Use SEO with PPC to get the Biggest Bang for Your Buck

Posted by Nikki Wardle on Oct 18, 2017 12:21:00 PM

Bang for your PPC buck

My statement to you is simple: You can do SEO (Search Engine Optimization) without PPC (Pay-Per-Click), but you cannot, and I mean CANNOT do a successful PPC campaign without SEO.


To understand why, we have to begin at the end.

Who is Google's Priority?

Google cares about the users--the searches--the humans who click on the paid and organic links displayed to them. Google is always striving to return the most useful, relevant and helpful content available on the 935,951,027 websites on the internet.

Google's second priority is the businesses that pay for top search results. It is possible to pay your way to the top of search results, (given that you stay within Google’s ad policies), but it will be a lot less expensive to invest SEO efforts into the landing pages you use for your paid campaigns.

PPC and SEO have many of the same elements that factor into the ranking of your ad or organic search result page. One of these elements is keywords. In PPC campaigns, keywords are words or phrases that are used to best match your paid ads with what searchers are looking for.

With reference to Google AdWords, the keywords or phrases you choose to use in your ad text and landing pages make up two very important ranking factors: Quality Score and Ad Relevance Score.

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Quality Score on Keywords

Quality Scoring is best defined as Google’s quantifiable estimate of a user's landing page experience, expected click-through rate and ad relevance. To get a high ad quality score, the keywords used to trigger your ad to display must be engaging and clear to the user and must lead to a highly relevant and useful landing page.

Google first introduced this scoring in 2008 as one of the factors considered when displaying paid ads above organic search results. Quality Scores are given on a 1-10 scale (1 being the worst, 10 being the best) and are associated with each keyword in a given ad group as it relates to your text ads and landing page.

Where SEO comes into the picture is implementing those keywords into your on-page tactics. Use the keywords in your content while making sure that content is fresh, thorough, and answers the problem a searcher is looking for.

Ad Relevance

Ad relevance measures how closely your keyword matches the message in your ads; it is one component of each keyword’s overall Quality Score.

In other words, if someone searches for your keyword and your ad shows up, would your ad seem directly relevant to his or her search query?

Ad Relevance to Keywords are rated as: Below Average, Average or Above Average. 

A "below average" score may mean your ads are too general or too specific to answer the user’s query, or that this keyword isn’t relevant to your business. Having an "average" or "above average" status means that there are no significant problems with this keyword's ad relevance when compared to all other keywords across AdWords.

Use the ad relevance status to help identify keywords that might not be relevant enough to your ads to perform well. However, don’t throw out the term, as it may be used in other pages on your site where it may be wholly appropriate and relevant.

Using the Ad Relevance and Quality Score will help you improve the performance of your pay-per-click campaigns. But those two scores can also be used to optimized your organic content, thus improving search engine rankings.

From SEO vs PPC, to PPC and SEO

SEO and PPC are no longer the East Coast and West Coast of digital marketing, but rather two sides of the same coin. When planning and executing campaigns, use both tactics and they will boost each other's effectiveness.


SEO and PPC whitepaper

Nikki Wardle

Written by Nikki Wardle

Nikki has a degree in Marketing from Boise State University and worked as an Inbound Marketing Specialist at Tribute Media from 2014 to 2019. She's a Google Whiz and dog lover, now serving as a marketing director for a local veterinary clinic.

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