Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Search Engine Marketing is over and above SEO but it’s only a subset of your overall Internet Marketing Strategy. As you might expect, “organic” SEM is a “natural” way to improve your ranking in search engines and therefore drive traffic to your website. The most common form of organic SEM is search engine optimization (SEO). SEO refers to a variety of techniques designed to help your website rank higher in search engine results.

What is SEM?

SEM is the marketing process with a goal of getting more visibility in search engines either by getting more free traffic (SEO) or paid traffic (Paid search advertising).

Through paid search advertising you essentially buy advertising space in the search engine results. So instead of trying to rank higher and get free traffic you pay to appear in front of the searches.

The most well-known advertising agency for PSA is Google Adwords. Through Google adwords you can get your ads to appear in the Google search results and you pay only for the clicks on your ads.

This is also the reason why the whole process is called Pay-per-click or PPC. Bing and Yahoo have a similar system but it not so successful and widely known as Adwords.

How SEM Works

Search engines use complicated algorithms to ensure the most relevant results are returned for each search, including location and other available information.

In paid search advertising, sponsored ads appear at the top of and on the side of search engine results pages to gain more visibility and prominence than the organic results.

Let’s say that you are a customer looking for a product or service online. You go to a search engine and type in your search terms (also known as keywords).

In your search results page, you will come across various company ads whose keywords match the keywords in your search.

These ads appear in prominent locations on the page – along with the other search listings that match your keywords. The paid listings are highly relevant to your specific search, making it likely that you will click on them.

Now let’s take a look at how SEM works from the marketer’s perspective.

SEM networks are self-serve operations. Once a marketer selects a network, he or she can get a campaign up within a short period of time.

When setting up a campaign within an SEM network, the marketer is prompted to:

  • Select a set of keywords related to their website or product;
  • Select a geographic location for the ad to be displayed within;
  • Create a text-based ad to display in the search results;
  • Bid on a price they are willing to pay for each click on their ad.

Text-only ads are easy to produce. Marketers enter a headline, text for the body of the ad, a call-to-action and a URL for the hyperlink.

Through paid search advertising you essentially buy advertising space in the search engine results. So instead of trying to rank higher and get free traffic you pay to appear in front of the searches.

The most well-known advertising agency for PSA is Google Adwords. Through Google adwords you can get your ads to appear in the Google search results and you pay only for the clicks on your ads.

This is also the reason why the whole process is called Pay-per-click or PPC. Bing and Yahoo have a similar system but it not so successful and widely known as Adwords.

How SEM Workshow search engine marketing works for getting results

Search engines use complicated algorithms to ensure the most relevant results are returned for each search, including location and other available information.

In paid search advertising, sponsored ads appear at the top of and on the side of search engine results pages to gain more visibility and prominence than the organic results.

Let’s say that you are a customer looking for a product or service online. You go to a search engine and type in your search terms (also known as keywords).

In your search results page, you will come across various company ads whose keywords match the keywords in your search.

These ads appear in prominent locations on the page – along with the other search listings that match your keywords. The paid listings are highly relevant to your specific search, making it likely that you will click on them.

Now let’s take a look at how SEM works from the marketer’s perspective.

SEM networks are self-serve operations. Once a marketer selects a network, he or she can get a campaign up within a short period of time.

When setting up a campaign within an SEM network, the marketer is prompted to:

  • Select a set of keywords related to their website or product;
  • Select a geographic location for the ad to be displayed within;
  • Create a text-based ad to display in the search results;
  • Bid on a price they are willing to pay for each click on their ad.

Text-only ads are easy to produce. Marketers enter a headline, text for the body of the ad, a call-to-action and a URL for the hyperlink.