Do you see SEO and digital marketing as the same? It is common for people to assume that both are the same, but the truth is that SEO and digital marketing aren’t.
I want to show you the differences between both so that you can make the best decision for your business. That’s the essence of this SEO vs digital marketing comparison.
But before we dive deeper, here is something you need to understand. Digital marketers deploy diverse channels to promote businesses, and SEO is one of them.
In this post, you’ll understand the differences between both terms. Keep reading!
What SEO Really Means
SEO means Search Engine Optimization, a strategy in digital marketing.
Now, let me put it this way. SEO is a set of tools or techniques deployed to help boost a website’s ranking on search engine result pages (SERPs).
Simply put, SEO focuses on getting your web pages for specific keywords to a much higher position on the search engine result pages.
The first thing is to conduct keyword research to identify the right keywords to target. And remember, you are not the only one fighting to rank on the first page for that keyword.
Hundreds of businesses want to occupy the first position on the search engine result pages because that is where most users end their searches.
In fact, according to Hubspot, 75% of internet users end up on the first page of search results. Some users may even think that websites in the second, third, and other positions on search engines are inferior.
Anyway, you and I know that’s not the case. The only issue is we can’t do much to change internet users’ perceptions.
So, regardless of your niche and targeted keywords, ensure you end up on the first page of search engines. Deploy best SEO practices to improve your website ranking.
Does Your Business Require SEO Strategy?
Hang on, SEM lovers! I know you enjoy getting traffic, views, and clicks via paid advertisement. By the way, SEM means Search Engine marketing.
A Pro Tip: The difference between SEO and SEM is how both generate traffic. While SEO focuses on obtaining traffic via organic search (unpaid), SEM focuses on bringing traffic via organic and paid search.
Now, please, don’t get me wrong. Combining SEO and SEM in your marketing campaign is an excellent strategy for marketing your business on search engines.
“Marketers using SEO and pay-per-click advertisements have reported a 25% boost in clicks and a 27% boost in profit.”
Alright, let’s answer the question. Does your business require SEO?
Yes, it does. SEO offers so many benefits. Let’s take a quick look at them.
Benefits of SEO for your small business:
- SEO is cost-effective.
- It helps convert prospects into customers faster
- SEO brings in more web traffic via organic search
- Builds a trustworthy web experience for prospects and customers
- It encourages you to focus on ways to improve user experience.
A Pro Tip: User experience is a ranking factor. Google made it so in 2021, and it won’t go away anytime soon. Google wants you to put the needs of your customers first before yours. Interestingly, when you prioritize your customers’ needs, you can boost your ranking.
- It offers you a better opportunity to improve brand awareness.
A Pro Tip: Getting to the first page is crucial for businesses that want to improve brand awareness. Even if people don’t click on your website (not possible anyway), you can create awareness by just being on the first page.
However, keywords are necessary for SEO. They serve as a form of direction to Google when ranking your website.
So, conduct keyword research, and target longer variations of any search term. For example, instead of ranking for search terms like “Best SEO services,” you should consider longer variations like “Best SEO services for small businesses” or “Best SEO services for small businesses in Texas.”
- SEO gives businesses equal ranking opportunities. Small companies can compete with established ones because of SEO. This opportunity wouldn’t have been available if TV, magazine, and billboard advertisements were the only options available.
So, SEO is significant to businesses seeking growth. It can help you to acquire more leads and increase reputation, sales, and ranking.
A Pro Tip: Have you been investing in SEO and not getting favorable results? If yes, a change in personnel and strategy can turn things around for you.
SEO can have a massive positive impact on your business if deployed successfully.
Stats that show your business need SEO
- 57% of B2B marketers have reported that search engine optimization (SEO) generates more leads than other marketing initiatives. [Hubspot]
- Google utilizes approximately 200 ranking factors in its algorithm. [Backlinko]
- Longer content tends to rank higher. The average first-page result that pops up on Google has 1447 words. [Backlinko]
- Google makes changes to its algorithm about 500 to 600 times annually. [Searchengineand]
- Google processes 40,000 searches every second. [Internetlivestats]
- Images receive approximately 3% of all Google search clicks. [Moz]. So, don’t forget to optimize your images.
The Three Types Of SEO
Does SEO have different types? Yes, and you’ll get help in all areas of your business. It’s necessary.
Here are the different types of SEO, including what they entail.
- On-page SEO – This refers to SEO done on your page, such as blogs, web copy, and product copy.
- Off-page SEO – This refers to an SEO effort performed outside the website. The aim is also to increase the website’s traffic, authority, and ranking. An example of an off-page SEO technique is Backlinking.
- Technical SEO – This includes website and server optimization to help the spider to crawl and index your website more effectively. The main objective of Technical SEO is to help improve organic ranking and traffic.
What Is Digital Marketing?
Digital marketing refers to all marketing efforts done online. The aim is to let potential customers know about your products or services.
Digital marketers know how to use diverse digital channels to create brand awareness and improve organic and paid traffic, ranking, and sales.
Here is the list of digital channels marketers use:
- SEO – Organic search
- SEM – Paid search
- Social Media
You can see that SEO (Search engine optimization) is one of the tools digital marketers use to grow a business. Now, let’s discuss the difference.
SEO vs Digital Marketing: The Differences:
Since we already know the meaning of SEO and digital marketing, let’s dedicate time to understanding how both differ.
1: Digital marketing is all-encompassing:
Digital marketing involves “everything” you do online to promote a product or service. In other words, it refers to all your marketing efforts done online.
On the other hand, SEO is just one aspect of digital marketing. Simply put, it is a tool used in digital marketing.
A digital marketer can use SEO, SEM, social media, email, your company’s website, blog, and other digital channels to promote your product or services. The aim is to obtain optimal results from the marketing campaign.
However, make no mistake. SEO is important. It is the first thing digital marketers must focus on before other strategies.
Optimizing a website helps to lay a solid foundation for other digital channels to thrive. So, SEO is the first thing digital marketers are expected to fix before leveraging other channels to grow a business.
2: Free Traffic Vs Paid traffic:
Another difference between SEO and digital marketing is how the traffic is obtained. Search engine optimization (SEO) includes On-page SEO, Off-page SEO, and Technical SEO.
When done correctly, these SEO techniques can send massive organic traffic to your website and boost ranking. Organic means the visitors are coming to your website naturally. You’re not paying for ads or anything. So, SEO focuses 100% on organic traffic.
On the other hand, in digital marketing, a marketer can combine paid search and SEO to generate more traffic to your business. Marketers can also use other digital channels, whether paid or unpaid, to grow their businesses.
A Pro Tip: The only payment you may make when you hire an SEO professional is the money for the service rendered. You won’t pay for advertisements.
However, when you hire a digital marketer, you have to pay for advertisement (if you want to promote your product via paid advertising) and the service rendered.
3: SEO vs digital marketing financial involvement:
The financial involvement in hiring an SEO specialist and a digital marketing professional is another thing that differentiates both.
Let’s start with SEO.
Hiring SEO specialists is cheaper. Why? Remember, you’re not paying for any advertisement. Using best SEO practices, an SEO specialist can take your website to the first page of search engines. And when this happens, you’ll start getting high organic traffic.
The only payment you are going to make is to the SEO specialists, which could be monthly or as agreed. But please, don’t forget SEO isn’t a one-off. Your competitors are working hard to dislodge your website from the spot it is occupying.
So, in SEO, you don’t take your foot off the gas. You keep monitoring, analyzing, and doing what’s necessary to remain on top.
Hiring a digital marketer is more expensive. But you’ll discover that it is worth every penny at the end of the day.
Why is digital marketing more expensive? The simple reason is that the marketing professional may deploy paid ads to send your business to the first page of the search engine.
You’ll start receiving instant traffic from the paid ads. Paid ads are the fastest ways to rank on the first page (temporarily) and start getting traffic too.
Your ads will continue running as long as you keep paying for them. And don’t forget that the cost can run into thousands of dollars.
The minute you stop paying for those ads, your website will disappear from the first page, and traffic may reduce drastically or stop.
Does Your Business Need An SEO Specialist Or Digital Marketing professional?
If you’re just kick-starting your business, there is a chance that your finances are thin. Starting a business can take a massive toll on one’s finances, speaking from experience.
So, if you have a startup or a small business with a tiny budget, I suggest you focus on SEO. Let the expert lay a good foundation for your business by optimizing your website for search engines.
With a good foundation, which includes proper SEO, you’ll enjoy massive organic traffic, ranking, high reputation, and sales. One of SEO’s differences with paid ads (SEM) is that the results of the SEO effort may take time to manifest.
However, paid ads don’t take time. You may start seeing the results almost immediately. When I say the result, I mean traffic. Most of the traffic will convert too.
So, if you have a tight budget, hire an SEO specialist to optimize your website. You can focus on SEO for a while until you have the financial capacity for paid ads.
When should you hire a digital marketer? Please, don’t get me wrong. You can hire a digital marketer and ask the agency to do only search engine optimization.
However, I would advise hiring a digital marketer when you have a big budget and don’t mind splashing thousands of dollars on ads, monthly or as you wish.
A Pro Tip: Hire a digital marketer that can turn your $1 into $2 or more. Don’t hire one that will cause you to incur unacceptable losses.
So, now that you have gotten an idea of which to hire among SEO and digital marketer, you can go ahead and make your decision.
You have read the SEO vs digital marketing comparison. I am confident you now understand the differences and can make an informed decision.
SEO is essential for every business. When you optimize your website correctly, you have laid a solid foundation for other marketing channels you intend to use to deliver the desired results.
Why Choose BitChip Digitals?
Digital marketing done without deploying a digital strategy might not deliver positive results. You may end up losing massively at the end of the day.
BitChip Digital knows the nitty-gritty of digital marketing. Our professionals are well-trained, experienced, and ready to bend over to get the targeted results.
So, if you wish to win the digital game and stay ahead of your competitors, contact us right away. We take pride in helping businesses grow.