Starting for Startups: PPC then SEO, or SEO then PPC?

small business seo
Small business website: PPC or SEO first?
Most new entrepreneurs agree that some sort of Internet marketing needs to take place. The two biggest ways that startups can create a presence and take advantage of Internet marketing is through pay per click (PPC) and search engine optimization (SEO).

Naturally, both strategies take time and money. Although PPC may seem as though it costs more initially, most business owners find that SEO will also cost a pretty penny once an expert or outside agency becomes involved.

Unfortunately, not all startup companies have the funds to really make it happens. This then leads to the question that so many startup companies can’t help but ask: Where do I begin?

When PPC Should Come Before SEO

Where to start depends completely upon the type of business that you are trying to run. PPC is great for companies who have a product or service they are trying to sell. People often check out the PPC ads before the SEO ads when they are ready to buy. PPC is great for a few reasons:

  • It is reliable. If you made a bid on a spot and won, you can be absolutely sure that the ad will show up exactly where you want it.
  • Quick results. You will be able to tell whether or not your ad was successful within a few hours, so you’ll know whether or not to continue on with that campaign.
  • Fair Game. SEO can sometimes be difficult because larger corporations have been around long enough to have a huge number of backlinks and visibility; thus making it hard for startups to compete. PPC, on the other hand, keeps it fair for all startups.

As you can see, PPC is a great place for startups to gain that visibility and earn some clicks. The vast majority of PPC campaigns take someone to the homepage of a website where the main goal is to try and sell something, so if this describes you’re company it would be wise to make PPC a priority over SEO.

When SEO Should Come Before PPC

On the flip side, SEO would be more beneficial for some startups. If your company puts a huge focus on education or offers services to educate, organic results will likely help you generate more traffic. Those looking for the answer to a question usually go straight to the organic results, so websites with great content usually thrive if they have a good SEO ranking on a Google SERP. Although this will take a few months to accomplish, a startup can do it if they really take SEO seriously and hire a good agency or a good expert to help.

The Bottom Line

In the end, it is usually best to have a little bit of SEO and a little bit of PPC working for your startup. It is important to always make sure that you’re following SEO best practices even if PPC is your main focus because you never quite know what can happen. On that same note, if SEO is your main focus it wouldn’t hurt to try a few different PPC ads to see where your online audience is really interested.

Did your startup find the balance between SEO and PPC, or did you stick with one approach first? Let us know how you made your decision in the comments below!