While only about half of American startups make it past the first 5 years of operations, it’s not all gloom and doom. There are actionable steps that you can take to remain part of the 50% that keeps its door open and ultimately thrives.
One of the most important steps to take is creating and executing a search engine marketing campaign. There are many benefits of SEM both for the organization and the end-user. Read on to learn what some of the top advantages of this two-way street are.
When you invest in an SEM campaign, you do so to put paid ads at the top of a search engine. You get to choose the keywords and phrases that you want to display your advertisement underneath.
Select the appropriate option by researching the words most associated with your website. You can then look into the volume of searches and how much competition you will have when bidding on those keywords. These keywords are the queries that people will type into Google before seeing your ad.
There are several benefits to this, but the main one is that you get to target consumers who are already interested in your products and services.
For example, if you’re a SaaS service for business communications, people who Google ‘business communications tools’ are already at a stage of the marketing funnel where they’re looking to invest. Show them how you solve their pain points and gain visibility among those that matter.
Paid search marketing is ideal because people will see your advertisement when they search for multiple related keywords. Assuming that your ad is displayed at the top of Google or in the sidebar, people are going to see it and remember it. Even those who don’t click right away will be subconsciously taking in your brand message and letting it stick in their memory.
This has two immediate impacts. First, people who see your brand appear in multiple locations will believe you to be an authority. They’ll notice your business appearing over and over when looking for resolutions to their pain points and eventually decide that your large online presence makes you reputable.
Second, your brand will stick in their memory for the next time that they’re looking for a similar service. Even if a competitor gets their business now, they’ll remember your images, colors, and awesome ad when they’re looking for something that the competitor doesn’t offer. If they’re looking to switch it up, you’re the one that they’ll come back to.
Many online marketing technologies don’t give you any control over your budget. You spend a set amount of money and get the content that it buys. The ad or blog post then is put online and gets the traffic that it gets.
You may overspend for a search engine optimization (SEO) campaign that gets you nowhere. With other paid search methods, you also may struggle when your advertisement succeeds and goes over your budget. SEM ads don’t have this problem because set your budget up-front.
When you upload your ad to Google and bid on a keyword, you also get to note the amount of money that you’re willing to spend on the ad campaign. Pay-per-click ads charge a small fee every time a person clicks on them, so every penny converts. Once your budget dwindles out, Google Ads immediately stops charging you and removes your ad until you renew the campaign.
This eliminates surprise costs and ensures the success of your marketing campaign.
Unlike SEO and organic search engine marketing tactics, SEM advertisements have an immediate effect. Rather than needing to wait 6-12 months, you will instantly get your brand message out to your target audience. Pay-per-click ads therefore only take a short amount of time to convert.
This is important for all businesses, but it’s especially critical for startups. You need to get customers quickly so that your business begins with a bang. Using PPC ads ensures that you’ll turn a profit right after the bat so that you can grow your business from the get-go.
Many people who hear that SEM is immediate choose it over SEO. This makes sense for budding businesses that don’t have a lot of money to spend. However, SEM actually is most effective when paired with a solid SEO campaign.
As you expect, SEM does all of the heavy lifting in the beginning stages of your business. However, it’s also a form of off-page SEO since it’s a manipulation that you make outside of your webpage to drive inbound traffic. This inbound web traffic makes your site more appealing to search engine crawlers and therefore is a form of SEO in and of itself.
However, you can upgrade your SEO campaign to take your organic traffic to the next level. Have professionals perform keyword research and build quality content. Ask for solid link-building both to other areas of your website and to external sources.
SEM helps your SEO strategy, but the opposite is also true. When you pull off a great SEO campaign, you’ll organically rank for high-traffic keywords permanently. You therefore can invest your SEM efforts into other high-traffic queries and cast a wider net.
One of the best things about a PPC campaign is that there are a huge range of possibilities for each campaign. You can decide on multiple different ad shapes and styles.
These can use different colors or imagery, but they can also feature different services or products. Investing in professional graphic design services is the ideal way to try new things and make them look awesome. When you diversify your SEM campaign, you can get a feel for what goes over best with your specific target audience.
One of the best ways to begin your ad campaign is with interactive advertisements that stand out from your competitors. Video content is a great choice since the human eye is drawn to movement. Animations make for an ideal ad because they’re colorful and grab attention.
Some companies have even begun to incorporate an interactive element into their PPC ads. These come in the form of short quizzes and simple games that redirect you to your business website. People tend to find these fascinating and unique, which contributes to the success of an ad campaign.
Local search engine marketing is essential because over half of people use smartphones to browse the web. By 2025, 72% of them will only be using mobile devices to go online. These statistics mean that people are going to be looking for local businesses more than ever before and that businesses can use GPS to target them.
When you claim your Google My Business listing or target for local keywords, you’ll get more traffic in relevant areas. Additionally, you can select the target location for your SEM campaign and only display ads to people whose smartphones show that they’re in this area.
Location isn’t the only thing that you can select when setting up your SEM campaign. Google also lets you enter other demographics that you want to reach. Some of the most important are age, gender, occupation, and income bracket.
Having the ability to enter these specifications means that you’ll exclusively reach people that are able to invest in your services. It also means that you’ll gain visibility with the exact audience that you care about.
When you bid on keywords for your PPC ads, you likely will go in with little knowledge for the first campaign. Your bid will be completely based off the research that you or a professional conducts. However, as time goes by, you can figure out which types of keywords convert to clicks and sales.
Using Google Analytics to track your SEM campaign is a great way to see this. You can see what keywords lead to the most paid traffic by looking into the number of clicks on each ad.
You also can track the types of ads that people are most likely to click on.
Do they prefer image-based ads? A certain color? Or are moving images and videos the better investment?
Answering these questions lets you better design your next ad. This will ultimately lead to more clicks and increase the effectiveness of each SEM campaign.
While search engine marketing may sound like a challenge, the many benefits of SEM make it a worthwhile endeavor. Don’t be afraid to invest in your SEM campaign. It’s one of the top ways to drive immediate clicks to your website and turn a fast profit with heightened visibility.
Now that you know the benefits of search engine marketing, it’s time to start developing a PPC campaign and remarketing via Google. Contact us to get the best support for your next SEM campaign so that you can ensure that your business soars to new heights.