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Stephen Logan

Is Paid Search in Decline?

14th May 2009 SEO Blog 1 minute to read

Paid search is, was and always will be an extremely hard-fought arena for online marketers. This looks set to intensify further after Hitwise reported that paid search traffic share is down 26% across the full range of sites that they monitor. According to their research, it now accounts for only 7.25% of total Internet visits in the past month.

This could of course be happening for any number of reasons; advertisers reducing ad campaigns, more of a reliance on organic search matches or fewer relevant ads being available to searchers could all be partially accountable for the slump.

Despite this fall, there’s no reason whatsoever to withdraw PPC campaigns. More than anything, this should serve as a wakeup call for anyone who has been coasting along with their paid campaign for a while and only achieving moderate results. It also emphasises the need for your website to achieve a high search ranking; because whilst PPC advertising may be suffering, it is evident that other areas, particularly organic search, must be benefiting. So this may not be the worst time to boost your SEO content.

In truth though, the most drastic drop in paid search was seemingly found in larger companies, such as Home Depot and USAA, who are likely to have diminished their advertising campaigns due to a naturally high search ranking. So perhaps this is more a sign of the current financial climate and the cost cutting measures that big businesses are going through, rather than a bleak vision of the Internet as a whole.

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