Organic Food for Thought

Organic’s good for you, right?

In the veggie isles at the market, organic is (now) easily available. And it’s good for you! Online, search engine optimization has always strived to position a site high in the organic results. And that’s good for you too, right?

Fact: There *is* no quick hit in getting good, consistent organic listings in Google Search Engine Results Pages (SERP).

Over the past 2 years I have seen the value of organic listings (the ‘non sponsored’ part of the Search Engine Results Pages – for those grasshoppers out there) rise relative to the value of Pay Per Click (PPC) listings simply because educated consumers are clicking on them more frequently, whilst at the same time PPC costs have skyrocketed.

One recent example; I conducted a heatmap analysis using the excellent tools at Crazy Egg that showed one of my clients (who’s paying $2,500+ a month on Google PPC) as getting over 65% of their Google traffic from their organic listings.

Does this mean reigning in some of their (or your) PPC spend? It certainly could, but the truth in any competitive environment is sometimes you “have to be there” from a branding or positioning standpoint.

Fact: Competing for sponsored placing isn’t always the smart business option for Return on Investment but it is sometimes a necessity.

As searchers become more sophisticated in their understanding of value (greater relevance) of organic results over “sponsored” listings, I expect to see even less clicks on PPC ads.

To support ongoing business and growth, I anticipate Google allowing more or better differentiation of Adword ads (more copy?), integration of organic and sponsored into one list (with flags) and / or more stringent quality standards for paid ads (it’s already happening) to ensure less of a difference between the relevance – read value – of paid over organic results.

As long as there are trust issues with sponsored results, expect organic results and expertise in the ‘how to get great organic’ results to win the day.

After all, if organic better for your body, it’s *got to be* better for a healthy business.


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