Search Marketing

Search Marketing is defined as targeting users who are search for specific words online and trying to solicit their clicks through either paid search (the ads to the left of the page) or organic search (the results in the center of the page).

Search Terms

Broad search terms are short keywords that often have a lot of traffic.  Such as “gold”, or “coins”.  Longer keywords are more specific   commonly referred to as “long tail keywords”.  Examples of these would be “mercury dime 3 coin set”, or “2008 gold buffalo 4 coin set”.

Typically close rates on clicks are better for long tail keywords then short keywords.  This makes intuitive sense since long tail keywords bring clicks from people who have already made a decision of what key want to buy.

Paid Search

Paid search is most effective when used to target long tail keywords because there is usually a higher click through rate and thus lower cost per click.  On top of that, the conversion rate is better.

Organic Search

Organic search is non-paid search.   The highest click through rates are for natural search.  The top position of a particular phrase gets a 70% click through rate.  Position 2 30%.  Position 3 10% and it moves down dramatically after that.  In order to achieve rankings for a particular term, we apply a technique called search optimization.


Search Optimization (SEO)

Search optimization is the manipulation of natural search results through a number of methods.  The first and most critical is on page optimization.  This means that the indexed page is properly designed with title tags, meta tags, and descriptions that include the keyword.  The second method, which takes much longer and requires an investment of money and time, is link building.

Link Building

Link building is simply the acquisition of links from other websites that point to your website.  There are a number of way this is done.  A brief list of possible link sources is listed below:

1.        Link Exchanges

2.       Publishing Articles

3.       Social Networking Sites

4.       Web 2.0 sites

5.       Video sites

6.       Forum posts

7.       Blog Commenting

8.       Directory listings

9.       Press releases / news sites

The details in how link building is accomplished can really affect the success or failure of any link building strategy.

Limitations of search marketing

The most obvious limitation of search marketing is that people must be looking for whatever you are selling.  For example for someone to market a “2006 Gold Buffalo NGC MS 70” using search marketing, somebody must enter either a general term like “coins” and then happen to go on your site and buy that coin.  Or they enter a more specific term like “2006 Gold Buffalo NGC MS 70” and then they find your site after looking through a number of sites and then buy the coin from you.  In this last case  it is much more likely for a customer to purchase after going to your site for this specific term however because the person is shopping around, price becomes a decisive factor.

A secondary problem is that since people have to be looking for your product, you are working with a finite number of people looking for whatever product you may be selling.  If there is nobody looking for that specific item, then your hope is that they will come to your site off a more general term and then happen to buy something.  In summary, since there is a limited amount of searches there is not the same type of scalability in search marketing as there is for say TV spots.

Shopping Engines

These days shopping engines like Google products and the find are becoming more important than ever.  This is very similar to other types of search marketing since the person must be searching for the particular item.  In your case if you list your items on shopping sites and compete with companies that are already selling your product and try to sell at a higher price, you have almost no chance in making a sale and you cannibalize your own business.