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This is another post that inspired by many questions I saw on forums. The terms of SEO, SEM and SMO have many online marketer and SEO newbie got in confusion. So I think I will breakdown these 3 terms from my own knowledge about them.


Search Engine Optimization (SEO)


In short, SEO is techniques and methods used to increase website’s traffic and its appearance on search engines results. There are two methods of SEO; on-page and off-page. On page method includes keywords, title tag, meta tag and description, keyword density, heading tags, website design and unique content.

Meanwhile, off-page optimization includes blog comment, forum posting, directory submission, article submission, web 2.0 and also search engine marketing (SEM) and social media optimization (SMO). I know some people say that SEM is a broad concept that includes SEO in it. But I think it’s the other way around. So you decide yourself which one is right for you, but still, they are only terms, the only thing you should care about is how to implement them. So, let’s move to our second description.


Search Engine Marketing (SEM)


According to Wikipedia, SEM is “a form of internet marketing that involves the promotion of websites by increasing their visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs) through optimization (both on-page and off-page) as well as through advertising (paid placements, contextual advertising, and paid inclusions).” SEM offers 3 methods; Pay-Per-Click (PPC), Paid Inclusion and Search Engine Advertising. When using Google Analytics, traffics come from SEM methods will appear in non-organic search. These paid links will cost you quite lots of money but work really good to generate traffic and increase page rank, especially if you use Google Adword.


Social Media Optimization (SMO)


SMO refers to promoting your products and services on social media sites with the intent to attract unique visitors to website content. The social media sites could be Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram or social bookmarkings such as Stumbleupon or Digg. I can say that now social media sites hold a big part of generating traffics and crawled better by Google. The more you get ‘Likes’ on Facebook page, the better your valued by Google. This is the advantage of SMO; you will get higher traffic by going viral.


While there are many discussions about whether SEO, SEM and SMO should merge, I think when you are promoting your website, products or service, the best way to do it is by use these 3 techniques. Implementing only 1-2 techniques may give you good result but not maximum. What do you think? Give me your thoughts about this topic, I can use more info on this topic.


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