SEO vs PPC: What Should You Do First?

Today we’re going to be talk about SEO vs PPC and what you should do first.

We could do a very structured pros, cons, and advantages post — but I’m sure there are thousands out there. Instead, what I’d like to talk about today is some of the misconceptions people take into both services. I’ll clarify each and share some of the misconceptions so you can make a better decision.

One of the largest misconceptions that we see on a consistent basis is that “PPC gets you quick results and SEO takes a long time“. These are misconceptions because they’re almost true, but they give you the wrong foundational starting point or wrong perspective going into either.

Let’s unpack that a little.

When it comes to pay per click, it’s not that you can’t get results incredibly fast, it’s that 95%, 99%, 100% of people don’t because what you need to determine is keyword and your brand fit.

For example, at Directive Consulting, when we first launched a PPC campaign for ourselves, we don’t know which keywords are going to convert the best. Depending on the volume of those keywords, we can’t turn those keywords off until we have statistically significant data. This means we need a certain amount of clicks — which depending on your budget, might take 3, 4, 5, 6 months to gather enough data to properly make a decision on whether certain keywords are profitable or not. Then, if you layer in your sales cycle or how long it takes someone from a form fill to closing a deal — this idea that PPC will work lightning fast is just incorrect.

For example, we know that if someone searches “agency,” that’s a better keyword modifier than “services.” We know that the person, individual, or company who is looking for an agency has a higher propensity to pay for our services than someone searching with the query “services“. “Services” queries are usually someone looking for a freelancer, such as Upwork, Fiverr, or something cheaper. They need a service, and they need it done cheap.

Someone looking for an agency is looking for a partner, understands that it might cost more, and usually has a larger budget. But you don’t know that when you go into this PPC experiment or this PPC campaign.

It’s really important that you go into it with your eyes wide open and recognize that PPC will get you clicks very fast. You can turn a PPC campaign on and get clicks lightning fast — but to think that those clicks are going to turn into opportunities, deals, and revenue in a way that makes sense on your financial statement, that takes time. I want to be clear there because it’s important that you go into PPC with the understanding that it takes time to make it an incredible, profitable channel for your business and that’s okay.

SEO, on the other hand, also takes time. The misconception going into SEO, is “this going to take a long time, it’s all about keywords and X, Y, or Z”. The reality of SEO is it can happen very quickly. It just depends on where you’re starting from.

If you’re a brand new website in a brand new business, it might even take 2 to 4 years. Not 6 months, not 3 months, not whoever is telling you how long it will take. Because you don’t have to beat Google. That’s this misconception is everybody thinks they have to be Google. You have to be all the other brands.

You have to have more people talking about your brand than everyone else who’s trying to rank for the same keywords you’re targeting. The reality is is that takes time. You need:

– mentions
– people talking about you in the news
– your industry talking about you
– partners talking about you

You need all these people talking about you. When I say “talking about you,” I mean linking to you. In other words, you need to build your brand. It’s very difficult to rank without a brand. Furthermore, you need exceptional design. You need great content. You need all these things.

“Are we going to have more bottlenecks on paid than we are on organic?”

Once again, it all matters. It shouldn’t be SEO versus PPC, it should be SEO with PPC and “where should we start” or “do we want to do both?” That’s the decision you need to make based on your budget, your team, and your bottlenecks.

Hopefully this video kind of walks you through the realities of each, and helps you make a better decision based on your own situation. As always, please like, share, or subscribe to our channel and have a great day!

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