To search or not to search? Well, what would your customers do?

Search Engine Marketing (or SEM, or paid search, or pay-per-click) allows you to advertise your business directly within search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc. These paid ads show up when a keyword you have targeted and paid for is searched by the customer. It’s different than the organic search placement you get with SEO, insofar as the ads can be placed in a separate “paid” box on the top of the search page. This places your business right in front of consumers looking for your targeted keywords. SEM is easy to manage, it’s easy to measure, it’s cost effective, it increases visibility, it can be implemented quickly – and did we mention that it’s easy to manage?

SEM supports your SEO efforts in that it can enhance your already established SEO marketing strategy. So, if your SEO efforts aren’t placing your page on the number one position in search already, SEM can fill that gap. And making certain that you are on the first page returned for a strategic keyword is one step in getting a step up on your competition.

SEM is really all about the numbers. You can launch a campaign in the morning, measure how many clicks your ad receives in real time, and adjust your strategy to be more effective by that afternoon. You can also further segment your customer profile by tailoring the time(s) of day that your ads are placed.