We have access to more digital tools than ever, but search continues to be the most used, especially in the beginning of our unique researching and buying journeys. In fact, 93% of online experiences begin on a search engine. And with Google processing more than 3.5 billion searches a day, companies have a lot of opportunities to get found.
Many times, marketing teams rely on paid search to maximize reach and drive consumer action. While effective, paid advertising only garners a fraction of consumer attention and clicks. By prioritizing a more synergistic approach to paid and organic search, savvy companies are enhancing their opportunities to get found, as well as refining the customer experience from the jump.
When a brand name appears in both organic and paid search results the brand attracted 92% of total clicks, according to Nielsen. This is all about maximizing reach and visibility. The more consumers that see your brand and products, the more likely you are to drive engagement and action. Paid and organic search both have their respective unique attributes that create value for both advertisers and visitors. These are the five important reasons why you should take a hybrid approach moving forward:
Reason 1: Cost Savings
Paid campaigns can certainly help you drive more clicks, but no marketing team has a bottomless budget. If you prioritize paid and organic equally, you can develop a more well-rounded plan that allows you to scale your budget up and down as needed. When you work consistently on your SEO and improve your overall ranking, you can scale back on paid campaigns. After all, the click-through rate of organic results is nearly 20x that of paid results.
You can also use your organic search performance to inform your paid efforts, helping you get more ROI out of both campaigns in the end. When specific terms rank high on search results, that gives you the opportunity to double down on them and take up more SERP real estate using paid search. When you start ranking well organically for that keyword or phrase, you can then reallocate your paid budget elsewhere.
Reason 2: SERP Real Estate
The SERP is broken down into different blocks of real estate: the top area is dedicated to paid ads, while the rest is organic results. A strong SEO presence is crucial to gaining visibility, but dedicating some budget towards targeted paid campaigns may help you get seen by people who are later in the decision-making process.
Early on in the journey, your audience may gravitate more towards organic results, such as article links, reviews and research reports. However, if users have a higher intent to make a purchase, they may focus on paid results that are tailored to their needs. Both SEO and paid are important to ensure your brand is positioned in the right spot on the SERP, especially if consumers are searching on smartphones and tablets. In fact, 30% of pages that typically show on the first screen when a consumer is searching via desktop will not appear in the top 10 mobile results. With more than 90% of U.S. smartphone users expected to search on their mobile phones this year, businesses can’t afford to lose out on these viewer eyes — and prospective dollars.
Reason 3: SERP Changes & Algorithm Updates
SERP changes and algorithm updates are designed to improve the overall design and user experience and help searchers find what they’re looking for quickly and easily. For instance, Google has included elements, like as the Featured Snippets section, which extracts excerpts from articles and webpages that seem to answer user queries. The latest updates to Google’s algorithm emphasize E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness). Content on your website, and ultimately your keyword choices, should uphold these principles so Google can designate your site as a meaningful and meaningful resource for users. These keywords should not only be used in your organic content but also for paid campaigns in order to maintain consistency.
Having an effective paid campaign in place can be a great support system for your organic search strategies, and can help maintain brand visibility and engagement amid any new algorithm changes. You should plan to continuously assess paid campaign and organic keyword performance to keep costs in check and ensure overall effectiveness.
Reason 4: Search Competition
When it comes to search, every business’ desire is to get found before their competitors. An emphasis on SEO can help you ensure that you’re creating material that informs and draws in your target audience. After all, our research shows that consumers are 131% more likely to buy after reading educational content they find online.
Paid search can give your brand a boost in consumers’ consideration set as they research and compare options. If you use an enterprise SEO platform to manage your activities, you can glean more meaningful insights into competitor keywords and findings, so you can determine the best way to adapt your strategies and investments moving forward.
Reason 5: Testing & Optimization
By combining SEO and PPC into a holistic strategy, you can take a more robust approach to testing and optimization. For example, your SEO strategy can inform your PPC plans. SEO data can help you identify keywords to use for your next paid campaign and then you can use PPC campaigns to not only test the efficacy of these keywords, but different creative and messaging approaches.
After running tests, you can compare user engagement and clicks, and determine the best creative and messaging for engaging users. Finally, you can collectively assess paid and organic results to determine whether you should invest more, or less, in PPC moving forward. Without synergy, all of these experiments would take longer to draw conclusions, make changes and drive a positive impact for your business.
Start Developing Your Holistic Search Engine Marketing Plan
Trust will be one of the most important attributes your brand can provide a customer. While paid search can help you boost brand visibility and recall, organic search, driven by relevant, trustworthy, high-quality content, can help you build credibility with your target audience. Together, the two practices can help you pack a powerful punch for driving user action, conversion and loyalty.
Learn how to develop a synergistic approach to paid and organic search by checking out this Conductor Academy course: https://www.conductor.com/academy/