Are SEM and PPC the same?
The digital marketing industry is flooded with acronyms, and we don’t expect this to change in such an advancing industry. A common question we hear in the digital marketing world is, “Are SEM and PPC the same”. This blog will set the record straight and give you the knowledge to crush your next marketing meeting!
What does SEM Mean?
SEM (search engine marketing) is an acronym heavily used by those in the marketing industry, but what does it mean?
So, search engine marketing or ‘SEM’ can be described as a ‘blanket’ or ‘umbrella’ term. It is used to describe digital marketing methods that aid in improving the visibility of a website. Therefore, improving the ranking position on the SERP (search engine results page).
Investing in a good search engine marketing strategy is critical. Ensuring your products or services appear at the top of the SERP (search engine results page) isn’t always possible through organic search methods. This is due to competitors using paid advertising methods to ensure their business’ products or services are ranked above yours.
SEO (search engine optimisation) is a method that falls under the blanket term of SEM. It plays a significant role in search engine marketing.
After all, SEM is centred around improving website visibility; Therefore, ensuring your site is optimised is crucial. This means your website features quality content, has a quick load speed and has the right keywords in the content.
If done correctly, your site will gain authority from the search engines. This will help improve site visibility through a higher rank on the SERP (search engine results page). Get to know SEO with our blog ‘How The Three Types of SEO Can Help Your Business.’
What is PPC Advertising
Nearly 50% of small businesses utilise some form of online advertising. However, PPC (pay-per-click) remains surrounded by a cloud of confusion for many people. So what is PPC, and is it the same as SEM?
As we’ve already established, SEM is a ‘blanket’ or ‘umbrella’ term containing various digital marketing methods to boost online visibility. PPC is a method that falls under SEM.
Pay-per-click, commonly called PPC, is an online advertising method that requires the advertiser to pay a fee every time a user clicks on an ad displayed on the SERP. The advertiser’s fee after every click varies depending on the keyword. For example, keywords that receive a high amount of searches will cost significantly more than keywords with a meagre amount. This is called ‘search volume’ and refers to the number of searches different keywords receive.
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Next up is campaign budgeting; if you get this wrong, and risk being invisible online, which is every marketer’s nightmare! A budget will be set daily, and depending on how much your CPC (cost-per-click) is, your budget must align appropriately. For example, if you have a CPC of £10, having a budget per day of £50 means your ad can serve five users. After that, you are invisible as you would have exceeded your daily budget.
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Moreover, ensuring your budget is appropriate to your CPC will allow your ad to serve more users. And remain on the SERP for a more extended period during the day. This gives you the best chance of gaining new customers.
Should I Use PPC or SEM?
The umbrella term ‘SEM’, which has been continuously used throughout this blog. It’s widely accepted that a mix of paid and organic methods must be utilised. Therefore, when discussing search engine marketing, it’s important to understand that PPC and SEO are just forms of SEM.
So, to conclude this blog and determine, “Are SEM and PPC the Same?” As discussed, pay-per-click marketing and other digital marketing methods are just forms of SEM, a ‘blanket’ or ‘umbrella’ term containing pay-per-click and search engine optimisation.