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PPC Monday – PPC Advertising vs. Search Engine Marketing

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Now that we’ve gotten our toes wet after the first two weeks, it’s time to work our way a little deeper and examine pay-per-click advertising vs. search engine marketing. Which one is right for staffing agencies? Are both the right answer? Is neither one the right answer? Is it somewhere in the middle?

The Answer Is…

Well, we can’t get there just yet. Let’s walk through each of the scenarios.

Starting with search engine marketing, I have yet to come across a business owner who doesn’t want to be on the first page of Google search results. It’s not as easy as it sounds and A lot goes into search engine optimization as this recent post by Dan Stock, our SEO and Social Media Consultant, explains.

On the basic level, your staffing agency needs a well-designed website with strong keyword optimization. Users need to engage with your website so Google sees people going to your site and spending time there, instead of going there and quickly leaving. The right keyword strategy will also help because you want to have your staffing agency website optimized for the keywords your target audience is searching for. Posting fresh content on the website, a blog is a great example, shows Google you are keeping the website updated with fresh and relevant information.

It would be great to be No. 1 for a search term, but if it’s not relevant to your business, who cares? However, if you are ranking lower for another search term and that search term is bringing you exactly the traffic that leads to business for your company (candidate side or client side), then I think you would be happy with the results.

In the competitive staffing industry, SEO is very important. Having the right strategy will lead to high-quality organic traffic finding your website. Once we get them there, a well-designed and easy-to-use website (on desktop and mobile), will get them to convert.

So, Why Do I Even Need PPC?

That’s a fair question. And I have some good answers!

One goal of PPC is to increase brand awareness. A well-designed remarketing campaign (remember, those are the ads that follow you seemingly EVERYWHERE), will have your ads in the face of people who recently visited your website or people who are in your database. Strong SEO won’t help with that goal. A remarketing campaign helps you stay top of mind with your target audience in a very cost-effective manner.

Google AdWords ensures that dream of every staffing agency owner and recruiter seeing their website ranking in the top spots on Google search results. Can it be pricey? Absolutely. Can it be the right strategy for your company? Absolutely. The best results come when you are trying to break into a new market, targeting niche industries and recruiting hard-to-fill jobs. These text-based ads also provide more opportunities to change the text in the ad to keep your search results fresh, unlike the results that will show up in a Google search when your website appears.

Social media advertising takes your company to a different area from search engine marketing. People spend time on Google and Facebook, but their motives might be different. A well-designed campaign will be effective and extremely affordable on Facebook. You could target new candidates, re-activate old job candidates, boost content, run separate ads, boost jobs, increase the likes on your page and even more.

The Answer Is Both… Isn’t It?

Yes – it certainly is. And I’m going to show you why it makes sense.

Example 1 – a person goes to Google and searches for a term related to your staffing agency. Your well-optimized website could show up on the first or second page. That person clicks on your search results and engages with your website.

Example 2 – the same person goes to Google and never makes it to the second page (where your search result is). However, you have a strong Google AdWords campaign and your results are in the top 3 spots of that search term. That person clicks on it and engages with your website.

Example 3 – that person who went to your website never converts. They don’t apply for a job. They don’t submit a contact us form. That’s OK because you have a remarketing campaign setup. Tomorrow, they see your ad on a Google Partner website (there are 2 million of them). They see your ad on Facebook or one of Facebook’s partner websites (there are a lot of those as well).

Example 4 – the same person (they spend a lot of time online), never goes to Google or your website. They spend all day on Facebook. Now, you have a strong Facebook advertising campaign of either showing ads about your staffing agency, boosting your latest blog post or running a Like Campaign to get them to follow your Facebook page. They convert and now make their way to your website.

All four examples are for the same person who could be actively or passively searching for a new job. Your strong SEO and well-designed website worked in example 1. A well-constructed PPC strategy made sure your business was always in front of them. All of those PPC options might not fit into your goals (or budget) but I’m guessing at least one, if not a couple, will.

Next Time on PPC Monday

We are going to dig deeper into a Google Remarketing campaign. How can you set up the right campaign to have your staffing agency’s online ads appear everywhere? It’s a lot easier than you think!

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