Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is the promotion of a website by boosting search engine results through paid advertising. The most popular, most effective, and most expensive search engine ads are referred to as Pay Per Click (PPC). PPC ads are focused on keywords pertaining to the goods and/or services a business offers and are bid on by the advertisers. These are sometimes referred to as Cost Per Click (CPC) although different, PPC and CPC mean different things. PPC refers to strategy and CPC to performance metrics. 

The more advertisers are willing to pay for clicks, the higher the ranking in search results and thus the more traffic generated.

Another form of SEM is through site retargeting. These ads differ from PPC ads in that they are not charged when clicked upon but rather have a cost per 1000 impressions (CPM). Have you ever searched for an item and then noticed that item begins showing up on social media feeds, game app ads, and so on? That is retargeting. The cost is significantly less than PPC ads and is a useful tool for building brand awareness.

Social Media Marketing

These ads are typically less expensive than PPC ads and are primarily for building brand awareness and social engagement.  Social Media Marketing (SMM) refers to ads and promotions run on Facebook, Instagram, and other social platforms aimed at consumers that build brand awareness and create a perceived value to a company’s products and/or services.

Finding the right combination of PPC, CPM, and SMM is a critical component to the success of any digital marketing strategy.