Continuing our series on the best advertising channels to reach your target audience, TACK10 will analyze today the benefits and drawbacks of search engine marketing for small and medium size businesses. There are many terms used in search engine marketing: paid search, PPC (pay per click), CPC (cost per click). Regardless of the term used, search engine marketing refers to the practice of paying to put relevant content in front of an audience who is searching for terms related to your business. Of all search engines, Google is the largest, but this doesn’t mean it is the best for your business. Read on for a more in depth review of search engine advertising.

Benefits

  • Search engine marketing delivers highly targeted advertising as your ads are displayed to people when they are looking for a product or service.
  • There is a high conversion rate from paid search due to the fact that your business is presenting an offer or information to an individual that is already seeking it out.
  • Even if someone presented with your search ad doesn’t click through, there is a link to brand building as your business’ brand is presented in a way that is tied to the product or service they are seeking.

Drawbacks

  • Competition in a pay per click environment is very high. Because price per click is based on a bidding system, it can be extremely costly for products or services associated with popular keywords.
  • Because of the level of competition, paid search favours large brands with big budgets.
  • A lot of people tend to ignore sponsored ad links, thereby scrolling past your company’s advertised content in favour of organic search results.

Who can benefit from Search Engine Marketing?

Search Engine Marketing could be a top option for:

  • Businesses with a niche product or service that doesn’t compete with Fortune 500 brands.
  • Businesses that can get specific with keywords. Submitting a moderately long phrase that is specific to your business can generate fewer but highly valuable clicks at a lower cost.

Paid Search Hack

While Google is the biggest and most widely used search engine, it is also the most competitive and expensive when it comes to paid search. This is because big brands have the ability to bid up the value of the best keywords and create an insurmountable barrier to entry for businesses that have smaller budgets. If you’re considering paid search advertising, look at other search engines (i.e. Bing, Yahoo) that offer paid search advertising with less competition.

TACK10 thoughts on Search Engine Marketing as an advertising channel

Like Facebook advertising, paid search offers the ability to test and learn based on the conversion from various campaigns. Due to the level of competition, however, we would only recommend it for companies who have a unique niche that can be identified with keywords that won’t break the budget.