There are essentially two main ways to be recognized and found in search engines – either paying a search engine company for a high placement or by ranking high organically by becoming a trusted and expert provider of a specific service or product. Search engine placement is a vital element of a company’s online marketing strategy as it increases visibility and trustworthiness for all visitors seeking your services online. It’s not a question of choosing between paid advertising and organic search engine rankings, but finding a mix of the two strategies to insure that your online marketing efforts stay ahead of your competition and you’re maximizing your online marketing efforts.

Keywords and Search Engines

When you type a phrase into a search engine, your results display numerous websites that will help you gain the information you’re looking for. Knowing the difference between a paid advertisement and an organic search result is important to know as they are listed in search engines for very different reasons. Paid advertisements are typically listed at the top of the search engine results, and you’ll usually see three to four links to these websites. How you identify a paid advertisement is by looking carefully at these top listings and see that they are placed on a faded background color, or there is a note mentioning “advertisements related” to your search phrase.  These ads are also listed on the top right side of the page as well. Each of these listings is set up by companies who are paying the search engine for each click they receive to their website, providing the name of pay-per-click.

Below the sponsored links you’ll notice a list of websites that are not paying for their position in the search engines. These websites are listed in accordance to their relevance for the specific terms and phrases you entered into the search engine. Ranking on the first page of these organic results is an excellent opportunity to be recognized by customers who are looking for your company and its specific services. Once your website reaches the first page or one of the top rankings organically on the first page in a search engine, it’s a ranking that is likely to last for an extended period of time as long as you keep providing relevant content that your customers are looking for on your website.


As opposed to organic search engine rankings, pay-per-click advertising requires companies to pay every time someone clicks through to their website. To set up a campaign, you select keywords, select the amount of money you want to pay for each time someone clicks the paid ad, and a daily limit on how much money you’re willing to spend. When someone searches for those keywords your website will be ranked amongst the advertising space on the search engine. This section is clearly identified as advertising space.

Your website and advertisement will remain in this section as long as you continue paying for the clicks. As soon as the funds run out, the campaign ends and your website listing in the paid section disappears. Ultimately, a business should not rely solely on a pay-per-click campaign as it’s an expensive endeavor, but should collect data from their pay-per-click campaign and use that information to help enhance their organic search engine rankings.

How PPC Campaigns Are Used to Improve your SEO

The goal of a pay-per-click campaign is to gather research and information on how your prospects and customers are finding your website. This information includes the key phrases and terms they are typing into a search engine as well as which pages on your website are most popular. PPC campaigns are a great way to gather this vital information as the paid advertisements are placed immediately atop the search engine’s rankings. As visitors click on your PPC ad the information on how they found your website is shared with you. As your PPC campaign runs its course, it’s easy to identify which phrases are most popular when customers are finding your website and what pages on your website are garnering the most web traffic.

With this information it is essential to know which terms and phrases are leading to prospects taking action on your website and which terms and phrases are attracting visitors who only glance at your website and leave. Implementing this feedback on your website will allow you to focus on the most relevant key phrases when updating your website and ultimately increasing your organic search engine ranking.

Should I choose PPC or SEO?

Realistically, you don’t choose between a pay-per-click campaign and search engine optimization, but rather, you incorporate both into your online marketing strategy as each practice will further enhance your online presence. Your organic ranking in search engines will further establish trust in your customers for being a relevant and credible source for what they’re searching for, and your paid advertisements will provide essential feedback on how your customers are finding you online in ways that you may not have initially thought. However, as your organic search engine ranking increases for key phrases that are relevant for your business, the need for an aggressive paid campaign diminishes but should never be completely abandoned.

Contact iGenMedia

Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns you may have regarding this information or our services. We would like to hear from you and would welcome the opportunity to discuss your business specific needs. Please visit our website at iGenMedia.com or call our offices at 630 930 0900 or Contact Us.

Contact ATS's iGen Web Dev Dept

  • 16624 West 159th Street, Suite 600
  • Lockport, IL 60441
  • 1434 W. Olive Ave, Suite 1
  • Chicago, IL 60660
  • 1717 N. Naper Blvd.  Suite 200
  • Naperville, IL 60563
  • 815.836.0030

Project Review

Just answer a few short questions and you are on your way to better marketing your business on the Internet.
Let's get started..