Digital Media Marketing​

The Difference Between SEO and PPC: A Comparative Guide for Businesses

It’s hard to be in a discussion about digital marketing without hearing the words “PPC” and “SEO.” While these are prominent buzzwords in the digital marketing realm, what significance do they hold for businesses?

Small and medium-sized enterprises in the country spend between $9,000 and $10,000 every month on PPC. Despite spending so much on these ads, most people, especially business owners, still don’t know the difference between SEO and PPC. If you’re one of them, worry not, you’re in the right place.

In today’s post, we’ll be highlighting the major differences between SEO and PPC.

What Is SEO?

SEO is short for Search Engine Optimization, which describes a cluster of techniques site owners use to improve their SERP ranking. In doing so, they can attract more traffic to their site, which translates to increased profits and awareness. Businesses use different SEO strategies to help generate organic traffic to their websites and generate leads to improve sales.

What Is PPC Advertising?

PPC stands for pay-per-click, which is a form where businesses pay every time an internet user clicks on their ads. It’s a way of generating inorganic traffic to your site and increasing sales. You can think of it as “buying” visits to your site to achieve your end goal of driving sales.

What Is the Difference Between SEO and PPC?

From the above, we both know that SEO and PPC are marketing strategies targeting internet users. So what makes these two marketing forms different?

The Cost

The first major difference between these two marketing strategies is the cost. SEO is free, while PPC advertising will cost you some money. As the name implies, pay-per-click means you’ll have to pay every time a user clicks on your ad. This is usually between $1 and $2 per click.

However, it’s not uncommon for businesses to pay marketing firms to streamline their SEO. However, this is completely optional.

Traffic Potential

All SEO and PPC activities premise on generating traffic influx to your business site. However, SEO generates traffic organically, while PPC tries to beat the system. Implementing proper SEO practices will help your site rank higher on SERPs and increase its traffic potential.

PPC has decent traffic potential, but you can always ramp this up to attract more site visits. However, this means paying through the nose for more traffic influx to your site.


There’s always the question of whether your PPC and SEO activities will convert into actual sales. Well, quite frankly, SEO has a lower conversion rate compared to PPC. That’s because highly targeted PPC ads will only de displayed to web users who really need your product.

SEO, on the other hand, will show your websites in SERPs for searches related to your business niche. This means a lower chance of converting into sales. However, you can use resources from the Online Advertising Academy to learn how you can implement both strategies for the success of your business.

You Don’t Have to Choose!

If you’re stuck choosing between SEO and PPC campaigns, remember, you don’t have to choose one. That’s right, you can use both of them to propel your business to greater heights. Now that you know the difference between SEO and PPC, juggling the two shouldn’t be a problem.

Check out the other posts on the site for more informative reads.

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