Play this while you read because the music from Pirates makes everything awesome.
Imagine you are standing on top of a mountain. You are trying to decide how to get down. On one side of you is a sheer cliff, a fast yet painful way down the mountain. On the other side is a gradual slope that, while long and arduous, will ultimately save your knees from certain peril in the long-term. The idea behind this metaphor is something businesses have to deal with every day. The question is: how do you handle your search engine marketing? The question has two answers and I am here to help you through each.
Since I have not mentioned Adwords before I will give a brief summary of what it is. Adwords allows for marketers to bid on sponsored positions for desired keywords that searchers see when they use Google. These sponsored links are bid upon, much like an auction. Marketers bid on how much they are willing to pay per click or per impression (consumer view). Google relates the bid amount to the marketers “quality score” (how relevant the landing page is, how relevant the ad itself is, and the average click through rate the marketer has obtained) and the position for the ad is determined. This makes for a very effective (yet potentially expensive) marketing campaign.
When you are looking at adwords, think of the slope as climbing a cliff. It is taxing, requires much more immediate investment but is ultimately a fast way to the top (of Google rankings). However, if at any point you stop putting in this investment, you will immediately plummet to the ground. This method has many advantages and just as many disadvantages.
The advantages are as follows:
While the advantages are alluring, there are many disadvantages as well:
Organic SEO is much more like a long incline. It requires a lot of slow and dredging work, but in the end it is hard to lose your position. If you stop for a bit you will remain relatively static (with a little variation). It is also far less taxing on your energy (or in this case your marketing budget). This one is a marathon, not a sprint.
The answer to this question really depends on your goal. If you are looking to drive large amounts of traffic to your site in a short period, adwords is probably the way to go. In that same vein if you are looking to make a long term investment and have the time to wait around for things to grow then go with organic (it is the better long run choice).
Generally speaking, we believe that the best way to conduct SEM is to make your goals clear. We believe that if you have the money to spend, Adwords can be great. However it is not a good long run plan. What is good is to synergize the two. A few examples of this are: using your Adwords keywords as research for what you want to target with an organic campaign; use the Adwords ads to build brand awareness and gain links (thus boosting your organic rankings). These are certainly not all the tricks you can pull with the power of web synergy but it is a good start.
Anyway, there you have it, a glorious compilation of how to answer the age old question: Adwords or Organic SEO? But, before you go, check this out.
Yea, this exists