The reading level for this article is Novice

 Before you get started with the Search Engines you should decide which of the two major Search Engine marketing strategies will work best for your site.  This will help you to stay on track and not waste a lot of time needlessly.

The 2 major Search Engine marketing strategies that exist today are SEO (search engine optimization) and PPC (pay-per-click).  You should know and understand that these two methods are very different from one another.  This will help you to be better enabled to decide which one is right for you and your web site.  Of course, part of this decision will depend upon what your web site is like.

One of the main reasons why it is difficult to decide which of these 2 strategies is best for your site lies in understanding why you cannot use both of these methods.  In reality, there really is no reason why you cannot use both of these methods.  In fact, it is encouraged to use both strategies because PPC can work well with any SEO plan.

By using PPC you can help users become more familiar with your web site.  Once these users become use to seeing your web site they will stick around.  Plus, the more often that visitors come to your site, the better the Search Engines will like your site.  This is one of the many reasons why it is so important to try to get as many people as possible to visit your site.

If you take some time to read about the pros and cons of both SEO and PPC then you can decide for yourself which strategy will work best for your web site.  Since Search Engine traffic is still the best way to get targeted traffic to your web site, a lot of marketers are still going to do battle with Search Engine optimization.   

You should understand that PPC is a form of text-based advertising on a Search Engine.  Whenever you use PPC you will be charged per click whenever a visitor clicks on your ad to enter your web site.  You will have to bid money in order to be listed first.  In actuality, this is the same as sponsored listings.

On the other hand, SEO is an attempt to alter how you rank in the Search Engines by looking at factors such as link popularity and Page Rank.  The rankings that you achieve through SEO will appear on the Search Engines’ main results pages, not in the box where the PPC links appear.  A lot of people like this method because it is free, yet you will have to invest your time here.

Now that you know what is involved in each method, you are probably wondering how you can tell which method is better.  Unfortunately, you really cannot say that one method is better than the other because each of these methods serves a different purpose.  Usually you will be able to see that one method will be a better fit for your web site though.  Here are some pointers to help you make an educated decision for your site.

If you are in search of stability and predictability then you will find this with PPC.  You may think that this is going to cost you a fortune, but this really is not true.  The stability and low cost are what makes this method so popular.  In fact, most web site owners will try PPC before working with SEO because your site can rank high without doing all of the tedious work that is involved in SEO (i.e. finding link partners, posting links, etc.).  As long as you have some money that you can invest in your web site then you can rank wherever you want with PPC.  Another advantage to PPC is that your site will be listed when you add it, not whenever a Search Engine gets around to finding it.  Unfortunately this is a very competitive market and CPCs (costs per click) are constantly increasing.  This is because it works like an auction wherein the more people there the higher the price will be.   

On the other hand, SEO can be done for free.  Unfortunately the traffic will be unpredictable since you constantly have to guess, adapt and change your strategies.   This is important to understand because you could rank in the top 10 one month and then fall out of the top 10 the next month, thus loosing some important income.  You also need to realize that SEO is slower than PPC because Search Engines only update about once a month.

If you are still finding this a difficult decision to make you should think about whether or not you have money to spend.  If you do have some money then go for PPC because it will have faster results.  If your budget is tight then go for SEO because all you will need to invest here is your time.  The best thing would be to use both SEO and PPC at the same time aiming for different keywords with PPC than you are using in SEO.  

Needless to say, while people are constantly looking for new, unique ways in which they can bring more traffic to their web site, the SEO industry will continue to grow.  Nevertheless, it is still important to understand what PPC advertising is.  Once you have a thorough understanding of both SEO and PPC you will be able to decide upon the best Search Engine strategy for your site.

This Search Engines article was written by Chris Taylor on 11/27/2006

For fast, higher rankings of your website visit learn seo basics or search engine placement package today.

Chris Taylor – author, internet marketer and SEO specialist – Catdynamics.