I am always surprised when I hear advertisers stating “I do paid search so I do not need to worry about organic search” or the inverse ” I have good organic rankings so I do not need paid search”. The correct answers is you need both to maximize lead flow, but the effort must be integrated and continually optimized.
Purchasers do not utilize linear, all or nothing, behavior when seeking to purchase from new or repeat companies. Also, avoid using your personal behavior (“I never click on paid listings”) to jade your approach. If the statement was true, Google wouldn’t be so successful, and I think we would all agree they are doing just fine. The facts and statistics point out that consumers use both means for making purchase decisions. In fact the split (paid vs. organic) is generally close to 50/50 for most categories.
The best practice in this area is to leverage each search type to help overcome pain points or weaknesses in your overall marketing efforts. For example, if a marketer has good organic rankings against “head terms”, paid search should be deployed to garner more leads from “long tail terms”; or the reverse. Additionally, after conducting a sales conversion analysis on your overall keyword lexicon, proven sales performers can be determined, where maximizing positions in both paid and organic at the same time will lead to better share-of-voice for your company. Thereby reducing positions available for the competition and result in maximized lead flow from these most desired sales generating terms.
With the advent of Google Places positions now dominating many of the search results, a three way focus is required to become an effective search marketer.
One way our 15miles analysts solve these challenges for our customers, is to employ position mapping and position probability analyses to optimize effort and media expense.
Think of it like building a fire; all the fuel in the world is no good without the proper balance of oxygen and vice versa. To build the hottest fire, you need a balance of both in the proper mix.
So stop thinking about your efforts as either/or, and start optimizing your efforts by designed experiments (measured of course) to determine the proper balance, by keyword, by media outlet – yes you need to think beyond just Google. But that is a topic for a whole other blog post for another day.