This blog will discuss the correlation, and the differences between search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM). Both practices, if done correctly, will increase your rankings in search engines, like Google and Bing.

SEM is referred to as gaining traffic on search engines by buying ads. Often times, the paid ads on a search engine, like Google, appear at the very top of the page. Businesses pay for ads by the process of CPC (cost-per-click), or PPC (pay-per-click). Businesses, who invest in SEM, pay a sum of money each time someone clicks their link in the paid ad. The paid ads gets businesses to the top of search engines, however, this does not always correlate into more customers or a higher profit.

SEO is the process of getting more traffic to your website, using the free organic searches on search engines. The organic searches appear just underneath the paid ads. The goal of SEO practice is to appear at the top of the organic list. Having many positive factors, like a strong HTML title, Meta descriptions, original quality content, analytics, sitemap, social bookmarking, directories, and reliable links back to your site, can increase the odds of success for your company. These practices are called White Hate SEO. When practicing SEO make sure to follow these guidelines. Boston Web Marketing will help your business become more visible on the World Wide Web, by providing your site with the above-mentioned positive factors.

When you invest in SEM, there is nothing you can do wrong, that will harm or negatively affect your rankings. This is so because the system of paid ads will not allow you to “cheat” the system.

However, if you do decide to go with SEO, make sure to avoid Black Hat SEO. Black Hat SEO is bad practices which will inevitably hurt your rankings on search engines.  Black Hat SEO pays companies to put their URL on link farms to increase the number of links back to their site. These links are not considered reliable, and will be flagged down by Google using their Penguin update. The Penguin update will shut down any site using these unreliable links. Another practice that will hurt your rankings is using unoriginal content. Your content needs to be original, rich, and reliable. If your content is unoriginal and poor, Google will shut down your site using the Panda update.

SEM works best when it is combined with White Hat SEO. SEM in combination with SEO can help bring more traffic to your website, which will then help increase your profit. Positive White Hat practices added to the paid ads can help increase traffic to your website.

When you invest in SEM, your company’s website will be guaranteed a top spot on a search engine’s paid advertisement. When you invest in this, you will be required to pay a sum of money to the search engine every time a user clicks on your ad. Paying for your business to appear at the top of search engine’s advertisement page, will not guarantee you more traffic, or customers to your business. That is why it is smart to also practice SEO. SEO practices will help get your website noticed on the web. Good SEO practices can help increase traffic to your website. If you are interested in investing in SEM, you are highly recommended to practice, SEO, too.


-Joe Giorgianni

If you are interested in more SEO techniques or would like to hire us to manage your reputation online contact us at: or call 857.526.0096.

Boston Web Marketing | 1 McKinley Square Suite 7, | Boston, MA 02109 |

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