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If you’re new to web or digital marketing, you’ve probably heard the terms SEO, SEM and SMM. It’s normal if you find them confusing at the beginning, but it’s essential to distinguish them well, since these terms are enormously commom in web. I remember learning them several years ago during my electronic marketing course at HEC, and since then I’ve used these strategies to help various companies to increase their web presence. In this article, I will explain to you the main differences between SEO, SEM and SMM.


SEO: Search Engine Optimization


SEO refers to search engine optimization. You should use this strategy from the moment you create your website. There are many ways to do SEO.


There are two types of SEO: on-site SEO and off-site SEO. The on-site SEO concerns everything you can optimize on your website. Here are some examples :

  • Insert strategic keywords on your site
  • Use of internal links
  • Properly name your images and optimize their format
  • Improve the speed of your site

As for the off-page SEO, it aims to optimize the search engines, but this time outside your site. Here are some known practices of off-site SEO:

  • Obtaining external links (focus on quality rather than quality)
  • Acquisition of traffic via social networks


SEM: Search Engine Marketing


The SEM refers to marketing on the search network. The best known networks are undoubtedly Google and Bing, which allow SEM to be made from Google Ads (formerly called Adwords) and Bing Ads. From these platforms, you can create different types of ads that may appear in the few first search results based on your keywords. Unlike SEO which is free, SEM is chargeable. For example, in many cases, companies pay for each click they get. This practice is justified by the fact that it allows you to have tight control over your ads and to get high quality traffic. A lot of companies are doing SEM today, because nowaday it’s very difficult to appear in the top search results without paying. This type of advertising can quickly have a positive impact on your business if it’s well executed. Découvrez mes services en publicité Google et Bing ici.


SMM: Social Media Marketing


When we talk about SMM, we’re talking about social media marketing. In the past, it was easy to promote your site for free using social media. This is no longer the case. Today, most B2C companies use paid social networks advertising to show their products and services. A big advantage of this type of advertising is that it makes it possible to precisely target a group of users, thanks to all the data that Facebook has. SMM is a great way to market your brand, drive traffic and test your content among strategic users. Click here to discover my Facebook & Instagram advertising services


Finally, as you can see, SEO, SEM and SMM are complementary strategies. Having a good SEO will allow you to increase your traffic for free, SEM will allow you to obtain clicks that are a lot valuable for your business and to have control over your ads, while SMM will help you to achieve specific goals by advertising with your targeted customers. I hope my article helped you to understand SEO, SEM, and SMM. What’s your industry and which of these strategies works best for your business?