SEO or Google AdWords

Which is better – SEO or Google AdWords?

       In our work, we often meet clients who are looking for a professional online marketing agency and are wondering where to start promoting on the Internet – SEO or Google AdWords campaigns. The knowledge that helps them choose a service is often based on the opinions of friends, consultants from different email marketing agencies. Such opinions are often extremely different from one another, or are made up of pieces of information scattered across various articles on the Internet. Finally, it’s no surprise that an entrepreneur who has even taken the time to research the information on the Internet, faced with so many different opinions, instead of coming up with one solution, feels even more lost.

Luckily, there are some simple, universal facts that will help you differentiate between both services and find the best solution for your business.

Fact I: SEO (promotion, positioning) is not AdWords

Understanding this fact is crucial when choosing a form of advertising. Both promotion methods allow you to show your company in Google search results as text…and that’s how the similarity ends.

SEO (promotion), is inside and outside of your business (internal and external optimization), which is designed to make your site relevant to organic search results by typing a search term into a search engine.

AdWords, in turn, includes many forms of advertising, such as ads that follow site visitors, banner ads on selected portals, price ads, and product images from the Google Web Store (Google Shopping), while many still identify it with their search ads. Sponsored Links is a text box with bright green (until recently yellow) “Advertising” text that appears above natural Google search results.

Fact II: SEO and AdWords Advertising Govern Completely Different Advertising Policies

When promoting, it is necessary to take into account more than two hundred factors that determine whether a website will appear in the required position in the search results or not. Unfortunately, these factors are more of a guideline than a specific guide to action, and Google is constantly changing, expanding, and improving its algorithms. Often associated with promotion is your site appearing not only in natural results, but also in the so-called Google maps above these results, and sometimes to the right of their site. This means that in the Google search engine, a potential client can find out how to contact you, how to get there, and even if your company has good reviews.

However, the conditions under which an ad or other forms of AdWords ads are shown are much more extensive than for SEO promotion. An ad text box can appear in Google search results, either when a specific keyword is entered, or when a potential customer has previously visited pages of a similar site as yours by topic, and where the age, interests, or geographic location of the potential customer matches your ad criteria – if they are included in your AdWords campaign. In the text field, we can also add additional elements that we do not guarantee in natural results with SEO, such as: a phone number, selected under the pages of the site (contact or a specific product or service).

If you want your potential customers to have a 100% chance of contacting you by phone already at the Google search stage, advertisements will be better. If you want to maximize your ad space on Google and stand a chance of your potential client seeing you on a map and getting an idea of ​​what’s going on with you, SEO positioning is the service for you.

Fact III. SEO effects take more time, but they are more than AdWords.

In the TOP – 1, a new, unranked page appears on average for about four to six months for low-frequency queries, for more complex phrases we have to wait from one and a half to nine months, and for the most difficult search queries we will wait a year or even several years. However, these results with regular positioning actions are very strong and relatively below Adwords by attracting a steady stream of new leads. Promotion also continues when you have even less budget than what you need for a paid contextual company.

Fact IV: AdWords is a seasonal and immediate advertising channel

From a business perspective, the time it takes to achieve positioning results is not short. If you’re planning on doing a very short but intense ad on Google starting tomorrow, and you have a much larger budget than what’s required for positioning, then AdWords is the way to go. Once your campaign is fully set up, your ads will appear in search results within a few hours of campaign launch. At any time, we can also optimize, stop or restart your campaign – according to your current needs.

Remember that when we talk about “small” and “large” budgets, we’re talking about a balance between SEO and AdWords campaigns, with no specific price ranges. Both SEO and AdWords can cost several hundred, several thousand, tens of thousands of hryvnias or more, and many of the indirect factors affect the final budget.

Fact V: AdWords and SEO are different in price

The cost of the above services is determined by completely different components and indicators. The cost of SEO promotion is affected by:

  • complex site audit;
  • internal optimization of landing pages;
  • building up external link mass; competitor market analysis; work aimed at increasing the influence of social networks;
  • creating and posting content;
  • identification and correction of technical errors.

In Google Ads contextual advertising, payment is charged for transitions to the Internet resource that is being advertised. Bids are calculated according to the auction system. Ads are displayed on the first page of the issue at the very top. This is the best option for attracting targeted traffic. The advertiser also pays marketers who are involved in the creation, launch and monitoring of the advertising campaign.

Fact VI: SEO and AdWords complement each other

You may have come to a conclusion by reading the above facts. It’s worth considering because running both services at the same time, although more expensive, has a number of additional benefits:

Maximize your ad space on Google with organic results, Google Maps, paid ads, and even banner ads on Google Shopping, another AdWords service.

Increasing confidence from potential customers. You see that you have money for AdWords, and at the same time, Google naturally shows your page in the TOP-10;

Audience targeting – some users click on the ad because it has a faster access when scrolling through the page, others – because of its difference, bypass it, going to more reliable natural search results; Using both methods, we will reach both groups of potential customers;

More traffic comes to the site – thanks to two independent active sources of advertising;

Google Adwords banner ads are a great addition to positioning and shooting for good sales.


Comparing SEO and context is very difficult because these tools work in completely different ways. For entrepreneurs, it is necessary to accurately understand the tasks set for themselves and their achievement. The best option for starting on the Internet is a comprehensive promotion using SEO and contextual advertising methods. Paid advertising – to achieve quick results and first sales, SEO – for the long term. This is the only way to achieve maximum results. Therefore, the best option is to use them together. Ask your questions in the comments or in the contact form and our certified specialists will answer you.

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