The services relating to Search Engine Marketing (SEM) are well known as the most effective method to get meaningful traffic to your site and improving your conversion rate. So effective, in fact, that even the best internet marketing company will focus 80% of its strategy on gaining a valuable presence on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).

And it’s not misspent at all. But of course, there are methods that are often easier and cheaper, that can supplement your SEO and Internet Marketing Company’s efforts. If done right, they’ll end up boosting your rank without on-page optimisation.

Display Advertising

These are the advertisements you see when you visit a webpage. It typically has media rich copy, like a banner ad. This can be done as part of an individual agreement between a single site or a syndicate of websites. AdSense from Google have one of the biggest and most sophisticated networks for display advertising.

These are typically done on a cost-per-impression basis but if targeted correctly, they tend to achieve a promising return on investment. The internet marketing company will usually handle the targeting specifics, as it can require some tweaking. Some of the targeting methods include:

• Contextual – relating to content on the page
• Placement – Set by demographics, vertical, geographic location, or URL
• Interest Based – Based on user interests and browsing behaviour (subject to some controversy)

Social Media Marketing

Agencies will often specialise in these types of campaigns. With the social network revolution, particularly in South Africa, these types of web marketing efforts are gaining popularity. Many argue that they have little marketing potential as users of social networks are more averse to commercialism on these mediums than any other format online.

Your Internet Marketing Company will likely implement a campaign that will focus more on building the image of your brand and overall consumer awareness, than it does on conversions. This way you won’t alienate your target markets.

E-Mail Marketing

An e-marketing strategy almost as old as the internet itself. It gained, and still holds, immense prominence due to its relatively low cost and a marketer’s ability to directly measure the results of a campaign and make alterations. It’s very controversial though, as many consider it either an extreme annoyance or an invasion of privacy.

Your first reaction when you think of e-mail marketing is the endless list of spam that pours into your inbox each day, that you don’t even bother opening before deleting. And that’s a good instinct.

Despite its constant growth, cold-call e-mail marketing campaigns have ridiculously low success rates and do nothing but breed resentment from most consumers. Rather, it should be used in conjunction with your CRM Database to bring valuable and interesting content to your existing customers, they may spread it by word-of-mouth.

‘The web isn’t the limit of website marketing’, should be a factor considered by your internet marketing company.

Affiliate Marketing

A performance based model that involves a third party webpage promoting a specified domain’s products or services for a sort of commission fee.

While often expensive, this leaves the entire marketing strategy of your brand on the web to another company. Which can be good or bad, depending on your desired level of corporate control and internet marketing expertise.