Pros and Cons of Using Organic and Paid Marketing Strategies

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Pearl, M. (2018). Paid vs organic [infographic]. Uick Marketing
Ok, so you just started your own pencil-top eraser company and you need to increase your visibility. Or maybe, you are an already established pencil eraser company but wish to increase the traffic to your website. You decide to invest in some digital marketing to give your company a boost. So, is it better to invest in increasing organic traffic, or should you drive traffic with paid strategies?

Well, it depends on your company’s objectives, budget, timeline, and competition within the marketplace. I have compiled for you some pros and cons of using organic and paid marketing strategies.

Let’s first look at the pros and cons of increasing your company’s organic traffic through search engine optimization, or SEO. 


  1. Drive brand awareness by increasing your company’s visibility in search results with targeted keywords.
  2. Many users perceive organic search results as being more trustworthy than ads.
  3. Increased website traffic.
  4. SEO can often produce a higher return on investment over paid strategies.
  5. Increased click-through-rate.
  6. Organic strategies can often be more cost effective than paid ones.
  7. SEO only gets better with time. The more time, effort, and resources you put in, the more you get out (Miller, 2017).


  1. Results typically come slow. It can take up to 6 months, in some cases, before a company begins to see an increase in their web traffic.
  2. You may have steep competition with commonly used keywords.
  3. A developed and robust content strategy is typically needed to achieve effective SEO (Miller, 2017).

A company can integrate search engine marketing, or SEM by implementing paid search tactics through PPC (pay-per-click) ads. Here are some pros and cons to using this strategy. 


  1. Using a paid ad will position your company “above-the-fold,” or at the top of the search results page, increasing brand visibility.
  2. Paid ads allow your company to specify what specific information to include in the ad. This could be location, hours of operation, site links, pricing, differentiating features, and more.
  3. If your company sells a product that would benefit from a visual ad, you can implement a Product Listing Ad (PLA) on Google. Providing your customers with a visual image of the product can increase the click-through-rate.
  4. Paid ads allow you to target your ideal audience, putting your company in front of those interested in your product or service.
  5. PPC ads are fast to set up, and your company could begin seeing results within hours!
  6. Algorithmic changes often have less impact on PPC ads than on SEO efforts (Miller, 2017).


  1. PPC costs can add up depending on the size of the area that you are targeting.
  2. You must continue to invest in the ads to keep seeing results.
  3. If you are trying to use popular keywords, you may get into a bidding war with larger companies.
  4. Paid ad campaigns are most effective when someone skilled in PPC efforts manages them (Miller, 2017).

So, which strategy is best to implement? Well, according to Search Engine Land, it really all depends on your company’s budget, the competition in the space, when you need to see results, your targeted area, and your long-term goals (Miller, 2017).

A small, local company may see good results by implementing some “DIY SEO” tactics, where an e-commerce site competing with larger retailers may benefit more from paid strategies (Miller, 2017).

Ultimately, if your company has the resources, implementing a mix of organic and paid strategies will be most beneficial in creating both immediate and long-term, sustainable results.

Either way, it is critical to have clear goals and a strategy in mind.

What are some of your company’s top goals? Let me know in the comments below.

Do you know how to set SMART GOALS and KPI’s for your company? If not, check out my post about it here.


Have a magical day!








Miller, M. (2017). SEO vs. PPC: Differences, pros, cons, & an integrated approach. Retrieved from

Pearl, M. (2018). Paid vs. organic – What is the difference? Retrieved from

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