What is the difference between Google Organic and Google AdWords?

As buzz phrases go in digital marketing, ‘organic results’ and ‘pay-per-click’ see plenty of use, but if you’re not a digital marketing consultant, SEO agency or web design house, why should you be expected to know what they mean?

More importantly, why should you be expected to know how they’ll benefit your business and which one (or combination thereof) will be right for you?

Going organic

Whether it’s new ways of producing the food we consume each week or establishing your business as a thought leader within a specific area of interest, ‘organic’ is a rather innocuous but powerful word.

Put simply, by investing time and some of your marketing budget in organic search, you’ll stand a far better chance of gaining great quality, qualified leads that don’t cost you for each click.

Going organic relies almost solely on search engine optimisation (SEO), which uses onsite website structure and content work combined with offsite link building to raise the profile (referred to as 'authority) of a website in Google’s eyes.

It’s can be a slow burn, but one of the most important marketing tactics your business can undertake in the digital economy and one that if done well and done properly can be easily sustained.

AdWords: not necessarily a black hole

We have lost count of how many times we have heard business owners say “but… we’ve spent a fortune on Google AdWords and seen nothing in return!”.

There’s always a good reason for this, which combines lack of experience and knowledge of Google’s platform with no clear strategy. The result? A black hole down which a huge chunk of your marketing budget will fall if you don’t undertake it properly.

However, if you use the services of someone who knows what they’re doing with AdWords, the impact can be fantastic for your business. A clear strategy, goal, understanding of the keywords for which you need to bid and a tightly defined audience will result in good leads - quickly.

Organic versus AdWords - the big battle

So, what wins in the epic battle of organic search marketing versus tools like Google AdWords?

The answer is neither! No, really - these are two forms of modern marketing that don’t ‘battle’ against each other; they should be used to complement one another. And that’s pretty obvious, when you consider that they share the aim of promoting your business to the right potential customers and providing your sales team with juicy, ready-to-go leads.

It’s important to bear in mind some of the key difference, though, which can be quickly summarised as follows:

  • AdWords campaigns can be turned on and off when required: they’re like a digital lead tap. Organic is a long-term strategy.
  • AdWords pretty much guarantees you’ll appear high up in search results - with the right approach. Organic is a bit more volatile and unpredictable (which is why it needs a knowledgeable pair of hands).
  • AdWords enables you to react quickly to a change in your industry or to suss out the opportunities that exist within a new market. Organic requires you plan longer term and doesn’t suit flash-in-the-pan sales opportunities.
  • AdWords listings generally place your business ‘above the fold’ on smaller screens, whereas organic listings require some scrolling on behalf of the user, although that arguably has more chance of resulting in a visitor who is invested in their search and possibly more qualified as a lead.

If the above makes you question what you have done or what to do next why not get in touch and we can discuss how our training courses will help you to manage both your Organic Traffic and Paid Traffic!

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