Posted to Ben Finklea's blog on July 10th, 2009

SEO and PPC to Double in Five Year Forecast

In a report released this week by Forrester, PPC and SEO is forecasted to double in size over the next five years. This research predicts that a huge emphatic change will move away from traditional media and towards online advertising and marketing over the next few years. The new emphasis will be trending specifically towards to Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Pay-Per-Click (PPC), which is great news to the SEO industry.

According to the report, digital marketing will be a $55 million industry by 2014, representing 21 percent of the overall national marketing spend in the US. For SEO alone, the spend is predicted to be around $5 billion. This trend is proof that the message is getting through that SEO and PPC can achieve the same as traditional media, but for less money.

This is the beginning of a paradigm shift towards new media spending, with 60 percent of advertising gurus already investing in digital media rather than traditional avenues. SEO and PPC are expected to receive the majority of that investment.

The most intriguing takeaway from the report is that it overall advertising budgets are predicted decline. The money being reallocated from traditional to online advertising and marketing tools, campaigns will be able to accomplish their current goals with less investment costs. Any money that isn’t spent is likely to be invested in research, innovation and customer service that can further develop online marketing strategies.

There is already much concern over this five year forecast within the online community. As technology and the Internet change quickly and dramatically, it is hard to rely heavily on any projections over three years. Consumers online behaviors change so frequently that marketing tactics and spending decisions will be affected. The interactive tools available today, i.e. social media, can also change and evolve faster than quarterly and annual budgets, that there is much speculation on the weight this forecast carries.

In the current online marketing climate, PPC is more prominent than SEO, with most companies preferring to invest in paid search. However, organic search is gaining popularity with a wider audience, which will lead more businesses and brands in the direction of SEO for more natural traffic and conversions. Despite the speculation, readers can safely take away that SEO and PPC are here to stay and are taking more precedence in online strategic communications. True, consumer behaviors do change and very quickly, but unless the Mayan Calendar holds true, people will still be utilizing the Internet in five years more than they are now.

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