With so many digital marketing strategies available out there, it can be challenging to determine which one is right for your business, so the question is SEO or Google Ads – which is right for you?
If this is your situation, then this material is for you. Instead of giving you the easy answer “choose both!”, We will try to give you the knowledge you need to make the right decision about what is best for your business, given the limited advertising budget.
So, SEO or Google Ads?
SEO is a science and we can’t go deep into its depths in this post. But there are also a lot of SEO features that you can apply relatively easily on any of the pages of your site to increase your search engine rankings and get more visitors. This necessarily includes creating high-quality content that your audience is looking for, and a good selection of titles and meta tags on your pages.
The meta description appears below your URL in the search results. Knowing what a page is about and with appropriate call-to-action text, the user is much more likely to click on it. SEO, as the name suggests (Search Engine Optimization) means search engine optimization. The term is well known in the world of digital marketing and this is no accident – finding your business through search engines is crucial for almost all companies today.
Let’s say you have a Car Wash company, but during the pandemic, you decided to expand your business and already doing a mobile car wash. If your website only mentions your Car Wash address, it won’t show up when people are looking for mobile car wash services in your city (or it will be far behind). If your site only mentions only your Car Wash’s main address, it’s unlikely to appear at the top of search engine results, although it may appear sometime after the first few pages.
If, on the other hand, you build a special service page highlighting your various Car wash service packages, you have a better chance of getting to the top of the search engine results pages. This is briefly known as on-site search engine optimization.
Google also wants to ensure that the websites it ranks high are reliable, easy to use, fast to load, and error-free. These technical characteristics are another major factor in SEO in recent years.
SEO aims to optimize all aspects of your web presence – both on and off the site – to give you the best chance of ranking well with Google. There is no guarantee of SEO results simply because you and/or your SEO consultant cannot control Google’s algorithms and rankings. However, once you know the key factors that Google looks for in a website, and by following best SEO practices, you can increase your chances of ranking well.
SEO or Google Ads
If you’ve been doing digital marketing for your business for a while, you may remember the days when Google Ads was still called AdWords. Google Ads is a way to get around SEO, organic rankings, and algorithms, and put your business at the top of search engine results pages (SERPs). There is a catch, however – you have to pay for this place.
Google search ads give you the ability to target very specific words and phrases (search queries) to attract paying and interested-relevant traffic to your website. These paid “places” are just above and below the results of organic search. Google Ads in search are not the same as display ads on websites – they are just text ads, formatted in a similar way to organic search results, the main difference being that they are marked as ads.
If this sounds like a fantastic alternative to SEO, well, I have to tell you: there are a few more tricks. You have to bid for keywords, which means that there is no guarantee that you will always appear on the first page of the SERP, as a competitor may “surpass” you in price. Google also assigns a quality Ad Rank for each ad, which, along with your bid, determines where your ad will appear on the page. So even if you’re willing to pay the most out of the competition, if a search engine doesn’t “like” your ad and/or landing page, you won’t be at the top, or you may not even be at the top of the results.
As you can see, there are some significant differences between SEO and Google Ads. This makes them suitable for use together – as Google Ads can generate faster results, while SEO builds long-term success, the two channels act as complementary strategies.
But as we mentioned at the beginning, there are many situations when this best option is not in your budget!
So, let’s dive into the essence of the pros and cons of Google Ads and SEO
SEO or Google Ads
Larger potential audience
Continuous traffic generation
Tracking is a little more complicated
Your control is limited
Local SEO has limitations
Easy and convenient tracking
Higher costs in competitive markets
This is not an asset
Of course, this is the best option!
As previously stated, the two tactics are complementary. If you’ve figured out how much money you’ll need for both SEO and Google ads, we recommend using AdWords to see which keywords convert the best and then focusing your SEO efforts on those words.
SEO or Google Ads FAQs
- What is SEO?
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is the process of optimizing your website to rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs).
- How does SEO work?
- SEO involves a combination of strategies such as keyword research, on-page optimization, and building quality backlinks to improve your website’s visibility and rank higher on SERPs.
- Why is SEO important?
- SEO is important because it helps your website get more visibility, traffic, and ultimately leads and sales. It’s like having a VIP pass to the front of the line at a concert.
- What are Google Ads?
- Google Ads is a pay-per-click advertising platform that allows businesses to create and display ads on Google search results pages and other Google properties.
- How do Google Ads work?
- Google Ads work by bidding on relevant keywords and creating ads that are triggered when people search for those keywords. You pay only when someone clicks on your ad.
- Can SEO and Google Ads work together?
- Absolutely! Combining SEO and Google Ads can help you dominate both organic and paid search results, which can increase your overall visibility and drive more traffic to your website.
- How long does it take to see results from SEO and Google Ads?
- Results can vary depending on various factors such as the competitiveness of the keywords you’re targeting, the quality of your website content, and the budget you’re allocating to your ads. Generally, it can take a few weeks to several months to see significant results.
- Do I need to hire an SEO or Google Ads professional?
- It depends on your level of expertise and the size of your business. If you’re just starting out, you can try learning the basics and doing it yourself. However, if you have a larger budget and want to see faster results, hiring a professional can be beneficial.
- How much do SEO and Google Ads cost?
- Costs can vary depending on your industry, the competitiveness of your keywords, and your budget. With SEO, you can do it yourself for free or hire an agency for thousands of dollars. With Google Ads, you can set a daily budget as low as a few dollars or as high as thousands of dollars.
- Is SEO or Google Ads better?
- It depends on your goals and budget. SEO can provide long-term benefits and organic traffic, while Google Ads can provide more immediate results and drive targeted traffic to your website. Both can be effective when used together or separately.
SEO or Google Ads
So, which one should you choose? It depends on what you’re looking for. If you need quick results or have a limited budget, Google Ads might be the way to go. But, if you’re in it for the long haul and have the time and resources, SEO can be a cost-effective way to get traffic to your website.
Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide which one works best for your business goals, budget, and target audience. Just make sure you do your research and choose wisely!
Related Article: How can SEO and Google ads work together?
SEO or Google Ads