Running an online business would require that you know specifics about the operation of the search engines. Sometimes it can get quite overwhelming, with all of the different acronyms and ways of approaching the same subject; getting traffic to your website. Although there may be many questions that could arise, one of the more common is the difference between SEO and SEM. Both of these can be beneficial to your business if they are done correctly but there are fundamental differences between the two that need to be understood. Here is a basic primer for getting your feet wet with online marketing.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – This is perhaps one of the more frequently used methods for getting traffic to a website or blog. Most people consider SEO to be a free method of gaining traffic, but it costs a lot regarding time and effort. It is also something that can be hired out to a third-party so you can focus on your business and any new customers that may be coming your way.
SEO can be divided into two basic types, on-page, and off-page. Both of those factors come together to help push your website up through the search engine rankings for specific keywords.
On-page SEO is what takes place on your website. It involves the words, specifically the keywords, and any related words that are used in the content. There are also specific things that can be done to increase your search engine rankings, such as using the keywords in the title of the page and near the top of the page. It would also involve using keywords naturally within the page rather than trying to stuff them in too frequently.
Off-page SEO is also very important. It involves getting links back to your website as well as social proof through the social media outlets, such as Facebook and Twitter. At this time, the primary benefit of off-page SEO is seen through links to your website from other, quality websites. It is one of the most important ranking factors in search engine optimization.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) – This is an Internet marketing technique that also involves getting traffic to your website. Rather than being something specific, such as SEO, it takes in other ways of driving traffic to your website, including paid search (PPC). It is also noteworthy that SEO is a part of SEM, but they are not the same thing. SEO is a very specific part of SEM and SEM is a much larger Internet marketing method.
We Asked Rotem Tibi, SEM & SEO Marketer From Sarasota Florida, Should you focus your efforts on SEO or SEM? Search engine marketing is the overall method of gaining traffic and can include SEO. Since it also incorporates paid advertising into the mix, it is something that can drive traffic to your website quickly. In either case, the traffic that you can receive from SEM is highly qualified and very specific to your niche. Be sure that you take advantage of what it has to offer and you will see your online business grow.