What’s SEM?

Sara Martín
5 March, 2019

SEM is the acronym of Search Engine Marketing but… what does this mean exactly?

SEM involves paying for promoting and advertising your product or service on search engine pages.

For example, you must pay the platform Google Ads to get your ad displayed on Google when someone is searching for “red shoes”. 

In this post, we are going to explain to you what is and the advantages that it offers over other types of ad campaigns.

Buf before learning about SEM, we have to tell you that we have a digital marketing dictionary where you can learn every concept within the digital marketing wold…

▶️ Digital Marketing Definitions ◀️

SEM Definition 

First, SEM is an essential part of a marketing strategy on search pages.

When we normally talk about SEM, we refer to any paid ad campaign on search pages. However, if we are 100% accurate, SEM involves any marketing action that we make on search pages, either a paid action or not. By saying this, we are including SEO as part of SEM.

It’s common to use tools and strategies that have the objective of increasing the visibility and improve the accessibility to online sites and web pages through search engines.

Normally, web search engines offer the possibility to advertise on their own platforms.

From the most popular, like Google Ads, to other less common, like Yahoo! Search Marketing, Yandex, etc.

Why we should use SEM 

If your target is to attract a quality audience to your website, that is, an audience interested in the type of products you sell, and you also want to get more visits and increase visibility, SEM is the perfect tool to do it.

Which goals can you reach through SEM campaigns:

✅ Driving traffic to our website from ads on search engine pages.

✅ Increasing the visibility of a brand, corporate or personal. Branding.

✅ Getting more conversions. Apart from driving traffic, it’s important to generate sales.

Advantages and Disadvantages of SEM 

Are you still considering whether to include SEM as part of your marketing strategy?

In case your answer is yes, we’ve gathered below the pros and cons of using SEM to help you decide.

Measuring your results is an easy task. Knowing your results is a piece of cake with Google Ads or Metricool’s tool. You will know what’s going on with your ad at any moment.

Real-time tracking. You can monitor and analyze your strategy ‘live’ and change whatever is not working well.

Fast. SEM helps you to obtain results very fast compared with other advertising techniques. You will see results from the beginning.

Pay per click. You only pay per click on your SEM ads, not per impression.

However, there is always a downside. Trusting SEM tool for your strategy also comes with some disadvantages:

It’s more expensive in the long term if we compare it with SEO. If you optimize your campaigns, you can reduce the cost per click. However, for every click-visit you get you will have to pay no matter what.

More competitive. SEM helps you get results easily and this explains why big corporations use this strategy to appear in the first positions of search results pages.

It might be considered invasive. Since your brand will be displayed on a user’s search, this person might consider it annoying and create hostility towards your brand in the long term.

Organizing a good SEM campaign requires a large investment of time to optimize it.

Now that you know what is, design your marketing strategy and start your campaigns.

Do you have any doubt? Let us know in the comment section. 👇🏻

Sara Martín


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