A client recently asked whether they should embark on a pay-per-click online advertising program that another company had quoted them.
In the best of all situations, businesses would have enough money to work with to do both pay-per-click and search engine optimization to improve their visibility on the major search engines.
But in reality, most companies we work with need to get the most out of a limited budget, in which we case we will recommend search engine optimization over pay-per-click.
Why? Dollar for dollar, search engine optimization over the long-term generates more traffic to company web sites. Research shows that 30% of Internet users click on pay-per-click ads vs. 70% that click on the natural results that can be attained via search engine optimization.
Additionally, pay-per-click only generates leads for as long as you keep paying for the ads. An investment in SEO usually will last significantly longer, requiring periodic updates to maintain or increase visibility.
So, if you need to make an investment to improve traffic and leads to your site, target the 70%, rather than the 30%, and target long-term vs. short-term results.
Here are a few other articles on the topic:
PPC vs. SEO
The Issue of Click Fraud in PPC
PPC vs. SEO from Marketing Chat