With the rise of digital marketing, the business competition in the online world is becoming bigger and bigger. Of course, our business, whether it’s for passion or for income, is our investment. And when talking about investment, we’re not just talking about money here. We’re also talking about time and effort. Then comes the biggest question among business owners: Google Ads vs SEO – Which is better?

When planning a marketing and promotion campaign, all business owners only want one thing: THEY WANT THE BEST. So when making careful decisions on online marketing, there are a lot of things to consider.

But here’s one thing that stands out the most: What online marketing strategy fits the best for my business? Should I use Google Ads or SEO?

In this article, we will carefully look at the difference between Google Ads and SEO to help you pick the best strategy for your business.


What is Google Ads?

Question: If you want to look for something in the internet, where do you usually type in to search for something?

Answer: Even a 6-year old kid knows this. Of course, Google!

Google Ads is a pay-per click (PPC) online advertising platform offered by Google. It was originally called Google Adwords, and it was then rebranded as Google Ads since 2018. Through Google Ads, you can create online advertisements to reach customers through keywords.

Well, Google, for the fact that it is the most popular search engine, most businesses just want to be on Google’s first page. How it works is exactly as what you think! When you search for a keyword, results automatically appear on a search engine results page (SERP). These results can include paid advertisements that was targeted by the keywords.

Getting to the top spot of Google’s search results is possible. With the right keywords and proper bid, your business will sail high on Google’s search results. Google Ads works on a bidding system. You bid for the keywords that you want to use for your advertisements. With PPC, you only pay when users click your advertisement, making this method traditional like that of television, radio, and newspaper.

There are many types and forms of Google Ad campaigns. Let’s look at 3 of them:

  1. Google Search Ads

Google Search Ads attract customers that are looking for your products or services. This is best for people who are ready to buy something.

The more you bid, the more visible your business can get. With the right keywords, you can reach shoppers they’re searching for some products at the moment.

For example, if you’re selling guitar lessons through your main website, you should target keywords like “best guitar lessons” and you’ll attract people who are actually wanting to learn how to play the guitar. Plus, you can actually include your location, too!

2. Google Display Ads

Google Display Ads are image based and allows you to attract potential customers who will likely buy your products or services. This is best to reach your potential customers earlier increasing your brand awareness.

You can actually see display campaigns when you’re browsing through other websites.

For example, you are reading a book online. You just saw a display ad with a photo of a coffee, and you just thought you suddenly needed coffee!

3. Google Video Ads

Google Video Ads gets in front of your target audience. This is best for getting your product or service in front of related audience.

Since Youtube belongs to Google and it acts as a search engine for videos, you can target customers based on the videos they are watching. Video Ads campaigns are are placed before, during, or after Youtube videos.

For example, you are watching the second season of that American drama series that you’ve been binge watching. The video got interrupted by an ad about having merchandise personalized according to your favorites. Hmmm, and then you suddenly realized you wanted to have a mug with your favorite actor’s face on it.


What is SEO?

Now let’s talk about page rankings. If Google Ads is about online display of advertising, SEO is another thing.

SEO or Search Engine Optimization is the process of optimizing your website and content to improve your site’s visibility. One thing that makes SEO different from other website traffic aids is that you don’t pay per click to be in the top ranks.

Here’s an example: Someone types “Korean BBQ” in search engines. Of course, they are looking for top recipes, ingredients, steps, or even top restaurants to have that famous samgyeopsal. If you own a Korean BBQ store in the middle of the city and you wrote a feature article on your website about it, you would want to attract your customers to go there, right? For everyone to find it, you need to rank above all the other Korean BBQ stores sites. It sounds tricky and difficult, but this is what SEO is all about.

Understanding what SEO is and how it works is the first step to everything, but remember that SEO requires a lot of time, effort, and action. A well-optimized web page will generate traffic for your site increasing your visibility and customer engagement.

There are many techniques to improve SEO. Let’s look at 3 of them:

  1. Make sure you have quality content.

Content is everything. Online businesses now invest on creating quality content to add value to their sites. You can’t just write something so that your website has something.

Here are tips on creating quality content for your website:

  • Know what your customers want, so that as soon as they’re on your page, you already know what they’re looking for.
  • Avoid longer articles. People have shorter attention spans nowadays. Images and videos can help too!
  • After reading your site’s content, make sure your customers will not just leave right away. Your content should have they “Okay, what’s next?” factor.

2. Choose relevant keywords for your page.

Google will rank your page according to to the keywords you selected, so choose the keywords that directly summarizes your page’s content to give you a good ranking.

In selecting the best keywords, remember to:

  • Use important tools such as Yoast, Ubersuggest, and SEMrush. The provide tips and they make your marketing life easier.
  • Know your keyword’s intention. There’s a big difference between customers. If your content is into sales, you’re not looking for a researcher.
  • Learn from your competitors. Competition is not just dragging, it can also bring out the best in you. The best way to be in competition is to learn from your competitors’ perspective. Check on your what leads your competitors are using.

3. Secure your site. In a world where hackers are equally present, it is always best to protect your company’s personal information. So it’s always important to use a valid SSL certificate.


Google Ads vs. SEO

So now that you have an overview on what Google Ads and SEO are, let’s go over the well known debate among digital marketers – Google Ads vs. SEO. Well, remember that Google Ads and SEO are never in competition with one another. They are both powerful tools to help you in your digital marketing journey. Now that we have seen them at a glance, let’s now compare and contrast the general features of both tools to see which is the right fit for your marketing strategies.

One’s advantage could be other one’s disadvantage. Yet both tools offer their own uniqueness when talking about digital marketing.


So which is the best one for your marketing?

And so whether you choose between Google Ads or SEO, each tool depends upon your business and marketing goals.

If you want faster results, Google Ads is perfect for you. But if you want the slowly but surely type of strategy, then SEO is the right one for you.