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  1. #1
    Affiliate Manager DreamPrints's Avatar
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    Natural SEO or PPC?
    One more great article:
    SEO vs. PPC.

    And what do you prefer? Please, share.
    Last edited by DreamPrints; September 21st, 2006 at 06:48 AM.

  2. #2
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    Both

    Start with PPC because results are immediate for one domain based page then move on to SEO all pages on the product/service specific domain.

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador MoneyBusiness's Avatar
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    If you're like me (need some kind of indication that a new business venture is actually going to pay), then PPC is a good start - there's nothing like seeing some dough when you're putting in hours n' hours of work. However, it only takes a little bit of time to realize you're limiting yourself to one arena, when you can have the best of both worlds (so SEO is usually the second part of each of my projects).

    Also (and I think this was in Revenue - or another mag - can't remember right now), there were statistics that claimed site owners convert a higher percentage of visitors, if the visitor sees the site in both the natural search results and PPC results. Another incentive to go both routes.

  4. #4
    Affiliate Manager Alan Hamilton's Avatar
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    I agree with the early consensus here. It is not a matter of "one or the other" it is a matter of diversifying ad distribution.

    PPC is an immediate indicator of a product, ad, promotions viability. So it is a good thing to use for both evaluating feasibility and monetizing your site. SEO speaks for itself.

    Logically, if a site benefits (meaning sales) from ppc, it will benefit from SEO and SEO is far more cost effective. So rather than thinking in terms of one or the other - ppc is immediate and SEO is credibility and cost effectiveness.
    Join the Spicy Aprons Affiliate program on ShareASale Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/spicyaprons Follow us on Twitter @Spicyaprons

  5. #5
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ALH - AmeritrustRx
    I agree with the early consensus here. It is not a matter of "one or the other" it is a matter of diversifying ad distribution.

    PPC is an immediate indicator of a product, ad, promotions viability. So it is a good thing to use for both evaluating feasibility and monetizing your site. SEO speaks for itself.

    Logically, if a site benefits (meaning sales) from ppc, it will benefit from SEO and SEO is far more cost effective. So rather than thinking in terms of one or the other - ppc is immediate and SEO is credibility and cost effectiveness.
    Excellent summary, Alan
    ~Rhia7 -- Remember the 7
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  6. #6
    Action Jackson - King of the World
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    I do SEO because it's cheap LOL

  7. #7
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    I'll have a helping of both please, and as much as I can get...

    The question of ROI between SEO and PPC can be misleading. Direct and indirect costs of consultant/employee, taxes and worker's comp, lawyer to revue contracts, etc aside, imagine the ROI of either PPC or SEO done poorly.

    The article, written for SEOs, is biased towards SEO, but I think it's clear that, when done right, most marketers are pretty happy with both.
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

  8. #8
    Newbie ceetee's Avatar
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    This is my take, do your PPC for keywords, then -

    1/ If profitable continue and develope SEO too
    2/ If not profitable but it makes sales develope SEO
    3/ If no sales whatsoever consider yourself lucky you didn't spend months finding that out with SEO.

  9. #9
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    Better question would be

    How are you doing SEO

  10. #10
    Full Member dak142's Avatar
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    Also, if you are a PPC newbie, or just not good at it, you will BLEED money. I for one have had a very hard time covering my ppc cost vrs commissions. I know there are people out there that only use PPC, I just never could get a good handle on it. Anyone know of any good resources to learn?

    Dak

  11. #11
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    I prefer PPC, I find it a easier way to make money. 70% of my current income comes from PPC. I consider PPC advertising to be something done on short term, you work now and in a couple of days/weeks you start earning money.

    As for SEO, it takes months or even years to start earning some serious money. And also I consider SEO to be a little bit limited. For example after you reach #1 for a popular term, there is nothing you can do about growing your business, you just keep on getting the same amount of traffic, the only thing left to do is work to keep that SE position. The best thing about SEO is that it's a lot cheaper, or even free.

    I try to build different websites for SEO (more content) and PPC (call to action websites).

    Best way to earn the maximum possible is to do them both in a successful way.

  12. #12
    Affiliate Manager DreamPrints's Avatar
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    Thumbs up
    Thanks to all for sharing! When we launched the site, we started with PPC, too. Now we are running both and getting great response!

    P.S. Alan, my respect to you, you are great at explainig things

  13. #13
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dapyx
    For example after you reach #1 for a popular term, there is nothing you can do about growing your business, you just keep on getting the same amount of traffic, the only thing left to do is work to keep that SE position.
    Then it's time to focus on converting that traffic and maximizing earnings, developing a mailing list, new channels, offline marketing, upsell opportunities, etc, even new PPC channels. There's always more to do.
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

  14. #14
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    Then it's time to focus on converting that traffic and maximizing earnings, developing a mailing list, new channels, offline marketing, upsell opportunities, etc, even new PPC channels. There's always more to do.
    For me, it seems each project multiplies at least 2X - 3X

    As you said above there are always new avenues and opprotunities


    One more great article:
    SEO vs. PPC.

    And what do you prefer? Please, share.
    I believe in PPC first, but with caution

    SEO can be worked in as you go

    JasonR

  15. #15
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dak142
    Also, if you are a PPC newbie, or just not good at it, you will BLEED money.
    I know in advance that PPC would not only bleed me but

    So I avoid PPC but would like to continue to educate myself on organic SEO

    Other people can do what works for them -- I know my own limitations.
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  16. #16
    Newbie motheninja's Avatar
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    If you just built your website, waiting for SEO to kick in can take months. but free traffic is free traffic... though like dapyx, most of my income is from PPC though.

  17. #17
    What's the word? Rhia7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dak142
    I for one have had a very hard time covering my ppc cost vrs commissions. I know there are people out there that only use PPC, I just never could get a good handle on it. Anyone know of any good resources to learn?
    Dak
    Dak, if you were interested in future options, I would whole heartedly recommend without reservation Options as a Strategic Investment by Lawrence G. McMillan (fascinating book and available on Amazon).

    I don't believe that anyone has written anything entitled to "PPC as a Strategic Investment" but the closest summary that I have stumbled upon is this .
    The main idea (of the blog entry) is that the optimization of paid search campaigns is being treated in a similar manner to technical analysis.

    The author of this blog entry exposes the bad advice of some SEO firms and offers tips to confirm what could be good advice.

    I think the author of this blog entry is on to something *but* as a disclaimer I will admit that I myself am like an "armchair explorer" (one who loves to read about exploration but who stays at home).
    ~Rhia7 -- Remember the 7
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  18. #18
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    The author of this blog entry exposes the bad advice of some SEO firms and offers tips to confirm what could be good advice.
    It's kind of a double dose of PR hype for Efficient Frontier, which is all about PPC and has nothing to do with SEO. But that's consistent with what's been posted at SEO/SEM forums by their sales manager for a while, which usually tends toward borderline self-promotion, just skirting on the edge of TOS violations.

    I think the author of this blog entry is on to something *but* as a disclaimer I will admit that I myself am like an "armchair explorer" (one who loves to read about exploration but who stays at home).
    I think the author of this blog post seems to be very much interested in promoting the services of EF, enough to conclude that there's a vested interest in doing so.

    But in spite of the spin, EF has some ideas on PPC that long-time, top-notch PPC veterans don't quite agree with. I had reason to do a bit of investigative hunting around on EF recently and can dig out some very meaty forum threads at Search Engine Watch and WebmasterWorld on that very thing, if anyone happens to be interested.

    As far as SEO goes, it's long term and highly cost-effective, but sometimes volatile for most newer sites. It does take a while with Yahoo, way longer with Google unless there's a healthy bit of authoritative linking and a big traffic surge for starters. But a new site can get listed, be ranking and pulling well targeted MSN traffic within the month, and then from there go on to work on the others.

    PPC has a stability that organic SEO usually doesn't for a while, but it's a different skill-set. They both have their place. However, it is important to know the difference between the two.

    Added:
    To balance out the spin, here's some shoot-from-the-hip straight talk at WebmasterWorld

    http://www.webmasterworld.com/forum81/4778.htm

    redzone was a long time top pro in the business before I even got to know who he was, and that was 6 years ago. My money's on his opinions any time.
    Last edited by webworker; September 25th, 2006 at 02:03 PM.

  19. #19
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    SEO and PPC
    Hi Rhia7,

    I'm 'searchquant'. I think that with regards to SEO and PPC, the correct link to my blog is here; the other links you had were all to a particular post on the history of 'portfolio optimization' as applied to PPC.

    Webworker - first off, thanks for the ringing endorsement

    Rather than me do a big, long post, why don't I just http://forums.searchenginewatch.com/...ad.php?t=13590 to the the most recent SearchEngineWatch thread in which I and others in the space discuss portfolio theory and its application to PPC.

    Note with regards to the since-closed WMW thread you linked to: RZG was correct in calling my comparison of 'risk' to 'CPC' inaccurate, and if the thread weren't closed I would be happy to respond and clarify that. Keep in mind, I don't have a math background, so it *does* happen that I put my foot in my mouth from time to time when discussing portfolio algorithms.

    That said, however, I don't think there's anything wrong with someone who works in Sales participating in forums like this. Salespeople arguably have a better read on the market than any other group because they spend more time talking to marketers and hearing their problems/challenges.

    I also think that most SEM/SEO forums have a very anti-vendor bias built in because many of the participants are either full-time or part-time consultants and don't want advertisers thinking there *are* technology solutions that a) work well in PPC; and b) make a good part of the consultant's work redundant. JUST one man's opinion.

    As for your vague but negative portrayal of Efficient Frontier, I think I have a right to say that you should clarify your stance with facts, or at least state what your issue with EF is. We are managing more PPC spend than any firm on the planet, have 70-80 of the top 500 U.S.-based ppc advertisers as clients, and with all due respect - you don't. We've gotten to that position because our application of portfolio theory to ppc works very, very well.

    For those interested, the reason is easily summarized by this 2-keyword bidding example. If we can agree that:

    a)most advertisers have or should have 1000's - 100K's of keywords;
    b)tracking keyword level cost and revenue data is a must
    c)Google and [soon] Yahoo are opaque marketplaces
    d) <5% of advertisers are actually managing to a goal of maximum profit (with no constraints around budget, volume of leads/transactions/etc

    ...then in that case I'm 3 years into waiting for the person who can argue against the fundamental advantages of portfolio/quant algorithms applied to ppc management.

    -Shorebreak

  20. #20
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    I'm 'searchquant'.
    OK then, an "aha" moment. So then in that case, about this:

    The author of this blog entry exposes the bad advice of some SEO firms and offers tips to confirm what could be good advice.
    It's kind of a double dose of PR hype for Efficient Frontier, which is all about PPC and has nothing to do with SEO. But that's consistent with what's been posted at SEO/SEM forums by their sales manager for a while, which usually tends toward borderline self-promotion, just skirting on the edge of TOS violations.

    I think the author of this blog entry is on to something *but* as a disclaimer I will admit that I myself am like an "armchair explorer" (one who loves to read about exploration but who stays at home).
    I think the author of this blog post seems to be very much interested in promoting the services of EF, enough to conclude that there's a vested interest in doing so.
    Which part of that response to the OP's quotes about and from the blog was inaccurate?

    I think I have a right to say that you should clarify your stance with facts,
    No. All I need to clarify is what I personally post that may not be clear about issues that relate to the topic of this thread, entitled:

    Where the poster asked this:

    And what do you prefer? Please, share.
    THAT is the topic of this thread. And for the first 16 posts, the thread stayed on topic. Until the one with the link to the sales pitch. That did warrant clarifying, since it was sales rather than objective editorial commentary.

    or at least state what your issue with EF is
    Actually, I have no reason to have any issue, or for that matter any interest. What I DO have issue with is hijacking this thread to discuss EF, which is NOT the topic. And BTW, it seems the SEW forum thread you linked to was split off from a thread about DART Search, so it's pretty safe to assume that the DART thread went off topic (aka got hijacked), if Danny Sullivan had to split it to a new thread.

    I also have to question why a blog post was linked to that's just a sales pitch for EF about PPC (which the OP who linked to it knows nothing about), and is therefore also off-topic for this thread.

    I'd suggest starting another thread if there's a desire to pursue EF as a topic relevant to affiliate marketing (that's in accordance with the ABW rules, of course) rather than continue to get this one sidetracked off the subject of PPC or SEO,which was going along very nicely until the program got interrupted for a short commercial break.

  21. #21
    ABW Ambassador
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    Well, that was a nice way to hijack this exceptionally good thread, a real thread-killer if I ever saw one. I hope we can salvage something and get back on topic, some of us were enjoying some of those great posts by the "elder statesmen" in the business.

    IMHO, in the final analysis all of the theories and all of the technologies out there don't amount to a hill of beans to the average small to mid merchant or affiliate. What matters in the long run, for any of it, is the ROI - everything else is BS.

    Logically, if a site benefits (meaning sales) from ppc, it will benefit from SEO and SEO is far more cost effective. So rather than thinking in terms of one or the other - ppc is immediate and SEO is credibility and cost effectiveness.
    With either one, the site/pages have to be done up with conversion in mind.

    PPC seems riskier from an affiliate's point of view, knowing that it's up to the merchant's site to close the deal and make the sale, so from the standpoint of an affiliate who does SEO, to do any PPC there would have to be a track record of products selling & a merchant who converts, and then figuring the profit point of bidding.

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