What exactly is the difference between SEO and SEM and why are they both extremely important?
Understanding the difference between SEO and SEM, that is, between Search Engine Optimization and Search Engine Marketing, is extremely important when deciding which resources and which budget to allocate to marketing. Let’s start, therefore, with the definition of SEO and SEM.
Meaning of SEO
The English acronym SEO (Search Engine Optimization) means all the web marketing activities that are applied to search engines (called in English “Search Engine”), in order to increase the positioning (or ranking) of a site in the organic search engine results. The organic results are the “free results” that are offered by the search engine and contrast with the sponsored results.
When you do a Google search, you can identify sponsored results as Google will place the yellow “ann.” All results that do not have “Ann.” in yellow, they are organic results of search engines, ie those results in which your site could appear after carrying out appropriate SEO campaigns through an SEO service .
Meaning of SEM
Paid search advertising or pay-per-click marketing is what we mean today by SEM (Search Engine Marketing). As the name suggests, this pursues its goals by paying a search engine to acquire traffic to its website; usually a price is set that the advertiser will have to pay for each time a potential customer clicks on the ad (hence the origin of the term “Pay-per-click”).
Its techniques are applicable in different contexts and there are different tools for SEM ranging from investment in Facebook Ads to the use of Google AdWords.
Originally, however, the acronym SEM had a much broader meaning, and certainly more consistent with its literal definition: it indicated the set of marketing strategies that a site can implement on search engines. Literally, in fact, “Search Engine Marketing” means “Search Engine Marketing” and should include both organic positioning strategies (SEO) and paid advertising strategies.
SEM and SEO tools
Tracking the increase in revenue, click-through rate and conversion rate is easier with the help of some software that analyzes the different elements involved in SEO and SEM campaigns. Among the best known SEM and SEO tools we certainly find the famous Google Analytics, but also Web CEO Professional Suite for Windows.
But online you can find lots of them as new ones are introduced to the market every day. Using tracking software can help you determine exactly which type of campaign requires more attention or generates better results for your specific business.
Difference between SEO and SEM
So, as we have seen, the difference between SEO and SEM is simply that search engine optimization (SEO) is part of search engine marketing (SEM), also known as search marketing. Both processes aim to increase the visibility of the portals in search engines.
The purpose of SEO is to optimize your website in order to get better positions in search results while SEM goes beyond SEO. The latter process involves other methods that can drive more visitors from the search engine such as, for example, PPC advertising.