SEO v Paid Search, Which Is More Sustainable?
The rise of profitable bricks and clicks businesses is a strong indication you need to be online to boost your profits. But before you can get clicks, you need to learn a few tricks.
Having a great web design does not earn you money online – although it does help! The only way to be successful on the web is to be visible. And that means one of three things:
1. Ranking in search engines through organic SEO
2. Paid search (i.e AdWords)
3. Paid advertising on social media
What is the difference between organic search and paid advertising?
Organic search is the term used to describe how a website is ranked in search engine results. If you are appearing on page one, maybe two of Google, Bing, Yahoo or any other search engine, you will attract visitors.
When a search engine user visits your site directly from search results, you do not pay a penny.
With paid ads on the other hand, search engines and social media networks charge you every time somebody follows your link. This is like paying somebody to come into your shop!
And paid advertising online can be costly. However, it does get you quicker results, which for new businesses or low ranking firms, is essential for visibility.
And here is the quandary – do you spend your advertising budget on paid search or do you invest in a content marketing strategy and hold out for organic results. Ouch, it’s a tough one!
How to make money online
In an ideal world, you have enough budget to invest in both paid search and a content marketing strategy. But sadly, not every company has that flexibility.
In order to improve visibility, your best option is to go down the paid advertising route. But this path is an expensive avenue to tread – and you will always be paying. This is how Google makes their money.
Paid advertising on social media is the same game. Organic results have been confiscated like a toy from a naughty child. Social networks also make more money by tempting companies into paying for ads.
But remember, with paid ads you pay every time somebody clicks on your ad. You are always paying.
How about content marketing?
Making profits online is something of a Catch-22. You also have to pay for content, unless you have a way with words and an eye for design – then you can curate your own content and cut down costs.
Otherwise, you have to pay content writers to write your ad copy and load your blog with amazing content. And good content writers are expensive. But it is better to pay more for a good writer than less to a bad one.
Quality content will ensure you rank higher in search results whereby you will attract organic results sooner and improve your profits without being charged for visitors.
Furthermore, once you are ranking in search engines, you can reduce the amount of content you are loading up to your site, therefore reducing costs whilst earning more profit. So clearly, SEO is more sustainable, although takes longer.
Like I said, it’s a quandary. For companies that are new to the online game, you should start with paid advertising first then add content marketing once you are turning a profit.