Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

The advancement in technology as evidenced by the internet has created a vast market for products and services far beyond the limits set by boundaries, languages, and currencies. Businesses and organizations have realized the importance of web presence and as such have started committing resources to achieve the feat for the benefits and growth of their businesses or organizations.


To succeed in business or other activities online, being discoverable is primary and crucial, and this requires being visible in the search engines. For a long time, webmasters and business owners have deployed massive resources towards optimizing their websites to cash in on organic traffic from search engines. However, their efforts take time and efforts before significant results can be obtained.


Given this, there is an alternative to treading the long path of becoming visible on the search engines through Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and that is Search Engine Marketing (SEM), which aims to bypass the lengthy process and ensure success within a short time and reasonable budget. If you are tired of waiting for the results of your SEO efforts, try SEM, which is also referred to as search engine advertising.

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What Is SEM (Search Engine Marketing)?

SEM (Search Engine Marketing) involves all activities embarked upon to gain website traffic through paid methods on the search engines. For several years, SEM was used to include both SEO and paid search activities. However, after some time, SEM was adopted primarily for paid search activities.


Spending a lot of money and time on building a brand and optimizing a website only to discover that you are not close to the first five pages in the search engine results pages (SERPs) can be impossibly frustrating and disappointing considering the efforts and resources committed to the cause. In the meantime, comprehensive technical knowledge and in-depth keyword research will guarantee the promotion of a website and climbing through the SERPs, over time. Good SEO takes time.


However, SEM offers a quick fix to driving massive traffic to your website or offer. You can skip some steps and save a lot of time with SEM as your website, or offer becomes visible on the classified area of the search engine results pages to a large potential customer base when specific keywords you bided for are searched on the search engines.

SEM is also referred to as search engine advertising or pay per click advertising. It does not require extensive website optimization before seeing the results. However, you would pay some money to ensure that your advert is placed on the search engine results pages.


Search Engine Marketing incorporates several methodologies to achieve its results, and they include:

  1. Pay Per Click Advertising
  2. Paid Search Ads or Paid Search Advertising
  3. Pay Per Call
  4. Cost Per Click


All these methods of search engine advertising refer to the situation whereby the advertiser pays only when an action is taken on the displayed advert.


What Is Search Engine Advertising?

Search Engine Advertising (SEA) is a form of digital marketing or online marketing that focuses on using paid-for adverts that are displayed on the search engine results pages. This form of advertising is also referred to as Google advertising or pay per click advertising. Search Engine Advertising works in a way that every time a user clicks on the ad placed on the search engine, the business or individual that placed the advert pays a small amount of money.


This type of advert leverages on the power and indispensability of the search engine. Millions of searches take place every minute and having an advert displayed to relevant people who are interested in the product or service displayed increases the chances of sales of the item showed.


Search engine advertising is compelling because it aims at the targeted audience. The advert is displayed to users who search the internet using the keywords or search phrase that the advertiser bided for. Research has shown that people who use search engines to buy stuff disclose their intention by indicating what they want to buy and when. Hence, online advertisers bid on keywords to enable the display of their ads when people search for the exact keywords for the product or service they sell.


One of the reasons why Search Engine Advertising is powerful is that the advert is displayed only to the persons who are likely to buy. Thus, it is targeted.


How Search Engine Advertising Works

Whenever a user types a word into the search bar of a search engine like Google, the search engine brings up several links to websites considered to be relevant to the search query, and this is referred to as the search engine results page (SERP). It should be noted that the websites returned in the search results are organic results (the website pages considered to be best matches for the search term as they were indexed by the search engine algorithm).


So, the search engine advertising or paid advertising shows the web page of the advertiser at the top or bottom of the search engine results pages. One of the best things about Search Engine Advertising is that your business does not have to be big before you can use this form of marketing. Whether your clients are among the highest strata of the society or not, you can cash in on the power of the search engine. You don’t have to be big to use it.


If you have embarked on website optimization of your site and you do not see results as expected, you can take advantage of Search Engine Advertising to reach out to potential clients. SEO is a long-term procedure for a website, but search engine advertising offers one of the fastest means of increasing or directing massive traffic to your website page or offer.


The possibilities of targeting and retargeting the market are endless, and search engine advertising can be used as a temporary marketing strategy to try out a marketing strategy. It can be used to increase traffic or promote a brand. It can also be implemented as a strategy to drive traffic to a new website page, offer, product or service.

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What Is Pay Per Click Advertising?

Pay Per Click advertising or PPC refers to the Search Engine Advertising, and it is a model in which the advertiser pays each time a user clicks on the displayed advert. The advertiser is only charged only when a user clicks on his advert. For best results, the onus is on the advertiser to bid for profitable keywords that users are most likely to use when searching for products or services. To know the right keywords to target, keyword research should be carried out, and further localization of the research should be explored with possible long tail keywords.


When the right keywords are bided for, you can rest assured of explosive traffic to your website or offer. Keyword research, biding for keywords, running PPC or Search Engine Advertising could be challenging if you are not tech savvy. For best results, you should contact a marketing agency that you trust to help you set up a profitable campaign.


On a final note, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM), and Search Engine Advertising (SEA) are all parts of online marketing or digital marketing. However, SEO is free, technical, and takes time before it becomes effective. SEA or SEM, on the other hand, is paid advertising that generates results immediately as long as the right keywords are targeted. Meanwhile, both free and paid advertising models can be combined for best results and significant ROI.


ALSO SEE: Pay Per Click Management