Whether it’s Google, Yahoo, Bing or Yandex, all search engine result pages (SERPs) showcase just two types of results: paid or organic. There is one big differentiation between these two types of results: Paid generates results using the biddable approach (PPC), while the ranking of results in organic are earned (SEO).
The skillsets required to excel at SEO and PPC are quite different, which is why the teams tend to operate independently from each other. This is similarly true of the structure on the client side of things, where different people manage each channel. All this has led to a situation where each channel often has separate owners, budgets and KPIs.
But when a user sees the results page, it's not a mixture of paid advertisement and organic listings. For them, it's one search page and that's exactly what search experts should remember when deciding their approach.
Having high calibre specialist teams working on each of the channels is (and always will be) necessary, but a lack of integration will lead to a multitude of issues, for example:
These common errors point to one conclusion: to achieve the highest ROI possible, SEO & PPC must work together.
How to make SEO & PPC integration work
The first step is to determine a unified view on how both of the channels are performing. This is done by gathering and storing data points from both first- and third-party data sources. Then the data is translated into information and analysed against business objectives, for example raising awareness or driving sales. It is important to be clear which areas of the consumer journey are covered and which are missing, as this way of looking at search enables the identification of missing content and which pages need to be restructured, optimised or enhanced.
This prior work will allow the search teams to come up with actionable insights from which a data-led action strategy can be devised. This strategy would consist of multiple elements:
One final point that needs to be considered is attribution. Because last-click attribution is the most commonly used attribution model and PPC campaigns tend to focus on the bottom of the funnel, attribution is often assigned to PPC. The drawback of this attribution model is that it almost entirely ignores the fact that organic listings (SEO) may have captured the user from more generic terms, or that the customer could have been exposed to content on other sites due to SEO outreach and influencer marketing activities. Without these, many users may not have built a strong enough relationship with the brand and thus wouldn't click on the paid listing and convert. By adjusting the attribution model this fallacy is mitigated.
SEO & PPC integration is not an innovation; it's an approach that allows you to improve the metric that matters most: Return On Investment (ROI).
This is achieved by:
iProspect's OneSearch is a scientific approach to SEO & PPC integration that brings together data, content, channel excellence and strategy, as well as budget allocation to achieve the best ROI from search as a whole.
To learn more about how iProspect can help you leverage search to its fullest potential, please get in touch.