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SEO or PPC: Where Should I Focus My Digital Marketing Budget?

By Laura Negrean on Nov 2, 2021

Marketing is all about finding the best ways to promote your products and services. It is leveraging whatever channels are available to get as many potential eyeballs from highly engaged consumers focused on your brand. As the traditional billboards and radio ads of the past worked for a marketing strategy to grow awareness, SEO marketing and PPC offer budget-friendly solutions for the digital marketplace.

The only challenge is figuring out where to leverage their benefits the most so you don’t blow your next quarter’s operating budget telling the world how great your next mousetrap is, only to find you’ve been talking to pet owners who love mice.

What are SEO and PPC?

These two terms get thrown around by practically every digital ad agency in the world because they are essential to your online business visibility. They offer affordable solutions to promote your brand to highly targeted market segments.

  • SEO stands for search engine optimization. It is the application of keywords and content techniques to increase your rank on popular search engines such as Google, Bing and DuckDuckGo. This strategy is also used for social media by using key phrases that help you rise to the top of the different platforms’ newsfeeds. You can even get Pay-Per Result SEO, so you don’t pay unless you rank well on Google.
  • PPC means Pay-Per-Click. With this strategy, you pay every time someone clicks on an you run on a network such as Facebook or Google. The good news is you only pay for those consumers highly interested in your ad, which translates to higher quality leads.

Why does this matter? Considering 53% of website traffic comes from organic search, it makes sense that you would want to leverage keywords as much as possible to grab some of that search volume.

Conversely, PPC offers higher brand visibility with more search results, especially for online-only businesses. The problem here is that you have to continually invest in this strategy for it to work.

Long-Term v. Short Term Strategies

When you are developing a marketing strategy, you need to consider leveraging the advantages of both SEO and PPC.

  • Organic visibility using proven SEO marketing techniques increases your brand awareness over the long term. The higher you rank on search engines and social media, the more traffic you generate. As your online reputation and backlinks grow, the power and refinement of your SEO keywords reach more eyes.
  • PPC campaigns are better for the short term. They provide the extra push to turn a small fire into a raging inferno of interested consumers going to your website.

You can run both strategies parallel to garner immediate interest while crafting a continual drip of leads in the background. It comes down to timing. A quality SEO strategy using quality keywords will probably take six to 10 months before you start to see actual results. That can be a long wait for brands needing to ensure a smooth cash flow as early as possible. For those companies, it makes more sense to invest in some PPC campaigns that can get immediate results if targeted correctly.

Do Your Research

The make-or-break moment in your SEO and PPC campaigns is when you do your research. Keyword testing costs next to nothing when using free tools like Google’s Keyword Planner. You can quickly measure the potential reach of a key phrase like “Mama’s Chocolate Chip Cookies” or “Organic Gluten-Free Cookies” and see how often you should leverage them in your website and advertising.

You’re going to need to apply critical thinking, data analytics and customer input to understand how well your keywords are reaching your intended target market. Don’t be afraid to get into the weeds a bit and explore the full potential of your selected keywords. Test and re-test different phrases to see how well they perform.

An important aspect of keyword research that some brands overlook is their location-specific information. Nearly a third of all mobile searches are related to location. Consumers want to find businesses near where they live, work and play. If for example you are a new Italian Restaurant in Key West Florida, you should include that data throughout your online presence, so you aren’t showing up for searchers in Northern Alaska with a sudden craving for chicken parmesan.

Quality over Quantity

Your goal with SEO marketing and PPC strategies is to engage with the highest quality potential customers so that you can build a long-lasting relationship. This creates loyal brand ambassadors who will promote your services and products through user-generated content.

The average consumer may see as many as 5,000 or more ads daily. If you want to rise above all that noise, you need to practice quality marketing strategies over quantity. The focus of your digital marketing strategies needs to be directed to those potential clients who will offer the most benefit. Don’t try to send out the widest fishing net possible. Instead, focus on the bait that works best for your particular fish.

Where to Begin

SEO and PPC are designed to elevate your brand visibility. You want to be at the top of Google as quickly as possible to increase your site traffic.

Not every company around the world can afford to employ an expert team of digital marketers ready to instantly react to the ever-changing online marketplace. That is why hiring a quality digital marketing agency will be the best use of your budget. Umbrella Local uses advanced technology and hands-on experience to infuse your online platforms with well-researched SEO and PPC practices. We consider the long-tail and high-volume keywords that appeal to your target market the most, so you benefit from both a long-term strategy for continued growth and a short-term boost to your brand awareness.

Reach out and schedule a consultation with us today to learn how Umbrella Local can help you with SEO marketing and Google advertising services.

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