The main difference between search engine optimisation (SEO) and digital marketing is that, although SEO is an integral feature of digital marketing, SEO also stands alone as an important internet marketing function. Digital marketing also includes many other features such as content marketing, big data (which includes market and customer insight and predictive analytics), artificial intelligence and machine learning.
Additional digital marketing functions are social media marketing, mobile marketing and marketing automation. Another aspect of modern digital marketing, conversion rate optimisation (CRO) has, in some web analysis reports, overtaken or nearly overtaken the value of SEO for some websites.
The popular terms today of search engine optimisation (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM) are sometimes used as though they have identical meanings, which is not true and can lead to confusion. SEO refers to the process of increasing the number of visitors who land on a website by raising the site rank in search engine results pages, using organic methods.
However, SEM refers to increasing the overall visibility of a site. SEM actually includes such tools and procedures as SEO, organic SEO, internet marketing and paid advertising. Although SEO is an organic, free procedure, SEM uses some organic features but requires some external funding as well. Experienced, full service digital marketing companies use SEO and SEM techniques with web development procedures.
Additional Features and Functions of SEO
Although search engine optimisation is often placed under the category of search engine marketing, SEO is actually a complete process in itself. There are two aspects of SEO that stay the same, on-page and off-page work. Other features and functions of SEO are always in a state of changing or updating as needed.
It includes such on-page features as page design and formatting, page loading speed, keyword usage in website content and effective social media integration in web page content. Off-page features include top quality internal and external links with high degrees of relevance and larger amounts of social media integration.
Importance of Various Digital Marketing Features
The three top-rated features of digital marketing today in terms of value and effect in obtaining results are content marketing, big data (which includes market and customer insight and predictive analytics) and artificial intelligence and machine learning. Everyone who uses the Internet regularly also encounters and uses these powerful and effective tools constantly. Although content marketing is forever changing with the rapid development of new interactive features and innovative technologies, it continues to maintain its position as a top-rated element of digital marketing.
With use of market and customer insight and predictive analytics, customers’ behavioral trends are interpreted, and customer discovery, segmenting and targeting is automated. Artificial intelligence can communicate and interact with customers, and with use of machine learning, customers can be effectively segmented and their behaviors predicted.
Even with all the frequent introductions of new aspects, techniques and functions of digital marketing, SEO remains a prominent tool of high value and impact in the active industry and arena of contemporary digital marketing.