Second Look into Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Written by Emma Natasha
February 10, 2022
People using search box for query, engine giving result. Vector illustration for SEO work, SERP, online promotion, content marketing concept

Last week, we discussed what Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is and how it works. And today, you are about to find out more insights about SEM here! Having acknowledged the basics of SEM, you need to also understand that SEM has both advantages and disadvantages. Further, there are also three fundamental strategies if you want your business to make the best out of SEM. Let’s check them out!

Benefits of SEM

After knowing some of the basics of SEM, you may be wondering “why should my business use SEM?”. There are tons of benefits to practicing SEM, especially in 2022 onwards when everything happens online. Here are some advantages to reap from SEM.

Wider Reach of Audience

SEM contributes to the making of a brand in the market, so this is beneficial for new businesses. As SEM is a broad component of digital marketing, it promotes branding. It can expand your brand’s reach beyond the regular demographics. When compared to traditional marketing, SEM offers more interesting opportunities, such as online purchasing of goods and services. 

Better Performance Indicator

Depending on your marketing efforts, you may review your performance and determine what you eventually need to optimize for better future performance with SEM. Google Ads, for example, provides very thorough information on the progress of your campaign, so you always know what is going on with your ads. This contains detailed information on the best-performing advertisements in terms of impressions, Click-Through-Rate (CTR), top-performing keywords, and so on. It allows you to assess the performance of your ads and measure the results acquired for each campaign.

Customizable Budget

You will have more control over the amount of money you spend on ad postings if you use SEM. You might start with a relatively small number so that you have less risk. As your results improve, you can gradually raise the amount you are willing to pay for ad postings.

Things to Anticipate about SEM

Despite its high effectiveness, SEM is not 100% foolproof, just like any other marketing strategies there are out there. Here are some of the drawbacks of SEM.

Can be Costly

Although you are able to customize your budget, solely depending on SEM can actually cost your business a lot of money. It is no secret that SEM’s most effective way is to pay a certain amount to bid on keywords and optimize PPC. Paid ads require money and depending on it for the long-term require bigger budgets overtime, so it is quite challenging for small businesses.

Crowded Competitors

SEM has grown in popularity, and many businesses strive to position themselves for the same keywords. This is why SEM is a field full of competitors aiming for the same target audience. Its success involves regular adapting and refining, as well as an eye for statistics and copy development. Costs grow as a result of the competition, and it might be difficult to obtain a high ROI at times.

Risk for Penalty

Unlike other alternatives, such as direct marketing, SEM implies “invading” the user’s territory with stuff that they did not seek out. In fact, if the client you’re trying to reach has an ad blocker, they could not see your ads. SEM, when utilized incorrectly or if you break Google’s SEM policies, can land you a Google penalty. 

3 Fundamental SEM Strategies

There are many ways to maximize your SEM, but for a starter, there are three fundamental SEM strategies that even a beginner can learn.

1 . Keyword Identification

Search engine is all about choosing the right keyword, so the target audience can find your brand. This is why keyword identification is at the heart of SEM, which involves understanding specific key phrases and terms relevant to your business. You can use tools offered by the search engine to determine which words are the most common. Google offers both free Google Trends and subscription-based Google Ads. These tools will assist you in identifying and tracking the popularity of terms and phrases that you want to use in your advertisements.

2 . Google Ads

Google Ads is a paid ads platform that comes within the pay-per-click (PPC) marketing channel, in which you (the advertiser) pay per click or per impression (CPM) over an ad. Google Ads is an effective technique to attract qualified visitors, or good-fit clients, to your business. Your brand will appear on the search engine results page (SERP) when your target customers look for items and services similar to yours on Google Search or Google Maps.  

Google Ads enables you to generate and deploy well-timed ads to your target audience from both mobile and desktop. However, metrics, keywords, and the load time of your own website are just a few of the things you still need to manually monitor on your own. Thus, knowing what search phrases to use in your advertising is critical to ensuring that they reach your specific target market.

3 . Landing Page Optimization

Another important part of SEM is landing page optimization. A landing page is not the same as your homepage, service page, or blog page. A landing page excludes a menu bar and a footer element. It also does not contain any links to other pages. What it does have is a title at the top of the page, a quick text that offers to solve the visitor’s concern, and a button that leads to their solution. SEO landing pages are ones that have been optimized for search engines, with elements that make them engaging to the algorithms that determine whether or not a page is helpful to visitors. 

Information should be displayed with little text and hyperlinks to other sites providing information, so it is concise, clean, and fast to load. This is due to the fact that page loading speed affects critical indicators of user engagement such as bounce rate, time spent on sites, and the number of unique visitors. If your landing page is overcrowded and slow to load, visitors will be discouraged from visiting for long. Less traffic to your pages may also indicate a lesser conversion rate from your site. The key is to use the same value proposition and messaging across all of your ads and landing pages.

Let us assist you if you are still unsure whether to use SEM or if your brand’s SEM tactics are properly created. Contact us so that we can work together to improve your company’s growth!