Search engine advertising hits the target

It is not surprising to see that search engine advertising is now accounting for the biggest sector of the online advertising revenue pie (MW July 29). With 70 per cent of online transactions originating from a search query (Forrester/Interactive Advertising Bureau), advertisers have soon realised that search engine marketing (SEM), and in particular pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, is the most effective way to target customers.

The recent Google IPO illustrates the huge impact search has had in general and how it has become a vital part of daily online use and as such, many businesses are now recognising search as a valuable route to marketing online. With this in mind, companies should be looking to SEM to provide best value from their advertising budget and anyone not taking it seriously is missing a trick.

Investing in SEM means that marketers can attract high-quality traffic at a fixed cost with immediate transparency on PPC campaigns by monitoring cost per acquisition and cost per click.

With PPC, the advertiser only pays for the clicks they receive, giving them accurate information about where their spend is going. This gives marketers complete control on their online marketing spend and generates measurable results, which is not possible with banner advertising. Accountability has become the buzzword for all e-commerce players and media agencies and this is why SEM has been more successful than other online advertising techniques.

Nick Hynes

Chief executive

WSPS

London WC2

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