Search Engine Advertising


Paid search, or Search Engine Advertising (SEA), is a close discipline of SEO and Search Engine Marketing (SEM), with which is usually associated.

It consists of the placement of paid answers (based on auction or fixed cost) in the search engine results page (SERP), as opposed to the free results, called natural or organic.

The purchase of sponsored links is by simply buying keywords such as from the Google AdWords interface. From the site in question, for ex., you can purchase the display of your ad in the pages with results for a number of keywords that will be considered relevant (according to a preliminary study).

AdWords is Google’s advertising creative platform but it is also possible to broadcast paid SEO ads on other search engines like Bing or Yandex (widely used in Russia). These search engines have their own platforms and creation of paid search management.

Each group of keywords relates in fact to an advertisement that the advertiser will create on Google Adwords (according to specific criteria: under 25 characters + 2 description lines of 35 characters each + “URL display” 35 characters + “destination URL”). Thus, when a user types a key word belonging to the list of words selected by the advertiser, the announcement that it will have previously created (in relation to those keywords) appear in the first results of Google in the form of sponsored links (top or in the right column).

However, it should be clear that this practice can in no way substitute the organic positioning: it is rather a complementary technique for the short term (for example during a launch of a site or a promotional campaign).

Moreover, statistics show that people click first on the so-called natural links rather than paid links:

Visibility natural vs paid links links:

  • Visibility > Visibility of natural links (% of click through rate) > Visibility of sponsored links (in% of click through rate)
  • No. 1 position in the search engine > 100% > 50%
  • Position 2 in the search engine > 100% > 40%
  • No. 3 position in the search engine > 100% > 30 %

Payment method for purchasing keyword campaigns: The remuneration principles are simple: each ad clicked involves remuneration for Google equivalent to the amount of keywords typed by the user on the search engine allowing the said ad display.

The sponsored links (or commercial links, or promotional links) are links for advertising purposes. They usually appear in the margin results in the search engines, in some software, and are identified as such.

Commercial links have blossomed in recent years and are present on all the major search engines (Google, MSN, and Yahoo have their own governing trade links) under a variety of name:, trade links, sponsored links, or sponsored listings . The main search engine offer also to display the ads on other websites. The advertiser has the choice to appear on partner sites of the search engine.

The sponsored links are also present on many commercial, editorials, personal sites… thus ensuring on the last a major source of revenue and may represent up to all of such earnings.

The success of these links is that they guarantee to the advertiser an immediate and optimal presence of the site on search engines and an increased visibility (usually before a graphics layout ) beside the raw results obtained by the search engine.

In principle, the advertiser made the purchase for a period for queried terms and keywords on which he wishes to see his site positioned. This purchase is often done by auction, determining the amount of the bid placement of an advertisement in relation to those of the competition.

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