Some of you are smirking right now, and some are wondering what happened to my spellchecker and when I could have meant to spell when I wrote ‘Stig’. All I can say is, look it up. The important thing to know is that he’s fast. So is the traffic that hits your website when you find a good PPC management firm and drop some cash on pay-per-click marketing.
There’s a lot of people disrespecting PPC right now, and the numbers appear pretty dire. Studies say that 80% of the money spent on search engine marketing is spent on PPC — the other 20% is spent on SEO. Then they tell you that 80% of search engine traffic comes from SEO — the other 20% comes from PPC. Sounds like someone’s been studying the Pareto Principle, doesn’t it?
Here’s the thing — the numbers are right, but the interpretation of the numbers is flawed. The basic assertion is that each visitor from PPC costs about four times more than each visitor from two.
When you pay for SEO, you’re paying now for visitors that won’t come for months. It’s not a purchase, it’s an investment. And yes, you’ll get a few visitors for the cost that you’ll pay for a single click of PPC. But the biggest problem that startup web businesses have isn’t cash — it’s cashflow. Your income has to be greater than your outgo on a week-to-week or month-to-month basis.
PPC doesn’t give you cashflow problems the way SEO does. SEO demands a few — or several — hundred dollars right now, and doesn’t give you a shred of payout for as much as half a year. In fact, it demands that kind of investment month after month with no payout until the victory bell rings and you score that coveted first page placement.
PPC, on the other hand, gives you your traffic the same day it takes your money. Your conversions happen immediately, which means (if your PPC management team has set things up correctly), you’ll make more money than you spent — and in modern web-based business, that’s the definition of success.