In the early days of any business, one of your primary objectives will be to bring as much relevant traffic to your website as possible. As you already know, there are two main ways to accomplish this: having a great SEO strategy, and using paid advertising. However, an easy trap to fall into is the belief that these approaches are mutually exclusive.
Long story short, they’re not. In fact, if used correctly, SEO and PPC can be combined to give your business a significant head start in its opening months. To help you get going, here are a few tips on balancing your marketing strategies and getting the most out of both your paid and organic traffic.
Related reading: Using Google Alerts to Get An Edge Over Your Competition.
Set Shared Goals
While SEO and PPC have unique strengths, they can be used in tandem for many common marketing aspirations. This means each strategy supports the other, fast-tracking you to your goals, and decreasing the overall investment to achieve those aims.
For example, say you want to boost web traffic by 20 percent, running some targeted PPC ads can be a great way to reach more people, and point them to your website. However, optimizing your web pages to show up more often in search results will also increase the likelihood that the right people will find your store.
However, while using both strategies may see some overlap in audiences, it gives you an even greater boost to your overall visibility. Furthermore, by integrating the two approaches, if someone sees your ad and then decides to look you up, your SEO efforts will make it far easier for them to find you.
Having shared objectives for your campaigns means you can refine your marketing efforts to be complementary. Not only will this reinforce your brand message, it also helps to build a sense of consistency and familiarity which can greatly enhance consumer trust in your brand.
Combine Your Data
Your SEO and PPC campaigns will both yield valuable data that can provide extensive insights into the habits and preferences of your target audience. So rather than having two completely separate teams acting on their associated data alone, it makes sense to pool your resources. This means that you can form a more complete picture of buyer habits, and enable your finding to influence your SEO and PPC efforts simultaneously.
- Data from onsite searches can help you narrow down keywords for your PPC ads.
- Success of individual PPC ads can provide insights into the sort of aesthetics and copy that are most popular with your target audience.
- Targeted ads on social media can provide granular detail about specific demographics, helping to build better buyer personas, and refine your SEO.
Another important reason to pool your data is that it can help to highlight discrepancies. If your paid ads are attracting an entirely different demographic to your organic search results, then you need to know why, and to use this knowledge to optimize your approach.
Optimize Landing Pages
Whether users find their way to your website via search results, or paid ads, having a great landing page is essential if you want to turn that visitor into a customer. Naturally, your SEO efforts will increase your site’s authority, and help these pages to show up in search results. However, if you have a unified strategy for SEO and PPC, these pages will also complement the paid ads that drive traffic to them.
The benefit of this is that users who click on your ads will feel like they have come to exactly where they expected, rather than having to navigate from your homepage to whatever inspired them in your advert. In fact, AdWords allows you to link individual product pages to your PPC ads, which is fantastic for driving impulse sales and creating a highly streamlined experience for your customers.
Test Organic Keywords
Finding the best keywords and key phrases for your marketing campaigns can be a difficult task. Even after reviewing your options using tools such as Wordstream’s keyword finder, it’s really a matter of trial and error to find the exact combinations that work for your business.
This is essential for getting the most out of your SEO, but you should also implement your findings in your PPC strategy. In fact, by reviewing the performance of individual paid ads, you can even use your PPC efforts to determine which keywords are most viable for your organic efforts.
Top tip: if you use an ecommerce host like Shopify to run your online store, you can claim $100 in Google Adwords credit when you spend $25.
Double Your Odds
A final point to remember when weighing up the viability of PPC versus SEO for your marketing approach is that by employing both, you can actually double your presence in search results. For example, if you manage to rank on the first page of search results for a given keyword, and your paid ad also shows up, the user is presented with two immediate options for visiting your site.
This increased visibility will also cause your website to seem more and more familiar over time, as it continues to show up in results. So while many web users are in the habit of ignoring paid search results, this doesn’t mean they don’t scan through them and remember the websites.
Then, if your site also appears in the organic search results, it is already recognizable, and presents the user with an alternative means of reaching your website, without feeling like they’ve been lured their by an advert. This means they arrive with greater trust in your brand, which in turn increases their likelihood of conversion.
– Credit: Pixabay
As you can see, there is a lot to be gained both from paid advertising, and from improving your SEO. These two strategies are each powerful in their own right, but become infinitely more impactful when used together as part of an integrated approach.
While it is certainly possible to incorporate either of these tactics into your marketing strategy at a later date, it will always be most effective to implement them from day one. By doing this, you build your campaign upon a foundation of consistency, making it far easier to develop and optimize your approach over time.
Your first few months in business can be hard work, but that attention and diligence will pay off. Put the time and effort in now, and before long, you will not only have built an ecommerce brand to be proud of, but you’ll also have acquired invaluable marketing experience that will benefit you in all your future endeavors.
Victoria Greene is a branding consultant and freelance writer. On her blog, Victoria Ecommerce, she shares tips on ecommerce and how companies can improve their brand representation. She is passionate about using her experience to help brands improve their reach.