How to Generate Leads in South Africa

How to Generate Leads in South Africa

Generic lead generation methods don’t work everywhere. So we’ve complied a list of effective methods to generate quality leads for your business in South Africa. Some you can do yourself however, you might need some help with others.

This guide provides a list of the two most effective South African lead generation methods. Also included is an overview of:

  • What each of these methods are
  • An overview of how they work
  • Details of their benefits and drawbacks
  • When they should be used
  • The ideal budget to run each method effectively
  • What you will need for each method


1: Pay-Per-Click Advertising – Better known as PPC

What is PPC?

Pay-per-click is essentially a form of digital marketing that involves buying clicks on popular platforms such as:

  • Google Search Engine Results Page (SERPS)
  • Google Ads Network – Youtube, and other monetized Platforms
  • Facebook, Instagram and other Meta Owned Platforms
  • LinkedIn Ads


How Does PPC work?


Most often you would start off signing up to an advertising dashboard. We have listed the most popular platforms and their links below:

Google Ads Manager – For Google, Youtube, Google Ads Network

Meta Ads Manager – For Facebook & Instagram

LinkedIn Ads Manager

Set up your Ads account/s. Consider consulting a digital marketing agency for help as this is quite detailed.

Once the accounts are set up, you add your card details and run your campaigns. (not as simple as it sounds.) Google will then display your ads to potential clients based on the criteria, location and platform defined in your ads accounts.

What are the benefits of PPC?


The main benefits of running PPC ads are:

The returns are Instant: As soon as your campaigns are live they will start generating a return on investment.

PPC ads are effective: You only pay when customers click your ad. This boosts the Click-through-rate (CTR). You’ll be getting your money’s worth.

Easy to control: With PPC ads you have the ability to control not only the budget but how its being used. You can do split testing to find what angle to take and type of ads perform best for your niche.

Targeting advantage: You can instantly target your ideal customers giving you an advantage over organic forms of marketing.

Data: Using the statistics from your PPC ads you can form other types of campaigns such as SEO strategies. Not to mention the advantage you will have when performing keyword and content research.

What are the drawbacks of PPC?


Time Investment: PPC ads need to be monitored and constantly adjusted to achieve your desired results. Leaving your ads to run unsupervised can lead to bad lead quality and budget wastage.

Clicks aren’t sales: You need to develop an effective funnel in order to close deals. If clients are clicking on your ads but aren’t interested in your product you’re losing money.

Your not the only one using PPC: This might not apply to everyone but, some markets are very competitive. The average Cost-Per-Click in the travel industry for example, is R85.00. If you’re a small travel agency with a small budget, PPC might not be viable for you.

The results are often fast, but the return on investment might not be. To find the right formula, time is needed. If you don’t monitor your ads and invest the time to improve the results, you may not turn a profit.


When Should You Use PPC?


When time is of the essence: When set up correctly PPC can provide instant visibility of your brand. SEO for example often takes 6 months or more.

Time-Sensitive Campaigns: It’s Christmas time and you want to push your holiday packages. Setting up an SEO strategy will take too long and display these packages year-round. PPC is the most ideal for these situations as they can be disabled in January and re-run next December.

E-commerce stores: Want to make sure that a product shows up right away and stops showing once stock runs out? Once again, PPC is the most effective method.

Adding to your SEO Strategy: While it is true that 70% of searchers click on the first organic result. (results that don’t have a sponsored badge). That leaves 30% of traffic for your ranking keywords are lost. So even if your currently ranking number 1 for Cars for sale, you can fill that gap with PPC.


What’s The Ideal Budget For PPC?


The ideal budget for your PPC Campaigns should depend on the following:

Determining the ideal budget for your PPC campaign comes with many steps. It is best to start with what you business can afford comfortably, running your ads and fine tuning your campaigns. Once you have an acceptable ROI, you can then gradually increase your budget to the sweet-spot.

Yes, you can spend too much. It is best to increase you budget gradually and dial it back once your ROI gets worse.


What do you need to start PPC?


Ads account: This can be Google ads, Meta or LinkedIn (Most effective in SA)

Funnel or Landing Page: Once your client clicks on your ad, they need to be sent somewhere. This can be a well-designed website, a Facebook Page or a booking form for an appointment.

Client Persona: You will need to create a detailed list of what your ideal potential clients are like. You need to know who you will be targeting.

Keywords: Find out what the most popular keywords are for your Niche. Among those, it’s best to find Transactional (Keywords that show intent to buy like, book flights and Houses for sale). Once you have done that you should find keywords that have an affordable cost-per-click. These are usually long-tail keywords like House for Sale Pretoria East and 24-hour dentist Cape Town.

Comfortable Budget: Starting with a comfortable budget is the best option in the beginning. Many businesses start off burning through a huge budget targeting the wrong keywords and abandoning PPC altogether. You need to be comfortable financially throughout the process in order to make your campaign effective in the long run.

A good Ad: This is probably the most important part of the process. You can get hold of the right people, at the right time, in the right place and not get any sales. Make sure that your ads are clear and professional or you won’t see any results.

Optional: A good marketing agency could provide valuable knowledge and direction towards a successful PPC campaign.

2: Search Engine Optimization – Commonly Known As SEO


What is SEO?

SEO stands for search engine optimisation

The process of optimising your appearance and visibility online. This process falls into multiple sections that combined, improve your rankings on Google Search Engine Results Pages (SERPS).

An effective SEO Strategy can push your website to the top of Googles SERPS. Giving you loads of relevant organic traffic and with a good funnel, high quality leads.

SEO is arguable the most effective marketing strategy when it comes to lead generation, if performed correctly.


How Does SEO Work?


Search engines crawl the internet looking for pages and data to add to their index. (Google stores data in their index and from there serves it to people searching for related content online.) This data could come in the form of:

  • News
  • Articles or blog posts
  • Directories
  • Pricing or Product pages
  • Videos and Images
  • Local Business Listings
  • And other More Specific data like Documents


There are many aspects to when and why content is served but the main factors are:

  1. Links to a domain – This shows search engines that the domain has authority for certain keywords or topics.
  2. Content – Search engines can tell if the quality on a website is good or bad and will rank that content accordingly.
  3. Keywords – Using the keywords found in content, search engines will compare the relevancy of the content and inbound links. This will also determine how it will rank in SERPS.
  4. Social Metrics – How many shares does the content have? Are there many interactions with it?
  5. Traffic – The more traffic that content gets the more search engines will serve that content to other users searching related keywords. This is assuming that the bounce rate or interaction time of past users is in order.
  6. Domain Authority – Domain authority is a metric that is calculated on the following:
  • How many relevant backlinks a domain has (Authority of these links also play a role). Spammy links work against SEO.
  • Content Quality
  • Social signals
  • Site Speed
  • Root domain


Read into this article on how SEO really works for more details.


What Are The Benefits of SEO?


SEO is Sustainable: You can dominate your market effectively and affordably. If you’re willing to put in the time and money over a longer period.

Free high-quality traffic from Search Engines: SEO provides free traffic. By free we mean that the clicks themselves are not charged for, like with PPC.

Exposure: By creating content to solve problems that your customers are facing, you’re getting exposure. Not every article needs to serve as an advert.

Return on investment (ROI): Results served organically are generally more accurate than paid ads. This is where the 7/3 rule comes in with 70% of searchers clicking on the first Organic result. Leaving the other 30% clicking on Sponsored results.

Visibility: Put plainly, people that don’t know about your business, find it.

Authority: When you show up on the first page of SERPS, you’re seen as having authority in that market. With Authority comes trust. With trust comes leads and sales.

There are countless upsides to SEO. Here’s an article about 10 more benefits of SEO

What Are The Drawbacks Of SEO?


SEO takes time: The process of Search Engine Optimization involves building authority and being indexed by Search Engines. This can be off-putting to most business owners who want to get the ball rolling quickly.

Large Investment: This, however, may not apply to all businesses. Competing in a competitive niche can get costly due to the competitive keywords. You will need to generate a vast amount of content and backlinks in order to gain authority. Content is not free and backlinks are extremely time-consuming to generate but, without them you won’t rank.

There’s no guarantee: There’s no surefire way to know that you will rank on the first page. Depending on your industry it might take years to get to where you want to be.

No Control: When search engines update their Algorithm you could loose up to 80% of your rankings if you don’t adapt. In some cases you might not be able to make a quick change. In a case like that you will have to rebuild parts of your site in order to rank well again.


When Should You Use SEO?

You are looking for a long-term and sustainable lead generation strategy: SEO is a long-term feat. If you’re looking to invest in something that will grow your business substantially then SEO is the right method for you.

You have time to run a project: This way you can assist with the process yourself and reduce costs. If you are willing to write articles about your niche, do research and monitor the results. You will achieve your marketing goals.

You have a small budget: SEO doesn’t have to cost anything. SEO is something that can start off small and grow with time. Later on once there are desirable results you can increase your investment and dominate your market.

You have a large budget: You don’t need to put that all into one campaign. SEO and other SEM strategies work well together and the results of their combination in most cases, exceed expectations.

What’s The Ideal Budget For SEO?


There is no set budget “in the beginning” : Search engine optimization can start off without a budget. Over time, as the project grows and the closer your keywords get to a good rank, the more competitive it gets. There will always come a point where investment is needed.

We suggest starting off with a comfortable budget, as with most methods. This will not guarantee ranking on the first page instantly. If utilized correctly a sizable budget can help to speed up the process.


Read this article on SEO for Small Businesses to find out more on SEO budgets


What do you need for SEO?


To start and run a successful search engine optimization campaign you will need the following:

A strategy: Developing an SEO strategy will require some intense research. This is the foundation and direction of all of the work that is going to be performed.

A website: SEO requires an optimized and Quick website. Your website will serve as the product of your efforts. The requirements for a website to rank well are as follows:

Website and content quality – Search engines want quality content, that’s what they are there for.

Indexability – Search engines need to be able to crawl your site. This includes: A sitemap, Internal linking, and clear navigation.

A Keyword and Content Strategy: You need to know what keyword to target. Once you have found the ideal keywords for your niche, you need to create quality content around them.

A link-building strategy: This entails collecting domains relevant to your niche. Then discover ways to obtain a link from their domain to your site or content.

An SEO Specialist or agency: You can hire an in-house SEO Expert or make use of an agency. This is important as your content will need to be optimized in order to rank higher. SEO specialists optimise content in some of the following ways:

Adding optimised title tags to your pages

Adding Optimised Meta Descriptions to your pages

Adjust keywords using performance information from google search console

Performing technical SEO and Site Audits to keep your website crawlable and loading fast

On-page SEO – All of the above while keeping user experience in mind

Off-Page SEO:

Content marketing

Guest Posting

Video Marketing

Social media Signals

Online Reputation

Branded Searches

Review Management

And LOTS more

While it is possible to do some of these yourself. SEO is a combination of many aspects to achieve a set goal. A holistic approach is best for this method to be effective enough to generate enough sales to make it sustainable.

Should you go with PPC or SEO?


There is no definitive answer to this. Simply put, both have their advantages and Drawbacks.

SEO has a higher return on investment but success has a lead time.

PPC has an instant return with a lower return on investment without a lead time.


Should you require any assistance choosing what’s right for your business, Book a Lead generation Consultation with us. Commitments? What commitments?

Take a look at one of South Africa’s leading SEO Companies


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  1. Guy Johnson

    Oh my goodness! Awesome article dude! Thank you, However I am experiencing difficulties with your
    RSS. I don’t know why I cannot subscribe to it. Is there anyone else getting similar RSS problems?

    Anyone that knows the solution will you kindly respond?

    • Reace Marais

      Hi Guy,

      Thanks for reading!

      We don’t have RSS access for now but will have subscriptions set up soon.

      Kindly send a mail to to subscribe.


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