43 replies
  • SEO
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Is Pay Per Click better than search engine optimization...

Well lets look at seo first.

This is just from my testing but if there's a quicker way please let me know.

If you could find a long tail keyword in a niche with under a 1,000,000 competitors I was able to rank within 18 days.

The keyword research would take about 5 days, so just under a month I could start getting traffic naturally for a single long tail keyword.

Then wait for the conversions to flood in.

With Pay Per Click I could have a campaign up and driving traffic for multiple keyword phrases in 48 hours

So for quickness of conception to making money I would say PPC wins

Please could you add your thoughts, let me know which 1 you think is better PPC or SEO.

P.S. Please dont forget to take the poll.
#pay per click #ppc #search engine marketing #seo
  • Profile picture of the author Lucid
    Instead of SEO, PPC and Not Sure, you should add Both Equally Important to your survey.

    > The keyword research would take about 5 days

    It took you five days to do keyword research?? I'm all for taking your time and do a good job but five days?

    Both SEO and PPC have their pros and cons. Obviously, with PPC you have a monetary expenditure but that doesn't mean it's a bad thing. SEO takes longer (a time expenditure, money too because time = money) and you can't be sure if and where you'll rank or for how long. PPC can help you test much faster and target keywords you don't rank for organically. Having that data will help with doing better SEO.

    Put Both in there and I'll answer it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Malachi Kelly
      Unfortunatly I can't find a way to edit the poll, but I agree with you they both are important and I much prefer building a site around keywords I know already converts after testing with PPC.
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      • Profile picture of the author AggieMom
        Originally Posted by Malachi Kelly View Post

        Unfortunatly I can't find a way to edit the poll, but I agree with you they both are important and I much prefer building a site around keywords I know already converts after testing with PPC.
        Being good at PPC takes a lot and of course, it requires investment. focusing long tail keywords, focusing your competitors - which keywords they are focusing, highly searched keywords, profitable keywords, etc.

        This a slightly risky area and you wouldn't really love to 'try' things if you don't have deep pockets.

        On the other hand, this is the best known method to get instant results. If you are selling unique products/services and there isn't much competition in your niche, you may find it really great.
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        • Profile picture of the author Malachi Kelly
          If time is money then SEO also takes money away...I've spent months on a keyword trying to get it to the first page and whaen it was there I tried everything to get it to convert.

          At the same time I was testing a small PPC campaign only spending $2 per day and found 6 long tail keywords in the first month that converted like gang busters.

          I subsequently went on to optimize for these keywords and smashed my ROI.

          You don't have to spend an arm and a leg when testing PPC campaigns. But the more you can spend the quicker you can get results.
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  • Profile picture of the author banless
    Nice comparison, it is really hard to chose which one is best. But for me I think that SEO is the best choice. Now granted, when you are first starting a site and have a hot product then PPC makes the most since in terms of getting your company known. But overall I think SEO has the upper hand due to the fact that you can rank on mutiple search engines in short a period of time provided that your seo skills are up to par.

    You can lose alot of money testing different tactics with ppc, whereas with seo you can simply swap out anchors and possibly get the same results. It might be a little more time consuming but it doest cost you or client a dime to find out.
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    • Profile picture of the author Malachi Kelly
      Originally Posted by banless View Post

      Nice comparison, it is really hard to chose which one is best. But for me I think that SEO is the best choice. Now granted, when you are first starting a site and have a hot product then PPC makes the most since in terms of getting your company known. But overall I think SEO has the upper hand due to the fact that you can rank on mutiple search engines in short a period of time provided that your seo skills are up to par.

      You can lose alot of money testing different tactics with ppc, whereas with seo you can simply swap out anchors and possibly get the same results. It might be a little more time consuming but it doest cost you or client a dime to find out.
      If your track your PPC so you know which keywords converts and strip away all non coverting keywords you can turn a profit within 5 days.

      But on the flip side once you have a good size list of converting keywords, you can target those words with SEO and improve your ROI.
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  • Profile picture of the author mejohn
    No comparison. SEO wins hands down!
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  • Profile picture of the author Malachi Kelly
    Thanks Me John, but can you elaberate on the reason why you think SEO wins hands down.
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  • Profile picture of the author AggieMom
    I think, SEO experts are better than PPC experts. Being a SEO guy, you focus on tweaking your website for better results, you provide useful information in the form of articles/content/etc.

    You also work deligently in making your website compliant to search engine requirements. You work on your website to make it user friendly and search engine friendly. You create associations with other webmasters in the same field. You do lots of link exchanges with quality websites. You make use of social networking engines.

    You do all that, you as a webmaster, should be doing to create a buzz which strengthens backlinks to your website. All that done without spending too much money. I believe, being a SEO expert is better than being a PPC expert.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lucid
    > whaen it was there I tried everything to get it to convert

    That's the problem with SEO. People want a high natural ranking, I understand that. But to do so, your sales pitch often takes an unnatural look which hurts conversion. I'm sure you've seen listings which are nothing more than keyword stuffing. Same with the page's body. I once told a PPC client that I believed his new SEO efforts, although may make more of his pages rank on the first page, would hurt his conversions. I was right. His SEO guy just stuffed the page with keywords and the flow was just broken, there was really no sales message and sometimes it just didn't make much sense. It got him on page one all right but conversions went from about 5% down to 1% on both natural clicks and PPC.

    So it's a balancing act. Do you want the high rankings at the expense of conversions, which might also affect your click rate or do you want your copy to sell at a higher rate at the expense of losing natural rankings? Myself, I'd take higher converting pages any time. Try to rank high organically, supplement with PPC. In other words, write your copy for humans, not search engines. The humans are the ones with the money.
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    • Profile picture of the author Malachi Kelly
      Originally Posted by Lucid View Post

      > whaen it was there I tried everything to get it to convert

      That's the problem with SEO. People want a high natural ranking, I understand that. But to do so, your sales pitch often takes an unnatural look which hurts conversion. I'm sure you've seen listings which are nothing more than keyword stuffing. Same with the page's body. I once told a PPC client that I believed his new SEO efforts, although may make more of his pages rank on the first page, would hurt his conversions. I was right. His SEO guy just stuffed the page with keywords and the flow was just broken, there was really no sales message and sometimes it just didn't make much sense. It got him on page one all right but conversions went from about 5% down to 1% on both natural clicks and PPC.

      So it's a balancing act. Do you want the high rankings at the expense of conversions, which might also affect your click rate or do you want your copy to sell at a higher rate at the expense of losing natural rankings? Myself, I'd take higher converting pages any time. Try to rank high organically, supplement with PPC. In other words, write your copy for humans, not search engines. The humans are the ones with the money.
      Here here I so agree...I initially voted PPC but im coming round to the idea of both being as important as the other.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lucid
    Ametis, PPC doesn't have to be expensive. In fact, it can sometimes be very cheap. It will be expensive if you cannot monetize properly and that goes back to what I said about writing your page for humans, not search engines. There is a good way and a bad way to make your sales pitch. If it's bad, PPC will look expensive. Even SEO will be disappointing. How many times do we see a thread in here starting with "I get lots of visitors but I'm getting no sales"?
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  • Profile picture of the author Steven Carl Kelly
    I use BOTH every effectively, and would never want to eliminate either in favor of the other. Both strategies are critical to my success.
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  • Profile picture of the author kevinpotts
    Why don't read by the big G it self:

    googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com/2009/06/seo-starter-guide-now-available-in-40.html

    Hope you like this link

    Kevin
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    • Profile picture of the author jigsawguy
      The question is apples and oranges really as they are both different and both have their place in driving traffic. Personally I'm a fan of SEO as the invetment in getting higher organic ploacement in the SE, pays off over the long term. PPC on the other hand lets you covert seasonal opportunity keywords and maximize your traffic say at Christmas or other holiday period.
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  • Profile picture of the author dave147
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    • If you're patient and willing to wait for months to get a paycheck then go for seo...I know some seo pro's here can get ranked to first page within weeks but majority of people here are not seo professionals.

      With seo, hopefully you know which keyword converts, you know the competition, you know the market, you know aida, you know Bo, etc.


      Ppc is great too but you got have the cash flow to make it happen.

      I pick seo for optimizing your on-site for better ctr then use ppc to test.

      overall, my vote is for PPC
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      • Profile picture of the author helpandinfo
        well I built a brand new website on a new domain using a wordpress template and it's on the first page of google in a month with 3,000,000 competitors and making money in the baby niche..

        Should we be any more impatient than that to start a new business from nothing?

        Adwords is very very very very good - for Google!

        cheers
        Russ
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  • Profile picture of the author Lucid
    > I think it's more important to get the SEO side of things right first and then run a PPC campaign.

    That's where I, and I suspect a few others here, would disagree with you, Dave. I say take advantage of being able to test many different things quickly with a PPC campaign first. You'll have loads of real data such as search patterns and numbers, trigger words in ads that get higher click rates and higher conversions. Starting with SEO, you're just guessing at all this stuff.

    jigsawguy is right, they both have their place even in driving traffic though they are different in many ways but similar in others. But I like Don's analogy of which leg is better. Don, next time a question like this comes up again (and it will), I'm going to use this.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lucid
    Checking the results so far, SEO is ahead 13-4 with one not sure. Can't say I'm surprised because the prevailing attitude is that paying to get traffic is bad.

    Which makes me wonder that if you had to pay for SEO, say pay $100 a year for the privilege of being indexed, and asked the same question, which one would people pick? How 'bout it Malachi? Care to create another poll?
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    • Profile picture of the author Steven Carl Kelly
      Originally Posted by Lucid View Post

      Checking the results so far, SEO is ahead 13-4 with one not sure. Can't say I'm surprised because the prevailing attitude is that paying to get traffic is bad.
      And yet, in real life, paying for traffic can be very, very good!
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    • Profile picture of the author Malachi Kelly
      Originally Posted by Lucid View Post

      Checking the results so far, SEO is ahead 13-4 with one not sure. Can't say I'm surprised because the prevailing attitude is that paying to get traffic is bad.

      Which makes me wonder that if you had to pay for SEO, say pay $100 a year for the privilege of being indexed, and asked the same question, which one would people pick? How 'bout it Malachi? Care to create another poll?
      Lucid sure I'll create another poll just not sure what the question and the options are...

      let me know and i'll create the poll
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  • Profile picture of the author webdaisy
    i think both are important but SEO looks Best
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  • Profile picture of the author Lucid
    > but SEO looks Best
    Don't know what you mean by that, webdaisy.

    Bryan is right about how you want to run your business. But I think you've got the percentages reversed, that is if you use PPC all the time, not just to get started. I think you'll put (or should put) more time and resources towards PPC than SEO.
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  • Profile picture of the author bryan85
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    • Profile picture of the author dburk
      Originally Posted by bryan85 View Post

      Hiya Lucid,

      Well at least in my opinion, SEO is the way to go ultimately cos who's gonna say NO to free traffic?
      Valuable traffic will never be free, the cost of going for the most valuable organic listings will require a substantial investment in time and resources. The nice thing about PPC is you can learn very quickly if your offer will perform well before you make that huge investment in SEO.

      I love competitors that choose only PPC or SEO, they make it so easy.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lucid
    Agree, who's going to say no to free traffic. I'm not saying to stop doing SEO completely and do only PPC. I'm saying that even a good SEO person can't rank high for all the keywords, all the time on all the search engines. This means you're not reaching all your potential customers. Use PPC to reach them. It's not a question of SEO vs PPC. It's maximizing quality visitors and maximizing sales at lowest possible cost by whatever means. If SEO happens to get you 50% of your visitors, all the better, that offsets your PPC costs. But if you don't use PPC, you miss out on that other 50%.

    If SEO gets me 10k visitors per year and 500 sales at $20 for a $10k profit, I don't mind spending $5 per sale to get an extra 10k visitors. That would be 1000 sales, $20k gross less $5k for PPC = $15k profit, an extra $5000 in my pocket. In fact, I bet PPC would get you more traffic than SEO and convert better.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steven Carl Kelly
    If you avoid one in favor of the other, you are most likely reducing your own potential profits. Both should be a part of most online marketing arsenals.
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    • Profile picture of the author Malachi Kelly
      Originally Posted by Steven Carl Kelly View Post

      If you avoid one in favor of the other, you are most likely reducing your own potential profits. Both should be a part of most online marketing arsenals.
      Both should deffo be included but it all about the balance, PPC is something you have to keep an eye on - weeding out the non converting keywords and doing keyword research.

      With PPC I can't say it enough tracking,tracking,tracking one more time tracking...

      SEO on the other hand is outsource and I just get a report when the works done.

      Final word for the day Outsourcing
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  • Profile picture of the author ShopZipCode
    I'll go with SEO, free of cost and is very reliable if done right.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lucid
    Malachi, you can outsource PPC too. Let someone else do the tracking for you. Lots of people to do this on this board, myself included.

    As for a new poll, like I originally said, you need to have the option of "Both". For a similar poll with the stipulation that both have a monetary output.

    The question would be along the lines of "If SEO cost the same as PPC, which one would you choose? Which to you would be more important to spend time and money on?". Choices are SEO, PPC, Both, Don't know.
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  • Profile picture of the author jacksonlin
    PPC and SEO have different purposes, so it really depends what you're looking for.

    You can easily set up a PPC campaign to test the market and not spend heaps of time optimizing a site to only find out the keyword your targeting was useless!

    They are both fantastic, but in the long run I think SEO trumps PPC. There's less messing around with irritating Google Slaps.

    J
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  • Profile picture of the author tjdaz
    Of course they are both viable, in essence they are doing the exact same thing: making your site visible on the front page of search engines. Now, there are numerous differences in how that is achieved. The main differences being...

    SEO takes longer and costs exponentially less.
    PPC provides instant results at a cost.

    Pick your poison.
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  • Profile picture of the author aofzagroup
    seo for long terms & ppc for short terms.

    i like seo is free
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  • Profile picture of the author cheapdeals
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  • Profile picture of the author Andy1750
    I think that they are both different. For me there are two options:

    1) Target microniches via SEO and build up a network of 100 or so siteseach bringing in a small income (which adds up)

    2) Target the monster keywords with huge search volume via PPC that you would never stand a chance of ranking in the organic listings. More risky if you're not careful. However, just a single profitable campaign could result in a full time income.

    Cheers,

    Andy
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  • Profile picture of the author AvidAZ
    I think this really depends on your niche. Each niche can be highly competitive with low or high cpcs. There really is no right answer.
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  • Profile picture of the author garyseo786
    no definate answer for that ..I think SEO it much powerful then a PPC campaign but it may a year or more to rank for a high competitive keyword and with PPC you can get some quick results and make some instant money
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  • Profile picture of the author Malachi Kelly
    If we were going by the stats 60% of readers say Seo is better than PPC. Is ther any PPC lovers that can add some spice to to pot.
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    • Profile picture of the author searchnology
      It's kind of a loaded question....i.e. how do one define "important"?

      I think PPC is more important when it comes to diversifying traffic and making a business more predictable, easier to test, as well as being instantaneous.

      SEO is good as well from an ROI standpoint but takes a bit longer to achieve and can't always scale to the same levels.

      Originally Posted by Malachi Kelly View Post

      If we were going by the stats 60% of readers say Seo is better than PPC. Is ther any PPC lovers that can add some spice to to pot.
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  • Profile picture of the author TheDebtEliminator
    Hello Malachi ,

    Testing conversion with PPC can give you a fast answer ... If SEO should be done?

    This will give you the best of both worlds

    Best Wishes ... Ron
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