I’ve wanted to write a post on SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and PPC (Pay Per Click), and why I like PPC better. However, I found myself in a message forum discussion about this last night, and the following pretty well sums up my thoughts. You can pick up the discussion pretty easily:
Joe wrote: In other words, if you’re strapped for cash, spend time to research SEO rather than spend money on a professional who can be very expensive. If you’ve got the money, then hire a pro.
Dan Replied: The thing is, I never recommend anyone even going into business when they are “strapped for cash”. If a (primarily) online business is strapped for cash, and they have no SEO, and no PPC, well, what is the plan to get cash, then? Wait? Because SEO takes time – it’s not an overnight thing. That’s a terrible business strategy that is doomed to fail more often than not.
To address something Steve asked me – yes, I am dependent on PPC. However, I still feel like I am a little more in control. In the past, Google has changed things overnight, and it killed a lot of people’s SEO efforts. Yes, they can change PPC overnight, but it’s a lot less likely.
You are correct that used in concert with other things, SEO is fine. I do agree with that. But I am also of the opinion that if you have primarily an online business, your business model / website should be good enough to convert a PPC campaign into profitability. Because if it isn’t, it may not be the best business model (in general terms). This is a little harsh, I understand, but it’s how I feel.
Joe, to answer another one of your questions – PPC costs me nothing. Zero. Zilch. Nada. I spend $x per month (more like $xxx, really), and my site converts “Y” number of clicks into contacts (and then clients.) The dollar amount I get from Y is always a lot higher than X. PPC is an investment that I happily make because it delivers me people who want what I do.
All that said, I do get a decent amount of clicks from organic, and I have made small efforts to improve that. I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t on my mind from time to time. I just concentrate more on PPC and converting those clicks.