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When it comes to generating tree service leads online, tree service providers have 2 major options—SEO and PPC. Both Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Pay Per Click (PPC) are big investments that tend to have huge payoffs when handled correctly. However, for most new tree service providers, picking the right option can be quite daunting.

The good news, however, is that once you understand how each option works, picking an option that fits your specific needs becomes extremely easy. This detailed guide is designed to help you better differentiate PPC vs. SEO. By the time you reach the end of this article, choosing an option that offers the best results should be extremely easy for you.

What’s SEO?

Simply defined, SEO—Search Engine Optimization—refers to the process of generating targeted traffic by taking advantage of organic search results. Tree service SEO involves selecting keywords that best describe the services your business offers and then working to rank high in the search results pages for these keywords.

SEO is a long and slow process that needs a lot of investment before companies can see a payoff. However, once your website starts ranking high for the right keywords, generating leads becomes extremely easy for your business.  If you have optimized your website for conversion, turning these leads into paying customers is also easy.

What’s PPC?

Known as Pay Per Click in full, PPC is one of the most effective alternatives to Search Engine Optimization. Instead of spending months optimizing your website to rank high in the organic search results, the tree service Pay Per Click puts your website in the ads that appear above typical Google search results. With PPC, however, Google charges you every time someone clicks on your ad.

Comparing SEO vs. PPC: How Do These Options Compare?

1.       Set-Up Time

When it comes to comparing PPC vs. SEO in terms of setup time, PPC is the clear winner. You can set up your pay-per-click account and start receiving calls on the first day—if you have your custom-designed website ready, getting started with PPC is extremely easy.

SEO takes more time. On average, SEO takes 3 to 6 months before a tree service business can start benefiting from it.

2.     Call Volume

When using SEO for tree service marketing, it is generally hard to cover an entire service area. Most searches happening online for tree services generally return a map pack on the Google results page.

The maps show companies located near wherever the searcher is located. It has been a big problem for businesses using SEO to be featured in the map pack.

As long you have good pay-per-click management, blanketing a service area should be easy for you. All you have to do is dial in the exact cities you want and Google will do the rest for you. However, you have to remember that if a client clicks on your business, you will have to pay.

3.     Lead Quality

When comparing SEO Vs. PPC in terms of lead quality, SEO is the winner. One of the most frustrating parts of pay-per-click advertising is that a click doesn’t always translate into a tree service call—however, regardless of whether you close a business deal with the click or you don’t, you have to pay Google for the click.

This means that if someone is trying to sell your company insurance, ask about pricing, or just waste your time, you will have wasted your ad money.

While SEO can generate calls that do not result in projects or jobs, the problem is not quite as bad as it is with PPC. When using SEO, you do not pay for clicks. Therefore, even if someone clicks on your website without the goal of working with your company, you won’t have wasted your money on the click.

If you are looking for high-quality leads, SEO is a much better option. Most Google users tune out ads completely. Even if you have used all the best pay-per-click tricks for your tree service business, a serious lead is more likely to skip over the PPC tree service ads and head straight to the company that is ranking first through organic SEO.

4.     Sophistication

Search Engine Optimization is not easy. A lot of factors influence your website’s ability to rank high in the organic search results—some of these factors include your Yelp and Google reviews, your website loading speed, backlinks, internal links, and much more.  This means that there are numerous things that you could end up messing with that can easily ruin your SEO campaign.

While it is also possible to mess up a PPC campaign, those setbacks will not put you back. What’s more, it is extremely easy to find a PPC specialist who can fix the PPC problems for you.

5.     Pricing

When comparing PPC vs. SEO in terms of pricing, PPC is more expensive. Some of the terms used for tree service PPC campaigns are extremely costly. It is not uncommon for some of these keywords to set tree service companies back over $200 every time someone clicks on the website in the PPC ad. Keep in mind that not every click you pay will give you a job—this means that you may end up wasting money on useless clicks.

SEO can generate leads at a fraction of the PPC cost, under certain conditions. Because SEO involves a large number of varying ranking factors, it is possible that you already have invested in your tree service website in ways that may help you with Search Engine Optimization. With your website already in a good position in terms of SEO, using this option to generate leads could bring in returns at a more affordable cost.

The Winner: Search Engine Optimization

Although SEO does come with some limitations, it generates better tree service leads. If you compare your tree service leads worth with the amount you spend on SEO to get these leads, chances are, you will notice your leads are more affordable and your return on investment is pretty high. If you are focusing on your company’s long-term success and health, SEO is the more ideal option.