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What is SEO and SEM?

A down to earth explanation of a somewhat complicated service.

Author: Dan Craddock
December 15, 2017

So what is SEO and SEM? And why is there a photo of a house below this?

SEO and SEM 2

So I constantly get the question “how do we rank higher on Google?” And clients typically don’t know what exactly they’re asking for. A lot of times I’ll mention SEO and the client asks about how much it will cost them per click. Or they’ll have questions about AdWords. Now it should be known that SEO can be and should be part of your future SEM plan, but it’s a different service. And just in case you’re not sure, SEO stands for search engine optimization and SEM stands for search engine marketing. And I’m going to give a very easy explanation of the two using a home as an example.

So to start, your visual identity that we put together which should include a logo, website, social media, printing and whatever contributes to the visual look of your company will be considered your new house. You’ve got this new house, you can live in it, there’s some stuff there and it’s useful. But now, you’re ready to showcase this beautiful new home with the entire neighborhood. That’s where SEO and SEM can come in.

Think of SEM as a house warming party. A big blow out that shows off all your great stuff to a huge group all at once. Which is great, but when it’s over, that’s it. Everyone goes home and you have to clean the rug and find your dog.

SEO and SEM 3
this dog

Now typically when you throw a party like this it’s not last minute. You choose a date far enough ahead to make sure you can get as many people to come as possible.

This is where SEO services come in handy. This is all the prep work to get ready for the party. Think of it as grocery shopping, cleaning, handyman repairs, landscaping, decorating, putting together recipes, and figuring out entertainment. It’s all the behind the scenes stuff that’s important in order to throw a really great party! Without the prep work of SEO, your party (business) is just going to be your Grandma (HI GRANDMA!) a stack of Kraft Singles Cheese and two balloons. Not great…

SEO and SEM 4
awful

I really hope this helps clear up some confusion you may have had about SEO or SEM services. Or at least made you laugh! So just to recap, think of SEM as the event and SEO as the prep work leading up to the event.

If you’re interested in hearing more about how Metro Nova Creative can help manage your SEO, just give me a shout!

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