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SEO or Paid advertising: Which is best for you?

Businesses today need not only be online, but actively online. This applies to almost every local business as well. You may be a restaurant owner, a cleaning company, a tattoo parlour or a dog food business; online presence is a must as most people have some sort of presence on the internet. But if every business is online, how does one stand out in front of the others? For example, how does your Italian restaurant appear as the best Italian restaurant in Google or Facebook? Today, I am going to answer the same question for you. Don’t worry; this isn’t a technical post which is hard to break down. I'll explain some concepts simply and then show you which one to choose that would work best for your business.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

If you are an online business (or blogger), you already know this one. SEO is nothing but optimizing your website in a way so that it is discoverable and easily usable by users and search engines (Google, yahoo etc).

Why do you need this?

Say you are an e-store selling shoes. Now when someone searches “buy shoes online”, they will see millions of results. But the user is likely to click on the results on the first page of Google search which is probably acquired by a site like Zappos.com or Amazon.com.

Why your website did didn’t show up on the first page?

Simply put, the SEO of Zappos and Amazon was better than yours.

How can you improve your site’s SEO?

Although there are multiple factors for this (at-least 200+), here are the major ones you should care about

  • Choosing the right keywords in your site pages

  • Getting good sites to link back to your site

  • Creating an amazing user experience on your site for customers

  • Avoiding building links from sites that have a lot of spam

Paid Advertising:

As online mediums have become a big platform to reach out to customers, companies spend billions of dollars in paid advertising. These include ads on search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing and also on social networks like Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest etc

Why are online ads a huge success?

Companies like Google and Facebook are constantly working with data. By data I mean information about their users. So if you looked up for shoes online in Google or liked similar pages (like Zappos ir amazon) on Facebook, all that information is being recorded by these websites. So when ads are designed, companies tell Google and Facebook the kind of customers they want to reach out to and using the data I mentioned, ads are targeted accordingly. You might have seen that sometimes when you browsed for something in Google, ads related to that product started showing up in sometimes.

This happens because the whole point of advertising is reaching out to targeted audience and the internet has made it all so easy.

So which one should you choose?

Different businesses have different needs. Some need to spread awareness about their product while some need to get downloads for their mobile application. Here I have prepared an analysis on the type of advertising that you should choose according to your business and its needs

To Your Success!