What is Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Search Engine Marketing is a vehicle for advertising your business to an engaged audience who are actively searching online for your products or services. By launching a paid search campaign, you will have an advertisement for your business show up in the search results against specific typed keywords on the search engine you’re targeting your customers on. The most popular search engines include Google and Bing. Search Engine Marketing is one of the most effective and efficient ways to grow your customer base online. 

Paid Search vs Organic Search

When the search engine displays results from a searched keyword, almost always it will present paid ads at the top of the paid (SEM), and then unpaid listings below (Organic Search). 

Why is it important for my business? 

There are now over 8 billion websites on the internet, and people who want information fast, turn to search engines to find it. Customers using search engines have a very high intent to buy, as they are actively seeking out your product or service. This customer’s high intent is one reason why advertising in search engines is very effective. 

Another significant benefit is that you can enter an auction on a keyword for as little as $0.20 per click, with no minimum spend. 

How can I get going with Search Engine Marketing? 

One of the most difficult tasks to manage as a business when it comes to it’s digital marketing is building out a robust paid search structure, and having the time and expertise to manage this efficiently and effectively. Getting excellent customer acquisition volumes can be a challenge for many businesses, however, using Paid Search Marketing, website owners can now pay for targeted traffic that is high converting. Our team at Spike Digital have extensive experience in scaling Paid Search campaigns from $0 – >$1m per month, and can help your business grow too. 

Keywords and Targeting

A core part of your search account is the selection of keywords you wish to target for your business. All keywords convert to a desired goal at a different conversion rate (number of customers who land on your website, against the number of customers who complete a desired action). Because of this, you will want the ability to bid a different CPC per keyword, and also have the control over which keywords you want to appear on. You will also want to have control over which keywords you absolutely do not want to appear on. This process is called negative keyword matching, and allows you to block appearing on certain keywords or phrases that don’t work for your business. 

Account Structure 

Building a robust and easily manageable account structure is the foundation of a successful paid search account. As a paid search manager, being able to identify opportunities and also minimise inefficiency is crucial to success. We have a proprietary structure we employ across all of our managed accounts that best positions the account for success. 

How much does it cost? 

Paid Search campaign budgets vary dramatically. They can range from as little as $50 per month, into the tens of millions. 

What are some of the challenges of getting an account live? 

An inexperienced Paid Search manager should be able to get a campaign live in-market, however it’s most likely that it will be unsuccessful and a significant amount of media investment will be wasted. Only years of experience understanding proper keyword research, structure, best practice ad creative, bidding methodologies, targeting and landing page optimisation will see a campaign deliver to objectives. 

At Spike Digital, we have over 25 years collective experience running large scale paid search campaigns. We’d love to help you grow your business.