SEM: How to Significantly Improve your Business

SEM: How to Significantly Improve your Business

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A lot of acronyms are bandied around the business world these days and it can be challenging to fully understand them all. One of the most important though, when it comes to improving your business, is SEM. Search engine marketing refers to a specific kind of marketing on search engines.

The term has come to mean paid search, with the most popular paid search tool being Google Ads. Businesses may also find Yahoo or Bing can be worth the effort. Using SEM enables you to harness the power of search engines to reach potential new customers.

Search Engine Marketing© relif / Adobe Stock


Understanding SEM

SEM is known by a number of other names, so you might find you know more about it than you realise. It can be called Pay Per Click or PPC, paid search ads and paid advertising – a name that assumes you realise it’s through search engines.

There are also numerous terms surrounding SEM that will help you to understand how it works. The most commonly used terms include “impressions” – describing the number of times your advert was visible on-screen.

CPC, or cost per click, means how much it costs you when someone clicks your ad. The CTR is the click-through rate, which is the number of clicks your website gets as a result of people seeing the ad.



Search engine marketing is reliant on keyword phrases to target people as they perform searches in places like Google. SEM works hand-in-hand with search engine optimisation (SEO) to help boost your business.

With SEO, certain steps are taken to help your website appear higher in Google’s organic search results. It can take time to get to the top of the first page of a Google search.

In contrast, SEM enables you to bid on a keyword phrase – and if you win the bid, your ad appears instantly on page one. You may even appear right at the top if you meet Google’s requirements and bid high enough.

While people often confuse SEM with SEO, this is simply because of the similar appearance of the terms, but they are both separate entities that can benefit your business in their own way.


Social media advertising

Some social networks offer ad services that involve a search function. However, SEM and social media advertising generally aren’t the same thing.

With social media advertising, the ads usually display based on data that the social media site has collected about the user. This means people can be targeted based on their location, specific interests, buying behaviour and other factors. On the other hand, SEM relies on keyword phrases, which target people when they are performing a search on Google or other search engines.

While SEM and social media advertising aren’t interchangeable, they work well together, increasing sales and brand awareness. It’s normal for people to see social media ads for several days.

As people go on to do a search, their eyes are often drawn to your ads because they recognise them. This makes the user more likely to click. Thus, it can be effective to use both methods simultaneously to market your business.

Thanks to our expertise in SEO and SEM, Page1 Digital delivers effective digital marketing campaigns that achieve results. Please contact us today to find out how we can help your brand to succeed.

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