SEO vs. Paid Ads: How To Skyrocket Your Market Share and Value

SEO-vs-PPCCurrently, digital marketing is the primary means of connecting with potential consumers on the internet. Businesses are pouring in ever-increasing sums of money to improve their advertising campaigns, vying to gain every possible edge over the competition. That is evident by the estimates of global ad spending for 2022 (which vary by forecasters), where the average growth is expected to be between 8% and 9.2%, totaling between US$781 Billion to US$828 Billion.

There are two main digital marketing techniques on offer – SEO Marketing and Pay Per Click (PPC) ads. Each brings unique advantages and disadvantages to the table, with some overlap. The question is, which one should you favor?

The answer to that involves a deep dive into what each digital marketing avenue entails, their alignment with your business goals, the resources needed for the purpose, and other such factors. This blog contains all the details you need about SEO and PPC, including their pros, cons, and best-case usage, for an easier decision-making process.

SEO and PPC: What Are They?

Let’s get a brief understanding of what each of these digital marketing terminologies means.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engines, such as Google Search, employ algorithms that go through web pages and index them according to relevancy for users’ search queries and authority over the information they contain. When a user enters a relevant phrase in the search bar, the search engine matches it to its database content, collects all relevant web pages, and then displays them in an order that’s based on their relevance to the search query and site authoritativeness for the topic.

SEO refers to the various techniques applied to websites and other such digital assets to help them rank high on search results pages by aligning them with the algorithm’s criteria.

It is a type of organic marketing as it generates traffic to your digital marketing assets without explicitly marketing them through advertisements. It is necessary because people tend to go for the first few links they find on the first search result page. So, the higher your asset gets placed on the search results page, the better your brand visibility and traffic inflow.

However, getting a higher ranking on search engine results requires meticulous planning and long-term strategizing. So, it is recommended to hire SEO service professionals for this task.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC)

 PPC is the most common and popular type of paid inorganic digital marketing, consuming 54% of global ad expenses. Users who click on a PPC ad are led to a landing page for conversion purposes. For each click, a business pays the PPC Service provider a certain amount.

The common PPC marketing ad assets are simple text (found at the top of search results or in between organic links), simple tiles (containing still images and text), still and dynamic banners (that show repeating animations, shifting images, etc.), carousel (that scroll a sequence of images one after the other), email, and clickable video. A new addition is location-based ads on map applications like Google maps that help businesses target local users.

PPC online marketing is a necessity because it has the potential to amplify business reach exponentially. However, businesses must invest time in proper keyword research, targeting, ad type selection, and ad content creation to achieve intended results.

SEO vs. PPC Ads: Pros and Cons

You should now have an idea of what SEO and PPC are and how they can fit into your marketing strategy. Taking an in-depth look into their merits and demerits can make the picture a lot clearer.

Search Engine Optimization- Pros:

Its Impact Lasts Longer

Google ranking positions may change as per search query intent and indexing of your web pages. However, if Google’s algorithm ranks your content in the top results, it is likely to remain there for a while. A similar principle applies to most search engines.

It’s Cost-Effective

Organic marketing is free for the most part. You may need to invest in an agency to create a successful SEO strategy, as making search engine algorithms work for you is a complex process.

It Brings in Relevant Traffic

Long-tail keywords are included to expand the potential user base by trying to cover a large search term set. But long-tail keywords can also be used by prospects who are further down the funnel and are looking to convert by searching for a specific product/service you sell. Thus, ecommerce SEO focuses relevant traffic to your pages with a high chance of conversion by covering broad and specific search term users.

Search Engine Optimization- Cons:

Little Control Over Ranking Period

Indexing and ranking are closely connected. A search engine’s crawler bots can visit a page many times in a week or not at all, depending on parameters that are undisclosed to the public. Once the crawling and indexing or re-indexing happen, the page’s ranking is also revised. But, there is no set period for this; you can only ensure that your content has the right ingredients for a good SEO outcome.

Algorithmic Uncertainty

Search engine companies are constantly trying to improve their search algorithms. That means you must keep up with those changes if you want your content to rank well. You must continuously monitor search engine algorithm updates and alter the content accordingly if you want your content to rank well.

Pay-Per-Click- Pros:

Quick Results

PPC gives immediate brand visibility across a wide target audience. Search engines like Google & Bing also place PPC ads over organic page links. Google even has a dedicated “Shopping” section for ads from eCommerce and local businesses on its SERP.

High Level of Control

Every aspect of a PPC ad campaign can be controlled by you, like bidding amount and campaign duration. The placement spot and platform are also under your control. This control helps maintain your budget while leading interested prospects directly to your desired landing page, aiding conversions. You can even test how well your ads are performing, which landing page works for your visitors, etc.

Pay-Per-Click- Cons:

Incessant Investment

Continuous ad placement (and investment) is needed to retain market relevance, even if you have an established brand. Sometimes, your costs could overshoot despite a decent PPC ad management strategy because of other factors. That’s a major reason why continuous strategy revision is necessary for PPC.

There’s A Learning Curve

Digital marketing platforms can be hard to master for newcomers. It will take time to understand them well to utilize them for maximum effect. You may need to do it repeatedly due to constant changes being made to the platforms’ features and rules of engagement.

In Conclusion

With this overview of SEO and PPC, it might get easier for you to choose one, But note that a proper digital marketing plan has to balance both to create desired outcomes. Whichever you choose, always keep your expectations and anticipated deliverables in mind.


When marketing your business online, you have two options-SEO and PPC. Search Engine Optimization involves the development of websites and web pages to match the demands of the search engine’s algorithm. This is a cost-effective tool for traffic generation but also requires constant updates and monitoring. On the other hand, a Pay Per Click model promises quick and wide visibility, but you may have to pay a hefty sum for short-term visibility. So, how will you choose between SEO and PPC? This blog details it all to help you choose the right one for your business growth.

Author Bio

Mike Wilsonn is a content strategist at SunTec India with a specialization in eCommerce and Amazon A+ Content writing. He has 5+ years of experience as a B2B content creator and has written numerous informative pieces to help sellers make sense of the continuously evolving eCommerce landscape.

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