3 reasons to use PPC (even if you have great rankings)

cash in walletI’m often asked at seminars a question like this: “Why should I use PPC? I already rank well with SEO.”

I love these questions, because it gives me an opportunity to talk about my favorite topic — paid marketing. For nearly every business, paid marketing must be part of your mix.

Here are my top 3 responses to the “why should I use paid” question:

  1. Control the page. Even if you had the greatest SEO team in the world, the best you can get for any given search is two organic listings. So what better way to dominate the page than with a paid result as well? In most cases, you’ll have two, if not three links (think “chances”) to capture a potential prospect. And when using the same keywords for both paid and organic, you should see far better results overall (for both spots).
  2. Control the message. The snippet and URL shown for your organic search results may not be the best possible place for your prospects to visit. Instead, support this listing with a paid result. Within reason, you can say what you want to say in the ad, and direct clicks to the page on your website which converts the best. From another perspective, if you’re facing negative or less than desirable organic results, use paid marketing to level the playing field.
  3. Expand your reach. The only way to expand your reach organically is to create content and links which support your additional keywords. But try doing this for more than a few dozen terms, and you’ll never make progress. If you want to be found for hundreds, even thousands, of potential keywords, the only way to get this type of reach is through paid marketing.

With the given change in Google’s search page, organic results are getting further and further down the page. These three reasons apply in all situations, and for all businesses. To borrow a page from politics, you’ve got to pay to play, and the only guaranteed way to get traffic from a search engine is to buy it.

Photo credit by Penny Matthews.

Brian Farrell is a coach, helping clients achieve their personal and professional goals. He's also the creator of the "QA2 Method". For more about Brian, visit bfarrell.com

2 Comments on “3 reasons to use PPC (even if you have great rankings)

  1. Brian,

    You’ve summed this up quite nicely in your post, but definitely brought it home with your last line of ‘pay to play’.

    In my experiences as well, I’ve noticed this being a great core compliment to any internet marketing program. It diversifies the company’s portfolio to claim another important piece of Google (or other major search engine) real estate.

    Also, with iPhones and Droids actively becoming the norm of mobile web surfing – you can see how much more important PPC campaigns would be because that is the first portion of the page available until you expand the screen view. Often-times, you’re just looking to buy a service right away. It’s convenient to click and PPC offers that kind of immediate satisfaction to what you’re researching.

    Thanks for posting this important, yet neglected piece of SEM and keep the advice coming!

  2. Mike – you’re absolutely right about mobile browsing. The method of research online, buy offline is most prominent with mobile, and only those willing to pay the price of entry are going to succeed.