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SEM vs. SEO vs. PPC

As business leaders there are no shortage of acronyms - some we use everyday and some that we need to Google to find out what they mean. Three marketing acronyms that I get asked about are SEM, SEO, and PPC. What do they stand for? How do they work? And, why are they important?

  1. SEM - search engine marketing "If you build it they will come" is a movie quote; not a SEM strategy. Instead, your SEM strategy should focus on search terms (i.e. keywords) that your customers are using and creating quality content to help attract them to your site and nurture them along their buyer journey.

  2. SEO - search engine optimization One part of your SEM strategy should include SEO. This is how you optimize your online content to rank higher in the Google search results organically (i.e. for free). SEO does take patience because you're competing with thousands of other relevant sites, but it will lead to quality website traffic.

  3. PPC - pay per click Another part of your SEM strategy is when you pay per click or advertise your website for a particular keyword. You'll set a budget for the day and then Google will show your website as sponsored results. This is a way to see results right away and drive traffic to your site. And, as the name suggests, you only pay Google when someone clicks on your ad.

So, where do you rank on Google today? Send me an email and I'll quickly run a report to tell you which keywords your website organically ranks for. We can use this report to identify which keywords you want to focus on and start to create your SEM plan.



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