PPC vs. Organic Placement?

Posted on 16. Aug, 2009 by in All Local Search Posts, Optimization, Pay-Per-Click

It’s widely accepted that organic (free) listings in Search Engines recieve more traffic/clicks than Sponsored Links (PPC) – but what position actually drives more actions and conversions? Where are those “ready-to-buy” consumers more likely to come from? This may be one of the longest debated issues in Internet marketing. 

A new piece of research completed in June backs up the earlier findings from a two-year study –  paid search ads are 50% more likely to buy than those who come from clicking on a natural search link. The conversion rate from paid search is 2.03% versus 1.26% from organic search, according to the study as reported by Internet Retailer.

Neither of these two sources however, drive the strongest results. The study found that (as you may expect) those most likely to make a purchase navigate directly to the business website by typing in a URL or clicking on a bookmark, as their conversion rate registered at 7.38. Makes sense, as these are most likely “known” customers, not new “unknown” ones.

Strong Organic visibility attracts more clicks, paid inclusion drives more conversions. I think most would agree that both are critical in reaching the entire market… 

A recent SearchEngineWatch article stated; “Heavy levels of research show that having both a natural and a paid listing result for a keyword drives more traffic, and even purchase intent”.

In addition, eye-tracking studies verify the importance of page position in both Organic and PPC search results for visibility and click through in Google. You simply need to be visible where ever searches look! 

The debate continues…

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