Why buy Google Ads When SEO Is Free?

A sales man I know who sells machinery for metal shops spends less than $500 on Adwords gets 700+ visits via SEO and just under 500 visits from paid Google Ads.

You know those “sponsored” ads a lot of people look at and say “I never click on those.”  Maybe you think like that.

Anyhow.  A while back we started segmenting his traffic, where 1 segment was for people who requested a info or a quote on a piece of machinery that sells for $20,000 and up.

According to his analytics the PPC ads drive 3X as many quotes as his organic or free traffic.  Remember that PPC gives you the ability to get traffic from keywords you might not rank for or even words you won’t ever rank for – think a local businesses that bid on related keywords without city names in the search query.

Go ahead and search for iPad, Apple obviously has the No. 1 SEO ranking but they also drive traffic to the Apple webstore with Google ads and I can guarantee you those ads make money - much of the traffic from SEO is for people seeking information.

I'm never one to say that PPC is THE ONLY thing you should do, or SEO and SOCIAL are bad.  Generally speaking, the best advice I have is to REALLY know and understand your customer and where they hang out and market to them effectively with 1 form of advertising first.

This takes a little blood and sweat!  Otherwise the tendency is for people do design websites and advertisements based on what they think is good, they promote their business unknowingly using ads that are not effective, and don't get results.  Or they pursue the wrong things entirely.

Without a successful paid search campaign that generates positive ROI I'm doubtful that Search Engine Optimization will be effective or as effective as it could be other wise.  At worst you could spend months and thousands of dollars trying to optimize with no guarantee of traffic or sales.

With paid search you at least get visitors on the targeted keywords you select.


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