Search engine marketing meaning

Search engine marketing is a very broad term. It includes all possible search engine activities that contribute to your website ranking higher in the search results. But what do these activities actually entail? What is the meaning of search engine marketing? What do you have to think about? And what is the use of it? 

The meaning of search engine marketing is actually very simple to explain. It includes all the things that help you end up higher in the search engines. This is also called SEO (Search Engine Optimization) or online marketing. The way in which this is done depends entirely on the goal you want to achieve and what your target group looks like. Online marketing has become increasingly important over the years. There are several reasons for this. 

The usefulness of search engine marketing 

When the Internet was not yet so widely used, marketing was of course already used. This was offline marketing. Think for instance of placing an advertisement in a local newspaper or magazine. Although this was very effective for a long time, it has changed considerably over the years. This is mainly due to the fact that consumers are moving more online. In addition, the passive consumer is now a thing of the past. Consumers have much more access to information. As a result, they are able to make a good and well-considered choice. They no longer believe everything that is said in advertisements, but draw their own plan. Much of that information is gathered through search engines. 

Online marketing was already very important in recent years, but partly due to the corona crisis, its importance has accelerated. More and more companies have started to establish themselves online. The vast majority of consumers are online as well. Did you know that more than 80% of consumers use search engines on a daily basis to look for products and services? It is therefore a shame not to use them. 

Remember that you are not the only one using search engine marketing. The competition does this too. When you do not pay attention to the SEO of your company, but the competition does... you are missing out on a lot of potential customers. A good search engine marketing campaign is therefore essential to not only reach the consumer, but also to be one step ahead of the competition every time. 

Different search engine marketing services 

Because search engine marketing is a very broad concept, it is sometimes difficult to put together a good strategy. This is only logical, as what works for one company, may not work at all for another. Often, a combination of various search engine marketing services is needed to achieve success. Below, we list the most common activities: 

Link building 

Link building is a core part of search engine marketing. With the help of link building, you are able to give your website a higher quality score and make it 'important' in the eyes of Google. Each backlink is considered a vote for your website. This sounds easy. Just' collect as many links as possible. But it is not that easy. It used to be, but because of this there was a lot of fiddling around with collecting links. Links were bought in large numbers, for example, which reduced the quality of the results. Something that can also harm Google itself. 

That is why Google has adjusted its algorithm enormously over the years. This way, Google's robots are able to distinguish wrong backlinks and even hand out a penalty. This means that you drop in the ranking and all your investments up to that point are worthless. A great pity, of course. That is why it is important to avoid such penalties. Obtaining a less than perfect backlink once in a while is not a problem, but it should not become a habit. Do everything you can to create a link profile that is as natural as possible. You do this by collecting the right combination of internal and external backlinks. 

Internal backlinks are the links you place on your own website and which refer to a page within the same site. Think of it as a kind of spider web that connects the different pages on your website. By using internal links you make it easier for the reader to navigate through your website. External backlinks are links that point from another website to your webpage. 

There are several ways to collect quality backlinks. The most effective method is by simply earning the links. By publishing interesting content for your target group, you also make it more attractive for other website owners to link to your page. Keep in mind that it is not tempting for other websites to place a link to the homepage of your website. It is therefore a good idea to also provide other forms of content. Keeping a blog can be very helpful here. By sharing interesting information for your target group, it becomes more interesting for others to use this information in their own articles. 

Please note that there are many different types of content online. You won't get away with the umpteenth 'How to' about saving money or losing weight. You will find plenty of information about this online. Make sure the information you share is unique and interesting to the reader. This way, you will not only end up higher in the search results, but there is also a greater chance that these blogs will be mentioned on other sites. 

Social media marketing

Social media marketing is more important than ever. More and more Dutch people are on one or more social media channels. Moreover, more and more social media channels have developed special functions for companies. This has made it a lot easier for companies to find their target group and to specifically target this group with their advertisements. 

Social media also offers the possibility of entering into a dialogue with the consumer. After all, nowadays there is no need for passive consumers. Consumers want to have all options at their fingertips and sufficient information to make their own choices. They are no longer satisfied with being talked at and not being able to enter into a dialogue. With social media, you can change this. Ask simple questions on your channels to enter into a dialogue with the target group or even receive more information about it. This not only reflects the personality of your company, but also provides you with crucial information to improve products and/or services. 

Influencer marketing has also become increasingly popular in recent years. A form of influencer marketing has actually always existed. Think, for example, of BN'ers being used for commercials on television. This is also how it works online. Only then, it is not necessary to use BN'ers, but even ordinary people can be enormously effective in generating brand awareness for your company. This is especially true for people who have a large following. Over the years, they have built up an enormous bond of trust with their supporters. As a result, they are more inclined to listen to the information shared and even take action. With influencer marketing, you enlist such influencers to tell something about your company, try out products and/or services and possibly post a review or a win online. In this way, you will gain more brand awareness and you will be able to reach your specific target group even better. 

Content marketing 

Content marketing is of course the pivot of all forms of search engine marketing. Without the right content, you will never be able to end up higher in the search results. It is therefore not for nothing that there are numerous SEO companies that focus on writing content. Yet it is important to take a few things into account. First of all, the fact that you do not write content directly for Google's algorithm, but to meet the human needs of your target audience. In the end, it is not about Google, but about the people who read it. They are the people you are trying to reach. You can rank as high as you want in Google, but if the information you share is meaningless, you will still end up with nothing. Therefore, gathering the right SEO optimised content and truly unique and relevant content for your target audience should go hand in hand. 

Keep in mind that there is already a lot of information available on Google. It is therefore important that you stand out from the crowd. This means you have to be able to share interesting information, information that is not yet known to the reader. What you really want to get your target group excited about and how you can treat them to good information, without mimicking the competition. By sharing unique content, you show your authenticity and experience as a company. With this, you gain more brand awareness and you enjoy more prestige within your industry. 

Benefits of online marketing 

There are several reasons to invest more money in search engine marketing, also known as online marketing or SEO. But are you actually aware of the search engine marketing advantage for your company? If not, it is high time to change this. It is not for nothing that more and more entrepreneurs are using SEO companies to help their website rank higher in the search results. The success of your company stands or falls with a good SEO campaign. We list the benefits for you. 

The activity of internet users is increasing 

It is almost impossible to imagine that the Internet has not existed for very long. The enormous possibilities that we have today were almost unimaginable twenty years ago. On top of that, the activity of internet users only seems to increase. Just like the knowledge and experience in the field of the Internet. The online market therefore continues to grow. Also in the field of marketing. Every year, completely new possibilities appear on the market with which you can put your company in the digital spotlight. 

Very important, because partly due to the amount of internet users at the moment, we also see that more and more companies are on the digital market. To ensure that consumers choose your company, it is important that you are able to distinguish yourself and end up higher in the search results. 

Search engines are also more important than ever these days. Think about how often you open a newspaper or magazine to look up products and/or services. Probably far too little. It is much easier to do a quick search in your favourite search engine. Within seconds you will receive all the information you need to make a choice. This also applies to the rest of the consuming Dutch population, of course. It would be a shame to miss out on this target group. Especially since more than 88 percent of the Dutch people regularly use a search engine. There is a lot to be gained here. 

Search engine marketing is measurable 

One of the biggest advantages of search engine marketing is that the results are fully measurable. This is in contrast to the various forms of offline marketing. When you place an advertisement in the newspaper, for example, you might see an increasing number of customers in the following days. However, this does not necessarily mean anything. It could also be coincidence. But when you make the connection with the advertisement, it might also mean that you invested in a method that actually yielded little. What a shame! With search engine marketing, this problem is history. 

Thanks to handy online tools like Google Analytics, you are able to take a close look at your online marketing strategy and adjust it if necessary. This way, you know for sure whether your strategy is effective and you never pay unnecessary money for things that hardly work. As a result, you are generally a lot cheaper than when you choose offline marketing forms. And you also know for sure that it has paid off. Win-win! 

Are you outsourcing your online marketing to a marketing company? Then ask them to show you the results they have achieved on a monthly basis. Do not expect immediate miracles. SEO takes time. But when it is done in the right way, you will benefit from long-term results. It is nice to know how you are doing. Therefore, do not hesitate to ask your search engine marketing specialist. 

More personal approach 

The digital marketing trends change every year. What is striking for the coming year is that we will benefit from a much more personal approach. Consumers no longer have a need for countless advertisements that do not respond to their perception. It is therefore better to opt for a personal approach and to advertise in a targeted manner. We see this, for example, in the use of social media. Here the algorithm determines which target group gets to see your company. This way, you only address the people who are actually interested in your products and/or services. This is a much more effective way of marketing. 

Be aware that there are hardly any passive consumers nowadays. Consumers have access to an enormous amount of information within just a few clicks to make choices. Therefore, it is not only important to show that your product really is the best choice, but also why. Dare to enter into a dialogue with the consumer. Do something with feedback and make this clearly known online. This way, you build up a relationship of trust with the consumer, which ultimately leads to a better position in the market. 

Search engine marketing: outsourcing? 

The meaning of search engine marketing is now clear. It is also clear that this is a very broad concept. Consider well that online marketing activities are not only very comprehensive, but also require the necessary knowledge and experience. If you do not have this, it will take a lot of time to learn the tricks of the trade. Moreover, you must also be able to keep your knowledge up to date and learn more. Search engine marketing is always in motion. That is why you will have to adjust your strategy regularly. Based on the latest marketing trends. 

It is quite understandable if you simply do not have enough time to do this. As an entrepreneur, you often lack time. Then also investing time in online marketing can be very difficult. Therefore, in most cases, it is wiser to outsource your search engine marketing to a professional company. Then you know that it is done well and that you save the necessary time to make your company even more successful.

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