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PPC vs SEO: the differences and when to use them

A good place to hide your website and a dead body? The second page of Google’s search engine! Yeah, we thought that was pretty clever as well. It’s true. How many people go to the second page of Google to find their answers? As an Austin SEO company, we can guess probably not too many people.

So, how can you get ranking on Google? You can use SEO and PPC strategies; however, there is a difference between the two strategies and each one is utilized in different ways.

What is SEO

The definition of SEO is, “search engine optimization (SEO) is the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results.”

What does this mean? This means an Austin SEO company find the best keywords to use for your business and in your industry to bring traffic to your website and rank you higher on Google search engine.

When you search for something on Google like, “local SEO strategies,” and a number of blogs and service pages show up on the first page, this is with keywords. The right keywords with some time, dedication and the right strategies can help business get to the first page of the search engine.

What does an Austin SEO company track with your SEO strategies?

  • Keyword rankings
  • Backlinks
  • SEM strategies (landing pages included)
  • Analytics
  • PPC advertisements
  • Tracking and reporting

As you can see PPC ads are under the realm of SEO strategies, but it’s a little more complicated than that.

What is PPC

Pay Per Click advertisements are the first thing that pops up on the Google search engine. Looking for a new winter coat? More than likely a large coat manufacturing company like Burlington, NorthFace and other brands will show an advertisement. This is a PPC ad.

A PPC ad uses keywords just like SEO does and these keywords are targeted specifically for seasonal sales, promotions, upcoming events and more. The only time a company pays for PPC is when someone is clicking on the advertisement.

Now, there is a bidding war that goes on for PPC ads. Whatever ad shows up first for your search “won” the bidding for Google Ads placement. An effective PPC ad has the best keywords and correct target audience.

It’s more than just posting it and letting it go. An Austin SEO company will also utilize SEM strategies such as landing pages for the duration of the advertisement.

The differences

As you can see, PPC and SEO are in the same realm of the SEO world, but use very different approaches to their methods. The main difference between the two different methods- the traffic.

SEO traffic is organic. This means the traffic that is going to the website is not paid for and is naturally happening with the right SEO strategies that have been set in place. SEO strategies take a significant amount of time to master and grow. We often tell clients they won’t see any major results until almost a year! This is because SEO takes time, strategy and man-power.

PPC traffic is not organic. The traffic going to the website is paid for and is for a short duration of time for that local event, promotion or any other reasons a business might want to implement PPC. Because of this, PPC brings faster results which means you can run more and more promotions.


Not sure whether your business would benefit from PPC, SEO or both? Give us a call today and we can sit down and find the best strategy for your business.

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