In today's digital age, SEO (search engine optimization) and SEM (search engine marketing) are two popular digital marketing buzzwords. Unfortunately, it can be easy to confuse the two and differentiates them from one another.
So, who do we differentiate SEO from SEM? And how do the two work? Continue reading this post to discover the role SEO and SEM play in digital marketing.
What is SEO?
SEO is the process of optimizing your website to bring you free traffic. With SEO, brands don't have to pay for appearing in search results. Instead, they use several tactics that prompt search engines to rank their content at the top position. However, SEO includes hundreds of techniques, which are grouped into three categories.
- Technical SEO is the process of optimizing your site for the indexing and crawling phase. With technical SEO, search engines will index and crawl your webpages without any problems.
- On-page SEO optimizes each page of a website to appeal to search results. These strategies include keyword research, keyword optimization, and content creation.
- Off-site SEO is the process of getting references from other high-quality websites to increase your website trust in search engines eyes. Off-page SEO techniques include managing directory profiles, local listings, and link building from other reputable sites.
What is SEM?
SEM is part of digital marketing that uses paid tactics through PPC advertising to earn visibility on search engines. So, instead of trying to rank your website organically and get more traffic, you will have to pay to appear in front of the search results.
Google Ads, for example, is one of the most popular Internet advertising platforms. Through Google Ads, your ads will appear in the search results while you pay only for clicks ads.
SEM vs. SEO: The Similarities
- Both help a brand appear in the search result
- Both are designed to drive more traffic to a website
- Both require knowing your audience
- Both use keyword research to uncover popular search terms
- Both target specific keywords
- Both require testing and continual optimization
SEM vs. SEO: The Differences
- SEM search placements include using an "Ads" while SEO does not.
- SEM use ad extensions while SEO use featured snippets.
- You pay each time a user clicks on your ads with SEM results while paying nothing when a user clicks with SEO result.
- SEO has a more click-through rate than SEM.
- SEO adds value to your business over time, while SEM does not.
Which one is better, SEO or SEM?
SEO makes complete sense for some business while SEM is out of the question. And for others, SEO may look like a good option when compared to SEM. But in our own view, both have extreme value and should be part of your marketing strategy.
Not Sure Where to Start? Give Us a Call!
The web strategy experts at Zimmer Marketing can help you. We know how industrial buyers think, work, and search. Contact us today at 417-624-1025 to plan your SEO or SEM campaign in Joplin, MO.