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In case you're new to the world of marketing online, SEO stands for search engine optimization. This means that when people use a search engine to find what they need; your business is set up to be seen first among your competitors. For instance, if you own a hardware store and someone in your town is looking for a new weed eater, and you are properly implementing SEO, then your web page should show up in the top of the search results. SEO involves a lot of techniques and some understanding of site development. It takes quite a bit of time and effort to work your way up through the ranks of search engines like Google and Bing, but once you reach that first page goal, you should get a lot more organic traffic without having to pay extra advertising costs. 

Adwords is a Google advertising program. You can choose to focus on brand awareness by paying for impressions or attract more traffic with pay per click. Either way, the idea is to get a link to your site at the coveted top spot right away. Ads are shown to people who have searched specific keywords on Google, which targets an audience that is more likely to be interested in your product or service. 

The Pros and Cons of Each

SEO is very important to the long-term success of a business. If your competitors are working hard at obtaining the top spots, you'll have to keep up or risk being pushed to the back. With so many customers going to the internet to help direct their purchasing decisions, it's vital that your website shows up on the front page, because many people simply don't have the time or patience to look on the sixth page of Google for a solution to their problems. In the eyes of consumers, having a high ranking in search engines says a lot about your credibility as well, and can help build an authority in your niche or local community. The downside is that it can take a while to establish. You'll need to stay on top of current trends and algorithms. You may need to publish more content, learn how to use keywords on your webpages, and constantly educate yourself on the frequent changes that occur in the online marketing industry. That can be a lot of work, particularly for a small business owner who already juggles multiple tasks that are vital to the success of the company. The technology can also sometimes be overwhelming to those who don't have a background in computers or web development. 

Adwords is a great way to bring attention to your business right away. Pay per click campaigns are also significantly more efficient than traditional methods of advertising, and can help you effectively target your ideal customer. If you are a local boutique whose main goal is reaching a specific group of women in your local community, then you can use your campaign to narrow your advertising dollars to only people in your area that fit that profile. At the same time, if you are a tech startup whose success depends on reaching a worldwide audience, then you also have the option of showing up in search results from Texas to China. However, your reach is limited by your campaign budget. As soon as your dollars are spent, someone else is there to take your top spot and there's a good chance your competitors might quickly snag your customers. You could see a noticeable decrease in traffic and sales as soon as your campaign is over. 

Use Both to Grow Your Business

While both SEO and Adwords have their advantages and setbacks, there are ways to capitalize on the positives of both. Many people feel they must choose one over the other. Every business has a unique set of needs, however in many cases companies can benefit by using a combination of the two options. For instance, if you are a new business you can run an Adwords campaign while you're building up your SEO. This will allow you to attract customers right away, and create revenue growth, while you're climbing the ranks. After you've organically reached the coveted first place, then you might be able to save your Adwords dollars for more targeted campaigns, such as certain holidays, events or sales. 

Ready to Get Serious About SEO or Adwords? The Team at iBoost is Available to Help

No matter what stage of online marketing your business is at, SEO and Adwords can both be powerful assets. At iBoost, we understand that many of today's business owners and managers are busy and simply don't have the time to do the work themselves, and hiring an in-house team dedicated to digital marketing isn't always a viable option. The SEO and Adwords specialists at iBoost are available to help you find a perfect solution. Call us today and find out how our experts can help you reach more customers. 

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