Internet Marketing Introduction for Small Business
How to Use Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
This internet marketing introduction will acquaint small business owners and managers with the basics of internet marketing. Internet marketing is a broad term which covers all of the strategies, tactics, and processes to create and promote an online presence. Internet marketing is a challenging process done in a highly competitive, dynamic, and fluid environment. Your website’s online ranking, visibility, and effectiveness are in a constant competition against other websites in your industry. This could be compared to a company’s need to provide ongoing development to their salespeople in order to compete with the salespeople of their competitors. Internet marketing is never finished . . . if you want to succeed online.
Successful Internet marketing has two key objectives:
- Create A Great Website that is content rich, employs sound user functionality, is aesthetically pleasing, and is search engine friendly. You absolutely must have a mobile friendly website and add SSL security to your website.
- Drive Traffic To Your Website from search engines, portals, vertical directories, and offline marketing efforts (i.e., advertising your domain name (URL) on business cards, invoices, etc.). For the purposes of this document we will focus on how to drive traffic to your website.
Internet marketing is comprised of generally two components; Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and Search Engine Marketing (SEM). The following is a general introduction to these two areas of internet marketing services.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is the process that determine the ranking of a website in the natural (organic) section of search engine results pages (SERP’s) for a given keyword or keyphrase. Each search engine has a proprietary method of evaluating a website’s quality for, or value to, a user’s search query. This proprietary method is called an algorithm. The exact methodology of any algorithm is not public knowledge and search engines periodically revise their algorithms. Every SEO practitioner maintains their own manner of executing SEO based on established web standards, experience, observation skills, and ongoing education. There is no official or formal process to create, manage, or master SEO. Although SEO is very complex, some of the basic parts of effective SEO are developing rich content, proper use of key phrases, and that make reasonable efforts to meet Google Webmaster Guidelines. A critical part of achieving, and maintaining, competitive natural ranking is acquiring links from relevant sites to the client’s website. Link building is a strategic process, and a website owner should never buy links or link packages.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
SEM is the process through which a company is promoted online to increase online visibility and develop brand identity. There are a multitude of strategies and tactics to achieve effective search engine results. Typical search engine marketing efforts are paid search advertising (PPC such as Adwords), social media, internet press releases, content marketing or inbound marketing. The bottom line objective of any SEM program or service is to increase visibility of the client organization throughout online search mediums. Effective SEM programs are highly customized initiatives based on the unique situation of the client organization.
In summary, SEO and SEM are the two components used to position a client organization’s website, and achieve competitive placement, for targeted key phrases that deliver exposure to the desired target market. The positioning, placement, and visibility of a website should consider all possible places where the client organization has an opportunity to engage a qualified prospect or relevant audience.
For more information, or to get a free internet marketing proposal you may contact us online or call 770-429-5300.