Organic search vs. paid search: Which is better for me?

When it comes to attracting new visitors to your website to become potential clients, search engines are your best friend. 

Search engine users may enter search queries that lead them to search engine results pages (SERPs) with your website as one of the top results. This is known as organic search, and it is at the core of many digital marketing strategies.

Search engine users may also discover your website by clicking on a paid ad that displays at the very top of a SERP. This is known as paid search, and it is also a valuable digital marketing strategy. 

However, when it comes to organic search vs. paid search, you might be having a hard time deciding which one is worth your time and money. We break down the pros and cons below to help you make a decision that’s right for your brand.

Organic search pros and cons


  • It’s credible — Pages that rank high on SERPs are ones that are trusted by search engines and are recognized as industry authorities. Search engines want to deliver the best to their users to keep them happy, and users generally understand that the top results are the best ones, since many of them never visit a second or third SERP.
  • It lasts — The content you create for your organic search strategy stays up as long as you leave it up.
  • It is affordable — Search engine optimization (SEO) is more affordable than many other types of marketing, which can include paid search marketing.


  • It takes time — It can take months for your organic strategy to start yielding the results you’d like to see. Some businesses cannot afford to wait that long.
  • It is constantly changing — The field of SEO is constantly changing. Google, Bing and other search engines constantly change their expectations, and it can be difficult for novice marketers to keep up with.

Paid search pros and cons


  • It’s quick — Paid search results can show up at the top of a relevant SERP immediately, whereas it may take months for organic content to show up that high on a SERP.
  • It is specific with targeting — You have a lot of control over the target audience you wish your ads to display for. This can improve your ROI by helping avoid wasted clicks from an uninterested audience.
  • It improves brand recognition — Even if your clickthrough rate (CTR) is low, if you have a lot of impressions, then this means a lot of people have seen your brand and may remember it later when they need more information.


  • It costs more than SEO — As the name suggests, paid search can cost you. Ads charge you by the click, so if a lot of people click through an ad on a SERP, it can become expensive.
  • It’s short-lived — Once you stop bidding on keywords for your ads to display on, your ads are no longer visible.
  • It is less trusted — Many web users have an inherent distrust for anything marked as an advertisement. While you may have the best of intentions with your product or services, simply seeing the little ad symbol on your SERP snippet can turn a lot of people away.

Want to attract new visitors to your website? Burg & Co. can help

Increasing traffic to your website plays a role in increasing conversions and leading to new clients. However, it’s difficult to attract visitors to your site when you don’t know what to do. Fortunately, this is what we specialize in at Burg & Co.

Our team has years of experience in helping businesses improve their digital presence to attract new leads and retain existing ones. If you’re looking to perform better in search engine results and attract more visitors to your site, we’re ready to talk to you to see how we can help. Contact our team today for more information about digital marketing or to schedule a complimentary consultation.

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