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Comparing the ROI of Organic and Paid Media

When it comes to online marketing there are a number of options which digital marketing agencies will offer their clients. The goal of a successful digital campaign is to utilize a number of different approaches in order to get the best results, and two key components of any campaign will be using paid media and organic content.

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Each strategy towards digital marketing is chosen based on the return on investment which it can promise, and the better the ROI, the heavier the campaign will go with that particular strategy. There has been a long debate about paid vs organic content, in terms of the ROI it offers, so let’s compare the two.

Paid Media

Paid media is exactly what you can imagine, an approach towards marketing which see you pay for things like Google ads, that feature at the top of the search results, in order to drive more customers to the business.

Paid marketing is an approach which will always bring more customers to your business than organic marketing, there is no disputing this at all, but this does not mean that it offers a higher ROI, and we’ll get into why a little later on.

Organic Media

Organic marketing is the production of content by the business such as social media posts or website content which optimized for search engines. The idea here is to rank high for keywords or to create a buzz on social in order to raise awareness of a brand or a product.

A digital agency may be able to help with organic marketing at a cost, but businesses could also take it upon themselves to forge relationships and to create their own content.

SEO may cost money to get content created but this doesn’t class as paid media, because the cost is for creation, not for placement.

Which Offers The Best ROI?

When it comes to which of the two offers the best return on the original investment, in most cases it is the organic media which will win the day. The reason for this is because it is extremely effective and it costs very little indeed.

Now when it comes to paid marketing, this will bring in more money and more attention to the business, bear in mind that brand growth is not quantifiable so we can’t include this in the ROI stats.

The issue with paid advertising, however, is that in order for it to be continuously profitable, businesses need to continuously invest, as most paid ads deliver short term success.

And so to conclude, we have seen that when it comes to online marketing, the area which offers the strongest ROI between organic and paid, is an organic approach, but don’t go looking to learn about SEO just yet, because this is only half the story. The organic method will bring a higher percentage return on investment, but it will take a huge effort to bring in the kind of figures which paid marketing can do in half the time. It is for these reasons that all digital marketing campaigns will feature both organic and paid marketing, weighted slightly more towards the organic approach for longevity.   

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