Frequently Asked SEM Questions

Posted by Nick Pizzolato on Wed, May 20, 2015 @ 01:05 PM


Search engine marketing has become the focus of many businesses as they try to build their brand and engage customers online. For many business owners the world of online advertising is still a brand new experience. We wanted to address some frequently asked questions that some advertisers may have about search engine marketing and strategy for their marketing campaigns.

Q: Why should my company participate in search engine marketing?
A: Search engine marketing is just another way to advertise your business. It offers your company a chance to stand out online when a consumer performs a web search. If your website isn’t one of the top results on a search engine, people may not find it. However, if you create a text ad, your business could be listed above the top search results.

Advertising is about visibility and putting your business in front of as many people as possible. With millions of web searches being conducted across every platform, search engine marketing puts your business in a great position to be noticed.

Q: What is a landing page?
A: A landing page is the web page that you direct consumers to from your text ad. Depending on what your keyword campaign is, the landing page should reflect what a customer would be searching for.

Your landing page should not be your business’s homepage. A homepage will only restart the customer’s search process. Your landing page should complete their search. It should make purchasing a product or service easy for the consumer.

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Q: What is a conversion rate?
A: A conversion rate measures the people who click on your text ad and go on to buy a product on your website. You want to watch these conversion rates closely because they will indicate what strategies are working. If the keywords you selected to represent your text ad aren’t producing a high conversion rate, it might be time to rework your campaign strategy.

Q: What is a bounce rate?
A: A bounce rate measures the people who go to the page linked to the text ad, but then go back to the search page instead of spending time on your site. This immediate retreat usually indicates that the item they were searching for wasn’t found on the page they clicked on. If you have a high bounce rate you might want to reconsider what keywords you are using to represent your text ad AND where the landing page is directing the customer.

Remember, the landing page should be bring a consumer to the item they were searching for. If you own a hardware store and you create a text ad with “grills” as a key word, make sure that the page the ad is connected to takes a customer to a page that makes purchasing a grill easy.

Q: My site gets a high volume of organic traffic, why should I invest in text ads?
A: If your website is generating traffic organically, that’s great. It means that search engines find your site to be trustworthy, reliable and full of good content. However, that just means that your business is a strong search result with certain keywords. It doesn’t mean that your business is being found during similar searches.

A text ad is going to expand the visibility of not just your websites, but also your products and services. It’s going to allow you to create ads that show up next links that lead to your competitor’s website. Also, your site’s strong organic traffic is going to factor into your quality score in a positive way.

Q: Should I just advertise on Google?
A: Although Google is the most popular search engine, you shouldn’t dismiss the idea of advertising on Yahoo or Bing when planning your strategy. Every business should attempt to be inclusive and find as many customers as they can. Also, if your competition isn’t using other search engines you may get a discount when it comes to bidding for top placement for your text ad.

Nick Pizzolato is the Marketing Content Manager at Wicked Local Media Solutions. For questions, topics for future blogs, or to share your favorite moment from the film “Back to the Future,” email him at

Related Blogs

Introduction to Your Google Results Page
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Learning the Lingo: 6 SEM Terms You Must Know
Metadata: Merging Keywords with Your Website
Putting Your Business at the Top of a Search Engine
Google Adwords 101: Introduction to Keyword Selection
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Infographic: Selecting Keywords for Your Text AD
The Two Sides of SEM

Learn More About  Search Engine Marketing!

Tags: SEM, Digital Advertising, Small Business, Digital Marketing