Search engine marketing or SEM is not an unfamiliar concept to us in Singapore. With many businesses shifting to the online market every year, SEM becomes a trend in furthering business operations online. What we barely realize is that SEM is actually very similar to traditional marketing even though the platform has changed. Today, we will share with you the factors that can affect your SEM campaign while relating it to traditional marketing. This way, even starters in search engine optimization will be able to understand the concepts behind search engine marketing. There are many other factors that can affect your online campaign and they further vary depending on the online platform you are using. However, here are seven of the most important ones:
- Accessible but secured website
- Mobile-Friendly Interface
- Page Speed
- Backlinks, Outbound Links & Interlinkings
- Technical SEO
Accessible but secured website
Unless we are talking about social media marketing, your website will most likely be the centre of attention when it comes to SEM. Just like in traditional marketing, the best way to promote your brands or stores is to get them recognized. How else will you be able to drive sales than to draw the market’s attention to your store, right? The same goes for online marketing, only that in this scheme, your website is your virtual store and it is competing with other websites in a large but saturated market that is the internet.
Thus, the first thing you want to consider when running an SEM campaign is to ensure that your website is accessible. However, you should also maintain a good degree of security while you’re at it. Why is that? Here’s a simple answer, try to imagine that your website is a physical store. You will want people to come to your store in order for your products and services to sell. Thus, you put an “open” sign on your door and even install decorative balloons and festival favours to call your customers’ attention. However, since everyone can enter your store, it entails that you are at risk of theft or sabotage. Hence, you install CCTV cameras, employ security personnel, and restrict access to some areas in your store. This is very similar to how your website must work.
If you want to sell your products or services through your website, you must let online users access it. However, you must provide some security measures against data breaching, hacking, and other online threats that may endanger your website and your customers. Adding such measures will also gain you more page visitors given that they feel safe while accessing your website. An SEM company can detect and resolve issues regarding online security to keep your website safe from attacks.
Now, when you gain page visitors, they have to land on a page that compels them to stay until they are driven to buy your products or services. A website that is not user-friendly can be compared to a physical store that is cluttered and disorganized. As much as a customer will leave the store if he could not find the item he was looking for, a page visitor will click back on the search result if your website couldn’t provide what he is looking for at first glance. You have to remember that people over the internet have short attention spans, they would quickly jump to another website to find the content they are looking for. This circumstance is technically called bounce rate in SEM. When your website has high bounce rates, it is very likely that Google will mark your website as unhelpful and you will lose the chance of getting into the first page of search results. Thus, it is important to keep a user-friendly interface for your website. This includes but is not limited to a reasonable resolution for images, on-point content, readability, attractive layout, and proper use of colours, contrast and font size.
A huge part of your success in SEM lies in your website’s mobile-friendly design. You have to remember that your page visitors do not use their computers or laptops all the time. In fact, the majority of online users are using mobile phones and tablets when browsing the internet. Thus, if your website is not mobile-friendly, you will run the risk of having high bounce rates. If you check your website on your phone and it’s not mobile-friendly, you may want to immediately seek the help of an SEM agency in Singapore to resolve the problem.
Why did we mention earlier that the images on your website must be at a reasonable resolution? Why not make all of them in high resolution? The answer is connected to this factor, page speed. Your page speed or the amount of time it takes to load the content of your website can greatly affect your SEM campaign. As mentioned earlier, your page visitors have short attention spans, and a loading page is certainly a pet peeve for them. This is why you wouldn’t want to post images and videos on your website that can be too difficult to load. Other technicalities to improve your page speed can be achieved through the help of various SEM services.
Backlinks, Outbound links & Interlinks
Most of the time, posting content on your website closely resembles doing research. However, in the online scheme, giving credits to sources is made easy using links. In a larger sense, it isn’t called the World Wide Web for nothing. As the name suggests, it is a very large web with strands linking to one another. Your content is among those strands. It can be connected to or from another strand through linkings. Here are the three types of links you can use for SEM campaigns:
Interlinks are the links that connect the pages within your website. The main purpose of this type of linking is to direct the page visitors to certain pages in your website that are connected to what they are currently reading. For example, you will want to add an interlink in your CTA so instead of just saying “Please go to our contact page to connect with us” you can instead link the URL of your contact page to words like “contact us” or “send us an enquiry”. This will make things easier for your visitors and will also direct them on how to navigate through your website in such a way that it will drive sales.
Backlinks are technically called inbound links. These links are those that direct to your website as posted on other websites. Why would other website owners want to direct users to your website? Simple, because they have to give credit to their sources. When your content is used by other website owners for their own content, they will likely reference your website through backlinks. A reputable digital marketing company can produce a good amount of backlinks to improve your website’s visibility.
Opposite of backlinks, outbound links are those in your pages but are directed to other websites. In most cases, they are also referenced to your content to make it reliable and credible.
Technical SEO involves meta titles, meta descriptions, use of keywords, alternative text for images, among other things. More often than not, these aspects are critically designed to meet the standards based on Google algorithms. A good SEM company can provide technical SEO for your website.
Last but not least is your content. As much as the tagline, message, and imagery are crucial to traditional marketing, content is very important in SEM. People are looking for quality content whenever they browse the internet. Whether they are looking for a recipe, a news article, or a list of tips, you have to provide them with compelling content that will make them stay and revisit your website.
Learning these factors will help you understand SEM better. However, if you want to ensure an effective online marketing campaign, we recommend that you let an experienced SEM agency in Singapore handle it for you. This way, you will be certain that your investments will pay off!