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The Only Difference Between SEO and SEM in Digital Marketing

You know that your company can’t survive today’s ultra-competitive market without a solid digital marketing strategy. 

You’ve come up with awesome email campaigns, you’ve mastered all things social media, and you’ve even created highly shareable video content that you know will make your target market tick. 

But you’re still not rising in the search engine rankings. So, what gives? 

For many, it’s a lack of understanding about the difference between SEO and SEM. 

So, what’s the difference between these two effective forms of search engine marketing? 

Read on to find out. 

What Is The Main Difference Between SEO and SEM?

So, what’s the difference between SEO and SEM? 

SEO experts from BearFoxMarketing.com explain that SEO generates organic traffic to your website, while SEM creates paid traffic. Both are essential tools for increasing your search engine rankings. 

While the goal of both SEO marketing tactics is the same, the way they go about it is quite different. 

Organic traffic (SEO) is when visitors naturally end up on your website because they’ve entered search terms that match with your keywords, clicked a link on another article and ended up on your site, or just typed it into their address bar on their own. 

Paid traffic (SEM) is also referred to as “pay-per-click” or PPC marketing. 

If you use paid traffic to increase your search engine rankings, then users who search for the keywords you’ve targeted end up on your website because you’ve paid for ads directing them to your website. Your site also appears at the top of search engine result pages. 

You’ll then pay a fee every time that someone clicks on an ad for your website and is redirected to your site. 

What Do SEO and SEM Have in Common?

In spite of these differences, SEO and SEM marketing tactics still have much more in common than you might expect. 

Both of them revolve mostly around conducting thorough keyword research and targeting the keywords that will get you the most traffic. 

They both also require you to do some serious research on your target market, and both are all about getting you more web traffic so that you can climb higher in search engine results. 

Perhaps most importantly of all, to have effective SEO and SEM strategies, you will need to constantly conduct tests on effective keywords, optimization tactics, marketing trends, and even current market demand. 

Which Form of Search Engine Marketing Is Right for Your Brand?

Now that you know the major difference between SEO and SEM (organic vs. paid traffic to your website) it’s time to start weighing your options. 

Remember – you don’t have to commit to one side here. In fact, most businesses use a combination of SEO and SEM to get the best possible results. 

Looking for more advice about how to grow your current digital marketing strategy? 

We’re always bringing you the latest news in all things SEO and SEM, so bookmark our blog today to learn about the next big search trends, tools, and much more. 

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