Ever since we’ve been introduced to the Internet, the way we do business has completely been revolutionized. In a world where fast-advancing technology is nothing new, it’s important for business owners to understand the influence that the Internet has on both business-to-business and business-to-consumer commerce.

The power of the Worldwide Web now offers the main point of contact between a consumer and the product or service he/she wants to purchase. And that point of contact is a search engine. Today, more and more shoppers are logging on to their favorite search engine to find information on what they want to purchase. Many of them are your potential customers.

Search Engine and Product Research

A survey was conducted by eMarketer.com to show the most popular online activities among Internet users. The survey results showed that:

  • 93% of respondents say email usage is the most popular
  • 79% of respondents say search engine usage is the most popular
  • 63% of respondent say researching products and services in the most popular

Search engines have become a commodity to people, especially consumers who do research before making a purchase. According to another e-Marketer.com survey, 32% of respondents said they could not live without Internet search engines.

Knowing the power and influence of the web, smart business owners make sure they develop a web presence. But the smarter business owners take it one step further. They take into consideration the popularity of search engine usage, so they put into practice search engine marketing (SEM) strategies to maximize their web presence.

Why is Search Engine Marketing Needed?

Search engine marketing is about more than just generating high volumes of traffic to your website. Effective SEM allows you to make your website visible to potential customers who are interested in the products and services you have to offer.

If a prospect does a keyword search and a list of related websites shows up but you’re not one of them, that prospect will likely do business with someone else. Can you really afford to lose potential customers that way?

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Search Engine Marketing Strategies

Two of the most popular search engine marketing techniques are search engine optimization (SEO) and pay per click (PPC).

Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization is a method of improving a website’s visibility in a keyword search, thus leading to improved volume and more traffic to a site from “organic” search results. The higher a website is ranked in a search engine, usually the more traffic that site receives. And higher targeted traffic means more lead generation and even increased sales.

Pay Per Click

Pay per click is the technique of advertising with search engines for particular keyword phrases. Advertisers are charged a small fee every time a visitor clicks on the PPC ad. In essence, website owners have the opportunity to buy their way to better positions on search results pages and attract more traffic that way.

The top goals for search engine marketing campaigns are direct sales, brand awareness and lead generation. If the SEM campaign is done properly, then those goals will be accomplished.

For more information on internet marketing strategies read this post.

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