You wish to expand your business and get more sales online. In the quest, you take the help of Google, and you get suggestions like SEO, SEM, etc. The options seem pretty interrelated with just a difference of one word.
You are more confused than before because you don’t know which one to choose, SEO or SEM. In fact, you even don’t know the fundamental difference.
Here is what you have been looking for… The much-needed explanation!!
SEO differs from SEM in many aspects, an important one being ‘SEO provides organic results while SEM is a paid strategy.’
Above could be the best answer for people who have a little know-how about the two online business growth strategies, but this simple-looking topic has more explanation to come forward. Therefore, let this blog start with some basics about SEO and SEM, further dwelling into differences, similarities, and everything you need to know about them both.
SEO or Search Engine Optimization is an essential practice of making your website discoverable on Search Engine Result Pages. It is more of an organic approach to building a website’s credibility and authenticity so that the website complies with the algorithm of search engines and ranks in the top five SERPs.
SEO actually brings visibility to your website, so that target customers find it easy to locate your services and make the purchase.
SEO further includes various sub-strategies to improve the quality of the website and strengthening E.A.T (Expertise, Authority and Trust) principles as coined by Google. It involves checking various parameters and bringing improvisations. Therefore, you should hire a skilled SEO expert for your website because he will take less time to show beneficial results.
2. Off-Page SEO – Under this subcategory of SEO, activities are done outside the website. You can take it as credibility building of the website with techniques like link building, social media marketing, guest blogging, and brand mentioning.
Some activities that are carried outside include –
3. Technical SEO – A website is nothing but a structure prepared with codes. Its smooth functioning and proper working depend on factors like the website’s speed, crawlability, data structure, indexing, and security. If a website is not perfect in the aspect of its technical features, it is not taken as a credible source by search engines. Therefore, the technical SEO optimizes the technical factors and makes the website more credible. The work includes-
For successful SEO strategies of your business, all these core pillars must be considered. Having said that, it is only possible when you have an expert right beside you like RankingXpress Digital.
4. Content – As the saying goes, your website is ‘Kingdom’ and content is the ‘King.’ A soulful and authoritative content represents your website to the core and helps your target audience to understand your takeaways. Therefore, the website content should be crisp and purposeful. It must go by the service industry, linking all the broken ends.
Content on your website can be further broken down into three categories –
As the content hold this much importance, it needs to be qualitative, trendy, relevant, speaking of usefulness, and keyword optimized. You can further as other elements like media to make it more appealing.
You may read our recently published blog: Is SEO Worth the Expense?
Unlike SEO, SEM or Search Engine Marketing is a paid service to gain visibility on top SERPs. Often people find SEM synonymous with PPC, which most people do not coincide with. According to them, PPC is one of the sub-strategies that are involved in SEM.
The popular strategies involved in SEM are –
SEM deals in paid services like Google ads, Bing ads, Gmail ads, YouTube ads, search ads, etc. The whole campaign starts with the research of most searched keywords that are targeted later to attract traffic.
SEO and SEM are strikingly different from each other. The differences can be shown well with factors like cost incurred in running campaigns, time-taken to show results, click-through rates, credibility and authority added, visibility, etc.
|Marketing Type||Inbound||Inbound and Outbound both|
|Cost involved||Free||Paid as the clicks|
|SERP ranking||Appears in organic search results with featured snippets||Listed on the of SERP with ad extension|
|Time taken in results||Takes time||Short and immediate|
|Visibility||Shown to everyone||Shown to target users|
Although the table has precisely defined how SEO differs from SEM, yet a few factors need to be discussed briefly. So let’s get started.
SEO has been a favorite strategy for generating organic traffic 24/7. The process gives your website the required organic traffic and recognition. As the traffic increases, the website’s credibility also increases paving ways for better recognition and sales.
On the other hand, SEM or PPC is a money constraint technique. You need to pay for it to keep running and targeting credible users. Once the paid campaign is over, the traffic disappears and sales go down. So, at this point, you can consider SEO a free-of-cost traffic generation process in spite of SEM. However, you will have to hire experts for better SEO results and pay for high-quality content. Overall, after paying for a skilled expert and high-quality content, SEO will still be more cost-effective.
The speed of showing results could be a contrasting difference between the two strategies. If precisely put, SEO takes time while SEM does not! Especially when you have launched a new website, it will take a lot of time.
According to experts from RankingXpress, a new website may take 1 year on average to rank first on Google SERP. But that depends upon the brain working behind the SEO campaign. An expert campaign maker can produce results as soon as in 3 months only. Being said that, it is very crucial to choose the right-brainer to plan your SEO campaign.
Now, as you talk about SEM, results are instant. You may start seeing conversions from the afternoon if you have paid for the campaigns in the morning. But results of SEM are short-lived till you are actively paying for the campaign.
The key point to note here is that – ‘traffic scores nil when you stop the payment!!!’
Well, this is a pretty tough question because both contribute to your earnings at one point in time. On the one hand, SEO builds the credibility of your website; SEM brings you sure sought conversions.
So, the question should be – when to focus on each campaign?
For example, if you are a new service in the market and have just launched a website, you need to adhere to SEO and bring more organic traffic. Having SEO right from your budding entrepreneurial phase will help ease your budget and get organic visibility on SERPs.
Later, after six months or so, when your website has gained enough authority and credibility, and you have a consistent budget, invest in SEM, manage Adwords account and launch landing pages.
Your decision must also depend on factors like –
You have seen contrasting differences between SEO and SEM; you must also understand the similarities both strategies could have.
Generally, experts suggest not combining both strategies and working with them at one time. However, if you still plan to combine both, you must have the ability to differentiate and integrate both channels.
Your first focus should be search engine optimization for traffic generation within six months. Later you can find the need for paid campaign and work accordingly.
You can use SEM insights as a testing bed for your SEO. With the help of SEM insights, you can see test conversion rates, keyword performance, etc.
Gain viability on the top of the SERP and in between organic search results with both strategies.
SEO and SEM are two totally different strategies that cannot replace each other’s worth. People will have to understand the difference and value of these strategies to generate more business and gain over competitive advantages.
All in all, you will require a highly experienced Digital Marketing Agency like RankingXpress Digital. The SEO services experts and PPC services experts here will guide you in every decision being taken for the betterment of your website.
You can read our recently published blogs:
Every passing year, many old SEO trends gradually sink into oblivion and many new surfaces to make another history. But every year, trends that drive into the SEO industry depend upon factors surrounding the consumer market and Google Algorithm changes.
Similarly, this 2021 and whole world awaits new SEO trends to follow and act up on. However, a few people in your knowledge might also be thoughtful about its relevance because almost every field has some setback after a pandemic struck the cord.
For such people, it would be mandatory to know that SEO is not going anywhere. In fact, it will grow to be stronger and bigger. Moreover, with time, every organization will have to optimize their website presence according to the changes made by Google Updates.
Many articles in 2020 claimed that SEO would sink into oblivion in 2021 to never to come back. SEO will remain intact with the arrival of some new updates and some old trends being reabsorbed in other divisions of digital marketing.
This year, search engine optimization will give more importance to local SEO, and other parameters like structured data will seep in. All in all, SEO 2021 is going to be more competitive and highly technical.
It will even challenge SEO experts to learn the new trends and become adaptable as soon as possible. But before you all get overwhelmed about the hard work needed in the future, let us first learn about the SEO trends in 2021.
You can also read: 7 Tested Techniques to Improve SEO Ranking on Google
Google will implement a new methodology named ‘Core Web Vitals’ to rank websites for better user experiences. It will now trust User Metrics to make the final decision about websites’ ranking on SERPs. This new methodology will be a tie-breaker when two or more websites have relevant and high-quality content.
Also, core web vitals will help webpages to qualify for Top Stories on Google Bar.
How will you do it?
Core web vitals have multiple factors to improve on. Overall you will have to improve vitals, including page contents, page speed, UX report, etc.
In 2016, Google took this erstwhile decision of ranking websites based on their mobile version instead of the desktop version. However, the implementation took more considerable time than thought. Now, Google has made it a clear verdict. Now, Google has completed the process. Its transition will start from March 2021. The websites with no mobile version will be ruled out while ranking on search pages.
How will you do it?
Get to know the checklist prepared by Google and implement it as soon as possible. You should make sure that your mobile version responsive.
EAT stands from Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness. Although it is a controversial topic in the SEO world, yet it has immense use. It is slightly on the fair side to say that Google cannot accurately answer EAT-related questions; however, it can still check whether the content present on certain websites is relevant to the search phrase or not.
How will you do it?
To implement EAT factor, you will have to follow secure protocols and strengthen your backlinks. Old backlinks will also do wonders in this case.
In the beginning, Google served suggestions based on the proximity to the local user (searcher). It sometimes allowed users to land to the best services nearby, and sometimes they felt cheated.
However, over the course of time, Google shifted its parameters and influenced local businesses a lot with its new tools. With GMB (Google My Business), it has opened new proximity for service providers to stay afloat at the front.
But with this, the complexity has risen. That can only be eased if the experts have full command over GMB and its new features.
How will you do it?
You can overcome the obstacles by getting trained in GMB and its implications. You should fully optimize your Google My Business listings and upgrade every attribute, including reviews, questions & answers, correct address, communication information, etc.
With the passing of time, Google has collected more than 5 billion entities, not only people but also songs, movies, books, companies, etc. This number has to grow bigger in the coming year, which will have a visible impact on Search Engine Algorithms.
Moreover, why wait for the future while Google has already started implementing entities based on web ranking rather than based on Backlinks. The model will help Google understand the trustworthiness of various companies catering to the same services or relatable products in the online market.
How will you do it?
This task can be a tad more complicated with respect to backlinks and related keywords. Here the organizations will have to define entities related to business/products, claim their GMB profile, etc. Here, the use of structured data will work wonders.
Google has been taking a great leap in AI (Artificial Intelligence) since time immemorial. It started with RankBrain in the year 2015 and then culminated into BERT in the year 2019. It made it pretty feasible for Google to answer queries in a better way and produce search results.
In the series, BERT has become the most renowned tool and has been used nearly 100% for queries in the English Language. With the help of BERT, it will be easy to get the gest of queries made by users to answer it in better ways even if the searched phrase has incorrect spellings, lexical ambiguity, etc.
How will you do it?
For utilizing BERT efficiently, websites will have to produce content for users, not for Google search. You will have to place keywords more sincerely rather than stuffing in awkwardly. It will require great command over writing skills.
Structured data implementation has never been a new thing in the SEO world. It has been there for many years, but its importance has grown over time. With many recipe websites trending in recent decades, it has been fruitful for a neat presentation.
In 2021, when local SEO will become of more importance, structured data will be coherently used. Local businesses, with its help be able to mark their company address and details for better search results.
How will you do it?
Gaining Expertise in structured data will force you to learn HTML and imply it with Structured Data Markup Helper. You can also do it manually or ask the help of experts.
Googlenow has a more powerful tool BERT (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers), which will help to retrieve the smallest of the content from the webpage. With the help of BERT, it will be able to search exact phrases as asked by a web surfer. With this tool, users’ queries will be answered more precisely rather than jumbling them up into the web of irrelevant webpages.
How will you do it?
To match up with this trend of SEO 2021, you will have to be very specific about your content. You may add FAQ schema and questions to be more specific.
So, follow the above trends and stay afloat!! SEO will never lose its relevance!!
Summary: Are you a business selling in the local market? Do you wish to grab more and more lead conversions but confused about choosing SEO services? Read the blog to learn about types of business that are highly benefitted from local SEO.
Who said that SEO only works if you have a huge consumer base? Local or Global, SEO is one such revolution that works equally for all. Whether you are a big business giant or a small vendor catering to local consumers, you can be benefitted through Search Engine Optimization services; however, the course of services will change a little.
Also Read: Is SEO Worth the Expense?
A good company like RaningXpress Digital, providing both local and global SEO services, knows the difference between the two needs, and provides their clients with the best. Even if the client is a layman (hardly having any know-how of technology and components), the experts at the company take care of everything and help them sign up with “Google My Business” as well.
But only a few services provider know about the benefits associated with local SEO services, and hence rest differ with the idea. If you also have been one of the few who do not know whether their business type actually gets benefitted with local SEO or not then read the listing below.
Any business that is associated with online selling e-commerce has no other choice but to use Local SEO services to enhance their exposure in the market. Such online stores and businesses do not have a physical store top draw local footsteps. Hence, they need to draw attention by posting their services online on social media sites or via other inbound and outbound strategies.
Local SEO has many parameters and components like Social Media Optimization, Keyword-Search related Contents, mobile optimization, etc., which expand the business presence and consumer base.
Medical Services including Dentists, Cosmetic Clinics, Physicians, Chiropractors, Pediatricians, etc. need local search engine optimization for better reach. A physical clinic will definitely do a job in bringing local consumers with word-of-mouth. Still, your online presence, reputation management, and reviews will help strengthen the existing bond with patients and bring patients of other cities for reliable services.
The online presence will help more and more patients to know about your clinics and their good practices. Once you get the services, your old patients or the new ones will easily locate you through Google Search.
These days having an online presence is a new normal rather than having a physical address. It not only reduces the cost but helps eliminate the extra cost associated with the business. Therefore businesses like IT consultants, Website Developers, AMC Service Providers, and others should bank on local Search Engine Optimization. The local SEO services will help you gain new prospects and new customers for your companies.
Also, if you have any doubt related to ‘how things will work,’ you should meet and consult with experts from the industry like RankingXpress Digital. They will clear your pertaining doubts and plan the course of Local SEO according to your need.
Pet care and services have gained a great import6nace among pet owners because of their busy schedule. They prefer to get their pets groomed so that they don’t have to cut slack of their time and make extra efforts. Therefore, if you have a business-related to pet care and grooming, you are the right contender for local SEO.
As you plan to get search engine optimization done for your business, you tend to get an extra edge than your existing competitors. Now, you could be found first and approached by the target customers as you would be easily available via Google Search. SEO services will also work on your social media presence and online reputation.
If you are a real estate service provider, then you should value the need for local SEO more. SEO and Real Estate go hand-in-hand for the cause where one provides online presence and visibility where other seeks the same. Therefore, presence on bigger platforms like online social networking sites will expose your services the most among target buyers and sellers of properties.
Also, you will able to update the best deals and requirements online with no helps. Online presence is like a huge broadcast channel where thousands will see your post of people at the time. In fact, you could be benefitted the most by the keyword-based research. Nowadays, people search for real estate properties and services with some popular terms. You can utilize such keywords to gain more traffic to your website.
If your business falls under this category, then don’t shorten your breath. You can become a hot-shot service provider in your area if you use local SEO to get the desired exposure. These days, housewives, professionals and old folks love to get home repair and maintenance done with one click.
In such a case, they tend to tale help of Google to find a provider nearby. Now, if you have implanted local SEO strategies, you will be listed first in the search result. However, you have not still got local SEO done; then your competitor may win the chance.
Therefore, whether you provide plumbing services, house repair, gardening, HVAC maintenance, Cleaning or interior decoration, get search engine optimization done by the experts at RankingXpress and get benefited the most.
Don’t cut slack they need because you are a very small scale provider.
Only with proper exposure and online presence, you will become a large scale service provider with hundreds or customer waiting in line to get served by you.
Lastly, the power of local SEO is still misjudged by a lot of businesses. You will be introduced with all the benefitswhen you will take help from the industry experts.
Is SEO Worth the expense? Does it continue to invest time and money in SEO to change Google’s algorithms and continue to pay off, these results too quickly? To determine whether SEO is, in fact, worth the expense and resources, you should consider carefully what “it” is that you want to get out of SEO investment.
SEO is not like how many people claim it. SEO is neither a static product nor a magical answer to all your business problems. SEO is a science; a constantly evolving practice that requires a human element to notice trends, patterns, and potential threats.
So, if you are curious to know if SEO is worth it – time and expense investment – read on. There are three important qualitative factors to consider before determining whether SEO is really worth the expense.
While you have probably heard that SEO can develop your bottom line, this is only true when all stars align correctly. SEO is not a direct factor in increasing your company’s revenue — sales are a direct factor. SEO is a strong indirect factor that can help generate new revenue opportunities — but it is not the end-all-be-all.
SEO services bring organic traffic to your website by properly ranking your website in search engines and providing a valuable user experience. User experience is an increasingly important ranking factor in SEO which is even more apparent with Google’s recent switch to make website speed a straight ranking factor!
For SEO to increase your bottom line, your website needs to be able to handle organic traffic and create funnels for sales. No call to action? Invisible Contact Information? No cost of organic traffic is going to help you.
Some people think that early traffic is better traffic. Other website owners consider the quality of traffic to be better. In addition, many business owners consider cheap traffic to be a better option.
If traffic speed is a big concern for you, then SEO may not be the best route to take initially. SEO takes time. When you do SEO on your website, you are essentially trying to earn popularity. When a website or page is online, it is one of the millions of people who have gone online on the same day!
People do not trust advertisements. Ad-blindness is a growing list of ad blockers that shows us that people are really fed up with advertisements.
More than 70% of people will happily scroll past advertisements to see organic results because organic results express more trust than paid advertisements. This trust takes the visitor to your website. The visitor knows that your website has earned its placement – it is not paid for directly.
As long as you are targeting the right keywords on the page and the value is provided after the visitor hits the website, your pay will be higher with organic than a paid visitor.
PPC which means “pay per click” derives its name from the acquisition it provides. You pay for each click. When someone sees your PPC ad on Google, or Facebook, and they decide to see you, you pay for it. Cost-per-click (“CPC”) will be a variable rate based on the quality of your ad and the competition in your location. You can spend $ 1.00 per click or as much as $ 70 per click with PPC!
SEO services, on the other hand, are not based on a PPC basis. Once your website arrives on the first page of Google, you will start receiving organic clicks on your page. The beauty is, you do not pay for every click!
If you are currently spending $ 2000 per month on PPC, then an SEO strategy may ultimately allow you to spend less on PPC and get “free” clicks through organic search results.
Let’s first take the idea of SEO as being an “expense” from your mind. SEO is an investment in your company. You are building a property by developing a website and content that will last as long as your company. Every dollar that is put into an SEO campaign will produce results that stay with your company. On the other hand, paid advertising (PPC) can gain a quick edge, but it will disappear immediately when you stop throwing dollars at it.
The amount can vary from agency to agency and industry to industry. Typically, you should expect to pay $ 300- $ 500 for some single location local, low-competition, local, SEO.
In addition, multi-location, national, and strong competition SEO will see recommendations from $ 1000- $ 6000 per month. The investment that is right for you will depend on what your goals are, the lifetime value of your customers, and how you are currently spending your marketing budget.
If your marketing budget allows, search engine optimization is an investment that should start sooner rather than later. Time is a valuable asset in SEO, and the longer you delay investing in a thriving SEO campaign, the longer it will take to get free traffic.
If you have a small, one-man shop, SEO is still a very important investment, but it may make more sense for you to perform SEO on your own to hire an agency to handle it.
By observing all the points mentioned above, the end result comes out to be that SEO is a valuable investment and worth the expense that can help your business grow and flourish forever.