What is SEO and PPC? – Which Strategy is Best?

If you don’t know what SEO and PPC are, this will be your chance to fully understand both strategies.  But it will also answer the question which one is best for you.

Getting your website found by the search engines is key in getting any traffic.  Both strategies are effective, but there are definitely things to understand about them before you choose which one is for you.

We will explore both strategies, let’s start with SEO…

Search Engine Optimisation – Everyone Needs This Strategy

The reason why everyone needs this strategy and will benefit from it is… it is a free marketing method.What is SEO and PPC

By making sure your website is optimised and found by the search engines, it means that any conversions (sales) you have become 100% profit.

Let’s start with the Pros and Cons of SEO Marketing:

The Pros of SEO Marketing

  • It is a free marketing strategy for online marketing and this makes it an ideal strategy for beginners.  It makes it very cost effective and has the better Return on Investment.
  • When you get ranked in the search engines, it is classed as an organic ranking, which can improve over time with more engagement.
  • A great way of increasing organic traffic, and also gives you an insight into how you are ranked against your competitors for the same keyword.

The Cons of SEO Marketing

  • It isn’t a quick method, it takes time to build up your trust and rankings with the search engines
  • The Search Engines change their algorithms regularly, which can affect any rankings you have built up. (Easy to combat with quality content).
  • Competition on some keywords will make it harder to rank for it, without the correct strategy.

How Does SEO Marketing Work?

Whilst both SEO & PPC marketing starts with a keyword, they have different things you are looking for.

The first step with SEO is keyword research.  You need a keyword research tool; our preferred option is Jaaxy.

In fact, if you are not doing any keyword research you are just writing content with no chance of getting it ranked on page one of Google.  With SEO, there is no point in targeting a keyword that gives you a chance of getting onto that page one.

But if you target a keyword with high competition or no searches, then there is no point writing the article.

I go into more detail on keyword research in my post “What is Keyword Research in SEO”.

But in short, you want to target posts with an average traffic of 100 a month and a competition of less than 100.

But do not just rely on the keyword in the title, the key to Search Engine Optimisation these days is Quality Content.

How to Optimise Your Website for the Search Engines

There are some key things you can do to ensure your website is optimised for the search engines.

WordPress is an ideal website choice, it is ideally optimised for SEO, is mobile friendly and with the addition of a simple plug-in, you are good to go and get found by the search engines.

What is SEO and PPCI highly recommend the All-in-One SEO plugin for WordPress, I know others use Yoast – but either way, installing this plugin will be the first step to getting your website onto the Search Engines.

Now, Google is great at finding new content – there are steps to quicken the process, but I will cover that shortly.  But Bing & Yahoo, are not so great at it.

To get your website and your posts ranked into the search engines you are best off submitting a sitemap to both Google & Bing/Yahoo.

You will need to use Google Search Console & Bing Webmaster Tools for this.

SEO does heavily rely on both effective keyword research and quality content.  Whilst submitting a sitemap and using the right keyword is a start to the SEO strategy, the most effective route is quality content.

Google is constantly changing its algorithm to give its users better results.  Things they are now looking at are:

  • Is your Website Mobile Friendly?  More searches are done on smartphones now
  • Is your Website Secure?  Websites with SSL will rank better
  • Is your Content relevant to what the search was?
  • Does it get Engagement? – Comments

SEO Rankings can sometimes not be consistent, and they are constantly reviewing it.  If your content is highly relevant and helpful to the searcher, gets regular comments and people are staying on your site and really engaging with it – your rankings will go up. You goal is to be on the first page of the search engines.

But if your content is the reverse of all this, then it is likely to go down.  Be mindful of any platform that works off duplicate content, the search engines hate duplicate content and will just drop your rankings massively.  It needs to unique and helpful.

Getting your content ranked relies heavily on the content, but it can be hard when first starting out – See my review of the training platform I learned everything online.

Related Post: My Wealthy Affiliate Review

Final Word on SEO Marketing

There are many aspects of SEO marketing that are appealing, definitely when starting out and it is the most used way as it doesn’t cost you anything.

Getting natural rankings through SEO will lead to long term marketing campaign that isn’t reliant on anything other than keep posting great content.  The more often you post great content, the higher your rankings will be.

Some aspects are harder at first, like getting the engagement side of it – but platforms like Wealthy Affiliate have great features like SiteComments. Where you will get quality comments from other members that will definitely help with your rankings.

If you want to learn a sound SEO strategy, you will definitely benefit from their training.

Relevant Post: Keyword Research in SEO

The PPC Strategy – What Do You Need to Know?

Whilst SEO is a free marketing strategy, it does take time to get those natural rankings that will benefit your onlineWhat is SEO and PPC business.  But there is a marketing strategy that will get you to the top of the search results straightaway, but it does mean you will need to pay for it.  Let’s go through the Pros & Cons of Pay-Per-Click (PPC) before I delve into it fully.

The Pros of PPC Marketing

  • Instant Traffic – You don’t need to wait for the search engines to find your content
  • Very easy to Target a Specific Audience
  • You only Pay When Someone Clicks

The Cons of PPC Marketing

  • Has to Be Relevant – You are paying with the hope of it converting
  • Can be an Expensive Strategy
  • Will Stop When You Stop Paying

Investing in PPC can be a sound strategy, but it is more important to have highly relevant content with this method.  If you are spending money to get it to the top of the search engines and getting people to click your advert – then you want the reader to follow a Call to Action (CTA).

You do not want to get people to your post to just leave, otherwise there is no point of using PPC.

How Does PPC Marketing Work?

If you want to advertise on Google, you will need to join AdWords.  Bing & Yahoo use the same platform and you would use Bing Ads.

Keyword research is still essential with PPC marketing, but you are not so worried about the competition figures as to you are paying to be above the natural rankings.

PPC Marketing requires you to choose which keywords you target, and you put in a maximum amount you are willing to spend per click.

You will need to consider your budget, but also how many other people are advertising for that keyword.  This will impact the price you pay.

You do not want to bid too low and not getting anyone visiting your site, but also you do not want to pay so high that it doesn’t pay to convert.

It is always worth checking out how many other ads there are for that keyword, as you don’t want to be appearing as an ad on page 3 because you will not get clicked.

Final Word on PPC Marketing

If you can get PPC Marketing right, you can use it effectively to increase revenue – either from expanding campaigns or using it to increase traffic to an SEO post that you have found is converting well.

The key thing to consider with PPC is you are paying, so it needs to convert to have any chance of having a Return on your Investment.  But also remember, once you stop paying your audience will disappear too.

You also need to consider what your budget is and stick to it.  If you don’t get your PPC campaigns right you can lose a lot of money and if you haven’t got it, it is not worth it.  Don’t chase it because it is quicker, use it when you know what you are doing.

SEO vs PPC??

Some opinions out there are that you should choose one over the other.  That is simply not the case, I have found great success in SEO without venturing into PPC.  I have tried PPC Marketing and it can be useful, but I much prefer SEO and getting natural rankings.  But that doesn’t mean I will not recommend PPC.

In my experience, many have used SEO and utilise PPC when they know which campaigns are converting natural and using it to increase their revenue.

So, I would recommend both strategies for the right circumstances.  I would advise that if you are still unsure or do not know a lot about PPC, then SEO is more suited to you until you can learn PPC effectively.

The key things to consider with either strategy is that it all comes down to effective Keyword Research and Relevant Engaging Content.

If you can do this effectively, then you will succeed at either strategy.

Where Can You Learn SEO & PPC Marketing Effectively

At this point, I am hoping you have a grasp of both SEO & PPC Marketing, the key differences and which strategy might be better for you.

But I want to stress that for me, the best strategy is to use both – SEO is the core of any online business, it costs nothing and means any Return on Income is 100% profit.  But PPC is a great way of growing campaigns that are working.

But if you are still unsure about what it takes to master these strategies, I would recommend you read my review of the platform I used to start my online business.

Wealthy Affiliate has great resources that will help you master SEO & PPC campaigns, create great content and get started with an online business.

Whether you are looking at starting an online business, or you are struggling to get your SEO or PPC campaigns off the ground, Wealthy Affiliate can help anyone with their online business.

I used the knowledge I built up from WA to help with my wife’s online wedding stationary business – but have also been successful in starting an affiliate marketing business out of it too.

Check Out My No.1 Recommended Training Platform – Wealthy Affiliate

If you still have any questions about SEO, PPC or anything to do with Internet Marketing please leave them in the comments below and I will definitely come back to you ASAP.

18 thoughts on “What is SEO and PPC? – Which Strategy is Best?”

  1. Very helpful article John! When it comes to this things I prefer SEO because it is safe and long-term success. I see many people who are success in PPC but I never liked to do that. Hard work is needed for SEO but it is worth it. Do you think that person who is focused solely on SEO can achieve online success in one year?

    • Hey Daniel,

      thanks for checking out my post and leaving some comments.  Success is subjective, but a year is a good timeframe to achieve income with SEO.  If you are able to write 3 great articles a week you will see a better return than someone who only writes one article a week, but like I said there are many different targets people have.

      I know a lot of people who just focus on SEO, and it works.  PPC will be for certain people, but it comes to a point where when you are earning money you would be wise to reinvest it to earn money.

      This is a business model.



  2. I think SEO and PPC are great on their own terms – For SEO, you can scale content depending on how much effort you put in, and PPC if you’re willing to spend. If you can create a super impressive article combined with PPC, your audience can reach 10k in a single week. Just my 2 cents, great article John!

    • Hey Riah,

      thanks for checking out my post and leaving some comments.  You can definitely achieve anything with great content.  Using both is where experience marketers end up.  The higher the traffic, the more chance of a ROI.



  3. Both SEO and PPC are great – For SEO is what I would use and it is stable in my opinion. I quite understand PPC reading your post and I don’t think I would use it initially. 

    How best will PPC be used for a starter like myself? Does it drive organic traffic or just robotic traffic?

    great article John!

    • Hey Padedayo,

      thanks for checking out my post and leaving some comments.  SEO is definitely a stable option and a very effective one.

      PPC is a great method of getting a highly targeted audience to a highly relevant post – that is how you can convert sales.  If you miss the relevant content, then it will not work.

      If you want to learn PPC marketing effectively, then I highly recommend the training available at Wealthy Affiliate.



  4. Good Morning John,

    Thank you for this helpful post, I really needed it. I am far from being technical so to have these aspects of website making clearly explained is very good.

    I have 2 websites which are doing nicely I would say. I have checked your list to see where I could improve.

    I have the All in One SEO Plugin installed with the request of a weekly search and also made the sitemap so that is ok. I am getting comments and my site is mobile friendly. Quality content, well, that is in the eye of the beholder. I do my best to write about interesting things and the feedback has been positive on the whole.

    Now I come to keyword research, there I think I could definitely improve quite a bit. Thank you for the reminder, as the list of all the details for writing a good post is rather long it is never bad to do a check.

    The PPC Marketing is not on my list yet, perhaps in the future.

    Regards, Taetske

    • Hey Taetske,

      thanks for checking out my post and leaving some comments.  I am glad you have found it useful.

      Keyword research is a key step, and if you are not utilising it effectively you could be missing out on a lot of traffic.  Everything else you do could be in vain, if you are not using keyword research.

      thanks again


  5. Hi John,

    Thanks for this great article on Tackling SEO and PPC. I’m really impressed on how you explained each one of them in a clear and comprehensive way and I did learn and have some grasp of information on SEO and PPC and how each of them will be the key ingredient in the growth of our online business.

    • Hey Glenda,

      thanks for checking out my post and leaving some comments.  I am glad you found it useful, getting your head around SEO is a key step in building your online business.

      Good Luck


  6. Great post and good info.

    For me personally, SEO works the best, yes the search engines regular update the databases and more, but my posts have quality content and are around 1800+ words, so I have no troubles to stay at the top.

    PPC is not my favorite, to pay for traffic and you don’t know it will converse into paid customers.

    So I stick with the SEO.

    Anyway, thanks for sharing it with us!

    • Hey Emmanuel,

      thanks for checking out my post and leaving some comments.  I am glad SEO works well for you, making sure your content is in-depth is a great strategy.

      Not everyone likes PPC, but it can be a great strategy – if you have an SEO post that is converting well, then PPC could take this to the next level. But you need to be comfortable with anything you do with your business.



  7. Your easy to comprehend review on SEO vs PPC has made it more clearer to me than my vague idea I had previously.  Thank you for taking the time to explain what each does and how it will benefit each in it’s own capacity of performance.

    I tend to agree with you that there is hard work in making SEO successful, but as you say, it is 100% profit in return since it is organic and if you’ve found the right keywords you can have a lot of traffic driven to your site.  But that isn’t the end of it, as you so aptly recommend, quality content and keeping the audience engaged is tantamount to having your SEO convert into income.

    What I liked about your advice is that you gave many options as well as your personal opinion and experience – this made me perk up and take notice.

    For all the effort and time you’ve put into compiling this post, I thank you as I’ve gleaned insightful information from it that I can now apply to my own website and see for myself which one works the best.  I wish you well in all your endeavours to succeed at affiliate marketing!


    • Hey Edu,

      thanks for checking out my post and leaving some comments. I appreciate your complimentary comments about my post.  I try to ensure i give as much helpful information as I can.  I love helping people!

      thanks again


  8. Great Post! I personally prefer SEO because I like doing things the hard way:). It almost like I feel like i am heating if I use PPC because I didn’t really work for that traffic. That is the same way I play my video games! I prefer working up to success rather than buying it (frugal tendencies)

    I think PPC will work if yo have quality content and decent products to sell. SEO works more like a river, steadily growing with your business.

    • Hey Renton,

      thanks for checking out my post and leaving some comments.

      Both strategies will rely on quality content, you are looking for people to follow the CTA, whichever way you want to.  But with SEO, you can change something that isn’t working without having lost any money.  PPC can get really expensive if you haven’t targeted it properly.

      thanks again


  9. Hey John,

    Nice read on SEO & PPC, I cannot agree more on your opinion of leveraging both of them, as needed.  I think everyone should agree that you need to know how to SEO your content, before getting into PPC. 

     The basic thing we need for PPC, is choosing or writing best relevant content and get most CTR,  Another point worth taking into consideration, is for a new entrepreneur SEO is the best strategy, instead directly doing PPC, which can be very expensive too, if you do not have the knowledge of PPC.

    You mentioned Wealthy Affiliate as a great place to start with SEO and PPC, can you please let me know how much it cost?  




    • Hey Shubhangi,

      thanks for checking out my post and leaving some comments.

      I totally agree, starting with SEO will have better long term prospects and you can always utilise PPC when you have learned enough to use it.

      Wealthy Affiliate offers 2 membership options – the starter membership is free and gives you an all rounded way of seeing what WA is all about.  the Premium Membership is $47/month.

      You can learn all about Wealthy Affiliate in my full review.




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