Introduction to Digital Marketing
Online search engines are powerful tools that are used by a majority of internet users to find businesses, products, and services in their areas. Search Engine Marketing (SEM) and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) exist under the umbrella of digital marketing. Both serve to utilize digital marketing outreach through search engines. Despite this similarity, both strategies differ in how they achieve an increase in traffic and visibility to your website.
SEO is an organic means of optimizing your website for crawlers which can increase your site’s ranking in search engines. On the other hand, SEM is a process of marketing in which your business’ visibility increases through paid traffic. This article will attempt to help you understand the principles of SEM as well as provide useful tips to help you achieve results.
What is SEM?
SEM is also known as Pay Per Click (PPC) marketing. Your business is paying for the site to show up when a potential customer searches for certain words or phrases. One benefit of SEM is that its effects are immediate, unlike SEO which can take months to yield results. SEM prompts increased targeting of leads and offers greater control over potential targets. These factors include the target’s location, languages, and other personal information.
A common misconception is that SEM requires a massive business investment, however SEM is cheaper than most traditional mediums of advertising. A main reason is that PPC only costs money when the user clicks on the ad. In fact, you can also set a limit on what you want to spend on PPC efforts daily or total. Eventually when your business establishes its reputation and clientele, you can gradually decrease the amount of investment in SEM.
Preparing For SEM
To develop an effective advertising strategy, you must identify prospective customers and the buzz words that they use when searching. Keyword research can be conducted through free keyword tools. Wordstreams’ Free Keyword Tool allows you to enter keywords related to your business and see associated keyword suggestions. These suggestions will also list keyword details including search volume and competitiveness.
A critical part of conducting research is analyzing your existing customers base and their demographics through tools such as Google Analytics. The platform has an audience tab which list the stats of site users including their ages, genders, and product purchase interests. In addition, Google Analytics contains an Acquisition tab which identifies your businesses’ methods of referring customers and web traffic to the site. In turn, this allows you to figure out where a target audience is from and what platforms you should advertise upon.
Based off these details, you can make a more informed decision about the keywords and phrases that your business invests in!
SEM Advertising Process
An effective ad relies on delivering a message that compels the audience to engage with the ad and subsequently visit the website. With the limited text space, it is important for your ad’s message to be concise and contain a call to action. This call to action should indicate what you want the user to do such as purchase a product. You may find it helpful to include discounts and offers within these messages which prompt users to click.
Perhaps the most important part of the ad is your ad headline which is the first thing that the audience will encounter. In Google AdWords, you can choose up to two headlines for each ad which allow up to 30 characters. It is highly recommended that you include their main keywords within the headline. This will allow a more immediate understanding of the intention of your advertisement for the user.
During the campaign, Google AdWords also offers its campaign evaluation abilities which allow you to see the real time results of your advertisement. Google AdWords documents the number of users clicking on the advertisement and performing the desired action such as purchasing a good. Adword provides a clickthrough rate (CTR) indicates your ad’s health percentage determined by how often users click on the ad. A lower CTR percentage indicates that you should try improving ad’s through some Google’s tips.
Understanding Ad Auctions
A large advertising budget does possess competitive advantages, however your success is also based on other factors. Search engines use ad auctions to determine the best ad to show at the current time. Through these auctions, you can choose your desired keywords and the maximum price you are willing to spend per click.
AdWords allow you to utilize specifications including an audience’s geographical location, age, and other details to target specific users. Finally, the ad auction assigns a rank to your ad based upon both the maximum bid value and quality score. This quality score is vital because your business can achieve a higher search result despite a lower bid than competitors.
SEM allows businesses to gain a competitive advantage by enabling users to select your product/service over others. Though there are costs associated, SEM’s effects are effective due to the widespread usage of search engines by consumers. In order to conduct a successful campaign, you should conduct research on the optimal keywords and target audience. If mismanaged, your campaign can rack up costs while producing dismal results.
SGSEO offers comprehensive that simplifies the SEM process for businesses. For a more accurate assessment of what we can do for your site, receive a free quote today!