As the owner of a small business, you know every dollar you spend on advertising needs to give you a solid return on your investment. If your efforts are focused on SEO vs PPC, you’re on the right track when it comes to online marketing, but are you ready for the changes to SEO vs PPC in 2020? The online market has changed rapidly, and you need to keep up. Are you ready? Here’s what to expect and what you can do to keep your business humming.
SEO VS PPC in 2020: What to Expect
Before we dive in, note that although it is important to know what the future has in store it is never a bad idea to first make sure the SEO essentials are covered, with that said, here are some trends that will have an impact on your efforts this year and possibly into 2021.
The growing use of automation, artificial intelligence, and machine learning is going to be a major part of PPC and SEO campaigns. It’s already here, but most experts predict it will grow enormously in the coming months. Google’s use of the automated Smart Bidding system netted an increase in ad revenues last year, and the use of similar automation is slated to grow.
SEOJournal puts automation at the top of the PPC trends you need to watch in 2020. In an article on automation and machine learning, the journal quotes Jeff Ferguson, CEO of Fang Marketing, who concludes, “The role of the PPC manager will not go away for at least another five years, but the days of spending hours tweaking bids are gone. Keywords aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. The robots still need us to speak to the other humans properly; however, whatever can be made into a math problem is now the domain of the machines.”
At the same time, others are cautioning against giving all the work over to machines and automation. The human element is still an important part of PPC advertising. The same article quotes Andrew Lolk of Savvy Revenue, who notes that businesses will still have to keep a very close eye on the outcomes they’re getting from using automatic bidding and other tools.
“I don’t advise outright rejecting Google’s automation, but knowing its strengths and weaknesses intimately instead,” Lolk said. “By knowing the weaknesses in Google’s automation, you’ll know what to do to beat other advertisers that aren’t privy to it.”
What Does This Mean for You?
Use Smart Bidding and other tools to automate some of the drudgeries, but keep a close eye on the outcomes you’re getting from automation. Are you really getting results you want without human intervention? If you’re not, it’s time to reassert control.
If you haven’t thought about voice shopping or v-commerce, you should start thinking about it now. According to the Street, “So far, less than 5% of consumers use voice shopping, but that number could reach 50% by 2022.” More than 25% of people in the US now have some type of voice-activated home assistants like Alexa or Siri. As people get used to the ease and convenience of using voice commands, more of them will start using these assistants to shop.
What does this mean for your SEO vs PPC in 2020? It means having to change the way you develop keywords and search terms.
Keep It Local
The majority of people shopping for food and consumable products are looking for local businesses. That’s to your benefit if you can get on the search engine’s radar from a voice command.
Use Long-Tail Keywords
These are just as important in voice searches as they are in typed searches. When people look for local businesses with a voice command, they usually ask open-ended questions. They might ask, “Is there a Chinese restaurant near me that delivers?” Think about these open-ended but specific questions. They will lead you to the right combination of keywords.
Use Natural Language
When you ask about finding a local business, you usually use a question. If you’re speaking rather than typing into a search engine, you’re likely to say something like “Where’s the closest car rental to me?” or “Where is a carpet store that’s open today?” Adding a well-known landmark that’s close to your business is another great idea.
Offer Useful Information
According to online marketing experts, you should put heavy emphasis on content that answers questions. Use FAQ sections and lots of how-to articles. According to a forum of online marketing experts at SearchEngineLand, you should focus on three key areas:
- Information: Guides, instruction manuals, how-to videos or article, and product information.
- Navigation: Local landmarks, store locations, directions, parking, and useful information.
- Transaction: Customer service, buying guides, warranties, and specific product information
What Does This Mean for You?
Start gearing your PPC and SEO efforts toward voice marketing, which is the shopping of the future.
Responsive Search Ads
Google launched these in 2019, and they’re becoming a key feature of 2020 SEO vs PPC efforts. Here’s how they work. When you write a responsive search ad, you can write 15 different headlines and four descriptions. This gives Google thousands of chances to test your ads to determine the combination that produces the best results.
To be considered, your ad must contain a minimum of three headlines and two descriptions. Google will automatically test all the possible combinations of those headlines and descriptions. If you use the maximum number of headlines and descriptions, Google could have more than 40,0000 combinations to test.
These ads differ from expanded text ads in several ways. You can write up to 300 characters for each responsive ad, while expanded text ads limit you to 80-character and 90-character descriptions. You can also write more headlines. Google calculates the click-through rate (CTR) of each combination to pick a winning ad. It will run the best-performing ad the most often.
What Does This Mean for You?
Be Creative and Original
Don’t use the same wording for every headline. Write original headlines and descriptions to get the best results. Write some headlines without any keywords to avoid writing the same thing over and over.
Use at least two different keywords. Long-tail keywords should not be part of the headlines.
You should use each headline to feature a specific benefit, solution, or service that your product or company provides.
Track the Changes to Boost Your Business
The online world moves fast, and your marketing efforts need to be equally nimble. If you want to continue getting the best SEO vs PPC results for your marketing dollars, keep an eye on these and other changes.