SEO glossary: Search engine marketing

In a nutshell: What is search engine marketing?

Search engine marketing (SEM for short) is an important part of online marketing. It includes all measures to position a website in search engines. The organic and paid areas are used here.


What is search engine marketing?

In English, search engine marketing means "search engine marketing", hence the abbreviation SEM. It has become an integral part of online marketing, enabling SEOs and companies to position themselves in well-known search engines such as Google, Bing and others.


Search engine marketing is basically divided into the following areas search engine optimization (SEO) and SEARCH ENGINE ADVERTISING (SEA).


The aim is to use search engine marketing to position your own website in such a way that traffic is directed to it. Interested parties and potential customers then enquire about a product or service so that a lead or sale is subsequently generated.


In the following, the two search engine marketing sub-areas are discussed in order to better understand the whole:


  • Search engine optimization (SEO): Webmasters and SEOs strive to position their website as high as possible in search engine results with the help of certain measures. Accordingly, more traffic flows to the site, which means more actions in the form of leads and/or sales, for example.


  • Search engine advertising (SEA): This involves webmasters and marketers creating advertisements that appear in search engine results. They are targeted and suitable for a specific target group who are looking for sneakers from a specific manufacturer, for example.


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How does search engine marketing work?

Nowadays, many marketers are increasingly relying on search engine marketing, using SEO and SEA. Search engine marketing offers the advantage that it uses a specific approach.


Other advertising channels such as email marketing and display advertising increasingly work with push strategies. SEM, on the other hand, uses pull marketing. This means that interested parties and potential customers search specifically for a certain product or information. They therefore have an intention and receive the appropriate response through search engine marketing.


Directing such search queries to a website with the help of SEO and SEA proves to be very useful. Because search engine users get exactly what they are looking for.


Another advantage is that the above-mentioned approach of targeting users means that wastage is much lower than with other traditional online marketing channels. Accordingly, the costs are also more manageable and can be better controlled.


Which search engines are suitable for SEM?

Search engine marketing (SEM) is possible with almost every search engine. Google is way ahead and has a very large market share. This is also the reason why many marketers are fixated on the world's largest search engine.


But there are also exceptions. For example, if marketers want to address the American market and attract prospects and customers here, Bing is also suitable. The situation is similar if Russian and Chinese prospects are to be addressed. Yandex and Baidu are ideal for this.


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Conclusion: What is search engine marketing?

Nowadays, search engines are the linchpin for attracting interested parties and potential customers. This makes it all the more important to master the individual elements of search engine marketing 1:1 and to position yourself in the organic and paid areas. The two basic methods available for this are search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine advertising (SEA).

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