SEA or SEO ?

If you are trying to increase your Web traffic and are looking for the most effective international marketing strategy, there are two different methods you might wish to explore. One option is search engine optimization (SEO) and the other is search engine advertising (SEA). Both techniques involve slightly different strategies and the effectiveness of each option depends on your needs and expectations.

What are SEO and SEA ?

SEO is the process of increasing the visibility of a website in a search engine’s natural (or un-paid) search results. This involves pushing your website higher up the results list, therefore increasing the number of visitors it attracts and, when applied correctly, it can be an immensely effective technique in increasing your website’s visibility.

SEA on the other hand, is a paid marketing model. Although it will do little to increase the natural rankings of your website, it is an effective means of generating traffic. One of the most popular methods of SEA marketing is pay-per-click (PPC) ads, in which the advertiser pays the publisher every time an ad is clicked on. These ads can appear in search engine results and, in Google, are characterized by their positioning at the top (highlighted in yellow) and right-hand side of the page. However, it’s important to remember that SEO and SEA are not exclusive from each other — SEO techniques can (and should) be used in SEA campaigns.

Natural or paid ?

One of the biggest advantages of natural search marketing (the SEO approach) is that these results are more trusted among Internet users. As a consequence, websites that employ natural search marketing get a significantly larger share of clicks compared to SEA. However, the main disadvantage of this approach is it’s very difficult to obtain the highest search rankings, especially if you are a small business in a competitive field trying to optimize in multiple languages.

With paid results you have complete control over your online campaign in real time, making it very easy to change or alter your tact. It can be a quick fix for appealing to different language speakers because it takes much less time to translate an ad than it does a website, but you should beware that not localizing your entire website will decrease its perceived reliability. The obvious disadvantage to using paid search results is the monetary cost.


  • 87% web visits come via search engines
  • 9% come from banners
  • 4% come directly from browser

What are the main differences between SEO and PPC ? 

One of the advantages of SEA is it gives you greater control over which page your visitors are going to see when they arrive; you can change your landing page for each ad. When using a SEO approach, you need to optimize specific pages to make them best suited for search engines. The benefit of this is that it provides you with a more holistic solution and greater consistency across your website.

For control over the regions and countries where your ads will be shown, SEA is an ideal option. It provides you with the ability to have regional control over your campaign, using SEO by implementing different keywords to make sure that your site appears for the right search terms. If you’re looking to target a new set of language speakers, this can be a great way to test the water, allowing you to identify which keywords work best in which languages, before beginning a large-scale multilingual SEO project.

Another key difference is that SEA ads allow you to change your budget and choose how much money you want to spend over a certain period of time. With SEO you do not pay for clicks, so there is no direct cost, but the process is time consuming and can also involve third party expenditure such as link buying, or using an external agency.

Sources :

By our friendly guest blogger Ben YEDDER


[Weekly Review] - How to choose between SEO and SEA strategies

During the past few months, we got an increasing number of projects for which website was turning into a major leads and customers tool. For those companies it's not about looking for some SEO results within 6 months, but having direct traffic the day after the release. It's obviously a nice idea, but quiet impossible in SEO, especially with new domains. So it turned into a regular question: How to balance our customer budget between SEO and SEA ?

As we do deliver both services - SEA & PPC Services and Search Engine Optimization - we tried to figure out a regular strategy we can enforce. The main idea is SEA & PPC are a must have to kick start a project but you need to figure out which keywords will save money with SEO efforts.

Difference between SEO and PPC

PPC & SEO Services in Dubai

SEO - Search Engine Optimization - 

To make it short SEO is the process we use to help Search Engines -Bing, Yandex, Baidu, Google, ...- to understand, crawl and rank your website. Frankly speaking none agency knows how the hell those engines work. It's not that we like to lie, it's more that Google and cie don't share their algorithm with agencies. However, with time, experience and failures we come up with general ideas and guidelines about what we should or not do.  To make it short it's: make an amazing website, share great content and people (+ search engines) will love your website. It's a nice concept, really ...

PPC - Paid Per Click - / SEA - Search Engine Advertising -

This is something we like and not just because we're Google Partner in Dubai. In this case you make a list of keywords relevant to your business and bid to rank for those ones. It's the easiest way to drive qualified traffic to your website if you respect the must have: optimized landing pages, tracking of your keywords, ads and so on. It's good to start but quiet costly.

General ideas about SEA vs SEO project

Okay we confess that it's not always that simple, but keep in mind those concepts:

  1. SEA will cost you money and drive you leads
  2. SEO will cost you less money and drive you leads too but not before "one day"
  3. People clicks also on ads and usually don't click on the last link of the page
  4. A website ranking in SEA & SEO on the same page, as roughly 40% more chance to be clicked
  5. SEO is a paid free service
  6. SEO is usually less expensive than SEA
  7. Your time is money, money is money and you need money
  8. Some keywords will be out of reach in both

Once you know this you can keep the following schema idea: it's good to start in SEA and step by steps move your efforts to SEO


Step by step tuto to decide how to optimized your website

#1 - Customer surveys

People don't Google like you. That's a fact, so don't bother us anymore with it

What to do

Take some times to speak with your customers. Make a form and collect data such as: keywords they google , website they consult and so on

Why to do

You need to know which expressions people use to look for your services and products. Keep in mind that people don't do like you.

#2 - Keyword Analysis

Be where people look for you

What to do

Review the list of keywords you got previously. Use Google Adwords Planner Tool to see their average traffic, difficulty, competition, bids. Check also similar expressions. Then use Moz difficulty tool to see the average difficulty for those keywords in your country.

Why to do

Forget what you think of SEO and SEA, be pragmatical. This list will help you to sort out the expressions that deserve your attention. Add some ranking factors to the average searches, difficulties, etc. and then focus on the keyword by importance for you.

#3 - Market Analysis

Be realistic and pragmatical, your time is your money 

What to do

Once you have your list of keywords ranked by interest, Google the 10 or 20 most important. Then note down the competition in ads and non ads. Make the list of competitors and use Moz tool bar to check their Domain Authority

Why to do

You need to know exactly who you gonna compete with for the keywords that do matter for you. 

#4 - Last step before taking a decision

Give me one penny, I'll convert it into 5 dollars !

What to do 

Add a "my services""how many services can I provide" and "my margin" columns into your .xls on the most interesting keywords check which of your pages will rank and more important how much margin you can make per service along with the number of units you can provide to people.

Why to do

No money for you = no money to invest. So be sure that you know in services you can invest your time and money.

#5 - Take a decision

Money, money, money

What to do

Now that you have: list of your relevant keywords, their interest for you, the services linked to them, your competition you can take a decision. Pick up the first 20 expressions / keywords you gonna focus on.

Why to do

You need to move smart. Focus on the best margin keywords and go for both ads and seo. SEO harvest will come later but you need to start now, meanwhile SEA will give you results straight away.

#6 - Monitor & track your efforts

Keep in mind the Sisyphean task

What to do

Use your first keyword list to create a new doc with: budget spent, current ranking, conversions on your website.

Why to do

You need to track your results on those elements. Week per week your ranking will evolve and you'll get a clear vision of your ROI.

Conclusion in SEO vs SEA

In 2014 there is no agency that can guarantee you results on SEO and SEA. All we can do is work hand by hand with you towards the best combo and strategy packages. So our unique advise is test, track, test, track and test again

People behaviors change regularly along with Search Engines algorithms. So you need to invest your time and money towards the best ROI tools. Without a deep analysis of your customers and competitors, you'll just setup vanities metrics rather than ROI KPI. 

So what do you think ? Will this post be relevant for your activity ?