by Jordyn Walters
Search Engine Marketing (SEM), also known as Pay-Per-Click (PPC) and Paid Search, is a digital marketing tactic used to purchase ads in search engines. The most notable and successful chosen search engine is Google, which owns a whopping 71% of search market share. In order for your target audience to become your prospect, they need to be able to find you! SEM will immediately solve that problem and put your business front and center, at the top of search results, when and where you want them. A strongly developed SEM campaign will hit awareness, interest, consideration, intent, evaluation, and sale. Yes, you read correctly. That’s all stages to conversion.
- 86% of consumers use internet search to find a local business.
- 95.3% of search clicks go to the top 4 search results.
- 75% of businesses that invested in SEM in 2017 claimed they would increase their budget for 2018.
- In 2018, businesses have, on average, allocated 41% of their marketing budget to digital marketing.
- This budget is expected to increase to 45% in 2020, surpassing the projected TV ad spend at 33%.
- Businesses make an average of $2 in revenue for every $1 they spend on SEM.
Why are these statistics so compelling and impressive? Because a strong, strategic SEM strategy works. Choosing to invest in Google Ads is such an effective way to reach target audiences: At 8.2%, it has the highest conversion rate among popular digital advertising channels, with Facebook and Instagram behind at 4.7% and 3.1%, respectively.
The highest performing SEM strategies are uniquely structured to fit any brand and budget, even when conservative. As digital marketers, we are able to control the CPC, overall budget, broadness of keyword match, demographics, locations, ad and keyword variety, and more. No two strategies are the same, which each strategy housing various campaigns with their own goals.
To achieve that coveted SEM success, you must identify the desired audience, target the most relevant search terms, determine search intent, and optimize the campaign daily. Competitor analysis, A/B testing, effective copy points, and ad links are regularly monitored as well to ensure the ads receive the ideal placement, audience, and engagement.
SEM is never a set-and-done product. It is always shifting. It requires continual attention to detail and a dedication to its principles. Because it is a such a strategic method, patience is crucial. Identifying and developing the correct approaches for any particular strategy, and its campaigns, will take time. However, a commitment to strategy improvement and refinement will prove essential for meeting and exceeding business objectives.
Convinced? Let’s get started!