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SEO. Button on Modern Computer Keyboard. Internet Concept. 3D Render.

 

At the start of each year, advertisers ask the same question: “Is SEO still relevant for me?”

 

This year, the question takes a more significant meaning after having just come from that catastrophic 2019 when a pandemic ravaged the world. Business owners took a hit as 6 in 10 companies permanently closed shop due to lockdowns and plunging sales.

 

So, you might be asking the next question, is it still worth investing in SEO when all my resources are already tight?

 

The short answer is yes.

 

As the 2008 financial crunch had shown us, businesses that ramped up their marketing spend in the middle of the crisis recovered quicker. Meanwhile, more conservative companies had a rockier restart. 

 

However, it does not mean that you should hastily spend your money. It is why you should be on the lookout for SEO trends, which should help shape your decision.

 

Here are the SEO trends you can anticipate for 2021:

 

 

1. Remember the acronyms

 

You should be familiar with these two terms, which impact your SEO campaign. BERT stands for Bidirectional Encoder Representations Transformers, while NLP stands for Natural Language Processing. While they are not a new technology, you need to know that their machine-learning capability would drastically change the way Google will appreciate the search query.  

 

With NLP, for instance, Google can better understand the context and nuance of the language used in the query. For now, nearly 4 in 10 organizations are already utilizing artificial intelligence to target their audience and analyze their data sets. AI will continue to change the SEO landscape as the industry will reach an estimated $120 billion by 2025. With machine learning, you can ensure more accurate results in your analytics, which will enable you to boost the success of your SEO campaign.

 

2. Corporate Identity becomes more relevant

 

Now, more than ever, you need to know who you are because Google would be asking the same question when indexing websites. You need to tick all the right boxes on the panels on Google’s Knowledge Graph, so you show up when people search for people, organizations, places, etc.

 

With the Knowledge Panel, you essentially have a billboard that lists the vital information regarding your company. More importantly, it also boosts your credentials, as far as Google is concerned.

 

Blue-chip companies automatically have their distinct billboards because they are aware of its significance. You cannot reason out that you are a one-person organization or a small business to justify your lack of a Knowledge Panel.

 

What this means is that you should start thinking of your brand as an entity. Any marketing effort you employ going forward should be to persuade Google and your customers about who you are.

 

3. The continued dominance of mobile

 

The trend is not new since, for many years now, people have been accessing the Internet using their mobile devices. For example, as of October last year, 9 in 10 of the nearly five billion Internet users in the world use mobile to access the Web.  Meanwhile, mobile e-commerce has shown no signs of slowing down from 2020 through 2024, as shown by the data below. 

 

What this means is that your SEO campaign should take into account mobile Internet. You start with your website and make sure that it is optimized for smartphones, tablets, and laptops.

 

Since 9 in 10 of your target audience are using their mobile gadgets to access your website, you must enhance the customer experience rather than make it difficult for them.

 

Hire web developers familiar with white-hat SEO tactics to optimize your page for search engines and target customers.

 

4. Lifetime value vs. short-term gains

 

There used to be a time when SEO was used purely to drive traffic and create leads for your business. Now, your SEO should be a tool to meet your objective. But your job has just started once you funneled traffic to your company and created leads. Your ultimate goal should be to enhance the client experience to create a customer lifetime value. Analytics will play a larger role in getting a profile of your target customers--who they are, what they do when they are online or offline, what they like, the links they click, the purchases they make, and the way they interact with your website. The profile will be material to create a unique experience tailored to each need. When you customize the experience, you make the customer feel important, and they are more likely to reward you with loyalty.

 

5. Search intent

 

Search engines have automated almost all aspects of PPC, and, along with machine learning, they managed to unpack user intent. Again, search intent is not a new concept. Every year, marketers are trying to find the magic formula to determine the nature of user queries. It is challenging because behavior and intent are in constant flux.

 

People go to Google when they want to ask something, buy a product, retrieve information. But user intent is more nuanced than that. The advertisers who can unlock the true nature of search will have a higher chance of maximizing their marketing campaign. Search engines continue to tweak their algorithms to match user intent.

 

Fortunately, Google is already trying to show you the way. For example, if the searcher is looking for scholarly articles on marketing, the SERP will list research and academic studies relevant to the search.

 

Its machine-learning technology will recommend results. But you need to leverage best practices to gain an edge over your competition. One method to do this is to analyze your search engine results pages and parse data so that your keywords best address user intent.

 

Those are some of the trends to look out for this 2021. But make sure that you have a strong foundation, which means that your website is optimized for mobile and SEO, and you produce only high-quality content. These tactics are evergreen, regardless of the future changes in the digital marketing landscape.

 

Before Google, there was Ask Jeeves - the well-dressed, always smiling gentleman who was always ready to answer your most pressing questions. Back then, the knowledge about search engines was still in its infancy stage. People treated it as a party trick, and they would ask the most random questions to stump the website.

But regardless of the name, both Ask Jeeves (which many don’t know still exists today under the brand Ask.com) and Google have the same function. They connect users to the closest answer or solution for their most nagging concerns.

Today, search engines are synonymous with Google. And for good reason. According to this study's data, 9 in 10 people use Google when they search online. Bing is a far second with 2.44%, followed by Yahoo!, Baidu, and Yandex.

https://www.webfx.com/blog/seo/2019-search-market-share/

This means for you, that if you are crafting your digital marketing plan, you always have to design with Google’s algorithms in mind.

The search engine’s dominance is almost unbelievable. Google used to release data on the number of pages it indexed. But it suddenly stopped without any explanation. To give you an idea of the sheer magnitude of its task, Google indexed 130 trillion individual pages on the Internet as of 2016.

Why Is It Important to Know How Search Engines Work?

A user’s online journey typically starts with a search. You need to understand the nature of the search to create an effective digital marketing campaign. This understanding is essential to search engine optimization (SEO), which is a tool to boost your Internet traffic, capture leads, and convert customers.

Here are some of the benefits of familiarizing yourself with how Google functions:

  • You can increase your rankings on the search engine results page (SERP)
  • You can develop optimized websites that search engines can crawl and index
  • You can benchmark your digital marketing campaign with your competitors
  • You can measure your SEO performance and tweak it for optimum results

The question is, why do you need to rank high?

A 2013 research by Chitika Insights showed how important it is to rank high on the SERP.

Users do not usually go beyond Google’s first page when they input a query. The top three websites on the SERP alone already corners 61% of web traffic. The top five websites make up three-quarters of the total traffic.

CRAWLING

All search engines utilize a complex algorithm to generate the most relevant search results. To do this, they must first inspect all elements of the website - such as the webpage, headline, navigation, relevant keywords, authority links, and the content.

Crawling in SEO parlance means to prowl or follow the links around your website. Google uses spiders or bots to handle the task. That the reason for web developers familiar with SEO to always include a site map on the pages, to make it easier for the spiders to navigate across multiple paths.

The links serve as invisible neural pathways for these bots to crawl through the World Wide Web. Their job is clearly defined: find the most relevant result to match the user’s query. As you might expect, if you put up roadblocks along the way, you might be sending Google’s bots in the direction of your competitor’s website.

To prevent this, you need to audit your website at least every month to spot crawl errors. Among these errors are:

  • Server error
  • 404
  • txt error
  • DNS error

The solution can be straightforward or complex, especially if the error is a symptom of a much deeper technical issue.

INDEXING

 

Once the bots have crawled through your website, they will add you to Google’s database. The database is an anthology of indexed pages crawled by the bots.

Here are some of the crucial elements in indexing a website:

  • The XML sitemap
  • The nature of the content and how it relates to the search
  • Anchor text of the links
  • Detailed information about the links (e.g., located within the page, ads, authoritative websites, backlinks, etc.)
  • Duplicate content
  • SEO-friendly URLs and canonical tags
  • Meta tags

You need to make sure that your website is optimized for SEO so that Google will find and properly index you. Even if you have the most amazing product, your target customers would have a hard time finding your business, if you are not on Google’s database.

RANKING

 

Once the spiders crawled and indexed your site, the next step is ranking. Search engines will consider multiple elements to determine your website’s ranking on the SERP.

Here are some of the factors that will impact ranking:

  • Load speed -- Google recommends that your page load should be two seconds or less to keep your bounce rate low. For instance, 8 in 10 users will abandon your page when it takes 4-5 seconds to load.
  • Off-page and on-page -- On-page refers to the technical elements of your website and content quality. Off-page typically refers to the backlinks--the more authoritative they are, the better.
  • Mobile-friendly -- American adults are glued to their phones for almost four hours each day. Nowadays, the phone is not only a tool to make calls. It is the main tool that connects them to the Internet.

 

According to this study's data, nearly 7 in 10 shoppers use their phones to read reviews first before deciding to buy. Meanwhile, 66.7% use a shopping app on their phones. The figure is significant since global e-commerce sales will hit more than $600 billion in 2021.

  • Relevant keywords -- How your keywords match the user search is crucial to your rank. But depending on your industry, the keywords can be extremely competitive. You need to have a better understanding of what your customers are doing when online. You also need to test your keywords and benchmark them with your most successful campaigns. Even Google will tell you that you produce content to address a user’s need rather than please the algorithm.

Being added to Google’s database is totally free. You do not have to fill up a form to be indexed. But you do have to know the parameters for crawling, indexing, and ranking to avoid the pitfalls that can penalize you, as well as mimic the best practices to gain an edge over the competition.

 

The COVID-19 pandemic changed people's lives around the world. Socialization and shopping activities shifted online with the implementation of lockdowns and physical distancing measures. For many businesses, the change to increasingly remote and digital work might be how their business is conducted way into the future. Therefore, now is the right time to intensify digital campaigns to keep your company in your current and potential customers' focus. There is an increase in organic searches, which shows the importance of building SEO campaigns to get the desired search results.

 

According to this BrightEdge report, with the changing landscape with shifts towards paid and organic searches as the most significant contributors to website traffic, it is increasingly important to refine your SEO strategy to get the best results for your business. We'll show you why SEO is more important than ever and share the best SEO practices in 2021.

 

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Top Reasons Why You Should Focus on Your SEO to Drive Your Business

 

  1. Evergreen content will remain essential – Focusing on evergreen content within your industry will remain crucial and accumulate views over time. As a good practice, you should combine evergreen with trending topics to generate traffic and prepare for the future at the same time.
    According to SEO specialist Jill Whalen, excellent SEO work will only get better over time. Businesses should only adopt their search engine strategies to the changes in the ranking algorithms by search engines.

 

  1. Search will continue to grow – As experienced during this pandemic, paid and organic searches dominate the online platforms and probably do so in the future. Marketers also believe in SEO as the most stable and most substantial strategy to promote a brand, product, or service. They also agree that SEO is a cost-effective marketing channel that can produce results.
    This 2020 survey showed that 65% of advertisers believe businesses will invest more in advertising campaigns to produce direct sales. This result makes SEO the overwhelming platform of choice for most marketers in both B2C and B2B sectors.
    Another survey found that a large percentage of agency and marketing professionals in the U.S. maintained their budgets for their SEO campaigns in 2020 compared to other efforts like paid social media, digital video, and display advertisements. SEO-focused marketing campaigns are on the rise.

 

  1. SEO platforms optimize telecommuting – The pandemic resulted in the emergence of many SEO platforms as enterprising companies scrambled to meet the needs created by the remote work boom. These platforms also helped improve B2B companies' efficiency that is leveraging SEO in their marketing efforts. The growing success of B2B marketers working at home will likely boost the demand for SEO platforms.
    The use of SEO as a marketing tool is increasing, independent of COVID-19. According to Orainti founder and international SEO consultant Aleyda Solis, we will see growing importance and use of structured data due to the increased number of mobile searches and voice control for Google assistant. She also projected growth in predictive search features and the adoption of a more technical SEO ecosystem.

 

  1. SEO provides a competitive edge – Another reason for SEO to be indispensable is how it allows small and medium enterprises (SME) to compete against their bigger rivals. It provides SMEs with a competitive edge since they usually only have one business to focus their SEO efforts on, compared to their larger competitors. If you are an SME, SEO is the best tool you can use to raise brand awareness, establish trust, and engage with your potential market at an affordable price.
    Based on a Hubspot study, brands that post at least 16 times per month generated 450% more leads than those who published a maximum of four posts. If you want to take advantage of SEO, create high-quality evergreen content, and focus on both COVID-19-related and industry-related search terms.

 

  1. SEO will support future business campaigns – Focusing on your SEO strategy now will bear fruits later. It will serve as the foundation for building your campaigns in the future when many businesses will operate more like before the crisis. You should include ways to help your customers strengthen your relationships and establish their loyalty to your brand.
    According to Conductor vice president of digital strategies, Patrick Reinhart, this is the right time to plant trees for SEO as they will provide shade on sunny days in the future. Businesses should create content dealing with the current situation and the future. In his tweet, Lane R. Ellis claimed that B2B marketers who advance their SEO campaigns would help them achieve expanded search success after the pandemic.

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Best SEO Practices to Utilize for Your Business in 2021

 

SEO's effectiveness as a marketing tool will largely depend on your ability to make your target keywords rank well on Google and other search engines. You must strive to reach the top 10 and appear on Google's first page to achieve results. Why? Based on a HubSpot study, 75% of users only looked at their first page results during their search. Here are some of the best SEO strategies you can use to make your posts rank on Google:


  • Use keywords in your URL – A well-structured URL increases your content's visibility to search engines and your visitors. Creating an excellent URL makes it short, easy to read, and includes your primary keywords. You should also avoid using stop words to make it concise and to the point.

 

  • Optimize your website to satisfy your users – Google puts a premium on the quality of user experience in its website rankings. Make sure your pages are responsive to ensure your visitors' satisfaction and improve your reputation with Google.
    Some of the strategies to optimize your website include achieving excellent page speed, eliminating intrusive popups, and using subheadings, screenshots, images, and videos in your content. Also, utilize white space to improve the readability of your content.

 

  • Develop content that aligns with search intent – To increase your content's visibility with Google, align it to search intent or user intent. To achieve this, familiarize yourself with the types of search intent and use the right action words when writing your content. The common types of user intent are navigational, informational, commercial, and transactional.
    In navigational intent, the user's motive is to look for specific apps or websites, while in informational, the aim is to look for particular data or information. In commercial intent, the user is looking for a product or service, but with no decision yet. In transactional intent, the goal is to purchase.  When creating your content, always remember to align it with the user intent.

 

  • Create interesting title tags and meta descriptions – Google's algorithm gives importance to a content's title tags and meta descriptions during the search. The title tags directly impact your content's visibility during search queries, while meta descriptions can affect click-through rates (CTR).
    When creating your title tags, make them concise but descriptive. You should also include your target keywords and should match them with search intent. Also, refrain from using the same title tags and avoid keyword stuffing.
    When writing your meta descriptions, keep them to a maximum of 160 characters, and they should reflect the main topic/s of your content. Also, make sure to create a unique meta description for every post, use action-oriented words, and include your target keywords.

 

  • Utilize optimized images – Images can help increase your website's overall appeal and visitors' user experience. However, if not done correctly, images can adversely affect your page loading speed and user experience. To achieve the best results, you need to optimize your images.
    To optimize your images, you should use JPEG or PNG image formats, compress them to speed up loading, and include an alt text to make them visible to Google. You can use free tools like ImageOptim, ShortPixel, and TinyPNG, to compress your images. You can also use the lazy loading strategy for non-critical pictures and videos to optimize page loading time. You can use the free tool a3 Lazy Load plugin to lazy load your videos and images.

 

  • Write long-form content – Another best practice for SEO is posting long-form articles (3,000+ words) on your website. Based on a SEMrush study, long forms perform better than others on Google's ranking. In the study, long-form content shares, traffic, and backlinks are higher by 400%, 300%, and 3.5% than average-length articles, respectively.
    When writing long-form content, you should use target keywords that balance keyword difficulty and search volume.  Use long-tail keywords and mid-tail keywords strategically to reach your target customers.

 

  • Use authoritative backlinks – Another critical factor used by Google in ranking web pages is backlinks. However, backlinks from spammy websites can hurt your rankings. To avoid this, make sure to build authoritative backlinks for your site.
    An effective strategy to get high-quality backlinks is by investigating and copying your rivals' link building techniques. You can use tools like SEMrush's Backlink Gap Tool to examine your competitors' backlink profiles and create a plan to steal their authoritative backlinks.

 

  • Include internal links – Internal links play a crucial role in improving your Google ranking if appropriately used. These links create an information hierarchy for your site and inform Google about the topics of your content. To optimize your website, link your low performing pages to the top-performing ones. Make sure the top-performing pages are relevant to the content you are linking to.
    To test the quality of your internal links, you can use tools like SEMrush. These tools can help you identify and resolve the internal linking errors on your site.

  • Maximize your page speed – A nonresponsive page may frustrate your users and compel them to leave your website. To avoid this, you should optimize your page loading speed to satisfy your users. To check your speed, you may use free tools like GTMetrix and Google's PageSpeed Insights. These tools will also recommend strategies and fixes to speed up your page's loading time.
    Aside from compressing your images, there are other techniques you can use to optimize your page speed. These steps include deleting unimportant plugins, enabling browser caching, and reducing server response time. You should also eliminate redirects and minify JavaScript and CSS files. Moreover, make sure your web page works well on mobile devices.

 

Final Thoughts

 

Your SEO campaign allows you to engage with your audience and prepare your business for 2021. Incorporating the SEO best practices in your campaign will increase your pages' visibility to a high number of users. However, our SEO experts are always willing to help if you are not sure how to do it.

 

Are you looking to find the perfect digital marketing strategy for your business? Search marketing can work well for you if you want to raise brand awareness, boost website traffic, and increase your revenue. However, for you to run your campaign well, you must familiarize yourself with the most popular search marketing strategies, SEO and SEM.

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Marketing professionals often use the terms SEM and SEO interchangeably. However, these strategies are different from each other, and you need to know their differences to better manage your search marketing campaign.

 

In this post, we will discuss the similarities and differences between SEO and SEM. But before tackling them, let us first familiarize ourselves with these terms.

 

What is Search Engine Optimization?

 

Google Knowledge Graph defines search engine optimization (SEO) as the process aimed at optimizing the traffic to a website by making it appear on the first page of the results list of a search engine called search engine results pages(SERP) during a search query. Actually, SEO is part of SEM.

In an SEO campaign, brands employ organic methods to rank high in SERPs. You can use several SEO strategies to increase your visibility to search engines like Google during their searches. Experts usually group these SEO techniques and tricks into three categories, namely:


  • Technical SEO – Technical SEO involves the strategies to improve the technical aspects of your website to optimize its foundation and backend structure. Among the website aspects tackled by these procedures are mobile-friendliness, page speed, crawlability, indexing, structured data, security, and site architecture. This category aims to improve both the user and search engine experience.
  • On-page SEO – On-page SEO includes all activities you do to improve your website’s researchability. Among the strategies in this category are HTML source code optimization, content creation, strategic keyword choice and placement, heading optimization, title tags, and meta descriptions. The implementation of an excellent on-page SEO strategy will result in better visibility with search engines and higher SERP rankings.
  • Off-page SEO – Off-page SEO includes activities aimed at building your website’s reputation to the search engines. The main strategies include link building to authority sites and managing directory profiles and local listings. Other off-page activities you can do to boost your website include influencer outreach, guest blogging, brand mentions, social networking, and broken link building. If you have reputable website connections, the search engines will consider your site as dependable and trustworthy, and will favor you during their search.

 

What is Search Engine Marketing?

 

Wikipedia defines search engine marketing (SEM) as a digital marketing strategy that uses paid and unpaid advertising and optimization techniques to promote a website and boost its visibility in SERPs. Aside from SEO, the other SEM strategies are:


  • Display advertising – These are image, video, or text-based advertisements aimed at convincing users in digital platforms like social media and websites to make a specific action.
  • Remarketing – This strategy involves the posting or showing ads to users who previously used your app or visited your website to boost brand awareness or sell a product or service.
  • Shopping/product advertising – This is a campaign to establish and maintain product awareness with prospective customers.
  • Pay-per-click (PPC) – Under this SEM strategy, you will pay a certain amount to websites or search engines like Google when your ads get a click.

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Similar Features of SEM and SEO

 

As search marketing strategies, SEO and SEM have similarities as they both aim to increase your brand’s ranking on SERPs. Among their similar features are:


  • They both are intended to increase your website visitors by making your brand appear high in SERPs. Users are more likely to click on the top-half results of the SERP’s first page.
  • They both require you to know your target audience’s behavior, wants, and needs to become effective. By learning your audience’s personality, you can develop effective content to convince them that your products or services will resolve their needs and wants.
  • They both use keywords to bolster your website’s visibility to the search engines. To find the most effective keywords in your campaigns, you may use tools like UberSuggest and the Alexa Keyword Difficulty

 

Differences Between SEM and SEO as Digital Marketing Strategies

 

Although they are often used interchangeably and believed to be the same, SEO and SEM have major differences. You can elect to use both these strategies in your digital marketing efforts if you want to get immediate tangible results, and you have the money to spend. However, if you need only to choose one, here are their different features to help you decide:


  • Cost – One of the primary differences between SEO and SEM is that SEO is an organic approach, meaning, it will naturally attract traffic to your website over time, while SEM is a paid scheme wherein you will pay each time a user clicks your ads. Cost-wise, SEO is a better approach.

 

However, your choice will depend on several factors, like your budget, business goals, and your business experience. If you are a startup and want to gain immediate impact, SEM would work well for you if you are prepared to spend. If you have several years in the business, SEO will help you expand your business with minimal cost and high returns.

 

  • Search results – Paid strategies like SEM could produce an immediate impact on your SERP and web traffic. It is because you can specifically target a group of users with your ads. SEO, meanwhile, takes time before it could produce tangible results. Also, you need to produce quality content to build brand awareness, establish a relationship with your market, and build their loyalty.

 

Furthermore, SEM is an excellent strategy for testing. If you are new in business or the advertising arena, you can use SEM to get immediate results for your campaigns and change strategies if the results are dismal. SEO, meanwhile, is ideal for those who want a gradual but steady growth of their business.

 

  • ROI – When it comes to return on investment (ROI), SEO could have the advantage as your costs are minimal. In SEM, you need to invest money if you want to get results. However, if you are a risk-taker, spending some for higher returns will work well for you.

 

A solid SEO strategy will bolster your web traffic significantly in the long term. If you already establish your SERP ranking, you only need to post regular content or update your existing ones to get results. Meanwhile, in SEM, you need constant monitoring to determine how your ads are performing. Your losses could also be significant if you don’t do SEM the right way.

 

Factors to Consider When Deciding Whether to Use SEO or SEM in Your Campaign

 

With a better understanding of SEM and SEO, you are now ready to choose which is better for your search marketing. But wait, don’t get too excited. Consider these factors in your decision making:


  • Determine your business standing – Your choice partly depends on how long you are doing business in your market. If you are a startup and your website is newly launched, it may take several months or years to develop your SEO and start to appear in organic search. Your best strategy, therefore, is to launch an SEM campaign while planning for your SEO. This way, you will get immediate traffic. You can also leverage your SEM when advancing your SEO plan.

 

  • Assess your industry – Your knowledge about your sector will also be a factor in your choice. If you have been actively doing business for several years and have a good idea of your customers’ needs and wants, an SEO strategy is an excellent way to grow your brand organically.

 

However, if your experience is limited and unsure of how your competition or market will respond to your content, SEM is a great way to experiment and test what works best in your industry. To know more about your market and your business standing, you may research on these sites.

 

  • Examine your competition – To decide your strategy to compete against your rivals, investigate their approach and the performance of their marketing campaign. Look at their organic keyword and paid strategy and device ways to outperform them. In your analysis, look for weaknesses in their campaigns that you can exploit.

 

There are several tools you can use to examine the keyword strategy of your rivals. You may utilize Alexa’s Competitor Keyword Matrix or SEMrush to do your research. Through these tools, you can get a glimpse of your rivals’ top organic and paid keywords attracting web traffic to their pages.

 

  • Know the average cost-per-click in your market – Driving traffic to your website and complete a sale is your primary goal in your marketing campaign. SEM is the right strategy for you if you want immediate results. However, to maximize your ROI or avoid too many losses if your campaign flops, know the prevailing CPC rates in your industry.

 

Several factors affect CPC like your keyword competition, quality score, ad rank position, seasonality, and bidding strategy. However, there are ways to lower your CPC rate. To determine your CPC performance compared to similar campaigners and how to reduce your CPC, you may use the free tool AdWords Performance Grader.

 

  • Analyze your regular customers’ buying cycle – There are three stages in your customers’ buying journey, namely, awareness, consideration, and decision. In the awareness stage, they realize their need, but they may lack money to buy or don’t know what to buy. In the consideration phase, they are now actively looking and weighing the solution. In the decision stage, they are now ready to make a deal.

 

The length of your customers’ buying cycle is also a key consideration on whether to use SEO or SEM. If you have a short customer buying cycle, wherein they are already prepared to buy when they search a product, an SEM strategy is a good fit. However, if your customers’ buying cycle will take weeks or months, an SEO campaign is better.

 

  • Consider the performance of your website – Examine the status of your website to better decide on your marketing strategy. If there is already a potential for an SEO campaign, you should exploit it and save money. However, if the potential is low, go for SEM for immediate impact. You may use the Alexa SEO Audit tool to analyze the status of your website.

 

Final Thoughts

Understanding the differences and similarities of SEO and SEM as search marketing strategies allows you to optimize your campaign strategy. You may also opt to combine them to make your marketing technique more effective. But if you are not confident or not sure where to start, we are here to help. Our professionals know the ins and outs of search marketing. For additional inquiries, call us today.

 

SEO and Social Media actions produce different outcomes. But they do have the same goal, and that is to drive website traffic and conversion. The thing is, they both have vacancies. Surprisingly, they simply fill-in what’s lacking on the other. Let’s find out how their differences allow them to address their purpose.

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4 Differences Between SEO and Social Media in Driving Website Traffic

Audience Targeting and Conversion

Social Media directly captures an audience initially through their specific pain points, which is the strongest and most catchy emotion. Apparently, social media audiences are deeply emotional because they’re on a personal level, rather than business-like. The secondary goal is to target people based on their demographics, geographic location, and, most importantly, their interests. It requires creative content to drive traffic efficiently. Social media audience targeting requires you to present the content even if they’re not searching for it. And you need to figure out how to make them click without sounding like a salesperson.

 

SEO targets an audience based on problems that require instant answers. The audience is usually asking questions and seeks reliable, informative content—the audience searches for the articles they want to read and learn. What you need to figure out are the topics that they’re searching for. They come to you, but you have to be there the moment they ask for it. That’s why it’s imperative to build website credibility to achieve and maintain a high ranking.

 

Content Format

Social Media lives and breathes visual content. The mind connects with words, but images and videos are even more quickly processed by the brain simply because it’s entertaining. Audiences in social media are there for entertainment, so you have a better chance if you conform to creating visual formats.

 

SEO relies on long written formats. Google recognizes credibility through the number of words on the web page content paired with keyword relevance.

 

Consistency of Traffic

Social Media continuously requires advertising efforts. You should maintain ongoing marketing strategies to drive traffic from social media platforms. Social campaigns are quick in driving traffic, but it doesn’t last for so long unless you’re always purposely running it.

 

Effective SEO efforts produce high-ranking campaigns that can usually sustain independently for weeks or months. The moment it works, it drives a passive search traffic source, which means less effort and better stamina.

 

Speed of Traffic

Social Media ad campaigns and posts engage with the audience instantly. You can get likes, comments, and drive traffic to your website in a matter of minutes, sometimes even in seconds. If done strategically, you can also grow a bunch of followers on your website and social pages.

 

SEO takes a little more time to gain traffic momentum. It has a slow, steady speed as it gets sifted for its relevance. You’ll have to wait for days before you can see results in the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) ranking. Search engines are also quite tricky because they can sometimes take years before your website gains authority and credibility. You’ll have to utilize highly-relevant keywords to improve visibility.

 

SEO vs. Social Media: Which is Better?

It’s actually not a battle. Addressing which one is better is out of the question. If you look at the bigger picture, you’ll need both SEO and Social campaigns because of the interdependence of their results. You see, social profiles can also rank in search items. And, SEO needs Social’s point of view in terms of link building outreach. Even though Social Media does not have a direct influence on website ranking and credibility, SEO needs a portion of social media signals to make it more effective in driving website traffic.

 

Ultimately, you’ll need either of them in different types of campaigns. It only boils down to what you need at the moment because they undoubtedly have strengths of their own. You just need to identify their uses and how you can apply them to drive website traffic.

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