Is PPC faster than SEO in Malaysia? The SEO vs PPC ROI debate has been going on for years. Which is better: simply buying your way to the top of the search engines through a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign or cultivating your organic (or natural) search engine marketing strategy through search engine optimization (SEO)?

Read also: SEO Malaysia: A Way For You To Be On Top of Google’s Ranking

But which method is suitable for you to use in Malaysia? Is it better to pursue an organic-first approach and find consumers through search engine rankings, or is it better to invest in an advertisement at the top of a keyword results page?

Deciding where your digital marketing dollars should go is difficult for many business owners and often leaves people wondering which is the better strategy.

Is there a right or wrong answer? Could it be both? In order to make this decision, you have to understand the pros and the cons of both SEO and PPC.

Advantages of PPC

PPC, or pay-per-click, is a form of search engine marketing (SEM) where an advertiser pays a publisher (such as Google or Facebook) every time someone clicks on the ad. This model allows advertisers to pay only when consumers interact with their ads, meaning you attract people interested in your offer and ready to make a purchase.

Read also: The Benefit Of Using Pay Per Click (PPC) Advertising

This method is mainly associated with search engines as advertisers bid on search keywords relevant to their target markets. You may have noticed that the top search results are tagged with an “Ad” marker.

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The cost of PPC ads usually depends on your industry and the search volume of the keyword you’re targeting.

PPC advertising can help your business stay competitive in a crowded market and quickly get in front of their target consumers if you don’t have the domain authority to get your site ranking organically on search engines.

Here are 3 advantage of using PPC:

  • Once your PPC campaign starts, you’ll immediately start to see more traffic, clicks, and conversions. SEO can take months before you start to see your site moving up the search engine results.
  • PPC is scalable and controllable. You set your budget and have a decent idea of ​​how many leads you are getting in return. This helps you estimate an accurate budget for your digital marketing. SEO is not so cut and dry, and it can take longer or require more money if the industry or location you want to rank for is very competitive.
  • Using PPC means you don’t have to worry about a search engine’s algorithm impacting your position. You’re bidding on the top spots so your organic rank isn’t going to matter. With SEO, you have to ensure that you’re optimizing your site to Google’s standards of best practice or you could lose rank or be penalized for black hat tactics.

Which is Better for My Business? SEO or PPC?

Asking which is better between PPC vs SEO infographic is like asking whether it’s better to eat with a fork or spoon, it depends. So here are the pros and cons of SEO and PPC.

Pros of SEO

Here are some advantages of SEO.

SEO is Cheaper in The Long Run

In the long run SEO is a better investment than PPC, yes or no? Okay, so although SEO might cost time and money —to pay freelancers or agencies, and for SEO tools — it’s still cheaper than PPC in the long run.

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When you create content that ranks and drives traffic to your website, you no longer have to keep spending money to make your target customers see it. And when these customers decide to click on your link, it comes at zero cost, unlike a PPC campaign where you pay per click.

You Can Target Different Funnel Stages with SEO

Not all of your audience is at the same stage of the sales funnel.

Some are just getting to know your brand at the top of the funnel. And others are already at the bottom of the funnel, ready to pull out their wallets.

With SEO, you can create different content types (blog posts, guides, case studies) that meet each segment of your audience exactly where they are in the sales funnel.

Search Traffic is More Stable

Once you rank on Google, you can be sure of free traffic to your website or web pages as long as you keep optimizing them.

There’s also no off-and-on switch with SEO, unlike PPC marketing, where your website stops appearing on search results once your marketing budget dries up.

Organic Listings Build Brand Authority

Appearing consistently on search results for keywords related to your products and services helps build trust and brand authority with your target audience.

It also signifies to Google that you’re an expert on that topic or subject.

Cons of SEO

Here are some reasons why you might not love SEO :

Search Engine Algorithms Change

Search engines, especially Google, have changed their algorithm many times over the years. These changes mean that you’ll have to keep a close eye on your marketing strategy and organic results.

Optimize Your Website Regularly

Your job doesn’t end when you get your website to rank for target keywords. Over time, you’ll have to regularly optimize your content and web pages so that it continues to rank.

Optimization might include refreshing old articles and removing old/expired links.

SEO Takes Time to Show Your Result

If your website or domain is new, it’s unlikely that you’ll enjoy immediate results from SEO. The reason is that many factors affect how Google ranks websites.

It Requires High-Level Skills and Expertise

If you’re not hiring a professional, you’ll need to be an excellent writer and SEO expert to optimize your site for search engines properly.

It’s undoubtedly time-consuming and overwhelming to run a business while taking technical SEO, writing, and link-building classes.

Pros of PPC

PPC Offers Quick Result

While it can take months to see results from your SEO strategy, it can take a few hours to see results from your PPC campaign.

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PPC Ads Appear Above Organic Rankings

When you run a PPC campaign for your target keyword, your website would appear first on the search engine result page. This ranking makes your audience notice you first before scrolling to see other results.

PPC Allows You to Pinpoint Your Target Audience

While setting up a PPC campaign, you get to choose who you want to target with your ads.

Do you want people from a specific geographic area? Or people of a particular age? Marital status? Or interest? If so, then you should use PPC.

You Can Quickly Run A/B Tests on a PPC Ad

With a PPC campaign, you can run two different ads simultaneously to measure the one that converts better.

All you’ll have to do is change some ad elements like the ad copy and allow them to run for a period. Depending on the performance, you can decide to either “kill” the Google ads or continue optimization to improve your results.

Cons of PPC

PPC Ads are Expensive

Without money, you cannot run a PPC campaign.

You have to pay for every link that your audience clicks, meaning once your budget dries up, so does your traffic.

Also, a PPC ad can get even more expensive (as high as $40) when you’re in a competitive industry like legal or insurance.

Lower Profit Margins

While a PPC campaign might bring short-term wins, it’ll usually result in lower profit margins. Because PPC is a “pay to play” system, your customer acquisition costs (CAC) would continue to get higher without a significant increase in the prices of your products and services.

PPC Ads Become Stale After a While

You have limited control over your paid ad because of the rule set by ad platforms like Google. As such, your copy might have similar wording to your competitors, which makes it easy for your audience to pass over quickly.

So which is better?

Well, it depends on your industry and budget. Ideally, both SEO and a well-structured PPC campaign tend to lead to the best results for a business. You’ll quickly begin seeing more clicks and leads come in to ensure that your business is making money while you wait for your SEO efforts to pay off.

If you have the budget and you need to see an immediate impact. Then engaging in a PPC campaign will show you the fastest results. But it can still take time and trial and error to hone in on ads that convert without overpaying for results.

If you have a longer timeline in mind and don’t need to see immediate results. Then SEO efforts can offer some of the best results and return over time. You won’t be subject to always paying for website traffic and leads or having to come up with new ads to combat Ad blindness.


Whether you choose to go with SEO vs SEM (PPC) ultimately depends on your business situation. So does PPC help SEO?  Take your time to evaluate the pros and cons of both SEO and PPC to see which is the right fit for you. And if possible, integrate the two strategies to see even more outstanding results for your business.

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