What is Search Engine Marketing? How can I employ search engine marketing to my website? Isn’t having a website enough to gain a presence online? These are the sort of questions that the average business owner or entrepreneur asks and unfortunately, most have no clue about.

Here is a definition on search engine marketing.

Search Engine Marketing (SEM for short) involves the marketing of a website using free submission (via organic search) and using paid advertising via pay per click (ppc for short) in the search engines.

How can I advertise or market via the search engines?

For the purpose of this article, we will use Google as an example of the search engine of choice – considering it is one of the biggest search engine on the planet. Now, imagine you are in New York and if you do a search in Google for a specific keyword – let’s say for example ‘flowers in New York’.

You will see that there are some links on the right hand side of the page. These links are ads that are four lines long composing of the first line as the headline. The second and third line are the copy or information about the ad and the last line being a hyperlink which leads to the actual page that leads to a sale or an action to a sale.

You will also notice on the top right hand side of the search results stating “Sponsored Links”. This means, the right hand side of the results are ads that other companies or marketers pay for in order to quickly gain more leads which may lead to a sale, exposure for their goods or services or be able to test quickly, quantify and calculate according to their ROI, whether there is a market for their product or service.

These sponsored links on Google are called Google Adwords. You will need to have to sign up with Google Adwords to be able to put an ad on their sponsored links. Once signed up, you can bid for as many keywords (that is relevant to your ad) as you want and you will have to pay for every click (by the user) that is generated from the ad via Google.

Just note that Google calculates how much you will have to pay per click for the keyword and the cost will depend on how popular it is. The higher the demand for the keyword, the higher is the price that you will have to pay for the keyword per click – hence, the term pay per click.

So, whilst SEM is called Search Engine Marketing which involves marketing online via organic search using search engine optimization (SEO for short) and paid advertising – you will also come across a term called Pay Per Click marketing (PPC marketing for short). PPC marketing however, is another article in itself.

We hope that this has helped you understand a bit more about the basics of search engine marketing.  If you need to find out more ways on how you can use SEM to your marketing tool kit, please contact or email us via our website.

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