What is PPC? Difference between SEO and PPC

PPC stands for Pay-Per-Click is an internet marketing model in which advertisers pay a fee every time one of their ads is clicked.

In this article, I want to explain more deeply to readers that small businesses or business people are still confused between choosing SEO or PPC to implement their marketing campaign.

The key difference between Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Pay Per Click (PPC) is that traffic coming from SEO is free while traffic generated from PPC is not free (as the name suggests). implies you pay per click).

This is also why you may sometimes see the terms organic search listings and paid search results listings (or Paid Search Advertising –) PSA – Paid search advertising).

Both SEO and PPC are part of Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is one of the tools you can use as part of your overall Internet Marketing campaign.

I’ll try to explain the other big difference between them using the following parameters: position in search results, cost, potential traffic, conversions, and ease of use.

What is PPC?  Difference between PPC and SEO

What is PPC?

Simply buy, PPC (Pay-Per-Click) is an internet marketing model in which advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked. The price you pay per click is usually based on your bid for that particular ad. Examples of where you’ll see PPC ads include search engines (Google, Bing, etc.), banner ads, social networks (Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook).

For example, you can set a maximum bid per click of VND 10,000, which means you can pay less than VND 10,000, but never more than VND 10,000 per click. You will only pay less if the next competitor only bids it for 7,000 VND for that keyword. Most advertising channels will only charge you what you need to get ahead of your competition, which in this case would be 7,100 VND for example. However, if someone is willing to pay a higher price, say 15,000 VND per click, for that keyword, then their ad will be shown on yours.

This doesn’t mean you should spend hundreds of thousands on clicks just so you can get the number one spot. The goal of PPC advertising is to increase clicks to your website and then convert those leads into paying customers. Like any other marketing tactic, if you spend more than you earn from the business, it’s wrong.

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Difference between SEO and PPC

Location in Search Results

Difference between SEO and PPC

As you can see from the screenshot above you can get PPC Ads results above SEO results (organic) and PPC also 3 more positions at the bottom after SEO results.

Your ad will appear correctly depending on a number of factors (i.e. the keywords you’re targeting, the keywords in your ad registration, the keywords in your landing page, and more) but it located above or below the organic results.

SEO: You can get first page position if your website is optimized for search engines
PPC: You can put your ads on the first page by paying higher cost per click (CPC)


I mentioned above SEO traffic is free and PPC is paid and this is absolutely true, you should understand that it takes a lot of effort and hard work to get free traffic. from search engines.

The competition is high for almost any keyword you can search for and you really need a high quality website and a great SEO plan to get in the top 5.

There is no shortcut to doing SEO even though some SEO companies are trying to explain to you that they do SEO on the fly. If you’re not familiar with how search engines work or don’t know anything about SEO, the best way to get search engine traffic is to hire an SEO expert to help you do the work.

On the other hand we talk PPC, the cost per click depends on several other factors.

If we take for example advertising cost per click with most common PPC system is Google Adwords, then it depends on the popularity of the keyword competition, the number of advertisers who want to use that particular keyword, the number of related sites that have ad placements for that particular keyword and more again.

Seems a bit complicated right guys, we can understand Google’s efforts to make the whole system easier to use.

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The good news with PPC is that you only pay for the clicks your ads are received, not for views.

Additionally, you can predetermine your daily budget and pay no more than that, and you can calculate an average cost-per-click estimate for the keywords you want to target.

As you can see from the screenshot below Google’s keyword idea tool (which is part of Google Adwords) gives you an estimate for the cost per click (CPC) for each keyword.

Google Adwords Keyword Ideation Tool

SEO: The cost of SEO is indirect. You can’t pay to get first page position, but you might have to pay for SEO services if you can’t do SEO yourself.

PPC: You only pay when people click on your ad. You can use Google’s keyword tool to calculate how much you can pay.

Potential traffic

Which method can bring more traffic to your website, SEO or PPC?

SEO (organic traffic) is more than PPC traffic, so if you can manage well to rank your site for the keywords you want, you will get more traffic. is to pay for those keywords.

This is because when you are in one of the top 5 positions (statistically most of the search volume goes to one of the top 5 sites) you can expect to get 24× traffic. 7 continuously without paying anything (actual traffic volume depends on the popularity of a keyword).

So if you compare the traffic and the cost of first page position for SEO traffic and PPC traffic, organic traffic is better. There are some studies that show that PPC ads get more clicks than organic, but this also increases costs.

SEO: Basic traffic is continuous as long as you are ranking in one of the top positions.

PPC: PPC ads may get more clicks but this means you have to pay more.


Which visitors are more likely to convert (i.e. make a purchase, sign up for a newsletter, and respond to a call to action), coming from PPC Ads or from organic search?

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If your ads are highly targeted and optimized, visitors from PPC are more likely to convert than visitors from search.

The reason is that a website can rank for different keywords (beyond those originally intended) so a search visitor may not be looking for the exact content (or product) presented. in the specific page.

On the other hand if you run a successful PPC campaign then you will only get clicks from visitors who are 100% interested in your content or products.

SEO: SEO traffic is better than other types of traffic (ie from social networks for example) but in terms of conversions it is not as good as PPC traffic.

PPC: Highly optimized keywords will generate more conversions but will cost more

Easy to use

Neither SEO nor PPC is easy to do if you don’t have the necessary knowledge and experience.

SEO is a process that takes a lot of time and effort. It can take months or even years to rank for specific terms, or no ratings if you do it wrong!

If you’re new to SEO, check out my SEO self-study to get a solid understanding of all of SEO.

To get some good results with PPC and Adwords you have to take a course or hire a PPC expert to help you or it will cost you a few million before you understand how it works (As often you will need practice to understand it better)

Bottom line: PPC first and then SEO

The bottom line is that you need to use both PPC and SEO as part of your Internet Marketing campaign.

PPC can get you results faster so you can run a PPC campaign and test for keywords that convert better and then try with SEO to rank for those keywords.

Use PPC when you have a high converting product and use SEO when you have a limited budget to spend on advertising.

SEO can take time but the results are (under some conditions) longer lasting than PPC because when you stop paying for clicks, the traffic stops too.

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