SEO vs. SEM: What’s the difference?

People constantly looking for effective ways to grow their business through online channels would’ve probably heard of Search engine marketing (SEM) and Search engine optimization (SEO). Both marketing strategies can help companies gain traffic via search engines, but what is their difference? Which one is suitable for who? To help answer these questions, this article will tackle everything about search engine marketing vs. search engine optimization and its difference.

Learning about each of them is the best way to learn about their differences.

What is SEO about?

SEO or search engine optimization is used to optimize and increase the visibility and organic traffic of a website on the Search engine result pages or SERP. In simpler terms, SEO optimizes the website so it can be highly visible for relevant searches. High visibility of websites in search results will attract customer attention which can improve business. 

Organic traffic?

Organic traffic refers to the volume of customers visiting a website as an unpaid or organic search result. The complete opposite of paid traffic is made possible by paid ads.

What is SEM about?

SEM or Search engine marketing involves SEO and paid techniques to boost the website’s traffic or visibility, such as google ads and more. SEM targets specific keywords. When a user searches for these keywords, it will push the website above the search results by putting an ad on it. SEM is a pay-per-click (PPM) system, meaning the website should pay according to how many clicks it gets. SEM can be used if a company or business wants its website ahead of other well-established websites. 

What’s their main difference?

Now that both are explained individually, their difference can be distinguished. SEM or search engine marketing uses paid searches to boost traffic and visibility. On the other hand, SEO, or search engine optimization, is a marketing strategy that increases traffic and visibility of a website solely through organic searches. Even though they have differences, they are still undoubtedly effective and beneficial for any business or company website.

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