It’s time to talk Search Engine Marketing

Spring has sprung! While we’re relieved that the Northern Rivers hasn’t experienced a second wave in terms of increasing COVID cases, it’s hard to hear that local businesses are still copping the brunt of the economic slow-down. It’s time to put on your "adapt to survive” hat and look for opportunities in places where business is growing. And one of those places is online!

Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is one of the most important marketing channels to generate web traffic to your website. It’s the process of increasing website visibility on search engine results pages though paid search advertising. If Google Ads, previously known as AdWords, rings a bell, this is what we are talking about. With millions of businesses out there vying for the same eyeballs, online advertising to promote your products or services has never been so crucial.

Bidding on keywords

Google Ads is a platform which allows you to bid on keywords to have your ads shown when people are doing searches on Google. You bid against other advertisers for the right to have your ad shown in several places on the Google Search results page. You only pay, however, when a user clicks on your ad. By setting a daily budget, you can cap the amount that you spend each day. You could set a budget of $5 or $10 per day and know that you are only paying for those who click on your ad (and hence visit your website).

More than just search

While SEM is great for attracting those who are searching for particular keywords, Google Ads also provides the opportunity to show your ads on other platforms. Advertising on the Google Display Network means your ads have the opportunity to be shown on millions of sites such as YouTube, eBay, Amazon and Gumtree.

Catch them looking

Everybody knows the experience of looking at a product and then suddenly getting those ads shown to you again.  This is a technique called remarketing that allows Google to show your ads to people who have previously shown an interest in your brand.  This works on the old marketing “rule of seven” that people need to be exposed to your message 7 times before they take action. 

SEM is focused on converting

While traditional advertising works to grow your brand awareness, SEM reaches people actively searching, people who are ready to buy. When someone clicks on your ad your landing page should guide them through the sales process… and voila! You’ve made a sale, gathered new leads, subscribers or sign-ups.

Now that you’ve got an idea of the potential for online advertising, set up your Google Ads account. There are heaps of tutorials on YouTube to help you get going. Google even has a free online course on Google Skillshop to get you started.