Search engine marketing (SEM) is a form of Internet marketing that involves the promotion of websites by increasing their visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs) through optimization and advertising.SEM may use search engine optimization (SEO), that adjusts or rewrites website content to achieve a higher ranking in search engine results pages or use pay per click listings.
There are four categories of methods and metrics used to optimize websites through search engine marketing.
Keyword research and analysis involves three "steps": ensuring the site can be indexed in the search engines, finding the most relevant and popular keywords for the site and its products, and using those keywords on the site in a way that will generate and convert traffic.
- Website saturation and popularity, or how much presence a website has on search engines, can be analyzed through the number of pages of the site that are indexed on search engines (saturation) and how many back links the site has (popularity). It requires pages to contain keywords people are looking for and ensure that they rank high enough in search engine rankings. Most search engines include some form of link popularity in their ranking algorithms. The following are major tools measuring various aspects of saturation and link popularity: Link Popularity, Top 10 Google Analysis, and Marketleap's Link Popularity and Search Engine Saturation
- Whose tools reveal the owners of various websites, and can provide valuable information relating to copyright and trademark issues.
- Pay per click (PPC) (also called cost per click) is an internet advertising model used to direct traffic to websites, in which advertisers pay the publisher (typically a website owner) when the ad is clicked. It is defined simply as “the amount spent to get an advertisement clicked. With search engines, advertisers typically bid on keyword phrases relevant to their target market. Content sites commonly charge a fixed price per click rather than use a bidding system. PPC "display" advertisements, also known as "banner" ads, are shown on web sites or search engine results with related content that have agreed to show ads.