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Why We Recommend Starting With Google Ads Before Doing SEO

For companies starting their digital campaigns, it is very important to choose the right strategy that can provide the best results from the get-go and make sure that the time and money you are investing will bring a large volume of high-quality traffic primed to convert into sales and revenue. As a digital agency, one of the most common questions that we get asked from business owners is whether they should run Google Ads or focus on SEO campaigns for their business. There are a lot of external factors that influence the type of marketing that would tend to your needs, but we believe that Google Ads can work for most types of businesses. Although using Google Ads requires a budget, the results have shown that Google Ads delivers instantaneous ROI, leads and sales. While SEO proves to be a more cost-effective form of search advertising, it has extended timelines that are needed to return the results.

Google Ads vs SEO

One of the biggest challenges for any marketer is finding valuable lead sources without having to put in an enormous amount of effort. Google Ads has proven to be the fastest tool for this job, which is why some businesses spend billions of dollars a year on search advertising (Google’s projected revenue for 2020 is 127 billion). If your Google Ads campaign is converting at a profitable rate, there is no reason to arbitrarily cap spending on that campaign. By increasing your PPC budget, your leads and profit increase accordingly making this the most cost-effective platform for businesses that need a lot of leads, but are short on the budget needed to do SEO. Here at Alpha Efficiency, we consider search, alongside email marketing and direct mail, one of the prime advertising options for the businesses that are focused on direct response and profitability.

It is easy to measure the results

Traditional marketing channels like TV and magazine advertising offer little to no chance to make exact measurements of the results they offer. The same goes for SEO because you can’t always know what actions led to increased or decreased rankings and algorithmic impacts on the positioning. On the other hand, Google Ads is somewhat transparent. It offers tons of PPC metrics that you can use to estimate which campaigns work and which don’t on a granular level. This way you can easily determine if your campaigns are returning ROI. Learn more about granular strategies we deploy here at Alpha Efficiency, by reading our article on Single Keyword Ad Groups and Google Ads Micro Campaigns.

Google Ads are highly customizable

Google Ads offers a lot of options to tailor your ads and campaigns to fit your needs and target the exact audience you wish to reach. Let’s name a few:

  • Specify keyword match types – By specifying your keyword match types you can choose to display your ads only to people who search for the exact keyword of your choice, filtering out all the other traffic that you find irrelevant for your campaign. SEO doesn’t offer this option, so your best chance is to keep your fingers crossed and hope for the best.
  • Use ad extensions to display important information about your business, such as images of your products, your company’s location, phone number, links to your website, or even initiate a chat or get an email address right from the SERP.
  • Filter your audience by location, time of day, language, browser, device type, or any other criteria you find relevant.
  • Reach non-search users on platforms like Gmail, YouTube, and many other partner sites.
  • Leverage the display network, which is great for building brand awareness and often converts at a lower cost than Google Search.

Google Ads Provide Results the Next Day*

For new businesses and websites using SEO, it can take anywhere from 6 to 18 months for the tangible generation of ROI (4 months with our accelerated SEO plans). This used to be referred to as the Google sandbox effect since people assumed that Google was deliberately filtering new websites out of the search results. The truth is that the competition is fierce and it takes time for new websites to earn authority and links.

By using Google Ads, new businesses don’t have to wait so long to see the results. It is a good idea to put your resources into a Google Ads campaign and start getting impressions and clicks right away, while at the same time working on your site’s SEO by improving authority and content. This can be a way for you to test if a certain keyword or audience is worth pursuing via organic search. If you see a high number of conversions in Google Ads, then it is probably worth trying to rank for in SEO and build out your content in that area.

Another great thing with Google Ads, is that it often offers vouchers that grant some free PPC budget for new advertisers.

Google Ads Account is Easier to Maintain

Maintaining a large website and keeping up to date with everything in the microcosm of your niche is a challenging and tedious task that requires massive resources. Also, it takes a dedicated team of people continually producing SEO content, working on optimization, and building links to increase organic traffic. This can take a lot of your time, effort with sometimes uncertain outcomes. In contrast to that, once your PPC campaigns are built and in place, you will find that they are much less uncertain and will provide value based on the size of your investment.

Ads Rank Higher Than Organic Search Results

Google Ads accounts for around 97% of Google’s revenue, so it is no wonder that the SERP has changed over time to give more space for ads above the organic results. Although this could be frustrating for SEO specialists, it is a great opportunity for PPC marketers to get their message high up on the SERP where they are most likely to generate clicks. And for queries with high commercial intent, sponsored ads take 2 out of 3 clicks on the first page, leaving SEO irrelevant in certain verticals.

Google Ads Formats Can Be More Engaging than Organic Results

Over the years Google has created many new ad formats, such as product listing ads and in-video ads on YouTube. They are going all out to make their ads as engaging as they can be. Their evolved ads generate more clicks bringing more revenue to both Google and the advertiser.

Better Traffic Conversion

Depending on the industry and the nature of the business, conversion rates generated by paid search traffic can be up to two times higher than those generated by organic traffic. This is because paid search traffic is more targeted, and queries that result in ad clicks are more often commercial, rather than informational.

Google Ads Work Great with Your Other Marketing Channels

Google Ads is complementary to your other marketing channels. You can use Google Ads to establish remarketing campaigns and target people who have already shown an interest in your business. When a user finds your website through social media, blogs, a product page, or any other way, your display ads will use cookies to monitor their internet activity, so you know what’s effective and what’s not. Retargeted ads have extremely high ROI compared to other marketing channels.


This article has barely scratched the surface when it comes to SEO, Google Ads, and choosing the right digital strategy for your business. With so many forms of digital marketing out there it is important to do your research and carefully pick your battles. Make sure that you understand what you are getting into and that you have the right company for the job. If you are going to invest time and money into growing your business, put your advertising in the hands of someone who knows exactly what they are doing, who has the right tools to make an impact, and who you can trust with your business. Kudos to all of you jacks-of-all-trades out there! You need to make sure your digital campaigns drive real ROI and don’t just cover the cost of marketing. We wish you all that your business scales and grows at a rate you have never seen before! Having a hard time doing the research on your own? Schedule a strategy session with Alpha Efficiency experts, and let us help you carve a path to digital success.

Brian Djordjevic
About The Author

Brian Dordevic

Brian is Marketing Strategic Planner with a passion for all things digital. Feel free to follow him on Twitter or schedule a consultation call with him.

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