What is the difference between organic and paid search results?
Posted on May 26, 2015
When you type a keyword into a search bar and press enter, you are likely to get thousands of results to choose from. Have you ever wondered where exactly those search results came from and how they came to be? There are two different types of search results. There is organic, and there is paid. Organic results are the "natural" results, meaning they are web page listings that most closely match what you searched. Paid results are, more often than not. advertisements. Any paid result is listed because the web page paid to be listed under those results. Depending on your search engine, it is usually easy to tell the difference between paid results and organic results. For example, if you use Google as your search engine, typically the paid results are at the very top and even have the word "ad" written next to them. Once a user can learn the difference, they can more easily sift through their results and use what is most valuable to them. Now that you can tell the difference between a paid result and organic result, you may want to know why a business would pay to have their webpage listed in the search results for certain key words. Even if a user doesn't click on the link of a paid search result, they are still getting exposure to the brand by simply seeing it listed. Advertisers bid on key words. Depending on their bid and ad budget, the search engine determines their rankings on the results. Placement can usually be based on how much an advertiser is willing to pay per click. Price increases depending on the competition centered around a key word. If a business can pay to have their web page come up at the top of a search, why do some businesses chose to forgo this method of marketing? The first clear reason is that it is cheaper. If you don't have to spend advertising money on this expense, it can be used elsewhere. Also, frequently users view organic search results as more credible. Each business must determine for itself the importance of paying for search results, or instead must allow for organic results.