What is the Difference Between SEO and PPC?

If you’ve been in the digital marketing industry for a while, then you’ve probably come across the terms SEO and PPC. Maybe you know a bit about both, but have never really fully understood them. Whatever your experience, it’s important to know the difference between the two.

Both of these digital marketing strategies play important roles in the world of online marketing. Both can yield great results if used correctly and can skyrocket your business’s growth and profit. But how do they differ from one another and which should you be using for your business?

We’re here to help you make a choice and find out which is the best for you. Let’s begin with looking at what they both are.

What is SEO?


Search Engine Optimisation, also referred to as SEO is a popular digital marketing strategy used by millions of businesses worldwide. If you’re a business and you want to attract more customers to your website, then SEO is a great way to do it.

Since customers use search engines like Google to help them find products and services, it only makes sense that you should invest money into ranking higher. After all, the top 3 results on Google for a given keyword usually get the most results. If you’re not in the top 3 then many users will never click on your website, never see what you have to offer and never purchase your product.

However, before you start panicking it’s important to know that not everyone gets in the top 3 results overnight, and there are in fact, millions of keywords up for grabs.

Investing time and money into SEO can do wonders for your website and business, but you have to be patient. Google uses a special algorithm to help it determine which sites should rank number 1 for a given keyword. There are hundreds of different factors that go into determining a website’s rank and ultimately, only Google know all of the factors.

Although there are certain things you can do to your website to help increase your rankings, don’t expect to be number 1 in a few days. The entire process can take weeks to months depending on how competitive the keyword is.

The good news is, once you finally make it to number 1, or at least in the top 3, you’re likely to stay there for a while. This means that every month you’ll bring in a reliable source of traffic to your website that isn’t likely to disappear overnight.

What is PPC?


Now that you understand SEO and have a good idea of what it involves, what about PPC?

Pay Per Click, also known as PPC is another popular digital marketing strategy that a lot of businesses use. Primarily used on platforms such as Google, Bing and Facebook, PPC differs significantly from SEO.

As we mentioned before, the top 3 results on Google usually get the most clicks. This is because they are at the top of the list and are the first thing many people see. In order to get at the top, you need to invest a lot of time and money in making your website rank higher. What if there was a faster and easier way to get into the top 3? Well, there is.

Pay per click allows you to leapfrog over all of the other websites in order to get the number 1 spot. All for a price of course! Depending on the keyword you want to be number 1 for this can range from a few pence to hundreds of pounds.

Instead of taking months of hard work to appear in the search results, you can appear in the paid sponsored results overnight. All you have to do is simply set up a PPC campaign and adjust your bids accordingly. This is ideal for a number of reasons.

First of all, you don’t have to waste months waiting to rank higher, you’ll see results instantly and know if it’s worth your money or not. Second, you can easily scale your PPC campaigns and target several keywords at the same time. If you were getting 30 visits a day from 1 campaign imagine running 10 campaigns. That’s a big traffic boost.

Finally, you can also advertise on other people’s websites using PPC. Search engines like Google have partnerships with millions of other websites. This allows you to advertise on partners websites usually for a much cheaper price than Googles.

The Difference Between SEO and PPC?

difference between seo and ppc

Now that you have a clear understanding about both of these popular digital marketing strategies, which one should you be using?

SEO takes a long time and a lot of investment to make it worth your while. Running a full SEO campaign takes a lot of time and you most likely won’t see results for months. The downside of this is that you can feel like you are spending money for no reason. At least with PPC you can tell if you’re campaign is profitable or not within a few days. SEO, on the other hand, takes a lot longer, and there’s not guarantee that you’ll even make it into the top results!

However, if you do stick in there and manage to make it into the top 3 then you’ll be highly rewarded. The traffic you’ll receive to your website will be super targeted and will almost always cover your costs.

PPC, on the other hand, is very different. A campaign can be setup within a matter of minutes, and you’ll be able to track in real time visitors coming to your website. Although PPC can boost you to number 1 on Google overnight, the costs can be very high depending on the keywords.

PPC is also not the easiest thing in the world, and if you don’t know what you’re doing, you can waste a lot of money. To get the most out of your campaigns, you need to constantly optimise them and keep adding and removing keywords.

So which should you use for your business? Why both of course!

Cheap PPC keywords that have a good amount of searches can be a great little way to bring extra traffic to your website that converts. The more expensive and difficult keywords are, usually, they are best left to SEO as they require much more effort and time.

Click fraud is a big problem in the PPC industry and often results in thousands of pounds being spent fraudulently. Every time your competitor clicks on your PPC ad they waste your PPC budget. This means no sale for you, but you still have to pay!

To find out how you can eliminate this unnecessary cost from your PPC campaign, visit our website for a free trial of PPC Protect.