Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is a specific digital marketing technique across search engines, used for paid search.

Google Ads is a favourite paid search engine tool. 96 percent of marketers use search engine marketing to provide content to their searchers.

SEM leverages search engines such as Google to reach customers at the perfect place and time. The term, SEM, is interchangeably used with other terms like Paid Search Ads, Paid Advertising, and Pay-per-Click.

Some other terms frequently used to discuss SEM are:

  • Cost-per-Click: CPC is the amount you pay when an ad is clicked
  • Cost-per-Million-Impressions: CPM is another way of paying for search ad where you pay for visibility
  • Click-through-Rate: CTR is the number of clicks the website received from people who saw your ad, even if not click
  • Impressions: The number of times an ad was visible on the screen, regardless of the person seeing it

To get things right, you need a proficient search engine marketing agency for assistance.

SEM vs. SMA

Some social network channels offer ads – its social media advertising (SMA). However, it is not the same as search engine marketing.

SMA campaigns display ads based on the data collected by the social media company about a particular person. It targets people based on their interests, buying behaviour, location, and other relevant factors.

SEM, on the other hand, depends on keywords and key phrases. It targets people performing searches through search engines.

While SEM and SMA are not interchangeable, they may work together to increase brand visibility and awareness and boost sales.

SEM vs. SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) is also confused with SEM, but they are not the same. Nonetheless, they are interdependent and could coexist.

With SEO, the purpose is to help your blog or website to rank higher in organic Google search results.

For example, when you search for, “How to bake a pie,” Google algorithm tries to determine the best-suited web page to answer your query. Thereafter, it ranks pages accordingly in seconds.

Google ensures you find exactly what you are looking for right at the top of the number one page in the search engine result. SEO aims to position a website in such a way so that Google identifies you like the best website in response to the question asked.

To give prompt search result, Google determines the following:

  • Speed of the website
  • Whether people are clicking on your website once the result appears
  • How people are interacting with the website
  • Are people opening other pages
  • Are people staying on your page for a while

Google also wants to determine that your website is trusted. The best way to check whether you are trusted is to look at the number of links coming from other websites, or backlinks.

While it takes some time to develop trust and reach the first page in Google search, with SEM, you can bid on a specific keyword phrase. If your bid wins, your ad shows up on the first page.

Benefits of Search Engine Marketing

  • Instant Brand Awareness: SEM positions a website at the top of the page instantly, unlike other techniques that take a lot of time. In fact, even a new business with no visibility or recognition can grab attention. Having the right system in place is important. Only an expert search engine marketing agency can do that.
  • Quick Revenue Generation: With a relevant ad copy, and all strategies in place, you can see sales pouring in on the same day. It’s easy to kickstart with ads. However, it also requires proper maintenance to get the expected SEM ROI.
  • Allows Business Growth: SEM is incredibly scalable. Start small. Test things. See what’s working. Ensure low costs. Eventually, as revenue starts growing, increase the ad count. Remove ads that do not work. Refine campaigns. Increase daily ad spends.
  • Reaches Target Audience at the Right Time & Place: More than 93 percent of online experiences begin with search engines. In fact, search engines drive more traffic to a website than others. Visibility is everything in this business. SEM helps you get there.

There’s more to SEM than just this. Consult an expert engine marketing for a tailored package.

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