Internet Marketing

PPC management – pros and cons

Taking the route to advertise using Pay Per Click or PPC is an interesting and fairly unique way to get word about your business out, direct sponsored by the search engine, Google for example.

It is important to note that PPC marketing is no replacement for a grounded SEO campaign, but it can still be a handy weapon in your Arsenal, and a great way to establish your brand with a shortcut to first page placement on the search engine.

Firstly PPC marketing is when you see sponsored ads at the top or on the margin of your google search. The great thing for the user is that with PPC you only pay for clicks that actually come into your website. One great benefit of this is that you can experiment with different seo strategies and continually refine your keyword use for the best results and the highest return on investment or ROI. 

Other benefits include the easy nature of the service, no hard contracts are signed and you can alter or cancel your ad whenever you want. This is another really considerable benefit which many advertising campaigns certainly cannot boast. With a PPC management service you can analyse your return on investment ROI on each individual keyword you advertise using to edit your campaign regularly to get the best results.

Having a dedicated PPC manager also hands you the website owner one other crucial resource, time. Managing, or trying to manage your own seo campaign is extremely time consuming, and could also be frustrating if you lack the technical expertise. Handing over the responsibility to an expert will give a peace of mind that your ad campaign isn’t wasted money, and provides accountability for the results which is hopefully backed up by happy previous customer testimonials, and examples on their own website. 

 

PPC Management to Rule Them All

Launching a Pay-Per-Click campaign on any web search engine is very simple, but it is also very risky to do it yourself. Just so you know what we are talking about we’ll give you a brief introduction. When investing to a PPC campaign you are actually selecting one or more keywords, that when searched by a user, trigger an advertisement for your company – it is paid publicity. However, the price for every word varies and may not trigger the web traffic you are expecting. That is why finding a great PPC management company goes a long way into saving you valuable dollars and actually making sure that your investment converts into traffic to your site effectively.

But How Much Does It Cost?

As any other business decision the first word that comes into mind is cost, and when it comes to PPC advertisement this can vary a lot depending on the type of service and the company you hire from, since they all consider different things as a standard package – so make sure to read the fine print on every supplier before committing

Kinds of Service

PPC management services are split into three different set ups:

  • Just a fix of the current campaign – generally cheap but not efficient in the long run.
  • Fix and revisit periodically – will cost a little more but it will help you avoid unexpected rises in keyword prices.
  • Dedicate teams with regular feedback on each campaign – probably will have the best effect but at a very costly price.

So Which Service Should I Hire?

Most freelance professionals will sit for a simple course and call themselves experienced in the subject. Many companies will hire them, or hire a specific individual on a permanent basis to act as a PPC professional – but several skills are required to get the desired effect.

The best thing you can do, is really look into the companies available and research them: try to find results they have had with other clients and their own testimonials as these are the most reliable sources in order to know what to expect, but don’t try to do it yourself.

Selecting the Right PPC Management

If you are considering pay-per-click management for your website, then you may be familiar with Google AdWords, which is very simple for anyone to launch in minutes. However, no matter how simple it is, it is important your PPC management is not a risk, which can end up in throwing away all the money on clicks, which will never convert. If you wish to have success with PPC ads, it is important you know exactly how to select the company that offers conversion advice and finds money keywords, which are based at an affordable price.

Cost

When you are in the process of selecting a PPC management company, the first thing you will want to consider is the cost. When you are reading the proposal, it is important you understand the exact service you are being offered as well as if the cost includes the PPC ads. When you are in the process of comparing proposals, it is important you read the entire fine print on all proposals, as all companies have their very own definition of what they mean by a standard package.

Management Experience

It is important the company that you select has experience backed up with certifiable references, as it is not so hard to take a short cut with Google AdWords and become a so called professional in PPC management. Another thing you may want to consider is the depth of the company’s talent pool. In order for PPC advertising to be successful, a wide range of skills is required as well as a number of specialists. It is very rare that you will find one person who has all the desired skills and level of expertise for the entire PPC process, which is why you will want to consider more than one professional.

DIY PPC Management

Due to the ease of setting up Google AdWords, some companies think they can manage their entire pay per click campaign in house. Unless the company has understanding of online customer motivation, employees skilled in keyword research, and optimization of landing pages, you will have to consider some new talent for your campaign.

Profitable Pay Per Click (PPC) Management Accounts

We all love unexpected moments where we get more than we expected. An example is like finding a tenner behind the sofa whilst cleaning. PPC management is more or less the same and gives you the same experience and a better surprise each time. Generating traffic to your site is a must for all site and business owners. In the case for you to get more visitors to your site, you need to use brilliant keywords and you can always get help from Google AdWords. However, no matter how much SEO you have done on your site, it is important that you also manage enough time for the PPC strategy.

Does PPC Help?
One of the ways you can really know whether PPC is helping you or not is by comparing your business/sites past performance to the current statistics. In order to help you with this, Google AdWords will always come in handy as it allows you to compare efficiently on most levels, at keyword/campaign level and/or ad group.

PPC and Data
You need to take as much data as you have so you are able to compare effectively. Looking at all the accounts and even anything that has been paused is a must. You need to remember that as much data you work with, it will give you more useful and reliable results. To get some further detailed information, you can also consider looking at the conversion rate, cost per conversion and the number of conversions. You can also transfer your data into Microsoft Excel, where you will easily be able to thoroughly go through it and make quick comparisons; making the whole experience straightforward.

CPL and PPC
Next, you need to look at Cost Per Lead (CPL) for each ad group. When it comes to PPC management, the key effective is CPL. You need to answer the following questions; where is the CPL averagely sitting? Is the CPL increasing or decreasing? What are the conversion and click-through rates? Behind the changed performance, there will be many reasons that you need to know in order to investigate any differences. Once you are familiar with the issues, you can start to work on more detailed reports so you can easily get to the bottom of things. Maintaining the account on a regular basis will always give you a better and profitable PPC account.

PPC Management and Excel Spreadsheets

When you are using a pay per click Management Company to take care of your PPC marketing then using excel to help collate your information can make life much easier. Excel is part of the Microsoft Office suite and is available on most computers using the Windows operating system. It is a simple to use spreadsheet program that will help you to choose the right keywords for your situation.

Using Vlookup to Help PPC Management
It is important to be able to look at your keywords and to be able to see how they are performing in your current campaign and in previous campaigns. The ability to use the VLookup functions to quickly show different time periods from the data make this a great research tool.

The ability to see how the keyword is performing overtime can show if it is losing its effectiveness. This may mean that you need to discuss with your PPC management team increasing the budget to get more effective pay per click ads or moving to other more productive keywords.

Duplicate Keyword Searches
It is important to make sure that your campaign does not use duplicate keywords. Using excel it is simple to find duplicate keywords with its search functions. A duplicate keyword can push up the price for pay per click ads as you can end up competing with yourself. This happens more often than you might think and the more keywords you are using the easier it is for one to slip in.

Faster PPC with Find and Replace
When you are dealing with different pages that need to be formatted differently such as when submitting to Google or Bing then using find and replace can turn hours of cutting and pasting into a one click solution us excel spreadsheets. This will make PPC management easier and help reduce typing mistakes when done manually.

Switch To Outsourced PPC Management
If your PPC management is taking up to much of your time then having all of your data in Excel format makes it easy to send to an outsourced PPC team. They can then organize the campaign and execute it while you still get all of the campaign data. This will leave you more time to devote to selling to the visitors that are generated by your PPC campaign.

Three Paths To Local Internet Marketing

Local Internet marketing is, writ short, the art of making sure that when someone searches for “your_industry your_area”, they see your name first. But that’s a pretty narrow definition; it’s also local internet marketing when you make sure that the first link on the appropriate Yelp page is your business, and so on. Here are the three most significant kinds of local internet marketing.

Google
When you search for almost anything and put a town name next to it, Google kicks in a special tool that not only lists a pile of competitors, but it pulls up a small map with several little ‘stickers’ on it show where you are and where all of your competition is. This is the mainstay of local internet marketing; if you don’t show up on the list, you’re missing out on foot traffic, end of story.

As a secondary mention, getting your name, address, and phone number consistent across Google, Google Maps, Bing!, Bing! Maps, and all of the other various similar sites that you can find is a very good way to create a solid web presence.

App Marketing
The mobile market is somewhere upwards of 30% of all Internet searches, and it’s only increasing. That makes it smart strategy to show up in apps that people use to find things in their immediate environment. Yelp, Google Places, Urban Onion, and dozens of others have apps designed to create a social platform to list and compare businesses from around whatever area you sign up to.

Pay Per Click Marketing
Not many people think about PPC when they think about local internet marketing, but any PPC manager will be happy to talk your ear off about the power of ‘geo targeting’ and the ease with which you can both limit your expenses and improve your conversion rate by focusing your PPC marketing on people who are near enough to walk over and enjoy one of your products in person.

If you’re a small business owner and you’re looking to use the Internet to drive business through your doors, don’t let your SEO company stop after they’ve gotten you up on Google and Google Maps — there’s still a lot more than could and should be done if you want to dominate the local marketing all by your lonesome.

PPC Management and Why Pareto Isn’t Always Right

If you’ve ever read a single book on business, you’ve probably read about the Pareto Principle. Pareto was an old Italian guy who discovered in his garden that 80% of his peas produced only 20% of the crop, and the remaining 20% of his peas generated 80% of his crop. This proportion, known as the “Pareto Principle” or the 80/20 law, has been extended into the business world: 20% of your clients generate 80% of your business, and another 20% of your clients generate 80% of your headaches and complaints, and so on.

The Pareto Principle had a huge bump in popularity a few years ago when Google released a study that pointed out that of all the money spent on search engine marketing, roughly 20% was spent on SEO and roughly 80% was spent on Pay Per Click marketing — but SEO produced 80% of all search volume and PPC produced only 20%. It looks like a clear case of Pareto: SEO is way more efficient than PPC and PPC should probably be avoided.

The problem is that it’s wrong. The study that Google did is correct in it’s numbers, but those numbers don’t take the entire zeitgeist into account.

80% of search volume is not the same thing as 80% of business traffic. Most searches on Google aren’t business searches — but every search on Google counts toward the traffic statistics. I’m only on my second hour of work today, and I’ve already Googled up two separate XKCD panels, facts on Mallorca for a client, and seventeen separate searches trying to find a killer suggestion to email to my wife for dinner. One of those was a business search, and even that one wasn’t ever going to result in a sale because I’m not a customer. On the other hand, because PPC links are created with an advertisement, you can be assured that much closer to 100% of that 20% of PPC links is actual business traffic.

There are also other elements of SEO vs. PPC that swing the picture back into the realm of PPC — like the fact that PPC traffic purchases products from you before you have to pay for the click in the first place, making PPC excellent for cashflow. The point is, if you have to choose between hiring an organic SEO company and a PPC management firm, the choice is probably a lot less black and white than either one wants you to believe.

Three Paths To First Page Placement

First page placement is the goal of every single client of every single SEO company in the world — if you can’t hit the top few results of some SERPs, you’re not ever going to get any business. But that kind of top rank isn’t the result of a single monolithic activity — there are three distinct ways to get your way to the first page, or even the first slot.

First: SEO
Search engine optimization is the most basic way to the top, but it’s probably the most efficient. SEO is a wide umbrella, basically covering almost every single activity that can make your website achieve a higher rank for a particular set of searches. SEO is a long-term investment, but it’s well worth it in almost every circumstance. Unless you know your business is going to close it’s doors if you don’t get a customer or three today, SEO is likely to be your route of choice.

Second: PPC
The next choice is pay per click marketing. PPC takes a lot more money to get into, but the results are essentially instant. If you need a customer or three today to avoid going out of business, spending the money to hire a PPC manager can get you those customers — and because you don’t pay unless you get clicks, it’s not even that much of a risk. All you have to do it make sure that your landing page converts like a beast.

Third: Third Party Site Funneling
The goal of SEO is to get your website up in the SERPs by linking to it. But having content up on someone else’s website that links back to yours and convinces someone to make the jump from one to the other has most of the benefits of an actual first page placement, only it can be faster and cheaper to obtain. It might not quite be technically a first-place for your own site, but if the traffic comes through and converts on the back end, who cares?

Most companies are going to want SEO, or PPC if they need it — but they shouldn’t ignore the potential of site funneling while they wait for the SEO to kick in.

PPC, Management, and Why You Shouldn’t Always Mimic Success

There’s an adage in the business world that says “find someone that’s succeeding in your industry and copy them.” It’s true in most circumstances — naturally, you won’t have their budget, but hopefully you shouldn’t be plagued with the kinds of problems they currently have, while their current solutions will be to the problems you’re facing today. There are, however, major exceptions. One of them in the area of PPC. Management types in big companies often go in large for pay-per-click marketing. They spend huge bucks on it because they need results that happen this quarter.

If they wait until next quarter, see, they might not have their jobs anymore. Business at the C_O level is just that volatile — you never know where you’re going to work next quarter. Investing in any long-term programs that will show a profit in six months, much less five years, is going to result in some schlub you’ve never met crediting his recent “Let’s replace all the mops with fuzzy little dogs” program for the company’s windfall.

That’s why 80% of the money spend on SEM is spent on PPC, even though SEO accounts for 80% of the results — because C_Os aren’t worried about results as much as they’re interested in results they can take credit for.

If you’re a small business owner, you don’t want to drop huge bucks on PPC management like the big boys do. A little PPC is wise, because it helps you get the traffic flowing quickly — but you want to balance it with an equal or greater amount of local internet marketing and SEO. You might be interested in instant results, but it should be more important to you to guarantee that you’re still in business in five years — and relying strictly on PPC isn’t a good recipe for that.

A blend is the best path for most of America’s small Internet-savvy business. The PPC gets you off the ground and gets some initial traffic as the SEO builds — and then a year later, as the SEO starts to build traffic, the PPC can slowly be decreased each month so that by the end of the second year, you’re entirely on SEO and your PPC budget is no more. That’s the safest path to Internet business success.

This Isn’t The Traffic You’re Looking For (Organic SEO Is!)

There are a lot of ways to get traffic on the Internet. Just listing them all here would wear out the keyboard. But for realistic ways of getting traffic to flow, there’s only a few:

  • Social media flurries
  • Black hat SEO
  • Pay per click advertising
  • Organic SEO

Social media flurries have two problems that make them not the traffic you’re looking for: first, they’re flurries. Unless you’re FEMA, you don’t want your business model to be based on occasional and unpredictable floods of too much traffic. Second, they’re just as often negative as they are positive — rather than looking to buy your stuff, they’ll be looking to string you up.

Black hat SEO is just stupid. You’ll win big for a week, then Google will figure out what you’re doing and tank you, and you’ll have to start all over. Basically the same unpredictability as social media, but without the chance to recover should you stumble.

Pay per click advertising is a completely functional way of driving mad traffic, but it has a couple of disadvantages as well. First, it’s expensive: one study put it in terms of the 80/20 rule — 80% of money is spend on PPC, but it brings only 20% of all traffic. Of the remaining 80% of traffic, almost all of it is SEO driven — even though only 20% search engine marketing expense is spend on SEO. Second, when you cut your PPC budget, you cut your PPC results by a proportional amount — so you’re trapped in a PPC loop forever. It takes a truly skilled PPC management firm to wean a company off of PPC without making it a painful process.

Organic SEO, on the other hand, brings traffic in for pennies on the dollar compared to SEO, and when you stop spending money on SEO, the effect is that the rate that you’re climbing slowly decreases — but it takes a while for it to decrease to the point that it’s a decline at all; it just climbs more slowly for a long while. Sure, SEO takes a while to invest in — time has to pass for SEO to kick in — but unless your business model involves only being around for a few months, SEO is the traffic you’re looking for.

Think You Can Slack On Your Website? SEO Doesn’t Work That Way

What comes up must come down. It’s a famous phrase, and, actually, it’s a great way to look at the performance of your website – if you don’t maintain it. It’s easy to be casual about something that’s working well, but when it comes to success on the net, there is no respite. Most sites do not do well by accident. It is usually a combination of great content, a well built site and excellent attention to detail from an SEO expert. You might also have needed a decent PPC management campaign to get you up and running too.

That’s all fine, but there does not come a point where you can look at all you have done and think to yourself that it will all take care of itself. It’s not the case of climbing to the top of the tree and just sitting there. All of the other people who have chased you to the top of the tree are going to be taking pot shots at you – you have to stay one step ahead of the competition, and that means hard work and a bit of cunning.

Keeping a website in a good position takes a lot of work in terms of SEO. If you can find a company who will take an organic approach to your website’s SEO, they’re probably your best bet. Google are very quick to penalise sites following the Panda and Penguin updates, so you have to be extremely careful not to employ a company who aren’t taking ethical SEO seriously.

With a good company in place, there’s no reason to believe that you can’t stay at the top. You really do need a large amount of fresh data and you have to stay relevant for your market. Continue to research the needs of your clients, continue to give them what they want and strive to do new things before your competitors and you stand every chance of remaining in top spot. Stand still, and others will go past you before you even realise it is happening.

Organic SEO Is Already The Most Valuable Asset Your Website Possesses

There’s no debate among the people making money online that search engine traffic is the #1 source of their income. Individuals may have odd niches here and there that get their traffic from elsewhere, and in particular Internet entrepreneurs seem determined to pursue off-the-wall traffic to make their riches, but the vast majority — well over 80% — of money-making hits across the Internet come from search engines (and 80% of those come from Google.)

So let’s say you have a website and you’re just getting off the ground. You’ve gotten yourself indexed by the Google spiders, but that’s the sum total of the work that you’ve done: what’s your most valuable asset?

It’s still organic SEO. Yep, even on Day 1. The moment that the Google spiders index your site, you’re showing up somewhere in the rankings for relevant keywords — and at the very beginning, that’s all you’ve got.

Now, you can change that, of course. If you invest in pay-per-click advertising, learn the arts (or, more realistically, hire a PPC management firm to run your campaigns for you), and deal with your traffic costing real money per visit in exchange for the privilege of only paying for those visitors who actually make it to your site, you can quickly build a campaign that will become more valuable to you than your organic search listings.

But in the long run, as your site grows in popularity and audience, you will eventually find yourself in a position where your own success has acted as your “SEO guy” — and the traffic you could have had in months of paying for SEO will start to appear after mere years of pay-per-click. That traffic, purely free, will out-value the paid-for PPC traffic (it’s hard to beat an RoI of 1 on an I of zero.), and once again, organic SEO will be the most valuable asset your website has — because in the long run, is ultimately always was.

There’s no substitute for good SEO — there may be replacements, but there are no substitutes.

PPC Management And Organic SEO Make Excellent Bedfellows

Traditional wisdom is that a web startup should being developing traffic with pay-per-click (PPC) marketing in order to get off the ground, and then switch to organic SEO as it starts to build enough traffic that it doesn’t have to spend money on PPC anymore. A new study from Google, however, suggests that this might not be the case after all.

The traditional wisdom is based on the assumption that, if someone searches for a keyword and would otherwise have seen your site in the top few positions, there’s no need to also have the site in the Sponsored Links (aka the “PPC area”). If the searcher clicks on the Sponsored Link, it costs you money — whereas if your site wasn’t doing PPC, they would (presumably) have clicked on your natural link and thus you would have gotten the same visitor without paying.

However, Google’s research has shown a very different story. Let’s give an example that uses their conclusions, but uses simpler numbers than their study does.

Scenario 1: PPC + SEO
Clicks/day from PPC: 100
Clicks/day from SEO: 100

Scenario 2: SEO Only
Clicks/day from SEO: 111

Company A is getting 200 clicks per day, 100 each from their PPC campaign and from their organic SEO. That same company, the next month, pauses their PPC campaign in order to see what will happen to their organic search results. Conventional wisdom says they should get about 200 organic clicks per day — but according to Google’s study, the average company will get only 111 clicks per day from organic results.

That’s a loss of a whopping 45% of their clicks per day by moving away from PPC. Now, depending on how much you spend per PPC click, your conversion rate, and your income per conversion, that may actually be a good deal for some companies — but most companies would collapse if they lost 45% of their client base, even if it did cost them 33% of their income to maintain those clients.

Of course, any such company would be well-advised to hire a PPC management firm to reduce their PPC costs and improve their PPC effectiveness. If your PPC campaign isn’t performing like you’d like, PPC management is a much better solution, according to the Google study, than pulling out of PPC altogether.

Web Presenters: The Little Guy On Your Website

A web presenter is a pretty simple concept: an image of a human being, outside of any obvious frame, pops up on a layer ‘above’ your website, and starts talking to the surfer. You mouse-over the speaker, and a few buttons pop up that allow you to control it like a normal video, including volume, a timeline bar, and an ‘off’ button. If you do nothing, the speaker keeps right on going, telling you about the site.

Why would you ever do anything so annoying to your visitors? Well, actually, if you do it properly, the benefits far outweigh the annoyance. It’s a single-second mouseover and then one click to banish the web presenter forever, so very few people are going to up and leave your site because of it. And those people that are on the fence about your site have a good chance to decide to stick around when they learn that they can get the information they want without scrolling or reading.

And that’s really what a web presenter is all about — pulling in the people that aren’t sure about your site. Remember, it takes the average surfer less than two seconds to decide whether they’re going to pay attention to your site or skim right past it. A web presenter that kicks in during that window and starts their speech with a good hook can almost make that decision for them.

Especially if you’re driving traffic that requires you to pay for every visitor — like using Google Adwords, for example — your PPC management team can tell you about the importance of tools like a web presenter for maximizing the profits from your pay-per-click campaigns.

The particularly clever can even arrange their site so that the web presenter appears to interact with it, pointing at certain links and buttons as they describe the benefits of your product or service. That kind of polish goes a long way with web surfers, who have almost universally seen every kind of cheap, hackneyed sales job in their surfing — having a few details that speak to your level of attention to detail implies volumes about how you’ll treat them as customers.

Web presenters aren’t just little guys on your website — they’re a huge tool for maximizing your website’s profits. That is what you’re here for, right?

Who Has The Time for A Website? SEO, Social Marketing, PPC…It’s Too Much!

It’s hard to maintain a website. SEO, if you don’t hire a professional company to do it, can literally take up as much time as you care to spend on it. Then you add the modern-day twists of social marketing (spending time writing to the people on Facebook, on your blog, on your forums, and on Twitter) and PPC (crafting clever text ads to put up on the ‘sponsored placement’ window of the various search engines and paying each time someone clicks on one), and you have a workday longer than this sentence, all just to maintain a single site.

How can any startup infopreneur or even a small business hope to keep up without hiring an outside company to take care of these details for them? The answer, quite simply, is that they can’t. hiring a company to take care of your SEO, your social branding, and your PPC management isn’t just a luxury anymore, it’s a simple fact of life.

Just like you don’t wash your own doormats or replace your own soap in the business bathroom, you shouldn’t be bothering with the minutia behind keeping your website profitable and useful. There’s just too much — but a professional that knows his stuff and does it day in, day out can support dozens of websites, because he focuses.

Look at it this way: would you rather have a webmaster that’s a webmaster for an hour a day and splits the rest of his time between managing employees, ordering supplies, signing paychecks, and cleaning the bathroom? Or one that’s a full-time webmaster, and doesn’t clutter his head with other stuff? That’s precisely the difference between being your own webmaster and hiring a professional company to take care of your site.

Modern SEO companies have pluralized significantly from yesteryears, in that they can and will offer nearly every service you need to keep your website on top of it’s game. From converting your website into a mobile-friendly format to driving heinous amounts of traffic to producing high-quality videos to pique interest to managing your pay-per-click campaigns. They can afford to do all of that because it’s all they do — and that’s why every small business and solopreneur should consider hiring one to care for their website. It’s the only way to get everything else done at the same time.

Eyes On Your Site: The Unadulterated Traffic-Making Power of Organic SEO

There’s exactly one thing that even the cleverest, most awesome website needs in order to be successful: it needs eyes. Specifically, lots of other people’s eyes, looking at it on their monitors, smartphone screens, and other display devices. So how do you go about getting eyes on your site?

There are as many answers are there are websites, but by and large, the most functional method as determined by market share is organic SEO. Organic SEO accounts for upward of 80% of all visitors to all websites across the Internet. When you stop to think about it, it’s obvious why: ask yourself how many times you’ve used a search engine in the past few weeks versus how many times you’ve clicked on an advertisement or typed the name of a website that you saw on a billboard or on someone’s car into the address bar.

Search engines are, no pun intended, the engine by which the Internet works. It should be no surprise, then, that SEO — Search Engine Optimization — is the gas pedal that squirts hot fuel into your website’s visitor log, setting it on fire…yeah, that metaphor just died. Point being, SEO — done properly, at least — outstrips every other kind of traffic trick (with the possible exception of pay-per-click done by a talented PPC management team, but that’s a different article.)

So what is ‘done properly’? Quite simply, it means that you have an SEO company that delves deep on the keyword research. They should be willing and able to write up an analysis of what your top competitors for each major keyword are doing, and a plan for how to unseat them and take over. Then they should be able to tell you what they’re doing each month to work toward those goals — that’s a minimum.

SEO companies have a tough job, and the market is fiercely competitive — but it’s also absolutely vital to the functioning of businesses on the Internet. Finding the right SEO company for you is the foremost task of anyone and everyone who wants eyes on their website.

Organic SEO Gets You More Visitors Per Dollar

A lot of people are talking about different traffic sources other than organic SEO. The fact is that 4 out of 5 visitors will visit your website based on how high you are located in the search engines. That is a lot of traffic! Perhaps some of the people that are looking at these alternate sources of traffic are just afraid of doing the work necessary to make it to the top of Google.

Here are the four other sources of traffic that are most commonly used when proper SEO isn’t in place.

Banner ads

Only 2% of visitors to any website come from a banner ad. They usually cost money to place and many of these visitors are not targeted. There shouldn’t be a lot of effort wasted on banner ads.

PPC marketing

Approximately 16% of website visitors arrive at a site through ads placed on Google and other search engines. It is an expensive proposition to run a marketing campaign on Google and most people hire a PPC management company to do it for them.

Social marketing

About 5% of the visitors to a website come from a social marketing site like Twitter or Facebook. Social marketing is an important part of any business’ web presence, but it simply does not compare to natural SEO.

Text ads

These are ads that could be placed in a classified ads directory, on other sites or at the bottom of articles sent out. These ads only bring in about 0.5% of all visitors to websites across the world. There has been a lot written about article marketing, but while it does have its place, it should not be counted on to bring in a lot of traffic. It is best used for backlinking.

Natural SEO

There is nothing that can compete with organic SEO and probably nothing ever will. Proper SEO will bring in about 77% of the traffic to websites across the world. The only way that you can compete with the big guns out there is to have your site ranking near the top of Google. You can use the other sources of traffic, but don’t forget about the one that will give you the highest traffic volume.

Pareto and Organic SEO: 80% of Your Visitors Come From Organic Clicks

Have you ever heard of the Pareto Principle? It’s a pretty common theory among the new wave of entrepreneurs that have spun off of the likes of Tim Ferris and T. Harv Ecker. It says, quite simple, that 80% of your X comes from 20% of your Y.

In other words, 80% of your profit comes from 20% of your customer base. Similarly, 80% of your problems come from 20% of your customer base — and it’s probably NOT the same 20%. This has led to, among other things, a sudden focus on reducing your customer base as a valid business strategy — just make sure you cut the customers that create problems, not the ones creating the profit.

In the world of SEO, this is also true on a large scale. It turns out that of all of the money spend on Search Engine Marketing each year, 80% of it is spent on pay-per-click marketing, and only 20% is spend on organic SEO. Conversely, of all of the traffic that flows through Google and it’s competitors, 80% of it is organic (i.e. it comes from the actual search results and not the PPC ‘sponsored placement’s.) The other 20% is pay-per-click traffic.

So, 80% of the money results in 20% of the traffic — and 20% of the money results in 80% of the traffic. By my math, that makes every dollar you spend on SEO some sixteen times more valuable than each dollar you spend on PPC. That isn’t to say that PPC doesn’t have it’s advantages — instant traffic is more useful in terms of cashflow than traffic that doesn’t come for a few weeks or even months down the road — but sixteen times? That kind of efficiency can buy a lot of patience.

Of course, there are options to dramatically improve the payoff of pay-per-click marketing. Many SEO companies are offering PPC management services that can quadruple the effect of PPC — so it’s only one-quarter as efficient as SEO. Still, unless you absolutely can’t wait for the traffic, SEO is probably your better option.

Kickstart Your Website With Top-Tier PPC Management

Starting a web based business is a long, slow, arduous procedure with a lot of details that must be attended to. Then there’s the process of actually getting traffic to come visit the website, which can be done in a few different ways. The “best” way is with organic SEO, which will drive genuine traffic from the search engines to your website — but organic SEO can take months or even years to really dominate your niche.

In the meantime, what are you supposed to do? Well, the best answer is to buy traffic more directly in the form of pay-per-click marketing. Pay-per-click marketing basically means setting up those ads you see in the Sponsored Links part of Google results. It’s a terribly complicated process, but if you do it right, pays for itself several times over. If you do it wrong, it will eat your bank account and burp dust.

That’s why almost everyone who has looked into pay-per-click recognizes the value of a skilled PPC management team. Often part of an existing SEO company, sometimes independent, PPC management teams handle all of the quirky and challenging details of a pay-per-click marketing campaign for a fee.

Many webmasters who haven’t tried PPC before are reluctant to pay any more than they have to, and to them PPC management seems like an unnecessary expense. Once they’ve seen how complex and dangerous PPC marketing can be, however, almost every one of them will either run away and complain about how horrible PPC is — or they’ll hire a PPC management team to turn things around.

They always do.

That’s because it’s possible for anyone to win with pay-per-click marketing (as long as you can afford the ‘pay’ part). It just takes a lot of legwork, keyword research, careful bids, and cost-benefit calculations — but that’s what PPC management teams specialize in.

So if you want to get your website off the ground without waiting around for months to get your organic SEO on, get flying fast with pay-per-click marketing — just take the time to hire a PPC management squad to make sure you’re making more money than you’re spending.

Small Business SEO: A Solopreneur’s Guide

There’s something extraordinarily motivating about being a solopreneur — that is, someone single-handedly making money, with no boss, no schedule, and no obligations other than the ones you make for yourself. It’s also not all that difficult of a dream to achieve given the state of modern Internet commerce.

I’m not talking about the stupid get-rich-quick schemes, I’m talking about the ability that everyone who can type has to do simple things that other people need done. Like they say, if you want to take advantage of a gold rush, you sell shovels. But no matter what your Internet-business-related service or product might be, if you aren’t getting eyes on your offer, you aren’t going anywhere.

Enter the world of small business SEO. Optimizing your website so that it’s picked up by the search engines and put in front of the people most likely to want to purchase your goods or services is no small feat. But even a solopreneur can pull it off.

There are basically three options: you can spend time on SEO; you can spend money on SEO; or you can skip SEO and go straight for pay-per-click marketing.

Spending time on SEO is basically the ‘shoestrings and the seat of my pants’ way of doing things. It’s extraordinarily slow to take effect, it takes a lot out of the solopreneurs that try it, and in the end you really only do it long enough to be able to make a little money and put one of the other options into effect.

Spending money on SEO is exactly what mid-sized businesses do. (Large corporations just buy SEO companies and keep them on staff.) You basically purchase the services of an SEO company and trust them to get you ranked. It’s never a question of if they can, it’s always a question of how much time it’ll take for them to get it done.

Pay-per-click marketing means you don’t bother ranking organically on the search engines because your site appears inside that “Ads” block on Google. It takes a bit more money than getting ranked for SEO, but you get that first-page ranking instantly and for as long as you want to pay for it. Pay-per-click marketing is a dangerous game, however, and hiring a PPC management group to run your campaigns for you is a very, very good idea.

There’s no one who can tell you which route is right or wrong for you, and no one route is right for everybody — test a little bit of each and run with the one the seems the most effective for you.

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