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Search engine marketing (SEM) was originally used as a blanket reference to encompass both SEO, which stands for search engine optimization, and paid search activities. SEM is the process of gaining website traffic by purchasing ads on search engines. However, the industry has adopted the SEM acronym to refer solely to paid search activities as time has passed. Generally speaking, SEM and/or “paid search” is used to refer to paid listings, with the longer term of search engine marketing used to encompass both SEO and SEM activities. However, this may not always be the case. Paid search marketing is a field in flux. Information and techniques on SEM as well as SEO activity are frequently updated. This article will provide information on some of the most commonly used terms to refer to paid search and SEM activities.
The acronym PPC can be used for two types of SEM activities–pay-per-click or pay-per-call. When referring to PPC as pay-per-call activities, these ads involve charging by the number of clicks that resulted in a direct call from a smartphone. These types of SEM activities are commonly found among mobile search users.
Other important SEM activities to consider include paid search ads and advertising, as well as CPC (cost-per-click). While the majority of search ads are sold on a CPC and/or PPC basis, some advertising options may also be sold on a CPM basis, which refers to cost-per-thousand impressions.
Google AdWords is considered one of the most popular paid search platforms used by search marketers, which places it at the top of the first-tier PPC platforms. Bing Ads would be considered second among the first-tier PPC platforms, which also serves a significant portion of ads on Yahoo. There are also a number of second-tier PPC platforms, as well as PPC advertising options on the major social networks, that could help companies and individuals gather information relevant to SME and SEO activities for business optimization purposes.
In addition to obtaining information on general paid search trends, interested parties. who are SEM beginners, can also find the most recent news about SEM and helpful tips on SEO activities, as well as its integration with PPC ads on the major search marketing platforms, such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Yahoo: Search Ads. Each of these platforms offer its own intro guides and helpful tutorials.
Another SEM beginner’s resource is Google’s Insider’s Guide To AdWords, which is featured in a PDF document. However, it is important to note that the guide was last updated in 2008 and Google AdWords UI, which is the user interface, has changed significantly since that update, along with several of its features, but the guide may still offer a useful introduction to the platform.
An additional resource to be aware of is the video Google AdWords released in 2014 about how AdWords PPC auctions operate. This feature could be very useful for anyone interested in SEM and SEO activities, whether they are a newbie or veteran.
Paid search advertising information as well as SEM and SEO news can be relayed in a variety of ways. The use of intro guides and helpful tutorials are always beneficial. They can not only be a useful resource for SEM newbies, but also serve as a great refresher resource for veterans of SEM and SEO activity techniques. Some of these resources could include the following helpful aids:
–All PPC News and Articles–This section might include verified product features and announcements from the major search advertising platforms, as well as expert analysis and real-world advice from network observers and contributors.
–Paid Search Tutorials–This section might include practical tips and techniques related to paid search ads.
–Search Ads Archives–This section might include a database of special topics related to paid search. Within this archive, interested parties would find additional sub-categories for special topics in paid search marketing. Some of these special topics might include the following:
Search Ads: General Information and Overview
Search Ads: Mobile Search
Search Ads: PPC–Pay Per Click/Call
Search Ads: Video Tutorials
Search Ads: Domains
Search Ads: Contextual
Search Ads: Behavioral Targeting
Paid search marketing is a field in flux. Information and techniques on SEM as well as SEO activity are frequently updated. The news of this fluid field can be relayed in a variety of ways. The use of intro guides and helpful tutorials are always beneficial. They can not only be a useful resource for SEM newbies, but also serve as a great refresher resource for veterans of SEM and SEO activity techniques.
By Leigh Haugh
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