SEO vs PPC: How to Make Sure that Both Strategies are in Sync
Internet traffic is increasingly becoming the center of attention for marketers as the primary sales force. Both search engine optimization (SEO) and pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns can increase traffic, and subsequently sales. Although they are usually seen as separate, with different pros and cons, an effective synchronization between SEO and PPC will not only boost the site’s visibility but improve the conversion rate as well. Here are some ways to make these strategies work in sync:
- Ensure Adequate Funding
Going all out across both fronts will greatly improve a company’s business and increase sales, but without a correspondingly big budget the marketing campaign could abruptly be cut short. Bear in mind that looking for a certain keyword, hopefully for the top spots, and at the same time paying for site optimization, can quickly drain a company’s cash. Meanwhile, the proceeds from the new sales will have yet to be collected, which could leave the company facing liquidity problems. Alternatively, not having adequate finances can result in a half-baked effort and hold the company back from reaching its optimum level of spending.
- Use Only White Hat SEO
SEO methods can broadly be divided into black hats, which are against search engines’ best practices but provide quick results; white hats, which are slow but long lasting; and grey hats, which are something in between. Returning visitors have higher conversion ratios because they directly go to the company’s website, presumably with the intention to purchase. Therefore, optimizing the website with new, valuable content will turn more of the traffic from both SEO and PPC into returning visitors.
- Locate the Most Profitable Keywords
At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how many visitors a site gets, but rather what percentage of them turn into customers. Therefore, different businesses can achieve higher conversion ratios by basing their campaigns on more specialized, obscure or different terms rather than the highly competitive general keywords. The effects of SEO are long lasting but take time to manifest, whereas PPC campaigns can quickly be analyzed and altered. Using this quality of PPC, experiment with various combinations of keywords for the best mix for an organization’s campaign.
- Set a Specific Goal
Having done the research in point three and obtained a reliable estimate of the market, it’s important to set goalposts for the marketing campaign: how much traffic to generate from PPC and SEO respectively, desired conversion rates, needed standing in the SERPs, and most importantly, the cost per $1 increase in revenue. Using the information obtained, the company must distribute the budget accordingly between the SEO and PPC teams so that both have the resources needed to accomplish their goals. These aims must be set according to the budget; they can be neither unrealistically high, nor ridiculously low.
- Provide Different Information
Webmasters cannot control the information displayed on SERPs. Search engines provide a snippet of text from the website that seems most appropriate to the keywords. With PPC ads, webmasters choose what the user sees and can provide commercial and product-specific information to help the user choose his website/product/service. Therefore, snippets will usually contain keyword heavy text, whereas PPC ads will try to close the deal. Using this method, it is possible to capture different market segments that are after different information, for example, direct purchase versus comparing many offers.
- Allow for Wide Accessibility
A marketing campaign, be it SEO or PPC, must be backed by a flawlessly performing website that can be accessed across different platforms, browsers, and operating systems. Web developers must ensure the website has a mobile version available because people increasingly use their smartphones to shop around the Internet. Developers should also enable customers with older machines to access most website features.