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Old 25th February 2011, 08:29 PM   #1
SinkingDeeper
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Join Date: Feb 2011
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Default SEO Service Versus Google AdWords.

Hello. First post.

I first have to say that I have read a bunch of posts on
this forum and I am EXTREMELY impressed with how
well the majority of folks write. I'm not a writer, but
my girlfriend is, so I appreciate good spelling, complex
sentences, and punctuation. (And I certainly won't be
offended if anyone wants to correct my writing. I was
an engineering major, so I have excuses.)
I belong to a number of motorcycle/scooter forums,
and I occasionally read the comments posted
following online political articles, so I encounter
a LOT of atrocious writing. This forum is refreshing.
Thank you for that.

To my questions. I am a fairly new owner of a small
mobile business, heating and air-conditioning repair.
I am focused, for various good reasons, in a small geographical
area within a larger suburban area. (In other words, I have
and want only a single business license covering that city.)
And I have a simple website that provides information about
why my service is different and my pricing approach. Having
other sites link to my site or me linking to other sites is not
desirable.

My initial advertising approach was to put a small ad in
the Pennysaver. (They are national, so I hope people know
what I'm talking about. They mail a multi-page pamphlet
to all households in various zipcodes. They covered the
three zipcodes for my target city.) After a month, the
response has been underwhelming. I have a hitcounter
embedded in my webpage so I know how few people
have gone to the URL in my small ad.

So when an SEO company cold-called (via phone) me
the other day, I was actually interested to talk to them.
We talked and I got a 20 minute explanation of what they
can do. The gist is that they guarantee a first page appearance
of my company in Google results through a myriad of methods.
The sales guy said he has been doing it for five years, seemed
to know his stuff, and answered questions well. Mostly it
is a satisfaction guaranteed sort of thing or they would refund
my money. Roughly $400 for the first month. $200 monthly
thereafter. I told him I would ponder. (The company name
is ezlocal.com and some googling indicated they are national, or
are getting national, that they were looking for sales people
in cities throughout the country. I did a search for them on
this forum, but no hits were returned. Anybody have experience
with them?)

So I was doing a little research, but I do find the SEO subject
a bit dizzying. My research uncovered Google AdWords.
I have already registered my site with Google places. I'm
sure everyone reading this is more hip to AdWords than I
am, but key for me was that it actually charged me based
on results, a person actually clicking to my website. I looked
at various applicable keywords for my service, and the top
ranked keywords have a CPC of about $2.75. That does not
sound too unreasonable if I actually got the person to read my
site.

(The big question=>)
So I am weighing the two options, the SEO service versus
Google AdWords. Is AdWords a bad idea?
Thank you for any thoughts.

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Old 28th February 2011, 12:02 AM   #2
AVP
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Location: Orlando, FL
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Default

I have only been using Adwords for about a week (my CPC is about $1.75 on average) but I have been impressed by it.

I am definitely netting a very positive Return on Investment from the campaign. I would recommend being creative and targeted in your keywords. Adding a location to the keyword greatly reduces the cost, for instance I helped a friend add "Orlando landscaping" instead of general "landscaping". You can even take that further and add different suburbs and sections of cities.

Hope this helps.

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Old 1st March 2011, 09:11 AM   #3
increaserevenue
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Hi SinkingDeeper,

If you want results today you should be using Adwords. SEO takes time and you should definitely not expect results overnight there. Adwords can be expensive and you need to keep sending money to Google to have the customers roll in.

My advice, make a good landing page with an opt-in email form so that you are at least catching the leads information.

If you are looking to go the SEO road, be patient and find a good SEO expert that will not try to steal your money and charge you a lot for his services.

I hope this helps,
Marc


Last edited by increaserevenue; 1st March 2011 at 01:32 PM.
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Old 7th March 2011, 06:22 PM   #4
CAllenMartinson
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SinkingD,

I own an SEO company and let me tell you. No one can guarantee what Google will do with your site in their search results. Yeah, they can offer to give your money back and hope things work out well but they are not going to get you ranked first page during the first month and probably not the second month. Are they going to refund those two months?

There are other roads to travel here that can give you a far greater ROI. First thing you need to ask yourself is. What do I want links for? Do I want links just for the sake of getting links so Google thinks I'm important? Or, do I want people to follow these links and become leads that I can contact and get some work going?

If the answer is the first, your best bet is directories. They are easy to get, most are free, and you may actually get some business from them. If your looking for traffic to your site with some lead generation then you need to consider plan b. Create some awesome content and place it under keywords your not trying to rank for, but your customers can be found there.

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Old 9th March 2011, 02:27 AM   #5
Terry Payne
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Hello Sinking Deeper,

First thing, keep your head above the water. There must be some lame analogy here that you're learning to swim. I agree with CAllenMartinson. I, too, have an Internet marketing business and I still get those calls such as the one you received. It's amusing though, because I know what questions to ask that they don't want to answer.

Guarantees in Internet marketing are worthless (there's always a catch). There are two ways of getting to the first page of search engines such as Google. The first is through organic (natural) results, and the second is paid advertising -- the pay-per-click (PPC) that you're considering.

I briefly checked the website you mentioned and they appear more than anything to be a directory. The example provided with their guarantee to get you on the first page was pay-per-click. If you go that route, you'll pay each time someone clicks on your ad. So it's very important to convert those clicks into purchases or you'll quickly sink deeper. PPC works great for some people and not so good for others. It will all depend on how good your keywords are (as far as targeting the right audience and being "buyers" keywords) and how well your website converts those folks into buyers. Just FYI, PPC gets about 30% of the page clicks and organic gets around 70%.

As for other sites linking to your website, that's one of the ways to build your credibility in organic results. However, when you link to their site, you're sending some of your juice their way.

Getting back to agreeing with CAllenMartinson, I would recommend submitting your business to local directories. When you do, think about those keywords and include them in your business description and tags. Whatever they allow you to upload (photos, videos, etc.) to the directory, fill it completely. I believe you will find that you'll get better results for free than going with the service you mentioned.

Your first step is to get a Google Places page. Then go to Bing, Yahoo, Yelp, HotFrog, Best of the Web and MerchantCircle. Each has individual features. For example, with MerchantCircle you can blog. Do it. When those happy customers are complementing you, ask if they will submit a review on Yelp.

If you've got the money, try the caller's service and the directories to see which gets you better results. I bet I win.

All the best with your heating and air conditioning business.

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Old 3rd June 2011, 03:06 PM   #6
lw-daryljames
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PPC = short term. SEO = long term. Know that there are no guarantees regardless. It depends as much on the competition in your online arena as the approach you decide to take. The bottom line is, as in the offline marketing world, the quicker the expected results, the greater the cost.

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Old 4th June 2011, 09:49 PM   #7
uwwandrew
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Default SEO vs. PPC

I own a web development company and loved the idea that I deliver a product/service for a specific price. Everyone knows what they are getting, they get it and we all sleep well. I didn't want to tread into waters I did not have 100% control over until some of my best customers DEMANDED I help them promote. Without a trustworthy referral source I jumped into it....sort of.

I am ONLY providing SEO and here is the main reason. With all the variable in PPC including some predatory practices in competitive industries, people without the business sense to bid for profit and not for placement, etc. all the expensive conversion experimentation I could not GUARANTEE ROI in any kind of reasonable time frame.

With SEO, I can almost categorically guarantee huge ROI, it is never a question of IF, just a question of WHEN. Sometimes it is days, other times months but it always happens.

The fine print...Now if you are selling gumballs and you make 1 penny on each sale ROI might be a bit more elusive. What if no one is searching for my clients goods and services (this would damage PPC too)?? The good news is that we know all of that going in.

Does that help?

NO MATTER WHAT YOU DO....be sure to have some mechanisms to test conversion FIRST....ESPECIALLY if you are going PPC.

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Old 6th March 2014, 02:32 PM   #8
Chrisadh
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I don't consider myself an expert in either of these fields but I can tell you what seems to be working for me. I began using adwords several weeks ago and seem to be having some luck. I track how much I spend each day, how many clicks I get for that cost and how many calls I get per day. Then most importantly, I track how many of those calls actually convert to sales. In the end I can calculate my return on investment. Then I rearrange the keywords and other parameters on the google adwords campaign to see if I can get more for my money.
Here's an article I thought was pretty useful about tweaking your campaign and keywords:
http://moz.com/beginners-guide-to-seo/keyword-research

Anyway, I really like the immediate results of paying for clicks starting today, plus I think it's really a good trackable way to spend your ad dollar (esp. vs SEO which seems like a bit of an advanced voodoo to me haha).

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Old 7th March 2014, 03:46 AM   #9
fredkmolloy
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You better do only SEO services because seo services only give money by hard work. also seo only give good conversion rate compare to adwords.

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