SEA = Search Engine Advertising

1. What is the difference between SEA and SEM?

SEA stands for Search Engine Advertising and refers to the placement of paid text ads in the search results pages of all search engines. This includes not only Google, but also Yandex, Bing, Baidu and others. Text ads are placed with paid keywords.

2. how does it work?

On the search results pages, there is space for up to ads above the organic search results. Where ads appear depends on keywords and cost-per-click according to the pay-per-click principle. With the pay-per-click (PPC) or cost-per-click (CPC) principle, you only pay if the ad is actually clicked. For each keyword, the advertiser submits a cost-per-click bid. Bid runs in the background for each search query and the higher the bid, the more likely the ad will appear.


In addition to the highest bid an advertiser is willing to pay for a click, there are other factors that influence the ad rank. The sum of these factors results in the so-called quality factor for a keyword. This is calculated from three factors:


 – Landing page quality

 – Relevance of the ad to the search query

 – Previous click through rate


 Example: If several users have clicked on the ad, but only stay on the page for a very short time, this is a sign for search engines that the content of the website is irrelevant. As a result, the quality factor decreases and the placement of ads on the top positions becomes more difficult and expensive for advertisers. The reason for this is that search engine providers want to ensure high quality and a good user experience so that users do not switch search engines.


Quality factor is calculated by Google for each keyword separately and ranges from 1 to 10, the higher the better. The entire activity history of the account is also taken into account. In other words, if you have many keywords with a bad quality factor in an account, it will negatively affect those with the potential for a good quality factor.


The term targeting can be translated into German as „Zielgruppenansprache“. Targeting is therefore about aligning ads as precisely as possible to a defined target group. In SEA and display marketing (= placing banners on the right websites), ads are tailored as precisely as possible to the target group in order to minimize wastage and use budgets efficiently.

3. Who are the SEA service providers?

In addition to Google, there are Bing, Yahoo!, Yandex and Baidu, to name the providers with relevant market share.

 Google: Google has the highest market share worldwide with over 80%. In German-speaking countries, Google is by far the most important provider of Google Ads products, with a market share of over 90%.


Yahoo! : An affiliate advertising network called Yahoo!


Bing: The related advertising system is called Bing Ads and is the second most popular search engine in Europe.


Baidu: Baidu is the top search engine in China. However, the privacy settings are problematic and the search results are criticized for censorship. The advertising system is called Baidu Tuiguang.


Yandex: Yandex is one of the largest search engines in Russia. The advertising system is directly called Yandex. Wolf Prey, Chapter


  •  Short-term measures: Actions that can be taken in the short term and produce results. This is especially useful for new products or topics that do not yet rank well in the organic niche.
  •  Effective cost control: With a set daily budget, you have costs under control.
  •  Measurable and optimized capabilities: Among other things, click costs can be linked to the number of conversions to calculate return on investment.
  •  Regional targeting: SEA offers the option of advertising in cities, related regions, or near activity locations. Thus, diffusion losses can be minimized.

Of course, we will also be happy to advise you on this!

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