Guest: @JoannaLord: Let’s do this #seochat!
@JoannaLord is the Director of Customer Acquisition at @seomoz, a leading SEO software company out of Seattle, WA. She currently heads up SEOmoz?s paid search, affiliate, and acquisition marketing efforts. @joannalord is also a well-known social media enthusiast and frequent conference speaker. Her diverse experience in data analysis, PPC, SEO & content creation lets her provide tactical acquisition strategies that work.
@JoannaLord: @dan_patterson I’m also a huge fan of coffee, hugs, and sarcasm. in that order.
@AlanBleiweiss: @JoannaLord’s bio: #PPCRockStar #ReallyFrakkinSmart #AcquisitionMarketingGenius #NuffSaid
How do the overall strategies for SEO and PPC differ?
You can use the two very differently but ultimately for the same goal: more traffic & more conversions! Biggest difference is SEO is great for consistent wins, and building an authority site, increasing value of a domain. PPC is best for immediate results, testing, highly targeted traffic, seasonal buys, promotions, etc.
I also think PPC is great for sites that aren’t made for SEO… you know those hot mess sites.
PPC is known for its speed and its expansiveness/scalability. Things can be automated pretty effectively these days.
The strategies of both differ quite a bit, but both require solid keyword research, optimize pages, and attentive strategists. Ongoing strategies are pretty similar: data mining, constant tweaking, daily/weekly reporting, and keyword list expansion. I think HOW best to use them is where the differences shine bright.
@nagyseo: That is true in a weird way!! How come PPC can make 2 or even 3 times more traffic than #organicSEO?
@AlanBleiweiss: PPC ads stand out from the crowd. And you can target landing pages in PPC – force more efficient call to action.
@nagyseo: Sure they do, but visitors know it’s not so relevant result then organic, even though it is more PPC traffic??!
@AlanBleiweiss: The average user cares about finding what they want – PPC ads are shiny objects.
@lyena: How is SEO keyword research different from PPC keyword reseach?
@JoannaLord: In general with SEO you want long term wins– keywords that will always return, PPC cant go after short term trends.
@dan_patterson: Personally, I love that with PPC you can get results faster to know if you’re going the right direction with SEO
@JoannaLord: So true it can be a great place to test things, and validate gut feelings for future moves.
@JoannaLord: How many of you do both PPC & SEO? I can ask questions too right?
@dan_patterson: Yes you can! I use both. They both have their strengths and weaknesses, but are both important for any SEM campaign.
@AlanBleiweiss: My audits never get into PPC – except to recommend a proper PPC audit from someone like you
@Matt_Siltala: I do both ..
@inflatemouse: I do both PPC and SEO.
@JoannaLord: I get so many clients asking WHICH to go with. both are valuable.
@kmullett: I suggest both, where appropriate.
@ashbuckles: I’ve worked with both SEO & PPC over the years.
@nagyseo: PPC and SEO they work together I think, not necessary you need to use either, combining various of objects and platforms work best
@beyondcontent: I step in to do PPC when a problem-solver is required, otherwise SEO all the way.
@tamrajh: I haven’t don’t PPC for a few years and, my, how it has changed!
@Thos003: I think SEO and PPC are compliments to each other.
@JoannaLord: me too!
@nagyseo: Nicely said
@dan_patterson: Totally agree. PPC can have a wider reach with content networks, etc. You have to at least try it and see if it works 4 u
@Matt_Siltala: I think PPC & SEO compliment each other too … IMO there are better times to use PPC (like @joannalord mentioned earlier)
@Thos003: Do you feel you can get the same conversion rate from a PPC as an organic?
@JoannaLord: I mean thats a tough one. SEO is not free you know? I mean people spend a lot on solid SEO. CRs vary wildly for both.
@Thos003: SEO isn’t free?
@JoannaLord: Hell nooooo. think of time invested, now give those hours a value…and ongoing management costs.
@Thos003: Totally… buying links gets expensive. #seochat #KIDDING =)
@kmullett: SEO isn’t free, but it also has the potential for more sustainability without further cost. Still suggest both.
@TonyVerre: Do you think the “adrenaline” of PPC is a lessened these days? taking into account , account histories and all.
@JoannaLord: A little, but I think Adwords is combatting this with integrated search results and new ad types. The display network for PPC is so hot right now, I think we will see the action only increase in there.
@inflatemouse: For most business PPC & SEO should be talked about as timed tactics, not strategies for driving traffic.
@JoannaLord: Yup! timed strategies with connected long term goals
In your experience, are SEO & PPC complimentary or cannibalistic? Why?
In my experience, they are complimentary more than cannibalistic. Running both can be a way to protect your brand, it allows for alternative messaging & show conversion uplifts. I actually think badly organized PPC campaigns can be more cannibalistic than the SEO efforts for that company.
I’ve worked for a lot of companies that dominated in SEO, and it was still effective to buy branded terms. It depends on if your competitors are buying into your brand, and if your goals for PPC are different. With the newer ad types from Adwords, you can really shape what people see. So you have more control in PPC than in the SERPs.
Updates to the search results have changed the PPC vs. SEO dynamic, and now PPC is looking more organic, it can be a huge win. So I believe, together they are most powerful. There are always exceptions though. We talk about this a lot in the MozPlex, but I think if you only do SEO you are missing out. yup there I said it. EEEK!
If you have a small budget and rank high organically, don’t waste money on branded buys, but keep an eye on competitors.
@Thos003: @JoannaLord Dang it… Cats out of the bag…”yup there I said it. EEEK! #seochat” …. http://www.flickr.com/photos/thos003/5533384936/
@kmullett: @JoannaLord with respect, it depends on client and their competitors. We’ve had clients able to coast for 2yrs w/no effort. *rare
@dan_patterson: We have to bid on brand terms because so many competitors are – we lose business cause they have similar names.
@ashbuckles: PPC is very cannibalistic by nature and it takes the right person to structure.
@inflatemouse: Have you noticed Brand-jacking lately in PPC?
@KrisRoadruck: dunno about @joannalord but we’ve been seeing a lot of brand jacking since late 2009.
@AnnieCushing: I’m seeing @SEOmoz ads on highly targeted sites in my wanderings that aren’t just about SEO. Very optimized.
@AlanBleiweiss: not very optimized. It’s @JoannaLord spying on us with retargeting #CreepyButKindaThrilling
@nagyseo: WE have seen the Instant and Updates,etc. but when you rank on simple FB Wall posts on #1 organic result that’s a bit worrying?!
Should you use the same landing pages for PPC & SEO?
No. The truth is best practices apply to both categories, but to perform well in SEO & PPC there are differences on page. PPC pages can have less of a full user experience and more of a relevant concise experience and clear call. SEO usually demands a more sensational experience – to attract links eyes, and engagement. This traffic is more permanent.
PPC landing pages can be created with less concerns around dup content (for the most part). To make sure you don’t get into duplicate content issues, be sure to noindex your PPC landing pages.
SEO pages need to be unique, feel more intuitive as well. Both SEO & PPC have similar best practices:clear relevant titles, relevant copy, eye catching image, strong CTA, trust signals. I mean on both pages you need to care about being relevant, and getting the “conversion”. Truth is when it comes to landing pages, you need to tailor them as much as you can, with it still being scalable. Back in the day you could bust out mass template PPC pages, and thats not the case anymore (most of the time ).
@inflatemouse: @dan_patterson You should only double up SEO and PPC landing pages if you want to save time and money.
@jeypandian: eg running a ppc bid on your brand name can reduce organic traffic as much as 40% on that brand kw.
@dan_patterson: Especially with the Quality Score, you have to follow some SEO-like principles in PPC these days.
@Scottmarket: Plus keeping seo and ppc on different pages makes tracking 10x easier.
@jameszol: I still google my ppc urls to see if they’ve been indexed…some get there even w/ “noindex”. have yet to figure that out. I’ll add my ppc lander folder to robots.txt too if i can keep them all in the same folder naturally…to keep organic spideys out.
@Thos003: Plus noindex helps to not merge the tracking and analytics of PPC and SEO efforts.
@lyena: Do you test landing pages like ads?
@JoannaLord: Testing is crucial, the metrics matter– your bounce rate, how deep a visitor goes into your site, that all counts.
@kmullett: Well some forget how unique or on topic related to the ad helps conversion and visibility.
@inflatemouse: I think that you are leaving $ on the table if you aren’t polling the SEO value of your PPC landing pages.
What insights can you gain for SEO from PPC, and vice versa?
A ton of insights. Both sides benefit from cross-channel data mining. Remember we are all on the same team? Team revenue! You can use PPC to test out branding messages and keywords descriptors that can be very effective on SEO. Take the PPC keywords/queries that return conversions (not just high traffic) and target organically. Cross channel data mining is great for both from a content side of things. Ad copy & messaging value to be found.
IMO, there USED TO BE a clearer divide between searchers that clicked organic listings and those that clicked PPC advertisers. With our current landscape results are more integrated, and the insights from each carry more weight when applied to the other. Tool tip: I use SEMRush a ton, they show organic and paid search keyword traffic data next to each other. I think PPCers think of keywords too much. It all goes back to the query, just like SEO. lots of insights to be found. You all saw the latest adwords listing change– headlines can now be 1st description sentence. looks organic.
I think if you work in house in PPC or SEO you should be harassing your other half. like all the effing time. If you are a consultant you should ask for that data from “the other side” … ewww scary I know! I guess it comes down to the idea of why NOT use the data. I mean when should any of us be leaving data on the table? #sillycat You can also use your organic traffic drivers and quickly create new keywords to buy on PPC and test out queries quickly.
@SusannaSpeier: @JoannaLord define “CTA” and “Trust Signals” please #seochat (sorry for being such a nuisance but I really wanna know)
@JoannaLord: oh no my bad! CTA means call to action. And trust signals are things like: logos, testimonials, secure badges, and awards…things that validate your brand.
@ivanmelvin: Trust signals are things like a clean design, encryption logos if you’re an ecommerce site etc.
@dan_patterson: I can see some situations though where u could have a page that converts w/ minimal content that wouldn’t work in SEO. I guess in the end it all comes down to testing, trying different things, etc. Where I work all of our landing pages are both PPC and SEO. Works pretty well for us right now.
@Matt_Siltala: I have found this so beneficial using both sides of the data to make an overall improvement of things
@Thos003: I have used PPC to find winning phrases and then use them offline as well.
@dan_patterson: You have to use both sides. PPC data can give you HUGE insight into which keyword sets to go after next for SEO.
Tell us how tracking PPC campaigns aligns/differs from SEO.
I use PPC data to validate spending the time on SEO to go after certain new categories, themes, queries.
Well I guess to round it up Ill just say that if you only know one piece of the pie, at least become familiar with the other. SEOs are pretty hardcore, tons to do for sure, but paid search is a great testing ground.
Also here is a great video on the PPC & SEO Rivalry: http://bit.ly/e1jbf1
@kmullett: I have always thought of it as; SEO = slow/steady vs PPC = fast/finite. Both have a purpose.
@dan_patterson: Honestly, I think the SEOs who refuse to look at PPC or talk down to it just don’t understand the insights it can give.
@alanbr82: It also works for testing headlines for traditional marketing.
@JoannaLord: This was awesome guys, thanks for letting me ramble. my hands are officially about to fall off from the typing Hey and if anyone has questions you can hit me up (I will actually respond..well maybe ) joanna at seomoz dot org
@CollaboCo: SEO is like working out & PPC is taking roids. Once you’re off roids, you lose everything. SEO is long term & doesn’t disappear.
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