SEM SEO Expert by Nima Asrar Haghighi: SEO vs. PPC Promotion Strategies - Toronto SEO, SEM, SMO, Web Analytics Consultant .comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

SEM SEO Expert by Nima Asrar Haghighi

SEM SEO Expert” is a blog written by Nima Asrar Haghighi. Nima is an Internet Marketing Specialist with expertise in SEM (PPC Advertising), Organic SEO, RSS, Social Media and Web Analytics (Google Analytics IQ Certified). Nima holds an MBA in marketing, B.Eng. in Electrical Engineering, Project Management Certification, and CIW (Certified Internet Webmaster) in E-commerce. Contact: nima @ sem seo expert.com.

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Welcome to Nima Asrar Haghighi's blog covering Internet marketing topics such as search engine optimization, search engine marketing, Web Analytics, RSS and online marketing industry as a whole.

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Thursday, October 30, 2008

SEO vs. PPC Promotion Strategies

Marketing SEO vs. PPC Promotion StrategiesSEO or SEM? This is a question you might have asked yourself. You have the budget to allocate either to SEO market your products and services or take advantage of PPC advertising to promote your website.

When deciding on your marketing strategies, there are many factors that you need to take into consideration.On the first look, SEO seems to be the perfect answer as it could attract as much as 70% of the searchers whereas your PPC promotion could draw only 30% of the search volume. Search Engine Optimization has other benefits as well.

SEO Benefits
• Once you have a high rankings on search engines, you can start getting traffic without directly paying for that traffic.
• Generate Possibly higher CTR.
• Gain more credibility among searchers.• Once you rank high organically, more people find your site and link back to you.

However, there are some challenges with SEO. First off, there is no guarantee that your site get first ranking even if you implement all your SEO strategies. Secondly it usually takes a while to be able to gain high rankings on search engines results pages (specially on Google, Yahoo and MSN). Thirdly search engines algorithms could change and impact all your SEO efforts. Fourthly, you have less control over messaging and the selection of landing pages. Fifthly, A/B or multi variant testing would be way more complicated.

PPC Benefits
By incorporating Pay per click advertising into your website promotion strategy, you will be able to put your message in front of your audience at the exact time they are looking for. Some of the benefits of pay per click advertising are:

• Quick time to market.• Flexibility in changing messages.
• Quick measurement of response.
• Easy A/B or multi variant testing of ad copies and landing pages.
• Ability to target audience in specific locations by geo-targeting.
• Set and control daily budget.

The challenges with SEM (PPC) advertising is that you need to keep paying for the traffic. As mentioned before it also only attract about 30% of the traffic.

So, let’s ask the question again. Should you allocate your marketing budget to organic SEO or sponsored PPC ads? The answer is both. Depending on what your objectives are or how urgent your marketing needs are you might decide on how to allocate your budget.

No matter which strategy you are using it is important that you track their performance by designing KPIs to measure the success of your SEO and PPC initiatives utilizing your Web Analytics application.

In most cases, when SEO and PPC are used together as part of an integrated marketing strategy they could create a great synergy that could create your company with competitive advantage.

SEO Benefits from PPC
As I mentioned in my post on SEO and Personalization, SEO can indirectly benefit from PPC advertising. By getting more visibility through PPC advertising, you increase the chances of getting backlinks from your audience which in turns helps improve your PageRank and SEO ranking in the long run.

In addition, by analyzing your PPC campaign you will get a better understanding of what keywords contribute to your ROI best. Then you can use those keywords to optimize your website for.

PPC advertising also create more awareness and branding for your site which in turn could help you lift your response rate.

Having multiple listings on the first page of search engines you can further reinforce your message and build credibility for your business.

PPC Benefits from SEO
When your website ranks high on search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN, your ads could start getting higher CTR as people find your site more credible.

Additionally a well optimized page could help improve your Quality Score for your PPC ads. This is getting more and more important as SEO and PPC are getting more and more interconnected.

Before spending time and budget to invest in your SEO strategies, you can run test PPC campaign to identify the pest performing phrases.

Both PPC advertising and SEO are excellent strategies for marketing your website. However, to be successful in a competitive industry you need to utilize the synergy between PPC and SEO. The key is to know when to emphasize on one and when to rely on the other or when to employ both. SEO is most effective when you are trying to reach long term objectives whereas PPC is most effective when you need immediate traffic.

Nima Asrar Haghighi, SEM SEO Expert

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