Organic vs Paid Search

I’ll be in NYC next week for the Search Engine Strategies conference.. If you’ve never been to a Search Engine Strategies event in New York City, this is a “must-attend”. The industry converges for a week of spirited discussion, high-level learning and attendees leave with actionable battle plans to go forward with for their companies.

So why would an affiliate be interested in a conference about SEO? Honestly, if you’re not using SEO to promote your campaigns, you’re leaving easy money on the table. Personally, I’ve never been a big fan of PPC.

Most affiliates would consider that statement to be sacreligious, but I just don’t agree. Sure, you can ramp up a campaign in a matter of minutes, and drive traffic to your site (or even directly to the merchant’s site), but there’s a cost involved. You’re now worried about ROI, ad budgets, daily spending limits, Google’s quality score, and a number of other things. If you decide to go on vacation, you’re going to have to remotely manage your PPC campaigns, or shut them down and stop all sources of profit!

With SEO, you’re definitely going to spend more time setting things up, and you have to be patient, because jumping to the top of the search results doesn’t happen overnight. But when it does (and it will), life will be great! The affiliate commissions will start rolling in, and you can just sit back and count your $$. Want to go on a cruise and leave the laptop back home? No problem! That’s the beauty of SEO, you just set it and forget it. Sure, you can spend time tweaking your landing pages to improve your rankings, but it’s not as “labor intensive” as PPC is.

So what do I hope to learn at SES NY? How to continue improving my search engine rankings.. The search engines are constantly tweaking their algorithms, and it’s hard to keep up with them. MSN rolled out their Live service last October, and something changed in their algo. The net effect – I lost about 50 1st-page rankings! To this day, I’ve been unable to get those pages ranked highly again. Yahoo is odd, with some pages ranking great, and others totally lost.. And Google is a total mystery. For a search engine that supposedly cares so much about the quality and integrity of their index, it sure doesn’t show. The sites that constantly rank highly are the ones that buy a HUGE amount of links from other sites. Strange, I thought Google was taking a hard line on sites that bought and sold links. Apparently not so much!

If only Ask would become the Search Engine of choice, I could retire today. I guess whatever I’m doing resonates with them, as I rank #1 for a TON of my targeted keywords. 🙂

If you’re going to be at SES next week, drop me an e-mail and let’s meet up!

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