Two-thirds of marketers would opt for paid search over SEO if they had to choose a single tactic to support campaigns despite organic search driving 53% of all website traffic.
BestSEOCompanies asked 1,000 marketing professionals and consumers about their search strategies and habits and an overwhelming majority said that both SEO and Google Ads were “effective”.
However, if only a single tactic could be implemented, 64% would opt for Google Ads compared to just 34% for SEO.
The preference for paid seems to show that marketers prefer to get things up and running quickly rather than having to lay groundwork over time with SEO.
However, the fact that paid is responsible for just 15% of site traffic suggests that it is unlikely to be a truly relevant or effective activity in the long run.
Challenges with tracking SEO metrics and determining ROI may also be pushing more marketers to paid search as it is generally easier to control and analyse.
SEO is an inherently more complex task and marketers could benefit by outsourcing their campaigns to an agency or other third party.
This is highlighted by the fact that 77% of those who work on SEO in-house only do so part-time.
Just 30% of SME owners have an SEO strategy capable of boosting the organic ranking of webpages, according to a separate study from The Manifest.
With budget considerations taking precedence right now amid coronavirus upheaval, marketers may be better served in pursuing more cost-effective SEO.
SEO is viewed by experts as a fundamental part of marketing, whereas pay-per-click (PPC) is often a strategy that can complement efforts rather than being a core pursuit.
However, marketers should act on a case-by-case basis in times of crisis while attempting to use content marketing to support better SEO efforts.