SEO And PPC: A Powerful Duo For Dominating Search Results
In today’s digital landscape, where competition for online visibility is fierce, understanding the avenues through which users access your website is invaluable. While various sources may drive traffic to your site, one of the most critical routes to attracting quality users is through search engines.
This is how search engine optimisation (SEO) and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising come into play. In this article, we’ll explore how combining SEO and PPC can create a potent strategy for dominating search results and attracting high-intent audiences.
The Importance Of High-Intent Audiences In SEO
Before delving into the synergy between SEO and PPC, it’s crucial to understand the significance of high-intent audiences. These are users who are more likely to take the desired actions on your website, whether that’s making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, or filling out a contact form.
Both SEO and PPC offer effective ways to attract these ideal users, but it’s when you bring these efforts together that powerful outcomes start to emerge.
Leveraging All Stages Of The Funnel With Paid Keyword Targeting
Scrape Existing Search Volume Within Your Growth Strategy
When crafting a successful digital marketing strategy, the first step is to identify the existing demand that you can capitalise on. This involves examining what’s already working in your paid search efforts. By leveraging tools like Google Keyword Planner and Semrush, you can gain insights into search volume and industry-specific data.
Start by analysing your current Google Ads account, if you have one. Identify what are known as “high-value keywords” in your account, which are the keywords performing exceptionally well. Look for keywords with a high impression share, as this indicates room for scaling. Maximise your success by becoming the industry leader for these high-performing keywords.
Conduct Keyword Research For The Competitive Landscape.
Competitor keyword research is an invaluable aspect of the keyword research process, impacting both paid and owned media. By understanding what your competitors are investing in, you can tailor your growth marketing strategy to capitalise on their successes. Semrush is a valuable tool for this purpose.
Within Semrush’s Advertising Research tab under Domain Analytics, you can input competitor URLs to access information on their paid search spend. You can view monthly spend estimates, traffic generated from that spend, and the keywords they target.
Create Demand With Brand Strategy And Broad Keyword Targeting Option
The final pillar of paid keyword research involves creating demand. Once you’ve maximised existing demand for high-intent terms, it’s time to expand your horizons.
Keep in mind that this stage is a long-term investment focused on building brand awareness rather than immediate conversions.
Here’s how to approach demand creation for both paid and organic keyword targets:
- Identify low-intent and long-tail keywords that are easy to rank for organically or have low CPCs in paid channels.
- Develop a content strategy centred around these keywords, enhancing organic performance.
- Allocate a small portion of your overall paid budget to target broad and long-tail keywords. These efforts improve brand awareness and should not be evaluated based on last-click conversion metrics but rather on impressions, CPCs, and volume.
Tactics like these have lasting effects across all marketing channels. Performance and brand tactics work together, guiding users in the right direction. A full-funnel approach takes time but delivers significant benefits.
A Full-Funnel Approach To SEO Keyword Research
Both paid and organic search aim to drive traffic and conversions through keywords. However, the nature of these two channels influences the best strategies for capturing demand.
Organic search offers flexibility to target users at various stages of the buyer journey, using a mix of informative and commercial-focused content.
Here’s how we approach SEO keyword research to support PPC efforts:
Examine The Current Keyword Rankings.
Before formulating a strategy, it’s essential to understand your current position in organic search. This involves analysing your existing keyword rankings to:
- Identify the keywords which are driving traffic to your site.
- Find keywords that are being incorrectly targeted, indicating a misalignment with search intent.
- Discover low-hanging fruit keywords on pages 2 and 3 of the search results.
Often, businesses have visibility for keywords related to their core services but fail to maximise traffic and conversion potential. This can result from not covering topics in sufficient depth, creating content that doesn’t align with searcher intent, or neglecting specific high-value keywords.
At this stage, you can compile a list of top-performing non-branded keywords to identify areas for strategy improvement. For instance, if a financial advisory company ranks well for “wealth management” on a service page, it’s a positive sign. However, if they aren’t targeting broader, higher-funnel keywords, they miss out on potential traffic and brand awareness. Utilise keyword research tools to filter common queries around your core topics, especially focusing on informative, top-of-funnel content.
Conduct Competitor Analysis
No SEO strategy is complete without competitor analysis. This step involves examining which pages and keywords perform well for your competitors. To determine which competitor keywords are worth pursuing, consider multiple metrics, including search volume, keyword difficulty, top-ranking pages, and user intent.
For example, suppose your financial company has no rankings for “term deposit calculator,” a keyword with substantial monthly searches, while a competitor holds the top position. In such cases, creating new content to fill this gap can be an effective strategy. Although ranking organically may take time, targeting proven high-traffic keywords can drive relevant traffic away from your competitors.
In other instances, competitors may be outranking your brand for high-value keywords, such as “smsf administration.” Since this topic is core to your services, optimising existing content to align with search intent and compete with top-ranking pages is a prudent strategy. Content optimisations typically yield faster improvements in rankings than creating entirely new content.
This step also provides an opportunity for collaboration between the PPC and SEO teams. If the PPC team has been testing ad copy and CTAs for services aligned with the SEO team’s updates, this data can be incorporated into the content strategy, ensuring a consistent message across multiple touchpoints.
Target Keywords At Different Stages Of The Buyer Journey
A comprehensive organic strategy should encompass a range of informational and high-intent keywords to cater to users at various stages of the buyer journey. While PPC excels at hyper-targeting ready-to-buy users, organic search offers an opportunity to engage with users earlier in their journey, building brand familiarity before they reach the decision phase. This approach minimises PPC spend on terms with delayed profitability.
Using Organic Search To Build Awareness
At the earliest stages of the buyer journey, people may not convert immediately, but they are seeking information related to your offerings. Establishing brand awareness with these top-of-funnel users is a long-term investment aimed at building traffic and brand authority rather than generating immediate conversions.
To target users at this stage, leverage questions gathered from competitor research, internal customer insights, and keyword research tools. Map these questions to different stages of the user journey.
From a PPC perspective, allocate a small portion of your budget to this visibility play. Measure success based on impressions, CPCs, and traffic to your site.
Using Organic Search To Drive Conversions
A robust organic strategy involves targeting keywords with high purchase intent, often referred to as “money keywords.” Your target audience frequently searches for these keywords, which are directly relevant to your offerings. However, they are usually challenging to rank organically due to high competition.
While building content targeting higher-funnel topics lays the groundwork, your site’s authority plays a pivotal role in ranking for competitive, high-intent keywords. In these cases, SEO and PPC can work together seamlessly.
Identify top-converting keywords from your PPC campaigns and aim to secure top organic positions for these terms. Focus on a select list of high-value keywords to maximise both SEO and PPC efforts. By collaborating on these high-intent terms, you can enhance brand visibility on the search engine results page (SERP).
Combining SEO And PPC For A Synergistic Strategy
Now that we’ve explored the fundamentals of SEO and PPC keyword research, let’s examine how these two channels can be integrated to create a synergistic strategy. Cross-team functionality and continuous evaluation of progress and performance are essential for success.
Use Data From Both Channels To Inform Strategy.
One of the significant advantages of utilising both paid and organic search tools in your marketing mix is the abundance of data available for analysis. On the organic side, top-performing pages can provide insights into the terms that resonate most with users. A high organic ranking indicates that your content aligns with search intent and provides value.
Identify keywords with strong organic performance and consider adding them to your paid campaigns. Test these keywords to determine which ones lead to the highest conversions, effectively doubling down on what’s working.
The reverse is also true. On the paid side, examine search term reports in Google Ads to identify converting terms. Prioritise these terms in your organic strategy by optimising existing content or creating new content aligned with search intent.
By cross-analysing data and using it to inform keyword strategies, you can achieve comprehensive SERP coverage for terms critical to your bottom line.
Leverage PPC And SEO To Dominate The Serp
Paid ads consistently appear above organic results on the SERP, providing prime visibility to users. However, users frequently favour organic content over paid advertisements because it carries a sense of authority and trust. To maximise results for essential keywords, integrate both strategies to maintain top-of-mind awareness among searchers.
Target Expensive Terms With SEO
Certain keywords come with high CPCs that can become cost-prohibitive over time. In such situations, targeting these terms organically as part of an SEO content strategy can be advantageous. By establishing your presence for high-value keywords organically, you ensure a long-term strategy. Ranking may take time, depending on factors like domain authority and competition, but the investment can pay off handsomely.
Boost Organic Efforts With PPC Retargeting
Many users discover your brand through organic search but may leave without taking action. PPC offers an opportunity to retarget these users, bolstering your organic efforts. Since these users have demonstrated initial interest, they are further along in the conversion pipeline, making them a prime audience for PPC spending.
In the world of digital marketing, some pairs just work better together. Sherlock and Watson movies and popcorn among these dynamic duos, SEO and PPC stand out as a powerful combination. These marketing channels complement each other seamlessly at every stage of the marketing funnel.
By harnessing the insights they provide into user behaviour, you can drive conversions, increase efficiency, and ultimately dominate search results.
In conclusion, the synergy between SEO and PPC is undeniable. By combining these two strategies, you can achieve greater visibility, reach a broader audience, and maximise your return on investment.
Whether you’re targeting high-intent keywords, building brand awareness, or driving conversions, the partnership of SEO and PPC can help your business thrive in the competitive online landscape.
For expert assistance in optimising your SEO and PPC strategies, consider partnering with a reputable SEO and PPC agency that understands the value of this powerful duo. Together, you can create a marketing strategy that dominates search results and drives success for your business.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What Is The Main Difference Between SEO And PPC, And Why Should I Use Both In My Digital Marketing Strategy?
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is the practice of optimising your website to rank organically in search engine results, while PPC (Pay-Per-Click) involves paid advertising where you bid on keywords to appear in sponsored search results. Using both strategies is essential because SEO provides long-term, sustainable visibility, while PPC offers immediate and targeted exposure. Together, they maximise your online presence, attracting a wider range of users.
To identify high-intent keywords, begin by analysing your existing PPC campaigns to pinpoint keywords that generate conversions. These are strong candidates for both PPC and SEO. Additionally, utilise keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner and Semrush to find keywords with high search volumes and commercial intent. Focus on keywords that align with your business goals and target audience.
SEO and PPC teams can collaborate by sharing insights from their respective channels. For instance, PPC data on ad copy and CTAs can inform the messaging used in SEO content. By aligning messaging across both channels, you create a cohesive user experience, increasing user trust and engagement.
Are There Specific Situations Where It's More Cost-Effective To Target Expensive Keywords Through SEO Instead Of PPC?
Yes, targeting expensive keywords through SEO can be cost-effective, especially if you have a strong domain authority and can compete organically. While it may take time to rank, the long-term benefits outweigh the investment. High-quality, organic traffic driven by top organic rankings can result in substantial cost savings compared to continually paying high CPCs in PPC.
Success can be measured through various key performance indicators (KPIs). Monitor changes in organic and paid search traffic, keyword rankings, conversion rates, and ROI. Analyse the impact of shared data and messaging consistency between SEO and PPC efforts. Ultimately, success is about achieving your business goals, whether that's increased visibility, conversions, or revenue.