The Difference Between Google AdWords and SEO Explained

The Difference Between Google AdWords and SEO Explained
  • AdWords, or pay per click advertising, is when you pay for the number of clicks you receive on an ad.
  • SEO, on the other hand, refers to organic traffic on major search engines and is achieved by optimising your website and content. 
  • But what are the key differences and which one is better for your business? Keep reading to find out what each strategy entails and how they work. 

When it comes to online marketing, and Google’s search engine, there are two ways for your website to rank. There is an organic and paid method of ranking your website.

This article will discuss the differences between AdWords and SEO, along with their main traits. 

What is Google AdWords?

Google AdWords is referred to as pay-per-click, this means advertisers do not pay for the number of times adverts appear, but for the number of clicks they receive; advertisers can control this by setting a daily budget. In reference to the search network, advertisers set keywords with a maximum cost per keywords, create adverts and set their location target as desired.

The following screenshot highlights where the adverts appear:

What is the difference between google adwords and search engine optimisation (SEO)?

What Are the Main Features of Google AdWords?

The main traits of Google AdWords include:

  • Keywords: Choose relevant keywords with suitable match types.
  • Adverts: Create adverts with adverts unique selling propositions (USPs).  Develop at least 3 adverts to test variations.
  • Optimised landing pages: Have adverts land on a user-friendly landing page with relevant content.
  • Conversion tracking code: Paste the conversion tracking code on your website and it will record the keyword.
  • Quality Score: A score out of 10 that is based on Google’s evaluation of your keyword, website and ad relevance. 

What is Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)? 

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) refers to obtaining organic traffic to be shown on search engines such as Google to view as relevant to their user. In turn, SEO is about controlling your content management system (CMS) and developing a user-friendly website that can be read (crawled) by the search engine’s algorithm. 

The following screenshot highlights which part of Google’s search engine is classified as SEO:

What is the difference between google adwords and search engine optimisation (SEO)?

What Are the Main Features of SEO?

The main features of SEO include:

  • Creating a user-friendly website:  The point of SEO is developing a website that is easy to navigate, accessible, meaning it to be used by anybody, has a clear menu, is visually appealing and loads quickly.
  • Createing backlinks: these are links that refer back to a website. The quality of your links will determine your PageRank on Google. Although Google has recently announced the ‘decreased importance’, Google still crawls your website, and bad backlinks will be negative for your SEO.
  • Creating valuable content: Blogging demonstrates that your website is alive and kicking to search engines. You can use the keyword tool and utilise relevant keywords/phrases in your blogs, you can rank organically for your posts.
  • Social media profiles: How many people share your content and do they have authority? Refer to the article below to learn more about how social media influences SEO. 

Final Remarks on AdWords vs SEO

Hopefully, this article has demonstrated the main differences between Google AdWords and SEO. In regards to SEO, the definition is constantly changing, because search engines are constantly updating their algorithm to make sure their result page is relevant to the user.


Editor's Update 03/06/2021:
Thanks for reading our article by Click Click Media. We hope it has helped you gain a better understanding of SEO, AdWords and the difference between the two. Members at SavvySME have additional questions on the subject, so we have responded to some of these FAQs below.


Click Click Media

Digital Marketing Agency at The trustee for The Online Trust


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