175 new websites are created every minute. The internet is a huge place, and it’s only getting bigger. As our internet continues to grow, it becomes harder and harder to find your corner of the internet. Enter search marketing. Search marketing can help your site stake its claim in any niche or industry to become a #1 choice for the algorithms, and the people using them. Unfortunately, wanting to be #1 does little to make you #1. Luckily, we have you covered. In this quick guide, we’ve put together some key information about what search marketing is, and why it matters.

What is Search Marketing?

Search marketing is the strategy websites use to gain online presence and traffic on search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo, through unpaid and paid strategies. In very simple terms, the main strategy is to help your site get as close to the top of the search result as possible. Search marketing is sort of an umbrella term that covers two main strategies. The first is Search Engine Optimization or SEO. This is the unpaid strategy that utilizes algorithms to move pages up the ladder. Second, is Search Engine Marketing, or SEM. This is also sometimes referred to as PPC or pay-per-click. This is the paid strategy, and separate from search marketing, despite the similar names.

What are the Types of Search Marketing?

Search marketing is easy to understand at a base level, however, as you begin to dive deeper it becomes more and more complicated. We know search engines can prioritize specific results. But, how? Why? To understand some of these more intricate parts, let’s dive a little deeper into each strategy of search marketing.

Search Marketing Strategy #1: Search Engine Optimization

SEO is the process of growing a web presence through unpaid strategies. Through these efforts, links to your website will grow organically and gain traffic. Upon creating a page, or website, Google and other search engines, begin crawling your site attempting to determine what kind of information lives there. They review every piece of text, every image, and all the metadata to determine what your site might offer a user. A search engine’s purpose is to not only serve the most relevant search results but also the results that will offer the best experience for a user once they visit your page. If your site loads slowly, users leave quickly or are just ignoring your page entirely, the search engine may move your page lower in the search results. The aim of search marketing, and SEO specifically, is to prove to the algorithm why your site is the best option for its users. This is accomplished through content optimizations to match the intent of users, as well as technical aspects that help your site have an overall better experience.

When diving into SEO, it’s important to remember that nothing happens overnight. This is a long-term strategy that may take weeks or months before results are seen. This doesn’t mean SEO isn’t worth your time. In fact, SEO can be a great long-term strategy to slowly and steadily improve your site’s presence on the web.

Search Marketing Strategy #2: Search Engine Marketing

PPC is the paid arm of search marketing. Like SEO, the main goal is to get your site to appear at the top of the search results page. How that goal is achieved, though, is very different. Where SEO is a constant pull back and forth over many months, PPC is more of a set-and-reap type system. When using the PPC search marketing strategy, you pay money to a search engine to prioritize your site for specific keywords and searches. When someone searches one of these words your site will be one of the first results on the page, and if someone clicks it then you are charged for it. Hence the term pay-per-click. You pay for each click your advertisement gets. The cost and placement of your ad can be influenced by a number of factors. These include your maximum cost-per-click, ad quality, and the competition of the keyword you’re bidding on. The first thing considered is the quality of your ad. This is calculated using the relevancy your page and content has to the specific keyword, the user experience, and the expected click-through rate of your ad. With these factors, your ad will be given a rank of 1-10. 1 being poor and 10 being excellent. After determining your quality score, your max cost-per-click is taken into account. How much you’re willing to spend on an ad is up to you. You may not always spend the max on each click. So if you set the max CPC to $6.00 there may be times your ad will cost you $6 per click, though other times it may only cost $2.00. Once this is determined the ad is measured against competitors and shown on the screen based on those ranks.

Compared to SEO, PPC is a short-term strategy. It is meant to get results in days instead of weeks. These results can also be influenced much easier than SEO can. In SEO, if you want a page like a sign up page to rank, you need to find relevant keywords, optimize the content, then hope it shows in the search results. Whereas with PPC, you can pay for that same page to be shown directly to the audience you want to see it. While these results may be short-term and cost money, the benefits of PPC can rarely be overstated.

Why is Search Marketing Important?

Search engines account for 93% of all internet traffic. They are everywhere. Our phones have them, our computers have them, our TVs have them, and even some toasters have them. If it has an internet connection, chances are you can use it to search for just about anything. Search engines are our gateway to the internet. Search marketing acts as a way to help your site be one of the first things users see as they enter those gates.

Search marketing is a key growth strategy. Each strategy can help raise awareness for your site. As awareness increases, it becomes easier and easier to put your site in front of the users you want to reach. Without a search marketing strategy, your site can be lost in the hundreds of thousands of sites that may exist in your industry. If you want your business to grow and find the right types of users, search marketing can’t be ignored.

At this point, you’re probably thinking, “Wow, search marketing sounds great. But I’m no internet specialist. How can I possibly get my page to #1?” Well, don’t you worry. You have the passion to get your page to #1, and we have the expertise to get you there. Base Search Marketing can help you create and maintain a suite of SEO tools in our free portal. We can help you build links to your site and high-quality SEO-optimized content. For more information on how we can help you, contact us here.