Digital Marketing Is More Than Pay-Per-Click For Organic Small Business Growth

Digital marketing is often described by the question: “Which is better, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) or Pay-Per-Click (PPC)?” It’s one of the most common questions asked by stakeholders for small-to-medium businesses. The answer to this question isn’t simple, but it’s worth asking — and it’s definitely worth understanding.

The quick answer is something like this:

It makes the most sense to ensure a website is in a sound state for success with several key elements in place like the implementation of general SEO best practices, a user-friendly, search-friendly, and technically sound website, as well as a visually and aesthetically pleasing website and digital assets, among other basics.

First, it needs to be established that organic search drives drastically more traffic to websites than paid search.

That paid traffic likely consists of more qualified visitors that are further down the buyer funnel and more likely to convert, but the overwhelming amount of traffic generated from organic search can and should never be ignored in this debate.

While it’s no secret that paid advertising helps a brand, product, or service achieve the goals it aims to accomplish, it’s important to consider the volume disparity between digital marketing, organic and paid search in terms of traffic.

REAL Moxie, LLC knows digital marketing.

Plus, in the case of PPC advertising specifically, a brand’s website is what is being advertised. So, the website must be effective in its goals for it to succeed in both an organic and paid approaches.

That’s not to say a sub-par website wouldn’t ever see some sort of lift from PPC advertising. It would (assuming the landing pages are live and decent). But there would need to be a sizeable budget that would span years.

The longevity of digital marketing superiority is unlikely in this instance.

That’s another reason why a solid organic presence is critical to the all-around success of a website.

What’s best for an immediate impact?

Now, if this question was asked differently — say, something like, “Which is better for my brand right now, SEO or PPC?” the answer, too, would be different.

Putting responsive ad dollars behind a timely initiative should produce a recognizable ROI, assuming the ad is satisfactory and effective, and the landing pages being used for the paid campaigns make it easy enough for the user to convert.

Relying solely on paid placement, though, could get expensive, especially if the other elements its success hinges on are not working properly or effectively.

Paid search would offer an immediate lift to your website’s performance, but once you stop investing, so does the lift.

Digital marketing is a made up of (primarily) two massive tools for the many phases of the user journey, from discovery and research all the way down to sales and conversions, those tools being paid search marketing and organic search marketing.

They work incredibly well together, but all too often, that just isn’t the reality for smaller brands.

Which is right for your business?

If your budget is limited and you’re faced with deciding between the two digital marketing practices, you’ll have to consider several other factors in addition to the sheer volume inequality between the two practices.

Based on that disproportion alone, it’s obvious the staying power of organic search does outweigh that of paid search.

REAL Moxie, LLC helps your small business with digital marketing, content marketing, social media, SEO, and much more. To learn more about digital marketing, visit To schedule an appointment, click here.