What’s The Difference Between SEO And SEM? Get Clear On The Difference!

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and SEM (Search Engine Marketing) might sound kinda similar...and sometimes they're used interchangeably...but as a matter of fact, SEO and SEM are two totally different things.

Show Notes

Here are links and resources mentioned in today's video. Enjoy!

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So here's the difference between SEO and SEM: You could say that SEO is a strategy to rank web pages, articles, product pages, and other web content highly in search engines.

In other words, when someone searches for something online, we can purposefully and strategically construct our web pages in a very specific way to increase the likelihood that our pages will appear on search engine results pages.

And ideally, we want to rank our web pages in the top 10 search results...or even better, the top 5 results, for the sorts of words and phrases our target audience uses when they're searching online. And this can be discovered through careful keyword research.

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So really, SEO is simply a set of guidelines to follow to increase the probability that your content will rank well. Next, we have SEM. This is a much broader term than SEO that actually includes SEO or search engine ranking.

But it also includes other marketing activities that relate to search engines...most notably, paid ads in search engines, PPC campaigns, promoted links, and similar strategies.

More simply stated, SEM is SEO + paid advertising. SEO is just, well, SEO! So that's the difference between SEO and SEM.

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Geoff Blake, Ten Ton Online

Hey there, I’m Geoff! Business, marketing, and the web can seem like a tangled, confusing mess, right? Well if you wanna get clear, straight info on all this stuff (no gimmicks or hypey nonsense)...then you're definitely in the right spot! Start here (free!)