Measuring the Strengths of PPC and SEO

IMPAQT Case Study: Automotive


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Sometimes, marketers struggle to understand the importance of using PPC and SEO together. Many of our clients have asked us questions like:

  • Why pay for clicks when I have a top Organic position and get these clicks for free?
  • If my PPC campaign is doing well, why should I perform SEO?

While our experience and extensive testing on this subject shows that PPC and SEO work together to strengthen a company's competitive position and create additional brand awareness, we realize that each client's situation is different. It is important to understand exactly how and to what extent PPC and SEO work together, so that budgets can be allocated toward the most effective means of Search Marketing.

A leading car manufacturer sought IMPAQT's help to spend their marketing budget most efficiently between PPC and SEO. They wanted to identify whether PPC or SEO provide them with the most conversions and how these two mediums work together.


How could IMPAQT determine the interaction between PPC and SEO and identify the most efficient way to allocate the client's budget?


IMPAQT paused all of the client's branded PPC campaigns for one month, in order to understand:

  • How a lack of PPC presence within search results would affect Organic site traffic and overall site actions;
  • How much PPC cannibalization occurred; and
  • The incremental benefit of PPC to Organic listings.

During this test, we recommended that the client use their Branded PPC budget toward extending their presence in non-branded and competitor terms.


The results of this test showed that while branded PPC was turned off:

  • Total visits decreased by more than 10%
  • An average of approximately 4,000 visits per day were lost
  • Visits fell by more than 50% within make and model branded campaigns

As a result, the client was able to better understand the relationship between PPC and SEO. They allocated PPC funds toward campaigns where Organic visibility was poor to see an incremental lift in market share and brand awareness.


Merkle | IMPAQT - Intelligently Using the Power of Search Marketing and Digital Display