By Franisha Hayes, Digital Marketing Strategist

What is Organic SEM?

Organic SEM is when an organization invests in tactics to improve the website’s natural rankings on search engine results page (SERPs). Organic search marketing involves making sure your titles, tags, meta descriptions, URLs, keywords, and the content on your landing pages and blogs are educational, informative, highly relevant and authoritative to your audiences. With Google updating it’s Quality Rater Guidelines (QRG) for search from Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness (E.A.T) to (E.E.A.T) adding Experience as the new “E”, it is even more imperative to make sure your website content is up to par.  

Search Engine Marketing is also called SEO or search engine optimization. SEO is a marathon not a sprint that requires regular attention from the person maintaining your website. The effects of your SEO efforts can be seen as soon as a few weeks to six months or more to achieve front page rankings, it all depends on the foundation your organization is starting with. 

When it comes to Google, most businesses’ top goal and only goal is to rank on the first page of SERP or top 1 to 3 at best. This is a great goal to have but it is also broad, competitive, and requires a long process to accomplish.


In my experience as an SEO specialist, I find that most businesses have a hard time setting long term goals, or even short term goals that are achievable and will assist the long term goals. Others just don’t have a marketing plan at all. Identifying company objectives will enable you to set clear goals for your analytic campaigns. Doing this ensures your SEO specialist understands how to demonstrate the results and prove the value of your SEO efforts through KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators).


Before investing in long term SEO strategies, carefully consider which objectives can have an impact on your goals. Decide what your business needs to accomplish and ask questions based on the current standing of your business such as:

  • Does the company need direct sales, traffic, branding or a combination of these?
  • Do you have products or services you sell directly over the web or through leads established?
  • Is the organization or brand subject to potential negative material that needs to be controlled or mitigated?

Depending on your type of business objectives a company is able to set clear and valuable goals to give to your SEO specialist who will create valuable SEO strategies. It would enable your Analytics specialist to create valuable goals using analytics tracking. Some to start with could consist of:


  • Converting X% of facebook users to new customers.
  • Increase traffic by X%during the slow season.
  • Sale X amount of products during a holiday season.
  • Generate X amount of new clients through lead capture forms and Ads.


This information is valuable for data analysts because then we are able to establish KPIs (Key Performance Indicators), data that tells us what has been implemented or not for a company’s year to year growth. Based on the KPIs, we are able to make appropriate recommendations to the business owners to review or refine the current marketing approach.


What is Paid Search Marketing?

With paid search marketing an organization pays a bid on keywords that could result in immediate ranking on a results page, above the organic search results and other SERP elements like a featured snippet or a “people also ask” section. 

Another form of paid search marketing is called Pay-Per-Click (PPC) marketing or PPC advertising. With PPC ads, the advertiser only pays when someone clicks on their ad, this is the most common kind of search ad.

As a Google Ads specialist and having managed a variety of campaigns for different individual personalities I have found that the common ground is that most business owners assume because they run a Google ad that leads will start pouring in overnight. Being that you are about to make an investment based on bidding against your competitors it would be smart to plan ahead instead of blindly throwing dollars at ads.

Before investing in paid advertising ask yourself questions similar to the SEO questions, paid ads can work with your SEO strategy beautifully if you plan and put some intent behind your efforts.

So How Do I Decide Which Strategy Is Best For My Business?

This is the ultimate question for most business owners when trying to decide where to put their marketing dollars. As a marketing strategist I believe that all channels matter and have a place and time to be utilized based on the foundation and current position your organization is in.

If you are new and just starting out, it is my professional recommendation to start with an SEO strategy that can help to establish a strong starting foundation. If you are not new to business but you have never focused on your audience’s wants and desires, I would recommend you to start with an SEO and content strategy as well; making sure to conduct industry research so that you can select the correct keywords and create content that meets the E.E.A.T standards.

If you are a well established organization and have already done the hard work of establishing a strong SEO foundation then I say continue monitoring and nurturing the things that currently work for your SEO strategy and combine that with some paid advertising, you are sure to achieve great results.