Re-Evaluating PPC and Organic Search Synergy in 2022





Blog Date

June 3, 2024


UK, Manchester

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Re-Evaluating PPC and Organic Search Synergy in 2022

Re-Evaluating PPC and Organic Search Synergy in 2022

Welcome to the fascinating world of search engine marketing, where search engine optimization (SEO) and pay-per-click (PPC) marketing rule. We’re about to delve into the core of these powerful digital forces that shape the online landscape, each with their distinct approach, yet working together to maximize growth and performance.

Search engine algorithms define this terrain, dictating the patterns of organic traffic that SEO relies on, as well as the rapid influx that PPC advertising generates. The key takeaway? SEO and PPC are not competitors; they’re powerful allies.

Search engine results pages are the stage where SEO and PPC play their roles. SEO builds a solid foundation, pulling in a consistent flow of visitors over time, while PPC campaigns offer immediacy, generating swift traffic. The purpose of this article is to guide you through this terrain, helping you gain a clearer understanding of both SEO and PPC, and most importantly, discover how they work in concert to deliver compound results.

The Synergy between SEO and PPC

Every few years, the debate over SEO vs. PPC resurfaces, and it seems to be back again. Which one is better? Should you focus on organic search, PPC, or both? Having worked in the search marketing world for well over a decade, I’ve seen this argument take many forms, and most of the time, they miss the point. It’s not about which is better, it’s about how to use them both to drive exponential growth.

As the team at AgencyAnalytics points out, SEO optimizes content and design for better search engine rankings, enhancing organic traffic over time. PPC, on the other hand, secures immediate visibility by buying ad space for targeted keywords. By harnessing both SEO and PPC, you employ a robust strategy in search engine marketing. It’s about the steady growth of organic traffic from SEO paired with the immediate results driven by PPC. Together, they form a potent combination, optimizing your online presence and enhancing overall search engine performance.

Understanding the Basics of SEO and PPC

To fully appreciate the synergy between SEO and PPC, let’s first delve into the basics of each:

Search Engine Optimization (SEO):
SEO is crucial for generating organic traffic. Its role is to optimize content and website design to improve ranking on search engine results pages. Though the outcomes of SEO aren’t immediate, it provides a steady and growing flow of traffic over time, making it an indispensable element in long-term digital marketing strategy.

The key elements of SEO include:
– Keyword research
– On-page optimization
– Content creation
– Link building
– Technical SEO
– Local SEO
– Analytics and reporting

Pay-Per-Click (PPC):
In contrast to SEO, PPC offers immediate results. It operates by purchasing ad space on search engine results pages. By creating effective ads and bidding on relevant keywords, each click on your ad results in paid traffic to your website. PPC’s strength lies in its ability to quickly drive high volumes of traffic, offering immediate exposure and potential customer conversions.

The key elements of PPC include:
– Keyword research
– Ad creation
– Landing page optimization
– Bid management
– Campaign settings
– Ad extensions
– Conversion tracking

Weighing the Pros and Cons of SEO and PPC

Both organic and paid search have their advantages and disadvantages. As the team at AgencyAnalytics explains, organic search results are free, so you don’t have to pay anything to appear in them (other than the time and effort to create content that will rank). Organic traffic can also be very valuable–if Google gets its algorithm right–because it’s usually more targeted.

However, organic search results can take a long time to achieve; it takes effort and patience to improve your organic rankings, and there’s no guarantee that your efforts will pay off. Paid search, on the other hand, is much quicker and easier to implement than organic search. You simply create a campaign, set your budget, and start appearing in the paid results almost immediately.

The downside of paid search is that it can be expensive–especially if bidding on competitive keywords. Additionally, there is always the risk that your ads will not be clicked on even if they are being shown to people interested in what you offer. Or, perhaps worse, your client’s ads will get a tonne of irrelevant clicks, driving up the spend while generating no revenue.

Choosing the Right Approach for Your Clients

So, which is better–organic or paid search? The answer depends on your client’s individual needs and goals. As the team at AgencyAnalytics points out, if they want quick results and are willing to pay for them, then paid search may be the best option. However, an organic search strategy may be a better choice if they are looking for a long-term solution that doesn’t require a significant and ongoing investment.

But the best choice is fairly obvious. Two channels are better than one. By harnessing the power of both SEO and PPC, you can create a comprehensive search engine marketing strategy that delivers both immediate and long-term results. It’s all about finding the right balance and synergy between the two.

Tracking Organic Rankings for PPC Keywords

Sometimes, there is an unfortunate “Not my pig, not my farm!” attitude regarding client reporting. Although it’s understandable to focus exclusively on the campaigns being managed by your agency, there can be a disadvantage to this kind of blindered approach. After all, if your client is willing to pay for those clicks, they should also try to rank organically for them (with some exceptions, of course).

As the team at AgencyAnalytics explains, tracking and reporting on organic rankings for PPC keywords can help position your agency as an expert in multiple digital marketing tactics. By providing holistic reports that show both organic and paid results, you demonstrate that your agency has its finger on the pulse of the entire business. And this can be a great way to upsell clients on additional services without even trying.

Imagine this scenario for a moment. Your client has hired your agency to manage their PPC ad campaigns but works with a different agency on SEO. Instead of just sending over a PPC report, your agency provides a holistic digital marketing dashboard that covers the client’s entire business, including paid search, social media, and SEO. Month after month, they receive reports highlighting their organic search growth (or lack thereof, since they’re not working with your agency on this) and thoughtful insights on how PPC and SEO could be improved to work smarter together.

When the time comes, and that client decides that it’s time to try a new SEO agency, who do you think will spring to mind first? And when the time comes to make an SEO proposal, how handy would it be to have a prebuilt history of their keyword tracking?

Leveraging Organic and Paid Search Data

While some people will continue to debate the merits of SEO vs. PPC until the Internet is no more, I like to think of them as peanut butter and jelly. Sure, they can be used on their own. But they are so much better together.

One of the benefits of tracking organic rankings for PPC keywords is that it can help you with your keyword research. By looking at both organic and paid results, you will get a better idea of which keywords are worth targeting, the search intent behind those keywords, and where the gaps are that your agency can take advantage of.

Another benefit is that having a paid ad and an organic listing on the first page for the same keyword increases the total SERP real estate. Not only can this increase the click-through rates on both listings, but it also increases your client’s overall brand presence on the SERP and pushes their competition out of the way.

Budget management is another key benefit of tracking organic rankings for PPC keywords. If you reduce your client’s spend on competitive keywords by achieving a high organic ranking, you stretch their budget further and get more growth bang for their buck.

Creating an Effective SEO Proposal

An SEO proposal is your agency’s sales pitch—your chance to persuade a new client that your firm is the ideal match for them. Bringing up search engine optimization during discussions with existing clients is the perfect opportunity to upsell a happy customer.

If you already have a solid amount of history regarding the client’s SEO growth or decline, it only takes a few minutes to turn that into a powerful SEO proposal. A typical SEO proposal includes sections like:

  • Introduction & Summary
  • Specific SEO Insights
  • Solutions & Deliverables
  • SMART Goals
  • Project Timeline
  • Investment
  • Call to Action

Combine all the data you’ve already gathered on your client’s SEO performance with a professional SEO report template, and you are ready to pitch your agency’s services in minutes instead of days.

Conclusion: The Power of Synergy

More than two decades after Google Ads launched, the debate over PPC vs. SEO is still a hot topic in digital marketing. Many agencies only offer one service, but with the right tools, an agency should provide holistic reports that include organic and paid search results. By including both, agencies show clients how they perform in multiple channels and use that as an upsell tactic.

At the end of the day, why settle for one when you can have both? By leveraging the synergy between SEO and PPC, your agency can deliver a comprehensive search engine marketing strategy that drives exponential growth for your clients. So, let’s put the full power of search to work for your agency!

Visit our website to learn more about how we can help your agency succeed in the ever-evolving world of search engine marketing.

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