You’ve spent months building the website for your new online business, and now you’re ready to do some internet marketing. You’ve heard about pay-per-click (PPC) and search engine optimization (SEO), and you know that both will help you show up on Google and other search engines. But which one do you do first?
At Fluency Media, we recommend starting with PPC. While it may seem counter-intuitive to begin the search marketing process by driving paid traffic instead of “free” organic traffic, it’s actually the best route in the long run.
SEO is a long-term investment that often will ultimately generate the majority of your website’s traffic. However, it’s difficult for a brand-new site to rank well in the search engines. Search engine spiders look for things like site age, inbound links, and other factors – all of which put a new site at a disadvantage.
Never fear, though, because this is where PPC comes in! Unlike SEO, PPC campaigns can be launched quickly. With a little advanced planning, a well-crafted PPC campaign can serve as the basis for future SEO efforts. I wrote about the process in depth over at Search Engine Watch. Even a small PPC campaign will yield invaluable data that you can use to jump-start your SEO.
Like I said, SEO is a long-term investment. And once a site or page is optimized, it’s hard to “re-optimize” for totally different keywords. Therefore, it’s essential to make sure you’re optimizing your website for the most leveraged keyphrases at the outset, instead of wasting valuable resources on the wrong words.
Communication between your PPC manager and your SEO specialist is critical at this point. Our specialists have regular meetings and impromptu conversations when working with new sites. This collaboration is important, as it helps to share finding such as:
- PPC keywords with the best cost per conversion
- Ad copy that converts the best
- Keywords that convert, but have a low Quality Score
- Keywords that are relevant, but don’t convert
By making the investment in PPC first, we’ve been able to help our clients jump-start the SEO process and achieve high rankings and organic traffic much more quickly than if we focused on one without the other.
Melissa Mackey is the Online Marketing Manager at FluencyMedia.com. A veteran PPC marketer, she helps clients get maximum ROI from paid search. She’s also mom to boy/girl twins and an avid Michigan State Spartan alum and fan. See more posts from Melissa at www.fluencymedia.com/blog