Posted on Jul 27, 2015

Does PPC Work If My Site Is Not SEO Friendly?

Does SEO have anything to do with PPC? What about the other way around – can PPC help with your SEO? And will your PPC campaigns work if your website is not SEO friendly?


If these concepts make as much sense as a six-year-old trying to spell words using their alphabet spaghetti, read through our introductions to SEO and PPC first. Then come back to this article.


But if you already have a good understanding of PPC and SEO, keep reading. We’ll explain how PPC and SEO are two sides of the same coin.


Do PPC and SEO Work Together?


Let’s go back to the title of this post: does PPC work if your site is not SEO friendly? The short answer is yes – you could put zero effort into an SEO strategy for your website and still get a result from PPC. Similarly, you don’t need to run a PPC campaign in order to make your SEO effective.


Google decides on your PPC position based on the Quality Score of your ad and the amount of your bid. When it looks at your SEO to determine your organic search ranking, it looks at hundreds of signals to arrive at a position.


Despite this, you shouldn’t look at the two strategies as being completely separate.




The most efficient way of looking at SEO and PPC is in the ways that one benefits the other. They are not direct benefits – as implied by the original question – but they are still significant.


Having both PPC and SEO will increase your visibility in search more than either of the strategies could achieve on their own. This is particularly true on mobile devices where PPC ads dominate the top results. This is because for most commercial search terms, users have to scroll before they see an organic search result.


So, PPC and SEO are complementary and, according to this graphic from MarketingProfs, they get similar results.




Help With Keywords


You can also use SEO and PPC to improve your overall keyword targeting. For a start, a website that has good SEO will pick up long tail keywords that you might not have thought to use in your PPC campaigns.


It works the other way as well, primarily because PPC offers better analysis. In 2013 Google moved to secure search. This reduced the amount of keyword data you can now access when looking at organic search, simplifying the information in your PPC campaign. Today you can check click through rates and track conversions more effectively.


With this information you can make better decisions on the keywords that you should target in SEO. Let’s say you sell watches and you see that your best converting keyword (the one with the highest click through and conversion rate) on your PPC campaign is “breitling submariner”. Because you know that this is something that people search for, and that they are making purchases on your website, you can review your content and improve your optimization so that you pick up more organic search traffic for this keyword.


Increased Number Of Landing Pages For SEO


You can also use the landing pages you create for your PPC campaigns as landing pages for organic search. Think about it – if you created a PPC landing page for the “breitling submariner” keyword mentioned earlier, and it is converting, why not use that landing page to also convert organic search visitors?


Just remember to think how the landing page fits in with your overall website though: does it have duplicate content, for example (not a problem for PPC, but it is an issue in SEO).


PPC Helps With Testing Web Page Effectiveness


Finally, PPC campaigns can help you improve the effectiveness of your web pages. You can easily split test different pages to see which designs, copy, calls to action, buttons, or colors give you the best conversion rates. You will obviously use this information to improve your PPC landing pages, but you can also use it to improve other action pages on your site.


In a technical sense, PPC and SEO work independently. But if you are savvy and practical, you can use PPC and SEO together to improve the other.