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How Paid Search & Organic Listings Work Together

Mobile phone google

Integrating both paid search (PPC) with search engine optimization (SEO) into your digital marketing strategy can make a big impact on your results.  

Differences Between PPC & SEO

screenshot of google SERP for dog chews highlighting paid search listings vs organic listings

Before we look at how they work together, let’s look at the differences between paid search advertisements and search engine optimization


  • Paid listing on search engines (costs determined by ad clicks, hence the name “pay per click”)
  • Display above organic listings on the search engine results page (SERP)
  • Quicker results
  • Targeted approach based on location, keywords, language, device, day of the week, and time of day.
  • You get to choose the keywords you want to focus on


  • Free listings on search engines
  • Displays below the ads and, often, below the map results on the SERP
  • Requires 3-6 months or more to start seeing results
  • Less targeted / more keyword focused
  • You’ll generally create an SEO optimized piece of content centered around a parent keyword. That content will then rank for an untold number of related keyword phrases. 

Using PPC & SEO Together

Combining these two digital marketing tactics together often leads to the best results. 

PPC can generate leads and test the traffic quality and quantity quickly, whereas SEO is the long-game and will allow you to build your digital marketing foundation steadily while supporting your relevancy for PPC keywords. 

According to research, 75% of people who performed a Google search say paid search ads make it easier to find the information they are searching for on a website or search engine. 

Additionally, when both a paid ad and an organic listing appear on the same search query, it increases the person’s brand recognition. The next time they see a paid ad or an organic search listing, they are incrementally more likely to click on one of them.  

Which is right for you?

We recommend both PPC and SEO, but it really depends on your business goals and needs. It is possible to start with one tactic then add additional tactics as your budget grows. 

Contact us to perform an SEO and PPC evaluation to gauge performance and optimization opportunities. We can guide you toward a winning digital marketing campaign.

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