What exactly is online marketing?

Filed under category: Misc

online marketing, ppc, seo, website design, social media

Online marketing is changing the way small businesses, companies and individuals reach their target audience. Whether you are selling a product or service, or campaigning for political office, online marketing can be amazingly effective. There are several methods of online marketing, this article is going to illustrate what I think are the most popular online marketing methods that people and companies use.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

One of current most popular ways to market online is search engine optimization. The process of SEO is optimizing your website so the search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing can read it properly. The goal of search engine optimization is to effectively get your website ranked on the first page of the search engines. This will drive more traffic to your website because your website is being put in front of customers faces for what they are searching for.

Search engine optimization can be one of the most effective online marketing methods and can also be one of the most cost effective. In fact, you can execute an SEO campaign without spending a single penny if you know what you are doing. Natural search engine optimization is not "pay per click". Unless you contract a professional SEO company to provide SEO services for you, then SEO will not cost you anything. The only downside to natural/organic search engine optimization is the results can take a long time to show effect (months, perhaps even years in some cases).

Pay Per Click Marketing

Pay per click marketing will advertise your website on the search engines within the "sponsored links". With pay per click marketing, this can get your site listed on the major search engines for certain keywords relatively quickly, but can be more on the expensive side. You will pay for each click to your website and you will need to make sure you are targeting your keywords properly. It is recommended to hire a professional pay per click marketing company to provide management for your pay per click campaigns. You want to make sure that you are converting traffic into leads at a maximum rate.

Banner Advertisements

Banner ads were a very popular online marketing method during the 1990s (in fact, it was practically the only online marketing method) and it was widely used by most early internet startups. Companies would buy advertising space on certain websites and have huge blinking banner ads on the site in efforts to drive visitors to their website. Banner advertisements have declined significantly and they usually are seen as spam. They are also not targeted, it is mainly a way to "get your name out there".

Email Marketing

Email marketing is a great way to reach past clients to inform them of new services or deals. Email marketing tends to generate a more favorable response if it comes from a known and trusted source. For example, if you have done business with a company before, receiving emails isn't going to necessarily frustrate you or annoy you the same way it would if you received a completely unsolicited email from a source which you have never made any contact with.

Email marketing tends to become spam when it is unsolicited, especially when people don't do their research on the companies they are trying to target.