Customer Base

Because online ads push your products and services into newer audiences and markets and the reach extends to people much beyond your organic reach, you collect and collate important audience-defining data. This data can help you generate a customer base (if you do not already have one) or it can help you fine-tune even further the type of audience for your products or services. Therefore, not only do online ads generate a customer base, but they all further define your already existing audience.

7. Direct Objective Approach

Running ads is extremely objective-based and has a direct purpose that you strategise for. Whether you want followers, leads, conversions, traffic, more subscribers, or anything else, you can plan for those results directly. An advertising campaign is only as good as its strategy, therefore, the better the strategy, the better the campaign.

8. Competition

With paid ads, you can make sure to outrank your competition by running optimised ad campaigns. If you know your competition and what terms they rank for, you can run advertising campaigns to try and compete.

Online Advertising Facts – Did You Know?

  1. Small businesses earn an average of €2.50 for every €1.30 spent on Google advertising. (PowerTraffick)
  2. Digital ads spend in 2021 is predicted to surpass €310 billion. (eMarketer)
  3. At least 64% of users click on a Google Ad when looking to purchase (HiveLife)
  4. 72% of internet users say they find new products and brands through paid social media advertising. (Hootsuite)
  5. An average Facebook user clicks on 11 ads per month. (Hootsuite)

When to Focus on Organic Growth?

Now, on the other hand, we have organic traffic, which comes through search engine optimisation (SEO). Organic traffic is the traffic to your website that comes naturally through search engine results pages (SERP). This is simply a user searching a term or keyword on a search engine, such as Google, and then finding your website on the results page (not clicking on a sponsored ad). So, wouldn’t it be great to have all of your website pages be on the first results page for all the main keywords and terms that your users search for? Of course. But every company wants their web pages on the first page and in the top spots, however, this will all boil down to the SEO of the company, the better the SEO, the higher ranking it will have.

Unfortunately, SEO is a long game, you should not expect instant results for high volume keywords. For example, if you sell polo t-shirts and you want to be first for the term “polo t-shirts” this will be unlikely as it is a very popular and in-demand keyword. However, by adjusting the term slightly and trying to attract lower volume keywords, you will better your chances. Instead of trying to rank for “polo t-shirts” maybe try and rank for “blue polo t-shirts” or “silk-cut polo t-shirts” these keywords are long-tail keywords and are more specific, which means it should be easier to rank for these terms.

Focusing on organic growth is extremely important as this is the best way your business and online presence will grow in the long run. SEO is a long-term strategy, and your objectives and planning should be carried out as such. Do not expect overnight results but see an accumulative build-up of progress.

Benefits of Organic SEO Traffic

1. It is FREE

Organic traffic is free. People can find your website and your web pages without you having to pay for them, your clicks and conversions all come for free in a natural way. Therefore, your investment in SEO would be the time you spend to build up your website and optimise it, but the results you get will be at no cost.

2. Credibility

By ranking on the first pages of search engines your company will be seen as a credible one. Users are more likely to click on organic pages rather than sponsored ads, so if you are on the SERP, your company is likely to be chosen and respected and credible.

3. Higher Engagement

Organic clicks have a higher engagement rate than paid advertising, therefore, users are more likely to click on your page naturally rather than through an ad. Making sure your SEO is good and your website is readily available on the first page can help you get more engagement.

4. 24/7 Marketing

By being on the first pages of search engine results you will always be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and at no cost. Your audience will always be able to find you, always making your website accessible to users.

5. Brand Building

The higher the organic traffic the stronger brand you have built. By having a regular influx of organic traffic, your brand will be stronger and will have gained a loyal customer base. Organic traffic is more trustworthy and likely to convert, therefore, the higher your organic growth the stronger your brand.

6. Long-Term Benefits

SEO has long-term benefits and implications for businesses. By optimising web pages and creating high-value content, companies can grow their SEO over time and see growth in organic traffic. This will lead to an increase in sales and customer loyalty. But, organic growth is a long-term strategy where you will see the gradual growth of your company over time, however, there are no limitations to how much you can grow, growth can be exponential, showing higher performance and better benefits over time.

SEO Facts – Did You Know?

  1. The top 5 results on a search engine get 75% of the clicks. (HubSpot)
  2. 70-80% of users focus on organic results and not paid ads. (Staylisted)
  3. 46% of all Google searches are local. (Staylisted)
  4. For every 1 click on a Google ad, there are 11.6 clicks on organic results. (SparkToro)
  5. High-quality content and links are the best way to rank well on Google. (SearchEngineJournal)

How can Online Ads and SEO help each other?

  1. Content Learning – Through paid ads, you will optimise for the best performing content, run A/B variation tests and see what your users interact best with. By knowing this, you can create organic traffic that you know is proven to get impressions and reactions from your audience.
  2. Brand Awareness – As you increase your reach through paid advertising campaigns when you create content and share it organically, it will also be available to the new following you have built up with your advertising campaigns.
  3. Audience Analysis – By running ad campaigns you will generate a better understanding of your audience and target demographic. The invaluable data you collect can help you retarget and organically target a more specific audience.

Free Resource

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