Peanut Butter and jelly is a classically delicious combination. Whether you are pairing the two on crackers or some whole-wheat bread, you can never go wrong with this staple sandwich. Sadly, sometimes you run out of one or the other and have to settle for just the jelly. This is still a good choice, but it’s just not as great as peanut butter & jelly together.
As you’re about to discover, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Pay-Per-Click (PPC) work the same way. One is great, but they are just so much better when paired together.
It can be a confusing and difficult conversation to decide which marketing efforts will best benefit your business. And today, there are even more options available. No longer are you limited to radio and print. In fact, if you’re not in the digital space, you’re not reaching your customers where they are looking for your products or services.
There are many wonderful ways to reach your customers online, but two efforts that still work wonders today are through SEO and PPC efforts.
There are numerous SEO efforts, but whether you are altering your Meta Description Tags behind the scenes or cultivating blog posts around keywords that you want your company to organically rank for on Google, this is a slower, more long-term strategy.
On the flip side, if you take advantage of Google AdWords and start paying for clicks to your site, you will see immediate results. However, this can sometimes be a more costly undertaking, so it might not be the best long-term option based on your marketing budget.
Ultimately, it’s in your best interest to engage simultaneously in SEO and PPC efforts as they complement each other so well. Here are just some reasons why this is the best solution:
More Keyword Data
You’ve likely decided to focus your keyword efforts on both branded and non-branded terms. Branded terms often naturally perform well, but there might be a considerable amount of non-branded terms that would be great to rank for. So, how do you decide which ones to choose? Well, you can just pick your favorites out of a hat, or you can see what’s performing best from your PPC efforts and then plug those into your SEO efforts.
For example, if you sell kitchen appliances you might want to up your organic search rank for blenders, but discover through your AdWords PPC campaign that there is more interest (or even conversions), for microwaves. In this case, you could direct your SEO efforts to improve your organic rank for microwaves more heavily than blenders.
On the reverse end, you can also use PPC to target keywords that are not yet ranking organically.
Focus SEO Efforts on Keywords with High CPC
If you’ve dabbled in AdWords, you are now aware that some keywords and keyword phrases cost more than others. While a low-quality score may be the cause (and you can work to rectify this), some keywords are just more competitive than others, which then reflects in a more expensive buy.
For those expensive keywords that you would love to target via PPC, but are just out of your price range, use SEO to draw traffic organically instead.
Improve Landing Pages & You’ll Improve PPC Performance
Clients regularly come to us and they’ll say something like, “I want our customers to purchase ‘X’ and I want ‘X’ to be the focus of our PPC campaign.” But, in reality, when we pull together relevant keywords and actually build the AdWords campaign, there is no evidence of “X” on their website and we have to direct clicks to a more generalized landing page.
This less relevant destination will (a) lower your quality score, (b) lower your ad position on Google, (c) increase the cost of your clicks, (d) lead to a lower conversion rate, (e) increase the bounce rate on your site, and more.
However, you will eliminate these problems when your PPC team and SEO team work together to create targeted landing pages and niche ads that are created together and with a specific goal in mind (ex. email captures or increased sales for product “X”).
Use PPC to Dictate Meta Descriptions
Meta Description Tags are 160-word snippets added to the back-end (not customer facing) section of a webpage telling a search engine what that specific page is about. Using the right keywords in the Meta Description Tags will increase your organic search rankings and is a component of SEO. But, which keywords should you use when there are just so many ways to say something? This is when PPC comes in handy.
Use your best performing PPC keywords as a starting point for your Meta Description Tags and you will be using the keyword phrases that are most often used by the people actually searching for your product or service.
PPC is More Reliable Than Organic Rankings
If you engage in the right SEO tactics and in the right way you will improve your organic rankings for specific keywords. However, organic search is volatile and evolving. While you might be on page one today, tomorrow you might be on page two (and who really gets to page two, let alone further than that). PPC on the other hand, will continue to perform. And, the more you adjust your campaign, the better it will convert for you.
PPC & SEO is Like PB & J
There are endless reasons why you should pair SEO and PPC rather than jumping into one over the other. While something is better than nothing, if you use these two digital marketing strategies in tandem you will:
- Develop a strategy that works immediately and long-term
- Find the right keywords to reach the right audience at the right time
- Improve your CTR
- Lower your CPC
- Improve your keyword quality score
- Lower your website bounce rate
- Improve your organic ranking
- And most importantly, increase your RIO
Remember; don’t just make a mediocre sandwich. Splurge for the real deal!