What’s the point of SEO if there are Google ads services – have you ever considered it? Or how effective do you think Google advertising is without SEO? They are both simply a case of keywords and getting your website ranked in the search results, but in one case it’s about the quick results, in the other case it’s the result of a long-term effort. It would seem, then, why have search engine optimization services if you can get the same and much faster results with Google ads services? Is it really the same?
Google Ads is a tool that provides a website with one of the first positions in search results for the selected (purchased) keywords. The result is immediate: we generate a list of keywords to buy, book a service, and as soon as the keyword you’ve chosen appears in the search box, you’re on top. Bingo! A small detail – your website with the keyword is only at the top of the search results as long as you purchase a service for the keyword (you are charged per click), but if being found is particularly important for a project that is happening right here, right now, this is the technique that will allow you to do it.
SEO services are about the same concept, top position in Google’s results queue for selected business keywords, but in an organic (natural) way. It’s a project that can take anywhere from 6-12 months, depending on the keyword competition and the methods used, but the result is assured and long-lasting, in addition having a number of additional benefits and values for the website.
- SEO vs Google Ads? Which to prioritize?
- I. Keywords and their importance for a website
- II. First positions in search results with Google advertisements – targeted visitors guaranteed?
- III. Google advertisements and visitors gained = Sales?
- How can I improve my website so that it appeals to both search engines and visitor flow?
- IV. Google Ads services – first place guaranteed?
- V. Professional Search engine optimization services – identical results for a more business-friendly budget?
- VI. Algorithm resilience with Google advertisements: myth or reality?
- VII. Google Ads and SEO: efficiency in numbers
- Verdict: Google advertisement services or SEO services?
- Digital marketing services – because just being in internet is not enough
SEO vs Google Ads? Which to prioritize?
SEO vs Google Ads – which choice should be your brand’s priority? Some facts to help you decide:
I. Keywords and their importance for a website
SEO keyword research is a key component that determines the results of both methods.
When choosing the shortcut with Google ads services, this aspect is very critical in order to avoid the disappointment of spending a significant budget and not generating sales.Since every click that leads to a website costs money, it is essential to avoid missed shots. The chosen keywords should answer the exact question the user is looking for (avoiding a high bounce rate, i.e. a sequence of actions: entered the site, did not found what I was looking for – left) and, most importantly, the chosen keyword should be exactly the word the user would use to search for your product or service. Often a business owner thinks that a consumer should search for a business service or product using one word or phrase, but SEO keyword research reveals a completely different set of search habits.
If Google advertisements selects the wrong keywords (weak, low-search) and does not include the ones with the highest potential, the project will also have the chance to remain average or weak. The key point is whether the user searches for the phrase for informational purposes only or with a tendency to purchase.
Whether you’re planning a Google advertisement or a SEO project, keyword research services are a vital point of readiness to start with both services.
Keyword research – an essential step for getting your website listed in search results with keywords relevant to your business
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II. First positions in search results with Google advertisements – targeted visitors guaranteed?
Yes, there is a very high probability that a user will come to your website, but there are also exceptions. If you buy a Google advertisement, you will see “ADS”, “ADVERTISEMENT” or “SPONSORED” in the search results queue next to your website. This gives away the fact that the website is not at the top of the results queue because it deserves to be, but because it buys Google advertising.
Often, users intentionally bypass such websites and choose the first naturally high ranking websites. Why? The idea is that a website that is naturally at the top is there because of its performance and superiority in its field (in other words, because it is authoritative), while a position at the top can be bought by anyone with a budget, but not necessarily by a professional in the field. This factor does not always work, but sometimes it is determinant.
III. Google advertisements and visitors gained = Sales?
Getting into the Google Top 10 is a big first step. But how do you keep visitors coming to your website and encourage them to take actions?
Whether it’s Google advertisement services or search engine optimization services, the important factor is that the user should not only stay as long as possible on the website, but also click on the call-to-action button. Let’s say both processes have done their job, your website is at the top of the results, and a potential customer has visited your website. A few determining factors will determine whether they will stay there, for how long and whether they will take actions that are beneficial for you:
I. Technically well-run and fast website.
Is your website technically up to date? Is it fast, i.e. does it display content fully on the screen quickly? Does the mobile version (a very critical factor) display the content neatly and conveniently? User satisfaction factors are often the deciding factors: if a potential customer gets frustrated with a website that takes too long to load, or content that does not display smoothly on the phone screen, the customer is likely to leave and navigate to a competitor’s website.
II. Website texts
Does the website text speak the language of the user? Is the textual content informative and the chosen terms comprehensible for the user? Is the layout correct, encouraging the user to read the whole text and take the desired action (purchase, subscribe to a newsletter, share on social networks, etc.)? Does it provide all the information required to make a decision? If a potential customer does not find the answers quickly or does not have the patience to wander through the confusing content, they are likely to decide to walk away and look for a more eye-pleasing, clearer, more sympathetic source, i.e. a competitor.
III. Illustrations, video material
Is the textual content enhanced by high quality illustrations that represent the product or service offered (but also optimized, alt-textual illustrations)? For most consumers, not only detailed textual information is essential, but also visuals, which give the text-heavy site some breathing space, and give a clearer idea of what product or service the customer will actually receive when they place an order. If possible, the website should also be enriched by videos, which give consumers a closer look not only at the range of products on offer, but also at the brand’s history, values and the team behind the powerful name – after all, video content accounts for as much as 82.5% of online content in 2023, and it is a format worth utilizing to build an even stronger brand image.
IV. Efficient navigation
Does the website provide clear navigation for the user, with a guided course of action that is beneficial for you? A user who visits and does not click on a call-to-action button – wasted budget on a click. Clear navigation and well planned internal links ensure maximum results from such visits.
V. Why you?
Are all means – including psychological ones – being used to convince the consumer “why choose us?”? Social proof is the phenomenon where the actions and attitudes of others influence our own decisions. How can this tool be used to benefit business? A website that speaks not only in the voice of the brand, but also in the voice of the customers who already love the brand, is one of the most effective ways to keep the attention of a user who has already visited the website, both thanks to Google advertisements and to SEO. In addition to business-generated text, the content of the website can also be supplemented by reviews and recommendations from the customers, giving the brand even more credibility and gradually converting visitors into customers who trust the business and are resistant to competitors’ offerings.
Google advertising is a powerful tool for bringing a user. The same goal applies to SEO optimization processes. The key difference is that during an internal SEO project, the technical problems of the website and speed problems are fixed, with particular emphasis on good user experience, i.e. a user-friendly website structure and text content that sells and encourages the user to navigate the website according to your goals.
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IV. Google Ads services – first place guaranteed?
Both Google advertising and SEO optimisation aim to achieve the end result, a high position in the search engine results for the keywords provided, but in both cases the specific position in the queue also depends on the popularity of the keywords, i.e. the competitive market, as well as on how technically well-managed the website being uploaded is, and its authority (measured by the domain rating).
Google advertisements don’t always guarantee first place. Maybe 5 of your competitors are actively using the tool, they are targeting the same keywords, they have a bigger budget than you, and their website is technically superior. Google’s user satisfaction factor is very important in all cases, so the number one position is not guaranteed. However, a position in the top results is guaranteed, which is already a plus. When choosing Google advertising, the following factors remain important for a well-organized website. Even if the technical gaps are not fixed, Google advertising will still do its job and the website will probably not be first in the queue, but it will still be second or third.
V. Professional Search engine optimization services – identical results for a more business-friendly budget?
The short answer is yes, to some extent and in some cases, but certainly not always. Looking back at global statistics, 44% of global businesses spend from $100 to $10 000 per month on Google advertisements, while the budget for an SEO strategy is quite often limited to the $500-$1500 range per month. However, PPC (i.e. pay per click, when is paid for each click) advertising is a short-term advertising strategy with a return on investment only for the duration of the advertising purchase. Meanwhile, businesses continue to see the value of SEO and organic visitors flow after the successful completion of a project, even when the budget for regular SEO strategy development is no longer allocated.
It is true that the costs required for successful results, whether through PPC advertising or organic website optimisation, are determined by a wide range of factors. Here are some of the factors that are relevant to businesses that want to dominate search engines both organically and through Google advertisements:
- The competitive environment, its size and the number of competitors already running successful marketing solutions. A larger number of powerful competitors = higher effort and financial resources for the business that wants to stand out the most.
- Keyword search. Particularly competitive keywords will require a higher budget (i.e. click-through rate) in Google advertisements, while SEO strategy will require high quality, consistent and comprehensive content focused on the keyword phrase, as well as backlinks.
- Targeting a precise geographical location. The geographic scope of the target audience is particularly influential for both PPC and SEO budgets. For example, a very niche location (for example, a small Lithuanian market) usually has lower competition, so a business that wants to dominate the top positions on Google will need slightly less effort and resources. Meanwhile, for brands targeting particularly broad (large national, regional) or even global markets, the Google Top 10 is a task that requires not only professional skills but also a substantial financial investment.
VI. Algorithm resilience with Google advertisements: myth or reality?
While the stereotype that paid advertising will be more visible and more effective than efforts to capture a user’s attention organically is indeed logical, practice shows that even Google advertisements are not immune to constant algorithmic changes. Algorithms also have a significant impact on PPC campaigns compared to SEO strategy – as you know, Google’s priority is high quality, user-oriented content, so ads that don’t meet these criteria or that use irrelevant keywords may also receive lower visibility. However, this result is easy to adjust – Google advertisement content can be changed, added to and updated in real time, adapting to the needs of the audience and ensuring the relevance and attractiveness of the advertising message.
Meanwhile, the dependence of professional SEO services on algorithms is a bit more difficult to control – even when a business adapts its strategy quickly in response to changes, the results can change much more slowly. This is why SEO is slightly more sensitive to the position of a website in relation to algorithms.
How to stay resilient no matter which strategy – SEO or PPC – is chosen to increase the visibility of a website? A solid website foundation is the solution to unpredictable algorithm changes and always high Google rankings. The duo of excellent quality content and a user-friendly (not only aesthetic, but also functional) layout of the website is a combination that is fundamentally in line with the principles of the algorithms and a signal that this is a website worthy of the highest Google positions.
VII. Google Ads and SEO: efficiency in numbers
- The average click-through rate (CTR) for Google advertisements is between 3 and 5 %, so for every 100 people who see your page, it’s likely that 3-5 visitors will click on it.
- A website that is SEO-optimized and ranked in Google’s TOP 1 can have a CTR as high as 39.8%. The second-ranked website can claim 18.7% of the attention of the users who saw it, and the third-ranked website 10.2%.
- 61.9% of clicks on Google advertisements come from mobile users.
- Every 1 additional second needed to load a website reduces user satisfaction by 16%. In addition, 70% of consumers say that the speed of a website influences their decision to buy a product or service, regardless of whether the website was visited via PPC advertising or through organic search. This is a clear signal that resolving technical errors should be the first priority, regardless of the tool chosen to increase a brand’s Google position.
- CPC (i.e. cost per click) – can vary depending on the business area for which Google advertising is placed. Currently, some of the most expensive clicks are in the motor vehicle sector, while cheaper CPCs are seen in the real estate and arts and entertainment sectors.
- In some cases, conversion rates among businesses that have chosen SEO and PPC advertising are particularly notable when the business area is considered. For example, financial services providers see as much as 7.3 times higher conversions with SEO compared to Google advertisements, while legal services companies see 3.4 times higher conversions. Meanwhile, transport, e-commerce and construction have fairly similar conversion rates regardless which tool is chosen to rank higher in search engines (source).
- While some users deliberately ignore Google results marked as “Sponsored” because they doubt their credibility, around half of internet users do not notice the difference between organic search results and websites that use Google advertisements in their marketing strategy.
Verdict: Google advertisement services or SEO services?
When it comes to the question of SEO or Google Ads, there is no single answer, and there are many more differences and factors that determine the outcome. Both options are effective, but if you choose the quick way, at least partial SEO optimisation is still recommended to ensure that your budget is not wasted without results: keyword research services, a website audit (SEO audit) and the recommended optimisation work to be done in the report of the audit, so that the website is technically functional, the content provides a good user experience, gives you the answers to your questions, has a consistent navigation and performs the actions you need to take to benefit you. All this is called internal SEO.
Then there is external SEO – a set of actions to get your website to rank organically (naturally) and stay there indefinitely, or Google advertising – a sprint towards that position, but a significant result as long as the advertising is bought.
SEO services: if you want to be on the web, just be in the Google top 10!
Did you know that the first three results of a Google search get 54.4% of all clicks? For ambitious businesses, having an SEO-optimised website that ranks at the top of Google is a necessity, not a luxury.
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