Industry Trends

SEO vs. PPC: Does Mobile Matter?

Is your phone in your hand right now? In your pocket? Are you reading this on your phone screen? It’s no doubt that smartphones changed the way we consume news, media and entertainment. However, has the need for mobile-friendly websites diminished? Will mobile content in SEO hold a candle to PPC and other paid search campaigns?

Google Indexing

When we talk about search engine optimization, we’re really talking about ranking in Google. According to Google’s updates, the search engine started mobile-first indexing in July 2019. This update would prioritize mobile content when presenting query results, making mobile-friendly content necessary to rank for relevant queries. This is no surprise since Google has been prioritizing mobile-friendly versions of sites since 2018. However, this made mobile a priority for indexing as well.

Mobile SERP

Like the desktop SERP, the mobile SERP is occupied mostly by ads. According to David Clemen, the SERP leaves no room for organic search results above the fold. The screenshot above proves this point.

This has caused an over 14% decrease in organic search traffic on mobile devices. With organic search generating only 26% of traffic, is an investment in organic search a waste of money?


PPC (pay-per-click) ads appear, like queries, at the presence of designated keywords. This means that when your ad fulfills the auction’s qualities to appear in a search query, it will display before the organic search results.

In that same screenshot, only paid ads appear above the fold, making PPC an attractive option for gaining traffic.


Even though organic search is on the decline, content cannot lack in quality. Google’s in-SERP results can’t compete with high-quality content written by experts offering both reliable facts and educated opinions. Writing well-researched articles and producing longform videos will still accrue a relevant audience in a quality over quantity approach. Working with a combination of PPC and SEO is the way to go. PPC will earn prospective customers or clients while SEO will generate an interested audience.

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Author : Marcella Micillo

Marcella is a digital marketing specialist based in Connecticut. With experience in editorial content creation and social media marketing, Marcella entered the digital media world through food writing, and has been published in The Valley Table, Edible Long Island and Edible East End. When she's not writing about the latest marketing trends for LSC Digital, she's publishing lifestyle content to her own blog. Linkedin

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