Search engine marketing – three words that represent the center of the modern marketer’s work. But what exactly do they mean? A basic definition of the term is as follows:
Search engine marketing is an online marketing strategy performed by a Roofing SEO company that aims to increase the visibility of a website in search engine results.
Why Is Search Engine Marketing Important?
The world we live in is a digital world. Consumers look for products and services online, using search engines (especially Google). They type in keywords, such as “organic food” or “leather shoes”, and the search engine displays the results on several pages. These results are websites which are optimized for the respective keywords. However, the most prominent results are those that companies paid for to appear at the very top of the search results.
While ranking for search results on the first page of Google involves a lot of time and work (called search engine optimization), search engine marketing is the answer for companies that want to grow their visibility in a shorter time.
How Does Search Engine Marketing Work?
The first step is to understand how search engines work. They have an algorithm that matches the keyword typed in by internet users with content on websites. This algorithm becomes more and more complex as time goes by.
At the beginning, Google would display results simply by searching for the presence of the keyword in a web page. This led to a lot of abuse and black hat (unethical) marketing tactics. Some websites were filled with popular search keywords just to rank high on Google, although the rest of the content did not match them at all.
Now, the algorithm used by Google takes into account many factors beside the keyword itself, such as context, whether a website is optimized for mobile browsing, how frequently there is fresh content added to the website, etc. Thus, it gets harder to trick the system and thus, there is only one simple option left for companies that want to feature high in Google ranking: to pay.
What Are the Key Steps for an Effective Search Engine Marketing Strategy?
Search engine marketing is also known as pay per click marketing. The promoted links that appear at the very top of Google search results are there because companies agree to pay to Google an amount of money for every click.
Thus, it is important to know where and how the marketing budget is invested. The first step towards a solid search engine marketing strategy is keyword research. Marketing specialists use various online tools (some of them offered for free by Google) to discover keywords related to the business that are frequently used by consumers to search for the respective product or service.
The second step is to define a geographical area for the audience that will see the promoted links. This is very important especially for local businesses (grocery stores, gyms, hair stylists), because it would be pointless to try to attract clients from hundreds of miles away, or even from a different country.
The third step is to define a bid value – how much the company is willing to pay for each click it gets. Again, it is important to let an experience marketer deal with this aspect, because there is a risk of paying too much for clicks, or setting such a low bid that the promoted links won’t be displayed at all.