Both paid search and organic search are valuable tools to help your business get found online, and it’s important to understand the difference between the two.
Paid search describes the ads that are displayed on the top and the right sidebar of the search engine results page.
As indicated by its name, paid search is a service that you will pay for. This is most commonly done on a CPC (cost per click) basis. As the advertiser, you bid on the keywords that apply to your site, and you set your maximum willingness to spend per click, per day, and per month. The search engine uses this information, along with the relevancy of your ad, to determine if and where you will be placed on the results page. Obviously the more you’re willing to pay, the
higher you will be placed on relevant
To ensure relevancy, you need to make sure that your ad specifically applies to your landing page (your website). In order to do this, the content (the written description) on your website should reflect the information that you’re calling out in your advertisement. In conjunction to relevancy, you also need to make sure your ad is appealing and competitive. It’s usually a good idea to check out your competitor’s ad copies (by searching for the keyword you’re interested in bidding on) to make sure your offers are competitive and compelling. You always want to do some research before investing! Paid search can become expensive if you’re bidding on high traffic keywords, so make sure you bid within your means.
The organic listings are the main, larger listings that take up the remainder of the page. These are the results that no one pays for, but are driven organically through the search engine. You don’t pay to appear on this list, but there are a few tricks to making your site rank higher on specific keywords.
Ultimately, search engines like to please the user, so they put the sites with the most relevance to the search query at the top. In order to make your site more relevant to specific keywords, you’ll need to boost the content on your website to highlight and describe those keywords. In addition to boosting the content, it’s important to keep the content up to date.
Additionally, it will benefit your site’s rankings to have the title tags of your pages reflect the relevant and high search volume keywords. You can use Google’s Keyword Tool to determine the most high volume keywords within your product/services scope.
Another way to really improve your organic rankings is to acquire quality, natural links (when another website places a link to your site on their page). This shows the search engine that your site is popular among the online community, and thus more likely to please the user. You can build links by promoting your site and creating viral content that will naturally spread.
Ultimately, your goal as an advertiser is to make your business visible in the top paid and organic spots for the keywords (search queries) that apply to the goods or services that your business provides. This would put you at the top of the page in two different locations, giving you a greater share of the search engine results page. Historical data has continually proven that it’s most advantageous for the advertiser to acquire these positions to increase their session count (clicks), and ultimately their exposure.